Think home security and an old, off-white box might pop to mind — or maybe one of those door alarms that require you to hit a button every time you open the door. That’s none-too-thrilling. Thankfully, the world of home security — nay, home automation has catapulted far beyond that sad beeping box.
Our Picks for Best Home
Sure, there are home invasions that occur (and that home security systems can help deter). That’s not all a security system can do these days, not all of it full of doom and gloom. Connect your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide monitors to the fire department. Lock your doors from your cell phone, or make sure the oven is off and the air conditioner’s set at the right temperature. Some fully automated systems even let you control audio and video settings, so you can listen to music or watch movies in any room.
There are a ton of home security companies out there that offer countless features, with a variety of price points to match. It can be hard to pick the best for your home. That’s where we come in. We evaluated the top home security companies and found that whether you rent or own, there’s something out there for you.
Home Security Basics
Home security is simply, but sometimes finding the right setup is not. So how do you know if you’re buying too much — or, worse, not enough? That depends on your particular living situation, to be honest. Do you need something that just notifies you, the police, or the fire department when an alarm goes off? Or do you want more monitoring, like cameras, in every room?
First, you have to understand what you’re buying.
Do You Want Professional Monitoring or DIY Monitoring?
Professionally monitored alarm systems are connected to call centers that contact first responders if the alarm goes off. Of course, to have professional monitoring, you are required to have either a phone landline, internet connection, or cellular service. They all charge a monthly monitoring subscription, something you won’t have to pay if you serve as your own montior.
DIY monitoring means you’ll be the one getting the call that the alarm’s been activated. If something serious is afoot, you’ll be the one calling 911. No monthly fees, though — all you have to do is purchase the equipment, set it up to your internet router, and you’re set.
Do You Need Bundled Security or a Custom Package?
Most home security companies offer two options. The quickest route is the bundled security package. Just like a Cable TV package, there are a few options, at a couple different price points. Most basic packages give you the minimum we’d recommend — that is door and window sensors, and landline monitoring. Premium packages include internet or cellular monitoring, and more sensors and gizmos. Once you decide which bundle you’d like, the monthly cost will rarely change. However, and this is typically a deal breaker for students or renters: bundled packages generally require 36-month contracts. Three years! That’s a lot longer than the average lease.
Custom packages are ideal for people with larger homes or more unique needs. In order to get an accurate quote and assessment of what kind of custom home security system you will need, most home security companies will send a rep to evaluate what is required. With this hands-on approach, you can make an informed decision based on the needs of your house. Though you’ll need the help of a professional to get started, you won’t be on the hook for quite as long. Month-to-month contracts are typical with custom packages.
That DIY option is another good one for the no-contract set. Buy your equipment, install it, and call yourself done. Just know you’ll be own operator and dispatcher.
Before You Buy
Before click that “submit order” button, be sure to ask yourself a few questions:
- How ready am I to commit? If you’re a renter who’s always on the move, it wouldn’t really make much sense to commit to a 36-month contract — especially if you have less than a year left on your lease.
- Do I want to be the one who answers the call? Some people like knowing they won’t be sending false alarm to the professionals; others like the knowing that’s exactly who’s getting the alert.
- What other perks am I after? If you’re a homeowner, there may be some perks to getting a top-of-the-line automated home security system, like a break on your homeowners insurance policy.
Our Top Picks for the Best Home Security System in Las Vegas
To find the best companies to service your system, we evaluated seven local options. Some are industry mainstays, around for decades, while others companies are still getting their name out there. We put their customer service, equipment, reputability, and pricing to the test. With that criteria, we then put them up against our national recommendations. Of the seven companies we evaluated, only two stood out.
Las Vegas’ Best Local Home Security Companies
Brantley Security Systems
Brantley Security Systems is a locally owned and operated corporation established in 2004. The President of Brantley Security Systems has been servicing the Las Vegas Community in security since 1993.The company has demonstrated a commitment to quality by having a locally owned and operated Central Station Monitoring Center. The company also does not sell or subcontract monitoring agreements so you know you are getting a good service when you have a problem.
Brantley’s Residential Security System offers intrusion detection as its strongest quality.
Intrusion Detection gives you the ability to detect unwanted attempts at accessing your property, home and loved ones. The easiest way to build this sense of security is to invest in a Brantley Security Systems Burglar Alarm system. The company will work with you to build a unique and comprehensive system for your home.
Brantley Security Systems’ business services give business owners the flexibility to protect, manage and control property and personnel. Protection is layered with Burglar Alarms for protection, Access Control to manage authorized entry, and Cameras for identification and loss prevention. Monitoring Services include armed guard response, Open and Close Reporting, Scheduling and Cell Back-up.
Brantley Security Systems offers four packages to new customers, three of which include cellular monitoring. Basic cellular monitoring costs $60 a month, but if you don’t need much beyond a basic package, you can pay as little as $19 monthly.
Alarmco was started by Lew Whitney in 1950. It was then called Merchant Patrol and Alarm. The corporate name Alarmco, Inc. was initiated in April of 1964. Mr. Whitney went to Los Angeles and learned the business by working for no pay at a Los Angeles alarm company. He installed in the daytime and ran service at night. He came back to Las Vegas and installed his first alarm in a Thrifty Drug Store on Fremont Street. The company has seen many changes since then as it has grown its service and brand.
Alarmco’s locksmith services are a break from the home security trend. There you will find a spectrum of locksmith services. Whatever your locksmith needs – from automotive emergencies to building security, Alarmco’s locksmiths offer affordable solutions to your lock problems.
Alarmco locksmiths install any type of lock hardware including: Lever locks, deadbolts, panic hardware, door closures and much more. If you need multiple levels of keyed entry for your business, Alarmco can setup a Masterkey System tailored to your situation.
Alarmco carries the very best in High Security Signature controlled locks and keys all of which can be masterkeyed.
Looking for an electronic entry system to control access to your business during specified hours or just to help track employee activity? Alarmco provides a wide selection of hardwired, wireless and stand-alone systems to fit your needs and budget.
Alarmco’s home and business security services offer fire alarm, electronic entry, and video surveillance options.
Companies That Didn’t Make the Cut
Five local companies didn’t live up to our standards. Some had really awful websites that made it impossible to determine which systems they actually offered. Others got bad reviews from former customers, others simply never responded to our questions when we phoned and emailed.
- Progressive Home
- A&B Security
- In The Sky
- Sting Alarm
- Synergy Security
Best Bundled Options
- Frontpoint: Frontpoint is an affordable option with outstanding customer service. They offer DIY installation of their cellular monitoring system, which Frontpoint ships right to your front door. They offer three packages that require a 36-month contract.
- Protect America: Protect America offers a DIY wireless setup with a 36-month contract. But they offer a whopping five security packages. What’s more, Protect America charges no upfront costs.
- SimpliSafe: If the price is a dealbreaker, SimpliSafe’s $15 monthly for cellular monitoring is tough to beat. SimpliSafe offers four packages and require no contracts.
Best DIY Security Systems
- Lowe’s Iris: is the essence of DIY. Lowe’s offers starter packs for easy set up, or you can build your setup from scratch. Plus, Iris offers professional monitoring as an add-on for a low monthly fee.
- Piper NV: If you live in a studio or tiny one-bedroom apartment, then the Piper NV security system is the way to go. Ideal for people without much space to cover, it’s a standalone tower with a 180-degree camera, motion and sound sensor, and audible alarm.
Preventing False Alarms
False alarms can be a major headache, especially for first responders. How can you do your best prevent false alarms in your home? We suggest that everyone who’s old enough to work the system learn how to turn it off and on. There’s a brief window when you can disarm it before the professionals are called. Lock doors and windows before arming the system. Inspect your equipment on a regular basis. And practice proper maintenance of your alarms — this includes changing the batteries.
How to Register Your Alarm System in Las Vegas
You don’t have to. Las Vegas doesn’t require residents to register their home security systems.
“Residents do not need to register their home alarm system with our police department. In the event of a police response in a false alarm, there is no charge by the police department. However, some alarm companies may have charges for false alarm responses.”
— The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department
Is a home security system worth it?
Yes, absolutely. In a 2012 study researchers at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, surveyed burglars and asked them this very question. Sixty percent of them said they’d stop in their tracks if they saw a home security system. How’s that for a testimonial?
How much security do I actually need?
We recommends that you choose a system with at least an audible alarm, door sensors, and window sensors. Where you go from there is really a matter of how much space you are covering and how much automation you’re after.
The Bottom Line
Home security can give you the peace of mind you need for the price (and perks) that you’re after. Think about what you’re after and get to installing!