When you are looking at home security systems you will quickly find that the two most prominent companies are Frontpoint and ADT. We know how hard it can be to make that final decision. You could contact each of the companies and spend a ton of time getting all their details to figure out which one works for you. We’ve put this article together to save you some of that time and headache. Best of all, no pushy salesperson, just straight forward, unbiased comparison.
Is Frontpoint a better option for a home security system than ADT?
When considering all the options that both Frontpoint and ADT have to offer, the reality is either system would be a great choice for your home security. However, Frontpoint does offer a few advantages over ADT that may make them a better choice for some homes.
The main advantages that Frontpoint has over ADT are:
- Do-It-Yourself Installation options
- All systems and packages are monitored by 4G LTE cellular signal, the most secure
- All packages include smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
- No activation fees
- Excellent customer service
We’ve examined everything Frontpoint and ADT has to offer in order to determine the best option. Since every home is unique, deciding which one is the perfect fit for you is important. Read on for the specific aspects of both Frontpoint and ADT, then you can decide.
Frontpoint – Overview
Frontpoint has grown into one of the top home security companies for a very good reason. Started in 2007, Frontpoint has developed in the modern technical age, they understand the importance of security technology. They offer packages that include the most modern wireless security technology in the industry. Additionally, unlike most of the security giants, Frontpoint offers homeowners the ability to install their security systems themselves.
Frontpoint customers regularly rave about their excellent customer service. The different equipment packages all include smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, as well as several options for adding other equipment for a customized security system.
Compared to some other security systems, Frontpoint’s monthly monitoring fees run a bit higher and they require a 36-month contract for their services. However, you can move your service to another location easily by contacting them ahead of time. Frontpoint is available in all 50 states and most of Canada.
Current Monitoring Options
Frontpoint Plan Details
All Frontpoint plans include 4G LTE cellular monitoring, the most secure option in home security. All equipment is wireless and Frontpoint monitoring includes automatic system checks every 68 minutes. Unique user codes allow you even more control over the access to your home, including activating and deactivating codes whenever you need.
Here is a brief look at what each of the main protection plans Frontpoint has to offer.
|Feature||Protection Plan||Interactive Plan||Ultimate Plan|
|24/7 Professional Monitoring||✔||✔||✔|
|100% Wireless & Cellular||✔||✔||✔|
|Automated System Check||✔||✔||✔|
|Expandable and Portable||✔||✔||✔|
|Unique User Codes||✔||✔||✔|
|Crash & Smash Protection||—||✔||✔|
|Mobile Alert and Notifications||—||✔||✔|
|Remote Access and Control||—||✔||✔|
|Live Video Streaming||—||—||✔|
|Video and Image History||—||—||✔|
|Motion Triggered Alerts||—||—||✔|
|Night Vision Enabled||—||—||✔|
|Smart Lock Control||—||—||✔|
Frontpoint Bonus Features
Frontpoint works with both Amazon Alexa and Google Home to add automation and voice activation to your system. Homeowners with existing smart technology in their homes that use Z-Wave protocols will have no issues connecting their new Frontpoint security devices to their existing smart home tech.
ADT – Overview
ADT remains the number one home security company. With over 140 years of experience in provided security and environmental protections to homes across the US. ADT offers 6 monitoring centers and has spent plenty of time building relationships with law enforcement and emergency services in all the areas they cover.
Previously ADT was only an option for homeowners in higher-end communities and individuals that could afford their higher fees. In more recent years, ADT has become more competitive with the other companies in the industry.
ADT still requires a minimum 36-month contract and professional installation from all customers. ADT does offer a cheaper monitoring option, but the plan requires a landline; a large portion of homes no longer have landlines.
Existing customers are happy they chose ADT for their home security, with the exceptions of issues when a customer needs to move their service, and cancellation policy.
Current Monitoring Options
|ADT Pulse + Video||$58.99||Cellular|
ADT Plan Details
All ADT plans include 24/7 monitoring, the most basic plan is for landlines, and all other options include cellular monitoring. ADT equipment is leased, and the cost is included in their monthly plan charges; additional fees may apply for adding equipment.
Here is a brief look at what each of the main protection plans ADT has to offer.
|Feature||Basic||Basic Wireless||ADT Pulse||ADT Pulse+Video|
|24/7 Professional Monitoring||✔||✔||✔||✔|
|Wireless Control Panel||✔||✔||✔||✔|
|Theft Protection Guarantee||✔||✔||✔||✔|
|Remote Panic Alert||✔||✔||✔||✔|
ADT Bonus Features
ADT’s monitoring centers are equipped with backup capabilities; if one center goes down for some reason then monitoring is automatically converted to another monitoring center. This ensures that all customers maintain protection 24 hours a day. All customers enjoy theft protection, ADT will pay $500 of your deductible for any loss due to a break-in.
How are Frontpoint and ADT similar?
- Wireless home security options
- Home automation options
- Cellular connection (not all ADT plans)
- Video monitoring upgrades
- Contract requirements
- Early termination fees
- Higher monitoring fees
- Equipment options
How are Frontpoint and ADT different?
- Installation (professional or DIY)
- Trial Period
- Activation Fees
- Monitoring contract length
- Monitoring cost per month
- Number of monitoring centers
- Battery Backup
Head to Head Comparison
|Installation||DIY installation||Professional: $99-199|
|Monthly Monitoring||$34.99-49.99 per month||$27.99-58.99 per month|
|Connection Options||Cellular||Landline or cellular|
|Equipment Options||3 Plans + additional options||4 Plans + additional options|
|Contract Length||12 or 36 Months||36 Months|
|Cancellation||Pay 80% of the remaining contract||Pay 75% of the remaining contract|
|Trial Period||30 Days||6 Months|
Looking at all the options both Frontpoint and ADT has to offer it is easy to see why most people have a hard time deciding which one may be the better options. Referring to the differences listed above, we will take a closer look at each difference, giving you a better look.
Installation (Professional Or DIY)
Installation is the biggest difference between Frontpoint and ADT, often the primary reason one is chosen over the other. ADT requires that ALL their systems are professionally installed by their trained technicians. The installation currently starts at $99 and goes up depending on the plan you choose and any additional devices you choose.
Frontpoint is the number one home security company for homeowners that are willing and able to install the system themselves. While Frontpoint does offer professional installation for customers that need or want the assistance. Frontpoint customers share that even if they have trouble during the installation process, a quick call to customer service can usually solve any installation issue.
Everyone wants some flexibility when it comes to signing a contract and using expensive equipment. When it comes to home security equipment, you may find out that the system just does not fit your needs, you may have had specific issues, or you may just change your mind. Most security companies offer some amount of trial period to give customers a chance to see if the system meets their needs.
Frontpoint has a 30-day trial period. Arguably, this may be more than enough for most people. One would hope that there is no true test to your home security at any point, so you will be dependant on the system checks and your ability to access, monitor, and alarm/disarm the system. After the trial period, if a customer chooses to drop the service, they are responsible for 80% of the remaining contract costs.
ADT, however, offers a full 6-month trial period. This includes all their plan packages and any additional equipment. Also, ADT equipment is leased instead of purchased. After the 6-month trial period, any customer that wishes to terminate their contract will be responsible for paying 75% of the remaining contract fees.
Both Frontpoint and ADT offer several options for their customers, and any fees may vary depending on the option you choose. ADT offers some customers the ability to avoid any upfront fees if they sign a lengthy monitoring contract that includes the leasing fees of their equipment.
In contrast, with Frontpoint, customers typically pay for the equipment and then pay less per month for monitoring. There are options for customers to pay over time to cover the equipment costs allowing many customers no upfront fees. At the end of the service contract, the system then belongs to the customer.
Monitoring Contract Length
Frontpoint and ADT require contracts for their services, however, they have slightly different options. ADT requires a minimum contract length of 36-months, with even longer contract options in some situations. Frontline, on the other hand, offers its customers a 12-month or 36-month contract option. Both companies have early cancellation fees associated with their contracts; Frontpoint charges 80% of the remaining contract fees and ADT charges 75%.
Monitoring Cost Per Month
Taking a good look at the different monitoring plans that each company offers and you will see that there are a few differences. Any research will quickly display advertisements for ADT home security packages starting at a low rate of $28.99 per month. While this is true, their basic security plan is only $28.99 per month, however, this fee is for the basic landline monitored system with no additional sensors or monitoring units.
On the other side, Frontpoint’s plans start at $34.99 per month. Their lower plan, however, includes cellular monitoring using powerful 4G LTE technology. The lowest comparable plan from ADT will run at least $48.99 per month. A direct comparison of all monthly plans, including equipment and monitoring, ADT regularly charges higher fees.
Number of Monitoring Centers
Monitoring Centers are where your services are monitored by real people. These are the people that are responsible for making sure your system is working correctly, monitor for disruptions in service, alarm confirmation, as well as contacting the appropriate authorities and you when something happens.
Frontpoint customers receive their monitoring from the highly regarded Rapid Response Monitoring. Rapid Response is the leader in security monitoring and has been certified and approved by the US Department of Defense and other industry licensing agencies.
ADT has its own monitoring center, 6 located all over the United States with more than 7000 trained operators. Each center is staffed with an average of 335 trained operators all the time. Most other monitoring services only report 3000 or trained monitors.
When the power goes out, it is important for your security system to continue to work. While individual components may not have batteries, the core system control needs to keep power. Frontpoint customers can rest easy knowing that the battery will keep their system going at full strength for a full 24 hours. ADT battery back, on the other hand, will only last 12 hours. For most power outages, 12 hours will be an adequate amount of time. However, more rural areas may struggle with limited battery backup.
Still Struggling to Decide?
We know that all this information may still be overwhelming. We thought we would give you a few scenarios that describe the type of customer and which home security system may be the most appropriate. If one of these scenarios is close to your situation, this may help you make your decision.
Homeowners with Little or No Technical Experience
The best option for these homes will be ADT, though Frontpoint is still an option. ADT requires all their systems to be installed by one of their own trained installers. Frontpoint does have options for customers that need installation assistance, you can contact customer service (during CS hours) for help or they will put you in contact with a qualified installer in your area.
Renters with Limited Options for Installation
All Frontpoint systems are 100% Wireless and most have temporary mounting options for renters that cannot make permanent changes to their homes. They also offer the short contract option of 12-months that may fit the leasing times of many renters.
All ADT plans beyond their basic plan can be installed wirelessly and can work for renters that want home security options. In general, their comparable plans run a little bit higher than the comparable Frontpoint system.
Homeowners That Plan to Move Within the Next 3 Years
Both Frontpoint and ADT home security systems can be moved to your new home, the difference is in the cost and trouble that may be involved with the move. Since Frontpoint systems are designed to be easily installed by the homeowner they can be moved with no issues, just let Frontpoint know ahead of time.
ADT, on the other hand, requires that the move of your home security system involves one of their professional technicians. This will require a professional to uninstall the existing system and then a professional installation at the new residence. Both will require the customer to cover the cost of the technician. For larger systems, this could run as high as $400 for each step.
Homeowners with No Idea What Their Home Security Needs Are
First-time security users may have absolutely no idea what their home security needs are beyond a keypad or perhaps a camera. Most of these homeowners would benefit from ADT’s home security free, in-home consultation. A security expert will come into your home to help you decide which plan or custom system options would work best in your home.
When it is all said and done, both Frontpoint and ADT are excellent choices in home security. Each offers some of the latest in-home security technology and are flexible enough to meet the needs of most customers. The biggest differences are installation and contract lengths. For these reasons we would say that Frontpoint is the better option for a wider variety of homes.
You obviously do not have to choose Frontpoint, ADT is also a great security option. No matter which you choose, we hope we have provided you with the details that you needed to make an informed decision that will fit your individual security needs.