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      January 18, 2019

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Get Safe vs Protect America

Best Home Security Systems

To help you find the Best DIY Home Security Systems, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of Get Safe and Protect America.

To see ALL of our reviews for the Best DIY Home Security Systems, please Click Here

Everyone wants to feel safe in their own home, no matter how big or small the residence. In the United States, there are over two million burglaries every calendar year, with losses averaging at least $2,000 per crime. Home security systems are the most popular, reputable way to deter would-be criminals and to catch them in the act.

However, many consumers are turning away from traditional home security systems which often involve lengthy service contracts, not to mention the installation of equipment and wiring that can leave unsightly holes in the walls - and that might not even be allowed by a landlord for those who are renting an apartment or house.

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Best Reviews

2019

DIY Home Security Reviews

4.5 stars
Get Safe

GET SAFE Visit Site

Features:

$249 for equipment starter kit (free with contract plans)

No installation fees

No-contract plans available, along with 1- and 3-year plans

Monitoring plans cost $35/month

GetSafe offers one of the most straightforward approaches to DIY Home Security. Created by a group of veterans in the home security industry, this provider is the only one in our review that is controlled solely through a smartphone app and/or key fob: no control panel to navigate.

If you're already familiar with GetSafe, you may recognize that they've made some changes; previously, they offered a self-monitoring option for a lower monthly cost, but that plan is no longer being advertised on the site. (Interestingly, on the site's Service Availability page, it says that customers in Maryland and Rhode Island can only use GetSafe with a self-monitoring plan, but there are no details as to how to access that service. If you live in one of those two states, you'll want to contact the company directly.)

Their current pricing structure is extremely easy to understand: 24/7 monitoring costs $35 per month, no matter what plan you choose or how many sensors and devices you have connected. If you prefer not to have a contract, you can pay for your equipment upfront; the required Starter kit sells for $249 and includes the Smart Hub controller, 1 Door/Window sensor, 1 Motion Detector, 1 Alarm Siren, plus window stickers. If you choose to sign a one-year contract, your Starter Kit is free, and with a 3-year contract, you'll also get a $250 credit towards that can be used to purchase additional equipment like a Nest thermostat, extra window or door sensors, and many other add-ons.

All GetSafe systems are controlled by a Smart Hub, which uses your home WiFi - backed up by AT&T Cellular coverage - to control all components of your system. We continue to be impressed by the number of devices - from motion-detecting cameras to smoke detectors, flood sensors, sirens and more - that can be used with the GetSafe system, which supports up to 32 individual users and up to a staggering 64 total security devices.

And, customer reports indicate that setting up the GetSafe system is exactly as easy as described:

  • Connect the Smart Hub to your home computer network via Ethernet cable
  • Get the GetSafe app on your smartphone and register your Smart Hub
  • Install the batteries in your sensors and mount them to your doors, walls, and/or windows as needed. These come pre-paired with your Smart Hub
  • Test your system by seeing which sensors activate; this will not set off an alarm but rather is part of the installation process

If you have any issues, GetSafe's customer service representatives are standing by to help you make any necessary tweaks and get your system up and running properly. You've got a 30-day trial period to make sure that your DIY installation is functioning the way you want and your home security system is meeting your needs.

We also found a lot of praise for GetSafe's service: the sales team is very non-pushy, so you won't be getting dozens of auto-dialed calls trying to sell you equipment you don't need. But, more importantly, you can expect to get very quick notification from the round-the-clock monitoring service if any part of your home security system is triggered.

GetSafe makes it easy and relatively affordable to protect your home, with no tricks in the fine print, and a fantastic no-contract-required option for those who want that kind of flexibility.

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4 stars
Protect America

PROTECT AMERICA Visit Site

Features:

FREE Equipment on all plans

Monitoring plans start at $19.99

Protect America has been around for a long time: more than twenty years and 400,000 customers later, their DIY Home Security Systems have kept pace with all of advances in technology that customers want.

Protect America offers three main home security packages:

  • Copper. This package comes with 3 Door/Window Sensors and a Motion Detector. The equipment is FREE and the monthly monitoring fee starts at $19.99.
  • Silver. This package comes with 9 Door/Window Sensors and 1 Motion Detector. The equipment is FREE and the monthly monitoring fee starts at $37.99.
  • Platinum. This package comes with 14 Door/Window Sensors and a Motion Detector. The equipment is FREE and the monthly monitoring fee starts at $42.99.

Did you notice that small detail on the monitoring costs, "starts at"? Unlike most of the DIY Home Security Systems we reviewed, Protect America does not automatically include broadband or cellular coverage of your system. No matter which package you select - Copper, Silver, or Platinum - the lowest monthly monitoring price only applies to systems that use a standard telephone landline. If you're like most people, you may not even have a landline in your house or apartment. That means you'll have to pay higher monthly costs to run your system. For the Copper package, you'll spend $41.99/month for broadband or cellular, $49.99 for Silver, and $54.99 for Platinum. Considering that you're obligated to sign a 3-year contract, that can be a pretty hefty financial commitment.

So, what if you want to add features, like smart lights or a monitored smoke detector? Protect America does offer those as extra equipment - but if you want to know what it'll cost, you'll have to contact them for a free quote. Compared with most of the other DIY Home Security Systems on the market, we would have preferred to see more upfront information about equipment costs and any extra charges (if any) for adding them to the initial equipment packages.

We also were left wondering about other aspects of Protect America's systems. Would we need a touchscreen control panel - which doesn't seem to be included in the initial packages? How are the systems installed? At first, we didn't see any helpful information on the website that would be useful for first-time customers to know exactly how to place the sensors or other equipment. Only when we dug around to find the Support section of the site did we come across that kind of help, including a live chat option (in very small print).

Of course, Protect America has a long history of satisfied customers that shouldn't be ignored. But, we'd like to see them be a little more competitive with other companies offering DIY Home Security Systems, especially when it comes to letting their potential customers know exactly what to expect with the process and the equipment they offer.

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Continued from above

Instead, customers are opting to use DIY home security systems, which gives them the convenience of setting up their protection equipment exactly the way they choose and taking it with them when they move to a new home.

Of course, every good DIY home security system should be paired with common-sense protective measures, such as using top-rated deadbolts on all entry doors and making sure all doors and windows are secure before leaving home or going to bed in the evening. Home protection experts strongly prefer security systems that include 24/7 monitoring as well, for added coverage and peace of mind particularly when people are at home. Using live monitoring has been demonstrated to greatly reduce the likelihood of burglary or invasion, as most criminals want to avoid being caught red-handed.

An added perk to taking the DIY approach to home security is saving money. These systems tend to be less expensive to purchase and set up, and yet they are usually eligible for the same premium discounts on homeowners insurance: up to 20%.

When considering the various do-it-yourself home security systems on the market, what should you keep in mind? Each company differs when it comes to the type of equipment they sell and service, the ease of installation, and whether or not they offer live monitoring of your system. Keep the following criteria in mind:

  • Equipment Costs. What does the company include with its home security packages? How many sensors will you need, and what will you be charged to get the level of coverage you want? What will you have to spend to get any additional equipment that you need for your particular living arrangements?
  • Monitoring Service. Will your DIY home security system include any kind of monitoring, or is that left as your responsibility through online apps and other features? If 24/7 live monitoring is available, how much will it cost per month? If there's a break-in or other emergency at your home, will the service contact local authorities on your behalf?
  • Reputation. What do other customers have to say about the business, the equipment, and/or the service received? How easy is it to get help, either with your do-it-yourself installation or with the service? Can you expect a satisfaction guarantee or refund if you are unhappy with the home security service?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best DIY Home Security Systems available today. We hope these reviews help you find the best do-it-yourself home security system that will keep you and your family safe for years to come!

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