The Best Home Security Systems in Denver
Denver is one of the fastest-growing cities in the US — which means that overall crime rates are also rising. But residents of the Mile High City don’t have to feel helpless: if you’re looking for a way to protect your home even when you’re out, the best home security system providers in Denver have you covered.
We spent months researching and testing the eight biggest national security providers nationwide. ADT, Vivint, and Frontpoint were our favorites, offering comprehensive support, from motion sensors and HD surveillance cameras to mobile app control and helpful reps. To provide a comprehensive picture of Denver’s security scene we’ve also compiled a list of popular local home security providers — along with key info about Denver’s crime rate and false alarm policy.
The 3 Best Home Security Systems in Denver
Denver Home Security System Reviews
To find the best home security systems in Denver, we used the same criteria that we established for our review of nationally available home security providers. Each company had to offer four basic types of protection:
- Intrusion — door, window, and glass-break detectors
- Surveillance — indoor and outdoor cameras
- Environmental — fire, carbon monoxide, and flood detectors
- Life safety — panic and life alert buttons
From there, we evaluated providers on their customer service quality throughout the ordering and installation process, as well as their overall range of equipment offerings. After ordering, installing, and trying them all out for eight months, we were left with three favorites.
Researchers from UNC Charlotte found that a displaying a recognizable security logo outside of your home can deter over half of potential burglars — and if you know any of our providers by sight, it’s probably ADT. This home security provider has been around for more than 140 years, and it’s also the largest security provider by far, serving over 8 million people across the US and Canada. In other words, it’s got the name recognition to make your average burglar think twice.
ADT’s security offerings also deliver: there’s a range of features for every kind of homeowner, whether you want 24/7 motion-sensor cameras and home automation, or just low-key door and window sensors. Plans start at $37, and home automation features are only available with plans $49.99 and up, but you can work with a rep online or over the phone to build a custom package.
If on-the-go monitoring is important for you, ADT’s “Video” and “Control” plans (which start at $57.99) offer live video monitoring through the ADT Pulse app. The app (which boasts an impressive 4.7 out of 5 star rating in the Apple App store) allows you to automate your home remotely — you can monitor live video or arm your system while at work across town. ADT also offers a separate app for account managing called MyADT. It’s available for all service tiers (whereas ADT Pulse is only relevant for plans with home automation). However, we weren’t terribly impressed with this app — and with a poor rating of 2.1 stars on the Apple store, we’re not the only ones who think so. There’s no harm in trying out the free MyADT app, but we’d recommend just managing your account online or over the phone with customer service.
We initially wondered whether ADT’s strong reputation would extend to its customer service — it’s racked up more Better Business Bureau complaints than the other providers on our list — but given that ADT also has the largest customer base of all our picks, this isn’t overly surprising. In our interactions with reps both on the phone and online, we encountered only polite and helpful service. We’re confident in recommending ADT to anyone looking for a large, well-established home security company.
Vivint is a security system designed for homeowners who embrace smart technology. If you’re looking for plans that allow you to pick and choose the most innovative smart features, this is the provider for you: you can start automating your home at a lower price than ADT ($39.99 versus ADT’s $49.99), and equipment pricing is a la carte depending on what features you want. That makes it easier for you to save on features you might find redundant, like fire alarms, in favor of more unique features like smart locks and sensors. We especially liked its mobile app, which allows you to fully control your system even while away from home. Our tester liked it so much, he said he rarely used his in-home control panel — the app handled everything he needed to do. And we’re not the only ones who were impressed: Vivint carries a 4.5 out of 5 star rating in the Apple Store. Frontpoint and ADT both have apps as well, but they only boast 2.5 and 2 stars.
The mobile app lets you record or view live camera footage, arm or disarm smart locks, and program your security system to respond to specific scenarios — maybe you want your doors to lock every day at 6pm, or you want your windows to unlock if your smoke alarm goes off. The app also lets you adjust any of Vivint’s home automation equipment, whether you change the temperature of your smart thermostat from work, open and close your garage doors, or turn your lights on or off. You can even set it to alert you to non-emergencies, like if you accidentally leave a window open.
The only downside? All that convenient tech can be pricey. If you want a month-to-month home security contract, you’ll need to purchase your equipment rather than renting it. If you’d rather not buy it outright, you’ll have to sign up for a 5-year-contract. Either way, Vivint represents a commitment — but if you’re committed to smart technology, it’s an investment worth looking into.
Frontpoint is the new kid on the block. Founded in 2007, it’s a much younger company than either ADT (founded in 1874) or Vivint (founded in 1999). But it’s making up for lost time: during testing, we were highly impressed with its fantastic customer service and easy DIY installation.
Our testers felt cared for from their very first call. The Frontpoint rep asked thoughtful questions about the layout of our homes, gave useful suggestions, and didn’t pressure us into buying anything. That sense of care was also evident in the installation process: Frontpoint is the only one of our top picks to offer DIY installation, but it puts great effort into making the process as simple as possible. When we received our installation kit, every part was carefully labelled — and the kit came with a link to a personalized website that walked us step-by-step through the installation process. From setting up and activating the control panel to installing our motion sensors, the entire process only took us about 15 minutes. But if you do need to pause mid-way through the process, the website marks your place so that you can pick up right where you stopped. The main qualm we had with Frontpoint was its app: whereas ADT and Vivint offer sleek, well-designed apps that allow for remote home automation, Frontpoint’s app has more room for improvement, only scoring 3 out of 5 stars in the Apple App store. All the same, if you’re less concerned with home automation and more about great customer service, Frontpoint may still be the right provider for you.
Frontpoint offers three tiered service plans. The Protection Plan provides basic monitoring. The Interactive Plan adds in mobile capabilities and home automation features. The Ultimate Plan includes motion-triggered photography, plus night-enabled live video monitoring. Residents of quiet suburban areas may only need the Protection Plan; residents of bustling neighborhood may want to look into the Ultimate Plan.
Compare the Best Home Security Systems in Denver
Other Denver Home Security Companies to Consider
ADT, Vivint and Frontpoint are widely available and offer comprehensive service, but they aren’t your only option. If you’re interested in comparison shopping, it’s also worth taking a look at local, Denver-based home security providers. We’ve hunted down the five most popular local security companies, based on customer ratings from Yelp and Angie’s list:
Denver Home Security False Alarm Policy
False alarms have become a major problem for the Denver Police Department: of the 10,000+ alarm calls they receive annually, 98% are false alarms. This represents a significant waste of time and resources for the city.
To reduce false alarms, Denver now requires residents and businesses to secure an annual alarm permit (the yearly fee is $25). You can apply for one through the city of Denver's website, or call the city at 877-892-5873.
After applying for a alarm permit, you’ll also need to call the Denver Alarm Permit Center at 877-892-5878 to verify your permit number and expiration date, and to make sure that your system will work properly in the event of an emergency. It’s required by law to register your security alarm — failure to do so may mean that the police won’t respond to an alarm in the event of an actual break-in.
If your system sends a false alarm, you won’t get a warning from the city: each occurrence, even if it’s your first offense, will result in a $50 fee.
You can appeal in writing within 30 days of the initial false alarm notice, with supporting documentation. Supporting evidence can include police reports, insurance claims, and photographs of damages. If your equipment malfunctions and sends multiple false alarms within a short period of time, you can also appeal to only be fined for the first occurrence. In those cases, you’ll need proof of the malfunctioning equipment through technician’s slips or repair invoices, and proof of your extended absence from home with plane tickets or gas receipts.
Denver Crime Rates
Neighborhood Scout reports that you have a 1 in 28 chance of experiencing property crime in Denver — almost twice as high as the national average of 1 in 41. But don’t let that send you into a panic: Denver is actually quite a bit safer than the national average when it comes to violent crime. However, investing in a home security system is an easy way to achieve extra peace of mind.
We also recommend doing a little research about your specific location before committing to a provider. As with all large cities, crime rates vary between neighborhoods. Much of Denver’s property crime occurs in the Central Business District and Capitol Hill, while rates in East Colfax or Harvey Park are much lower. You can check the Denver Police Department’s Crime Statistics and Crime Map to see what to expect for your neighborhood, and decide what security measures make the most sense for you. Ultimately, the best home security system should take into account the overall safety of your neighborhood, your daily routine, and your desired level of support.