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Keeping our home and family safe from intruders and natural threats is now easy, even if we are away. This is because we have home security systems that do the job for us, alerting us of any potential danger and even calling for help when we’re not around.
There are several reliable home security providers you can choose from. Two of them are ADT and Monitronics (also known as Brinks). While these two have the same goal of helping us protect our home, there are differences in the way they go about it.
Contents (Jump to)
- 1 The Main Difference Between Monitronics vs ADT Home Security
- 2 What makes them similar?
- 3 Monitronics (Brinks)
- 4 Plans
- 5 Warranty and cancellation
- 6 What you would like about Monitronics (Brinks)
- 7 What could be better
- 8 ADT Home Security
- 9 Plans
- 10 Warranties and cancellation
- 11 What you would like about ADT
- 12 What could be better
- 13 Final Verdict
The Main Difference Between Monitronics vs ADT Home Security
The Main Difference Between Monitronics vs ADT Home Security are:
- Monitronics is a DIY security system, whereas ADT is a professional security system.
- Monitronics only offers a 30-day warranty period, whereas ADT offers a significantly longer warranty period of six months.
- Monitronics doesn’t offer medical alert pendant, whereas ADT does and allows its professional monitoring team to respond to medical emergencies in case you are alone at home and the control panel is out of reach.
What makes them similar?
Both Brinks and ADT require a three-year contract.
Neither Brinks nor ADT offers free equipment. These devices must be purchased or rented.
Both company’s home security systems offer around-the-clock monitoring service. They also both offer many of the same equipment plans and features.
Brinks and ADT also offer smartphone connectivity, as well as landline, Wi-Fi, and cellular connectivity options.
Let’s dive in and give each brand an in-depth look
Monitronics is one of the most recognized brands in the home security space in the United States. It’s been around since 1994 and has more than a million subscribers. However, in 2016, it underwent a change in leadership and was rebranded to MONI Smart Security. Then, two years later, MONI got the branding rights for the “Brinks” name, so it is now doing business as Brinks Home Security.
Brinks offers simple, affordable, and personalized home security systems that come with quick 24/7 professional monitoring and alarm response. These systems showcase the ASAPer technology, which is a patented mobile platform that boasts fast connection with loved ones in cases of emergency.
You can easily install your Brinks system yourself or you can have the company install it for you.
With Brinks Home Security, you have three plans to choose from: Smart Security Essential, Smart Security Complete, and Smart Security Ultimate. Aside from paying for the system price of a specific plan, you also have to pay for the professional monitoring service. All plans lock you in for
36 months under the contract.
Aside from the three Brinks plans, the company also offers a Nest Secure package.
Smart Security Essential
This basic plan has a system price of $199 that you pay up front and a monitoring service fee of $29 per month. This basic system is designed for easy DIY installation, wherein you can just peel and stick the sensors.
The Smart Security Essential plan comes with the Brinks Home Touch touchscreen control panel, two wireless door sensors, and a wireless motion sensor. A yard sign and stickers are included in the package, too.
Moreover, this plan provides cellular backup, smartphone control, tamper protection, LiveVoice Assist, and home automation option.
Smart Security Complete
Smart Security Complete has everything in the basic plan but with the added power of a 24/7 smartphone video. The system price for this package is $499, which you can pay up front or in monthly installments of $13.86. You also need to pay a $39 monthly monitoring service fee.
This system package comes with a touchscreen control panel, two wireless motion sensors, three wireless door sensors, and an HD indoor camera with night vision. This camera can detect motion and automatically record in case of an alarm. It also allows you to view a live video of the footage via your smartphone at any given time.
Smart Security Ultimate
Smart Security Ultimate is Brinks’ top-of-the-line system package, offering the sensors you get from the lower-tier plan plus an outdoor camera and video doorbell for that extra layer of protection.
This system comes with the Brinks Home Touch control panel, two wireless motion sensors, three wireless door sensors, a Brinks Home outdoor camera, and a SkyBell Slim Line video doorbell. You also get professional installation with the plan.
You can pay $1099 up front for the system, or $30.53 per month. You also need to pay a monthly monitoring service fee of $39.
Nest Secure has a system price of $399, which you can pay up front or in monthly installments of $11.08. You also need to pay a monitoring service fee of $29 per month. With this plan, you are not bound by any contract for the monitoring.
This package already comes with the Nest Guard, two Nest Detects, two Nest Tags, as well as a yard sign and stickers.
Warranty and cancellation
Brinks provides a 30-day trial period. If you are not satisfied in the 30 days, you can simply cancel your service without questions asked and without having to pay a termination fee.
Brinks offers a two-year warranty on its systems.
What you would like about Monitronics (Brinks)
For people with regular-sized homes, Brinks’ do-it-yourself system is an advantage.
It does offer professional set up and installation on two of its higher-tier packages, but its systems are basically DIY. Bricks’ systems are pre-configured and the devices are easy peel-and-stick that you can set everything up in as little as 30 minutes.
The good thing about this DIY installation and setup is that you don’t need to pay installation or activation fees, allowing you to save a bit more when purchasing your home security system. You also get the ability to modify your system.
Another plus point for Brinks is that all its equipment are wireless and connect via Wi-Fi or cellular service. Its system doesn’t require a landline in order to connect with emergency services. This also means that you can do away with drilling holes on your wall.
The company also offers remote operation through a convenient app, which you can download to your smartphone or tablet.
Moreover, Brinks devices are compatible with Nest products and can integrate with the Nest security system. This offers partial home automation at any time.
Additionally, if your security plan includes video devices, you will be able to store recorded clips in the cloud.
Bricks also offers around-the-clock monitoring by its team of professionals who are ready to respond in case of an emergency.
What could be better
Most security plans under Brinks require a three-year commitment. This is not something very attractive for people who are renting or have the possibility of moving to another home within that period.
Another thing customers may find a turn-off is that professional installation costs extra, given that Brinks’ systems are essentially DIY. If you go for professional installation using Brinks Pro Install services, you will have to pay a one-time installation fee of $199 or in installments of $10 per month. Availing of this professional installation service will extend your warranty from two years to lifetime coverage.
ADT Home Security
ADT boasts more than 140 years in the home security business and is considered as the world’s leading security provider. Aside from home security systems, the company also provides automation options and 24/7 professional monitoring.
ADT offers different home security plans, as well as designs custom solutions to suit your security needs.
The company provides and installs security equipment through independent partners. Protect Your Home is its premier third-party provider. ADT monitors its systems and automates your home through both hardwired and wireless connection.
ADT’s security system packages tie you up for a 36-month period. These plans include the equipment and the costs for professional monitoring.
This is ADT’s entry-level plan and costs $27.99 per month.
It comes with a digital keypad, three door and window sensors, a loud alarm siren, an infrared motion detector, and a wireless keychain remote.
This package is landline-based and does not come with smart home features. It also doesn’t have cellular backup.
Basic Security + Wireless Connect
This security package costs $48.99 per month. It comes with everything offered in the ADT Basic package, but with the cellular backup.
ADT Pulse Select
The ADT Pulse Select costs $52.99 per month. This package gives you everything offered by the two lower-tier plans, plus home automation.
With this plan, you will be able to use the ADT Pulse app to connect to and access your system at any time and from anywhere. You can also arm and disarm your system, get real-time updates, and receive notifications.
ADT Pulse + Video
For $58.99 per month, you can get the ADT Pulse + Video package, which is like ADT Pulse Select but with additional video surveillance. Aside from the basic equipment, you get an indoor surveillance camera to monitor your home. You can use the ADT Pulse app to view what’s happening at home via live stream.
ADT Pulse + Home Automation and ADT Pulse + Video & Home Automation plans
These are the top security plans offered by ADT. These plans offer full home automation and you can opt for any of the two if you want a smart home complete with a security system.
The cost of these plans depends on the custom devices you need.
Other plans with other partners
ADT also has other third-party suppliers and offers other packages and plans with these partners. These packages and their respective prices may vary.
Warranties and cancellation
ADT gives a 90-day limited warranty for its security equipment. In case something goes wrong with your ADT security system while this warranty is in effect, you only have to pay $25 for an engineer to fix it.
The company also gives you the option to avail of its Quality Service Plan. The QSP is an extended limited warranty and is bundled in with some of ADT’s packages. For the basic packages, however, you have to upgrade to get the QSP and pay $7 a month on top of everything.
If you terminate your home security contract before the end of the 36-month term, you will need to pay 75 percent of the outstanding balance.
On top of these, ADT provides a six-month money-back guarantee, allowing you ample time to try out ADT’s services.
What you would like about ADT
You would love ADT for its professional installation as it comes with a comprehensive risk assessment done by the company’s highly trained technicians and security advisers. Through this assessment, you will be able to identify your home’s potential risks and security vulnerabilities. You will also get recommendations from the professionals with regard to the best security solution for your home.
ADT is also a great choice for people who have big pets. Its motion sensors will not be triggered by pets weighing up to around 95 pounds. That means you don’t have to worry about the alarm sounding off each time your dog passes by the motion sensor.
Aside from its pet-friendly motion sensors, the company also offers fire protection, flood/water protection, and CO monitoring. One of ADT’s latest features is the video doorbell equipped with two-way communication.
ADT also offers a number of home automation solutions. And the company’s six-month money-back guarantee is also a great deal.
What could be better
The monthly fee you need to pay under your plan doesn’t include the cost for professional installation. You need to pay $99 upfront to have your ADT system installed by professional technicians.
Speaking of costs, ADT is not as fully transparent as other security system companies are in terms of costs. You need to call ADT for a quotation and these calls could last long because customer service representatives will always try to sell you more products.
ADT’s lowest-level plan is landline-based, which means that the system has to be connected to a phone socket to work. It also does not include cellular support, so in the event that the alarm is triggered and something is wrong with your phone line, ADT won’t be able to tell. However, the alarm will still sound, and if there’s a power outage, the system still has a backup battery that will keep it active for up to eight hours.
ADT is a great choice if you are interested in effectiveness and reputation and you don’t mind the price tag. The company also offers a larger selection of features to choose from, giving you more flexibility when it comes to customizing your system.
Brinks, meanwhile, is great if you want something that is fuss-free. Its DIY home security system is attractive if you have a small place and would just want to do everything yourself. In terms of pricing, Brinks is also slightly more affordable than ADT.
Alvin has been reviewing different types of technology from QR codes to the latest smartphones and robot vacuums for over a decade. Outside of technology, he writes about a wide variety of topics, including buses, travel, bankruptcy, healthcare, and cannabis. He was once so addicted to online shopping that he was on a first-name basis with delivery guys and courier services — and he shares his passion with all of you!