Cheap Alarm Monitoring with a Wireless, DIY System
SimpliSafe is a wireless DIY alarm system (do-it-yourself) that you
purchase online, then self-install in your home. The system consists of a
base unit, keypad, and several wireless sensors. The door, window, and
motion sensors install using 3M sticky tape, so no tools are required.
The equipment comes to you pre-programmed, and voice prompted start-up
makes installation quick and easy.
There are various packages or kits available with prices starting at
$230, each with a different level of protection. This should make the
Simplysafe system a good fit for anything from an apartment alarm to a
medium or large home.
By the way, the SimpliSafe company seems happy to use various spellings of its brand name.
Besides the main spelling, I’ve seen Simplysafe and Simply Safe, all
associated with the same product. Not to be one to rock the boat, I’ll
also use the terms interchangeably here.
The systems are offered with UL certified monitoring for only
$14.99/month, with no contract. This price is roughly
half the rate charged by most other national chain alarm companies.
Simplisafe can offer savings like this largely because you purchase the
system online (no sales commissions to pay) and install it yourself (no
The $14.99/month price covers the "Standard" level of protection, which includes central station monitoring. If you also want features like remote control via smartphone and text alerts, you'll need to upgrade to the "Interactive" plan, which costs $24.99/month.
There is no phone line needed, since the system
communicates over the cellular network. This means you don’t have to
have a landline, and a burglar can’t cut phone lines to keep the alarm
The Simplysafe equipment is wireless, so no wiring, drilling, or holes in the walls are needed.
Monitoring starts at $14.99 per month, with no contract.
detectors can be added to the system, allowing homeowners to take
advantage of discounts on insurance rates for having a monitored fire
If you’re looking to save money by getting a DIY home
alarm, this is probably one of the easiest systems around. Once you
self-install the equipment, it’s basically “plug and play”. With all of
the programming done for you, you can start using the system right away.
Simplisafe alarm is expandable up to 41 components, so it will work for
an apartment security system up to all but the largest homes.
Simply Safe alarm system will operate as a stand-alone system, if you
decide you don’t want to pay to have it monitored. If you go this route,
consider buying an auxiliary siren. These units are much louder than the basic sounder in the keypad, and
will be the only real deterrent without the monitoring feature.
For help deciding whether or not you should monitor your alarm, see these pages:
You’ll have to install the system yourself, but granted, it’s very easy.
A reasonably handy person should find this a breeze. The pre-programmed
devices use peel and stick mounting, so no tools are needed. If you do have any problems, their customer support is very
good based on the Simplisafe reviews I’ve checked.
Like most DIY home security systems, you’ll be doing any
required service work (like battery changes). Again, fairly handy folks
shouldn’t have any problem.
Although the monitoring is very cheap, you do have to
purchase the equipment up-front. As with most burglary alarm systems,
it’s a compromise. You can get a free or cheap system at a higher
monitoring rate, or purchase the equipment outright and pay monitoring
at a lower rate. For more on how this works, see this page on home
security alarm monitoring.
As with any wireless burglar alarm, there is always the chance that
radio communication between the base and the remote transmitters could
be lost. However, with an advertised range of 400-500 feet, this likely
won’t be an issue unless you have a very large house.
Like most other security brands, the Simplysafe alarm system is proprietary equipment. This means it can’t be used with
any other brand of alarm system. If you decide to switch companies,
you’ll have to pay for a new system.
Simplysafe doesn’t offer any option for cameras or video equipment. If
you have your heart set on any kind of video security camera system, it
will have to be added separately.
So, who should choose a Simply Safe security system?
your home has fewer than 40 openings on the ground floor, the system
should be adequate. If you own a home bigger than this, you’d probably
be better off with a larger alarm panel with zone expansion
Because no holes have to be put in the walls, this
system is ideal for renters. When you leave, you can remove the
equipment, take it with you, and still get your security deposit back.
For those on a tight budget, Simply Safe offers cheap alarm monitoring with a reasonable initial cost.
do-it-yourselfers, this is one of the easiest DIY alarm systems you
could ask for: Pre-programmed, voice-prompted installation, and no
If you plan to self-monitor your alarm system, you'll need to upgrade to the Interactive plan for $24.99 per month. Since there are other systems available that allow you to self monitor for free, SimpliSafe may not be the best choice for you.
For more advanced do it yourself alarm system fans, I
think the Simplysafe alarm may appear to be a little too easy. With almost everything done for you, there’s
not much left to tinker with!
Safe could become the
system of choice for many people who are already considering a DIY alarm system. For those unable or unwilling to install equipment themselves, traditional professional alarm companies will always be there. I’ll update this section
with any new developments as they happen.
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