The best home security systems (opens in new tab)tend to fit into two categories: DIY systems you can install and operate standalone, with the option of adding monitoring, and monitoring systems that require professional installation.
Frontpoint has gone down the middle for its system, with an alarm system you self-install, but one that also requires a monitoring package. The aim is to provide a security system you get up and running quickly, but has all of the same benefits of a fully monitored system.
As a result, deals aside, Frontpoint’s hardware tends to be more expensive than the true DIY kits, such as SimpliSafe, although you do get a greater degree of customisation than with many other systems, and you can add new hardware whenever you need it.
Beyond security monitoring, the company has environmental monitoring with smoke and carbon monoxide alarms available separately.
Free cancellation: 30-days
Security monitoring: Professional 24/7
Smartphone control: Yes
System price (starts at): $430.95
Monthly costs (start at): $34.99
Wired or wireless: Wireless
Video cameras: Yes (optional)
Installation fees (start at): DIY
There are a few monitoring packages available, although some hardware packages require you to buy more expensive service plans to enable all of the features. For example, if you have a camera or add in a smart lock, you’re forced to upgrade to the most expensive monitoring package.
You also only get remote control of your system with the middle monitoring package, so check out the costs carefully before you buy. If you’re looking for a simpler DIY system, SimpliSafe (opens in new tab) may work out better value, while those interested in professional monitoring should look at Vivint (opens in new tab) or Brinks (opens in new tab) home security solutions.
Packages: How much does Frontpoint home security cost?
Frontpoint requires you to buy the hardware and install it yourself, adding on a monitoring plan. There are several hardware packages available and then multiple monitoring plans to choose from. Be careful, as some hardware packages require more expensive monitoring plans to unlock all of the features that you need. Check the final prices before you buy and then compare what you’re getting to other services, as in some situations Frontpoint can get quite expensive.
Hardware costs are a little more than you’d pay for DIY systems, such as SimpliSafe, although Frontpoint does run discounts: at the time of writing, the Safe Home Starter kit was discounted from $430.95 to just $69.
Frontpoint hardware packages:
- Safe Home Starter: Equipment starts at $430.95
- Safe Home Everyday: Equipment starts at $528.93
- Safe Home Plus: Equipment starts at $548.93
- Safe Home Select: Equipment starts at $701.90
- Safe Home Preferred: Equipment starts at $834.88
- Safe Home Elite: Equipment starts at $1,332.84
Frontpoint Monitoring plan prices:
- Protection Plan: $34.99 | One or three-year contract
- Interactive Plan: $44.99 | One or three-year contract
- Ultimate Plan: $49.99 | One or three-year contract
Frontpoint: Safe Home Starter
Designed for smaller apartments and homes, the Safe Home Starter package includes two door/window sensors, one motion sensor and the Frontpoint Hub and Keypad. It’s comparatively expensive unless there is a deal to take advantage of.
Frontpoint home security review: Safe Home Everyday
A larger package for bigger homes, this one gets you three Door/Window sensors and two Motion Sensors, plus the Frontpoint Hub and Keypad. Again, it’s quite expensive, unless you can find it on a deal.
Frontpoint home security review: Safe Home Plus
Designed for pet owners, this package doesn’t give you any motion sensors and focuses on defending windows and doors. You get three Door/Window sensors, two Glass Break sensors and the Frontpoint Hub and Keypad.
Frontpoint home security review: Safe Home Select
Adding in environmental monitoring, this system is designed for larger homes. You get four Door/Window Sensors, two Motion Sensors, one Glass Break Sensor, and one Smoke and Heat Sensor, plus the Frontpoint Hub and Frontpoint Keypad.
Frontpoint home security review: Safe Home Preferred
This is the first package that adds in security cameras, adding in one Indoor Camera, in addition to five Door/Window Sensors, two Motion Sensors, one Glass Break Sensor and one Smoke and Heat Sensor. You also get the Frontpoint Hub and Keypad.
Due to the inclusion of a security camera, you have to take the most expensive monitoring package, the Ultimate Plan.
Frontpoint home security review: Safe Home Elite
The complete works, this gets you all of Frontpoints sensors and cameras, including one Outdoor Camera, one Indoor Camera, six Door/Window Sensors, two Motion Sensors, two Glass Break Sensors, one Smoke and Heat Sensor and One Doorbell Camera. You also get the Frontpoint Hub and Keypad.
Again, due to the inclusion of a security camera, you have to take the most expensive monitoring package, the Ultimate Plan.
Frontpoint home security review: Hardware customization
In addition to the packages, you can specify additional hardware either at the time of purchase or by expanding your system in the future. Options include the Keypad ($49.99), Door/Window Sensor ($32.99), Glass Break Sensor ($74.99), Garage Door Tilt Sensor ($44.99), Motion Sensor ($64.99), Carbon Monoxide Sensor ($89.99), Flood Sensor ($44.99), and Smoke and Heat Sensor ($64.99).
For cameras, you can add an Outdoor Camera ($199.99), an Indoor Camera ($99.99), Premium Indoor camera with Bluetooth speakers built-in ($199.99) and the Doorbell Camera ($189.99). Finally, you can add some smart devices, including a Yale Z-Wave Door Lock ($179.99) and a Garage Door Controller (69.99).(opens in new tab)
Frontpoint home security review: Plans
For standard Window/Door and Motion Sensors, the basic Protection Plan is the one that you want. This gives you 24/7 professional monitoring of your alarm and sensors, plus a cellular backup in case your main internet connection goes down.
The Interactive Plan gives you everything that the Protection Plan does, only you get remote access and control of your system, plus email and text alerts, making this plan a better choice for smartphone users. Geolocation is also turned on, letting you automate parts of your system, such as turning off lights when you go out.
Crash and Smash Protection is one of the most interesting add-ons. When your alarm is triggered, an alert is sent immediately to the monitoring center. Should the thief then smash the control panel, you still get the alert and your system is protected.
The most expensive version of the monitoring plans, the Ultimate Plan gives you everything the previous plans did, plus you get live video streaming, video and image history (up to 1,000 clips are stored each month), sensor history, light control and smart lock control. As such, it’s a requirement for certain hardware packages that include cameras or smart locks.
Frontpoint home security review: Warranty and cancellation
For the best deals from Frontpoint, including the current discounts on hardware, you have to take out a three-year monitoring contract. One-year contracts are also available, although these bar you from certain hardware bundles and discounts.
Given the options, Frontpoint makes most financial sense when bought with a three-year contract. Watch out for the termination costs, though, which stand at 80% of the remaining period left if you cancel during your initial contract period.
Each plan has a 30-day trial period, so you at least get a chance to check out the options and cancel if you find that a plan is not right for you. Given that some security monitoring packages only give you an initial three-day get-out period, 30 days is relatively generous.
With the three-year plans, you get a lifetime limited warranty for your Frontpoint system, which is hard to beat. Again, it’s another good reason to sign up for a longer period.
Frontpoint home security review: App
If you go for the Interactive Plan or higher, you can use the Frontpoint app for Android or iOS. Using this app, you can change your alarm’s mode, turning it on and off from anywhere. You can also view footage and the live feed from any Frontpoint security cameras or doorbells that you have.
Beyond alarm control, the system learns your habits, so it can send you notifications. For example, if the garage door is left open when you leave for work, you’ll get a warning. The system can also tell you when the alarm isn’t disarmed as usually, such as when a child doesn’t come home from school on time.
You can control any of the smart home devices that you have in your system, too. Frontpoint uses Z-Wave to communicate with devices. You can use the products available in the store, such as the Yale Smart Lock, but you can also add additional Z-Wave devices, with this downloadable PDF giving you the list of compatible devices. (opens in new tab)
Once you’ve got smart devices installed, you can automate them with rules and geolocation, such as opening a garage door when you return home from work or turning off connected lights.
Beyond the app, Frontpoint offers Alexa and Google Assistant voice commands, to both control the alarm system and any smart home devices that you have connected.(opens in new tab)
How does Frontpoint alert you when an alarm is raised?
If an alarm is triggered, security or smoke, then what happens depends on the monitoring package that you have. If you have the basic plan, then your two nominated contacts will be called to verify the alarm; if you have any monitoring package that gives remote control, you get a notification through the app, as well as the phone calls.
If an alarm is verified or the contacts can’t be reached, Frontpoint will dispatch emergency services to your home to deal with the problem. If there’s a false alarm, you have to give over your passcode to the monitoring center for them to cancel the emergency services dispatch. If you accidentally set off the alarm, Frontpoint recommends that you call its security center to cancel it.
Frontpoint also supports a Duress Code. Once this is set, entering this code into the control panel disables the alarm to fool a thief in the house, but it also sends an alert to the monitoring center, which will dispatch emergency services without first calling you.
You can also buy the optional Panic Pendant, letting you set off your alarm at the press of a button. Frontpoint will call you to verify the alarm and dispatch emergency services if there’s no answer.
Frontpoint home security: User reviews
Real product information from users that have the system can be useful to help you find the right monitoring system for you. We have to point out that users will more often make a complaint about a system with problems than write a good review for a system that’s working properly. That said, in this section, we’re looking at Frontpoint reviews on well-established user review platforms.
Consumer Affairs gives Frontpoint a high rating of four out of five based on 1,028 ratings in the last year. The sales team has been praised by users, as has the range of sensors and simple DIY installation. Those who didn’t like the system mostly complained about the high price and long contract periods.
On TrustPilot, Frontpoint has a solid five-star rating with 5,386 reviews. According to the reviewers that loved the system, the customer service is excellent, and that the system is easy to install. Complaints largely focus on high costs and long contract periods.
Frontpoint home security review: Other things to consider
Frontpoint’s three-year contracts are some of the longest in the business, and high termination fees mean that you need to be sure that this is the system for you. Make sure you know exactly what you’re signing up for before you complete the purchase of the system.
It’s worth pointing out that Frontpoint is very flexible, particularly if you want to move, though. With the Frontpoint Moving Kit, you’ll be sent boxes for all of your kit so that you can simply take it all down, go to your new house, and then reinstall everything. There’s no need to take out additional contracts, although you can buy new hardware if you need additional sensors for your new place.
Should you try Frontpoint home security?
Frontpoint’s range of sensors and DIY installation make it one of the most flexible security systems that you can buy, plus one of the easiest to add to or move. Yet, with that flexibility comes a cost, and hardware can be expensive unless you can get it on a deal.
Most of the best deals come with a three-year contract, which is one of the longest in the industry, so make sure that this is the right system for your before you buy. Those that find that Frontpoint is for them have praised the customer service.