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      October 16, 2018

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Alarm Relay vs CPI Security

Best Home Security Systems

To help you find the Best Home Security Systems, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of Alarm Relay and CPI Security.

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Home Security Systems are more important than ever before. Crime is on the rise in many areas of the country. Over 2 million burglaries occur every year, with the average dollar loss over $2,000 - not to mention the potential harm to personal safety. Many experts point to the nation's current economic troubles and high unemployment as leading indicators for a continued rise in the crime rate.

Safeguarding your home is vitally important to the protection of your property and family. Properly placed exterior lighting and good dead bolts can help reduce your odds of being a victim - but unfortunately, an experienced criminal can generally get through nearly all locks within 60 seconds. As a result, most experts suggest investing in a home security system - preferably one that is monitored by a live service for the utmost protection.

Continue reading below reviews

Best Reviews

2018

Home Security Systems Reviews

2 stars
Alarm Relay

ALARM RELAY Visit Site

Features:

Monitoring starts at $8.95/month

Alarm Relay offers remote home security alarm monitoring services at rock bottom prices. However a less than informative website makes it difficult to tell what you get for your money, and most additional services above the standard monitoring seem to cost extra.

The Alarm Relay website looks professional enough at first glance. Highlighted on the main page is the very low monthly monitoring cost of $8.95 a month, along with some industry accreditations including an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. Alarm Relay has been in business since 1987 so their high rating and longevity lends credibility to their business model. However there are some other things we didn't love about the presentation of their home security products and services.

We wanted to review the various home security plans available to the consumer, so we navigated to the "monitoring solutions" page where there are options for residential plans or commercial plans. Clicking on the residential plans we expected to see choices between various levels of home security systems and services available, and the cost of each, like we do on many other home security websites. Instead there is a just a paragraph explaining that "our monitoring packages will bring you peace of mind". Nowhere could we review the actual monitoring packages to determine what services or equipment was included.

We figured we might find more information on the pricing page, but when we went there it gave us only one pricing structure, which is the $8.95 per month plus a $35 one-time administration fee. The only real piece of information we could find on this page was in the form of an asterisk which tells us that a requirement of the home security service is that it needs to be connected to a land telephone line. So we were able to figure out that the home security system is not wireless like some of the other systems we reviewed.

We then navigated to the "additional services" page where we found a list of services such as e-mail notifications, cell phone monitoring, internet monitoring and fire alarm services. None of these options say how much they cost, although there is a note that instructs you to call the folks at Alarm Relay to find out about adding these features to your monthly alarm monitoring package. With that said, we know that none of these options are included in the $8.95 per month fee.

As mentioned, Alarm Relay has a high rating from the Better Business Bureau and has been in business for a long time. It's entirely possible that a consumer could find a good home security system with Alarm Relay. However with no wireless home security option, no good information on their website to provide details on their services or technology, and an a la carte list of options that come standard with most other home security systems, we find it hard to give Alarm Relay a very high rating.

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1 star
CPI Security

CPI SECURITY Visit Site

Features:

Monitoring promotional offer 3 months for $29.95/month, then increases to $49.95/month

Free installation and/or equipment, depending on selected package

CPI Security is a home security systems company that offers traditional hardwired security systems, wireless home security systems, as well as a host of remote control options for various items in your home such as locks, thermostats, and even garage doors. The equipment is modern and the services provided are equal to many of the other home security providers we have reviewed, but the cost is quite a bit higher. In addition, we found many instances of customer complaints.

The basic CPI system is called In-Touch, and it functions much like other 24/7 rapid response alarm monitoring systems. If something triggers the home security alarm, an emergency operator responds in seconds to address the alert. The security system is completely wireless, so it does not rely on a hard line that can be cut or knocked out in a storm. The basic home security package comes with one motion detector, one HD video camera, a fire detector, 6 window and door monitors and a remote keyless door lock. Additional equipment, such as glass break detectors and carbon monoxide alarms, can be purchased separately and added to the system. As with many other modern alarm systems, the customer can monitor the system remotely via their smart phone or other electronic device. Additionally, the system can be set up to control the heat, lights, and locks in the house remotely as well.

Our main objection to CPI Security is the expense. The website describes a promotional offer of $29.95 a month for the first three months of home security monitoring services, but neglects to say anywhere how much the cost goes up after that period. As it turns out, the increase is up to $49.95 per month, much higher than most of the other similar home security providers we have reviewed.

Additionally, as we reviewed CPI's reputation we discovered a long list of customer complaints, mostly surrounding their sales practices and hidden fees. Many customers complained of being locked into a 5 year commitment period without ever having been informed of it. Several others complained of hidden upgrade charges and promised refunds that were never delivered.

With all the other home security companies out there, we can't recommend taking your chances on a company that charges among the highest fees in the industry and appears to have a fairly spotty reputation. We suggest looking at one of the higher rated companies.

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Continued from above

Statistics show that the majority of criminals will choose a home without a security system and bypass those better protected. Home security systems can vary greatly in protection and cost. Some home security systems provide free equipment along with a monthly monitoring contract, while others charge hundreds of dollars for installation as well as monitoring services. The best home security systems are flexible with or without home phone line requirements.

Before reading any home security systems reviews it's important to be familiar with some important home security aspects and features. These include:

  • Equipment and Installation Costs.  What does the company charge for the home security system equipment? How many sensors does that include? Is installation a separate charge?
  • Monitoring Service.  Does the company provide a 24 hour, 7 day a week, live home security monitoring service that will quickly contact authorities in the event of a break-in?
  • Guarantee.  Does the company provide a money back guarantee for their home security systems, or a warranty for faulty equipment?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best home security systems available today. We hope these reviews will help you find the right home security system to keep you and your family safe for years to come!

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