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ByJoe Supan Staff Writer

The Best Home Security Systems in New Jersey

According to the FBI’s annual crime report and U.S. News & World Report’s annual listings, New Jersey is one of the safest states in the country to call home. New Jersey’s property crime rate has been steadily declining since 2011, and this year, U.S. News & World Report ranked it as the second-safest state (behind only New Hampshire) for crimes like burglary, theft, and larceny. In addition to low property crime, it’s also one of the least violent states, recording the twelfth-lowest violent crime rate in the country.

New Jersey homeowners should feel good about these statistics, but a home security system can still help make peace of mind a “shore” thing. Our picks — Vivint, Frontpoint , ADT, and SimpliSafe — offer 24/7 remote monitoring of entrances and rooms, easy-to-use equipment, and the most helpful customer service around. It still pays to get quotes from a few companies to see what’s the best fit for your needs, but all four of these systems have their place in the Garden State.

The Best Home Security Systems in New Jersey: Summed Up

Vivint
Frontpoint
ADT
SimpliSafe
Prices starting at
$39.99/mo.
$34.99/mo.
$36.99/mo.
$14.99/mo
Contract length
Month-to-month
42 months
60 months
12 months
36 months
36 months
No contracts
Cameras
Indoor
Outdoor
Doorbell
Indoor
Outdoor
Doorbell
Indoor
Outdoor
Doorbell
Indoor, Doorbell
Sensors
Intrusion
Smoke/flood/CO
Panic button
Intrusion
Smoke/flood/CO
Panic button
Intrusion
Smoke/flood/CO
Panic button
Smoke/Freeze
Flood/Panic Button
Smart home features
Lights
Locks
Thermostat
Garage door
Lights
Locks
Lights
Locks
Thermostat
Garage door
Locks, Thermostat
Control panel
Touchscreen
Mobile app
Touchscreen
Mobile app
Touchscreen
Classic keypad
Mobile app
Base station, Keypad, Web or Mobile App

The 4 Best Home Security Systems in New Jersey

Best for
Home Automation

Vivint
Vivint
Full-service professional security meets home automation; Vivint lets you manage all your home systems from one sleek station.

Vivint offers a robust lineup of automated home security and the most flexible automation options out of our four favorite companies. Perfect if you want to bring home next-level automation and intuitive controls but in just the combinations you choose.

One comment we heard over and over from our testers was that they loved Vivint’s mobile app. Like the ADT app, it lets you do things like lock and unlock doors, view smart cameras remotely, change the temperature in a specific room, or even arm and disarm your entire system.

With all of those options, we expected it to be one of the more confusing systems to navigate. But our tester reported the opposite, saying the app was so intuitive that they found themselves using it even when they were inside the house, ignoring the sleek command center. And they’re not alone: Vivint has a 4.5 out of 5-star rating in the App Store, compared with 2 and 2.5 stars from ADT and Frontpoint, respectively.

As much as we love Vivint’s high-tech equipment, it does come at a price. While ADT and Frontpoint rent their equipment out to you, Vivint pushes you to purchase your equipment outright. The advantage to going this route is that your contract is month-to-month, and your bill won’t be inflated by a rental fee. But it does require an initial investment that’s much higher than most home security companies. On the bright side, you only purchase the equipment you want, so you aren’t forced to pay for expensive gadgetry you’ll never use.

If you choose to rent the equipment, you’re locked into a five-year contract with a tiny three-day trial period. Vivint’s advanced technology also requires professional installation, unlike ADT and Frontpoint, which both offer DIY installation packages. If you’re not ready for that kind of commitment, we recommend checking out Frontpoint.


Best Customer Support

Frontpoint
Frontpoint
Professional monitoring and a full range of security packages, backed by some of the best customer service in the industry.

If you’re not comfortable making the substantial financial commitments that ADT and Vivint both require, Frontpoint is a great way to test the home security waters without necessarily diving in headfirst.

Where ADT and Vivint only offered measly three day trial periods, Frontpoint went for a comparative eternity: 30 days to decide if you want to commit to a longer contract. It is the only company that doesn’t offer any professional installation — you’ll have to do it all yourself — but our testers generally found that this wasn’t too much of a hassle.

Its website is personalized to guide you through your specific package’s installation with thorough guides, video tutorials, and a detailed FAQ section that helps you quickly solve any problems that pop up along the way. If, for some reason, you’re still having issues, we’re confident that Frontpoint’s customer service will have your back.

From our first phone call, Frontpoint’s reps made us feel taken care of in a way that ADT’s and Vivint’s didn’t quite manage. They patiently answered all of our questions and asked a lot of smart ones themselves, helping us to get the best security for our home’s unique layout. We never felt like they were pushing us towards a specific package, either. Frontpoint’s reps come off as invested in helping you find what fits your needs best.

Most
Flexible

SimpliSafe
SimpliSafe
With plans starting at $15/month, SimpliSafe offers some of the most affordable options in the industry.

You'll be seeing a lot more of SimpliSafe in the home security space. Its no-contract options and updated equipment get it on the podium with industry leaders like Frontpoint and ADT. A Reviews.com survey found that 46% of U.S. adults cite the cost of home security as their main barrier, and Simplisafe seeks to eliminate that. Simplisafe users interested in DIY monitoring need only purchase their equipment and tackle a the straightforward drill-free setup, while those who opt for the professional monitoring and 24/7 live alarm service can choose from six package options, starting at $15/ month. You can cut your startup costs even further by opting for a refurbished Simplisafe system. If you aren’t happy with your Simplisafe system after 60 days, Simplisafe will issue you a full refund, complete with return shipping costs.

One caveat to bear in mind when choosing Simplisafe: their included security camera can fall a little short when it comes to other tech in the industry but it still provides free streamable HD video and audio, 30 day-storage, and night vision.

How to Find the Right New Jersey Home Security System for You

Research your neighborhood’s crime profile

The problem with most statistics is that they are overly broad — lumping together diverse areas and populations to create numbers that may be mathematically true but paint a less-than-accurate picture of any individual’s reality. The answer is… more statistics? Yes, but get granular. Check out the crime map of your New Jersey neighborhood to get a sense of historical disturbances in your neck of the woods. Use that information to build a more informed security system for your home.

Register your security system

False alarms are a significant drain to police resources and also desensitize residents, neighbors, and burglars to alarm systems. To cut down on the noise, most states and municipalities across the U.S. institute home security system policies to keep homeowners accountable for their alarms. New Jersey doesn’t have any statewide laws dealing with false alarms, so you will need to check with local government. New Jersey municipalities that hold a formal false alarm policy require you to register your security system. You’ll pay a hefty fee if you don’t register your system before it summons police to your door.

Compare quotes

We focused our search on companies that operate nationwide, and we believe they’re the best choice for New Jersey homeowners, too. But it’s always a good idea to compare offers with local providers so you can find exactly what you’re looking for. We found five local companies in New Jersey that have high ratings across Google, Yelp, and Angie’s List:

New Jersey Home Security FAQ

How much does a false alarm cost in New Jersey?

False alarms happen, and they’re a major problem for New Jersey’s police departments. Police are required to respond to every call as though it’s a legitimate emergency — lights and sirens ablaze — but the fact is that false alarms are more common that true ones. In Bridgeport alone, officers respond to over 4,000 alarm calls per year, most of which are accidental or due to malfunctioning equipment.

You will be fined for every false alarm the police have to respond to, with fees typically escalating for every occurrence. In Hampton Township, for example, the first false alarm merits only a warning, but the second one will set you back $50. After that, the town can choose to issue a fine between $100 and $250 for every subsequent false alarm. You’ll also be required to have a licensed technician come by to make sure your system is functioning properly.

Since policies and fees differ so much depending on where you live in New Jersey, you’ll need to check your city government’s website for specific laws after you purchase a home security system.

What is New Jersey's crime rate like?

By any measure, New Jersey is one of the safest states in the country: According to the FBI’s most recent crime statistics, only about one in 66 New Jersey residents were the victims of a property crime in 2017. New Jersey boasts one of the lowest violent crime rates in the country, too, at one in 438.

But New Jersey homeowners are particularly vulnerable in one area: vacation homes. The 2010 census (the most recent available) estimated that New Jersey had 109,321 houses that were classified as “vacant for seasonal, recreational, or occasional use,” representing 3.3% of all homes in the state and the 10th-highest number in the country. Because New Jersey has an inordinate number of houses that are vacant for some portion of the year, its neighborhoods at particularly at risk for home invasion.

If you want to learn more about the crime in your specific area, you can check out the New Jersey State Police crime stats page, as well as Neighborhood Scout’s county-by-county breakdown.

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