SimpliSafe and Vivint are among the best home security systems, allowing you to monitor and protect your home with ease and without middlemen.
While both systems are highly ranked in the world of home security systems, they both aren't without their differences. If you want to choose between the two systems, we've compiled everything you need to know about each below, including their similarities, differences, benefits, and where each could use some improvement.
Keep reading to find out with system is the best for you and your home and which system we think is the best option.
SimpliSafe & Vivint - What Do They Have in Common?
Both smart home security systems allow you to achieve high-quality protection for your home from various digital equipment, although not all pieces are required for system installation. With each system, you can get high-resolution security cameras, a mobile app to monitor and control the system from your phone, preconfigured packaged plans, the option for self-monitoring, and various security equipment you might not have otherwise known you needed.
In all, both home security companies provide high-quality full home monitoring coverage to give you the peace of mind you deserve.
SimpliSafe & Vivint - What Are the Differences?
The primary difference between the SimpliSafe system and Vivint? You can opt out of SimpliSafe's professional monitoring options for no monthly fees. With SimpliSafe, you also don't have to have a professional installation team come out to your house for setup, while Vivint does. However, you should note that Vivint's professional installation does not come at an additional cost.
Vivint also does not come with any upfront fees. Instead, you pay a monthly fee for the equipment and monitoring services depending on the number of cameras you have and the package you order.
Another main difference between the two systems is their warranties. With SimpliSafe, you get a three-year warranty on all equipment either order through the company or retailers. With Vivint, however, you get a lifetime warranty on your equipment, meaning if five years down the line you run into an issue, Vivint will replace the product.
SimpliSafe Home Security System: What You Need to Know
SimpliSafe makes home security incredibly accessible and affordable without compromising quality. Before purchasing your system, you should consider SimpliSafe's cost, installation options, smart home capabilities, and customer service.
Simplisafe offers five equipment packages with set upfront costs that range from the low 200s to the high 400s. However, Simplisafe also offers frequent discounts for the preconfigured packages, or you can customize your own from the available safety devices, including:
- Motion sensors
- Entry sensors
- Carbon monoxide sensor/smoke detector
- Keyfob remote
- Standard base station
- Yard signs and decals
- HD security camera
- Freeze and water sensors
- Wireless Keypad
- 105-decibel siren
- Panic button
With the option to customize your package, you get the option to DIY your home security system for what you need and what your home requires. For example, if you have a small apartment, you might not need the bells and whistles that come with the HD security cameras or professional monitoring offer. Instead, you can choose a couple of motion sensors to complement the base station. Plus, customizing the system makes the system altogether more affordable.
No professional installation is required for this security system. Similar to the customization aspect of SimpliSafe, you can complete a DIY installation too. Go online to place your order, get the parts in the mail, and set them up in the spots you want. There's no wiring or electrical work needed that would require professionals to stop by your home.
If you don't feel comfortable setting the system up on your own, you can request for a professional to come out and assist at an additional cost.
To activate the system, you can install the mobile app to configure and control the system. However, the app will not send you push notifications unless you sign up for SimpliSafe's interactive plan because it comes with 24/7 professional monitoring. If you sign up for the interactive plan, you can also use the live stream and download video footage from the mobile app.
Smart Home Capabilities
If your home is set up with smart home capabilities, you won't have an issue integrating SimpliSafe into the area. SimpliSafe is compatible with Amazon Alexa, Google Home and Google Assistant, August Locks, Nest, Apple Watch, and other smart home devices.
With these devices synced to your SimpliSafe, you can verbally instruct the system to meet your needs, arm/disarm the device, and connect the control to other smart home devices.
SimpliSafe has a responsive customer support team, with the option to reach out via phone, email, and online help service. However, SimpliSafe does not have an online live chat feature to use at your leisure.
- Month-to-month payment plans make the system more affordable.
- The customization option lets you choose security features you will actually use and that make sense with your lifestyle and home.
- SimpliSafe's smart home capabilities and DIY installation make the system easy to use, even for first-time security system users.
- No notifications are offered without the interactive plan.
- Not as many smart devices are offered as Vivint.
- No live chat customer support option.
Vivint: What You Need to Know
The Vivint system gives you high-quality home security that you can monitor from your phone along with professional installation. The system has various packages to choose from, all without upfront costs.
When considering Vivint for your home security needs, you should check out the company's pricing options, installation services, smart home compatibility, and customer service.
The company offers three Vivint smart home packages ranging from a single SkyControl panel, motion sensors, and Google home integration to a multi-part bundle which can include:
- Control panel
- Glance display
- Motion sensor
- Smoke and carbon monoxide detector
- Flood, heat, and freeze sensor
- Key fob
- Doorbell camera
- Outdoor camera
- Garage door controller
- NestThermostat or Vivint Element thermostat
- Glass break sensor
- Smart lock
The packages start at about $30 per month and range up to about $50, which is also the base price for Vivint's monthly monitoring service. WIth Vivint's monthly monitoring services, you pay a set price depending on how many cameras you have. You can have a maximum of four cameras per account.
With Vivint's equipment, you must sign on to either a three and a half or five-year contract. However, if you decide you no longer need the company's services, you can cancel your contract at any time as long as you finish paying for the equipment.
If you can get professional installation for free, why not take it? Instead of installing all of the equipment yourself, which might confuse you if you don't have experience with smart home devices or security systems, Vivint sends a professional installation technician to set up the system for you.
When everything's set up, the technician can also show you how to sync the equipment to your phone using the Vivint mobile app. The app has all of the same features as the SimpliSafe app, including arming and disarming the system and connecting other smart home devices, but it also lets you view the doorbell camera video feed and speak to visitors.
Smart Home Capabilities
What can't Vivint connect with should be the question you ask because it's a very versatile system. One standout feature that Vivint offers is the ability to sync to the Nest thermostat system. It can also pair with Google smart devices and the Amazon Alexa, among the most notable devices. Plus, you can control your smart home device interactions with the Vivint mobile app.
If you find yourself fidgeting with the security equipment, run into issues, or have general questions, you can take advantage of Vivint's responsive customer service team. The company's customer service representatives are almost always available thanks to their online help center, live chat, and phone line.
Whenever you need a technician to come out and inspect your equipment, Vivint sends a team member promptly to address the matter as well.
- Free professional installation.
- High-quality and responsive customer service team.
- Compatible with a wide variety of smart home devices.
- No upfront costs.
- More expensive than SimpliSafe.
- If you move and plan to keep Vivint, you must pay a re-installation fee.
SimpliSafe or Vivint?
After taking a closer look at each home security system, the two have many similarities that might make them seem interchangeable. However, at the end of the day, the choice really comes down to monitored or unmonitored options.
If you want monitoring - go with Vivint. You get a highly rated mobile app, free professional installation, smart home integration, and no upfront costs. While the system might cost more than SimpliSafe in the long run, homeowners get a professional-grade security system and various options to reduce that cost, including removing the professional monitoring service. Plus, you can't argue with Vivint's lifetime equipment warranty.
If you just want solid equipment that you're comfortable self-monitoring? You can't beat SimpliSafe.
This article has been reviewed and approved by Officer Banta.
Officer Banta is the official SecurityNerd home security and safety expert. A member of the Biloxi Police Department for over 24 years, Officer Banta reviews all articles before lending his stamp of approval. Click here for more information on Officer Banta and the rest of our team.