ADT vs. Frontpoint Home Security: Which Company is Right for You?

When most people think home security, ADT may be a popular choice that comes to mind since it’s been around for so long. While ADT is certainly an option, there are other trusted companies that have entered the playing field these days that can provide reliable home security protection nationwide. One of those options that we’re seeing more of is Frontpoint Security.

On one hand we have ADT weighing in with 135 years of experience but also carrying 135 years of baggage caused by a “large and in charge” mentality. On the other hand we have Frontpoint Home Security with less than 20 years of experience but dominating customer reviews on Angie’s List, Yelp, and Consumer Affairs. So who wins?

Side-by-side the companies really aren’t that different. They have similar pricing models, semi-similar features, but there are a few key differences. Frontpoint Home Security puts the focus on their customers and their unique security needs first. They take their reviews seriously and have created policies that allow the customer to have full control over what they’re going to pay and receive without any hidden fees or pricing fluctuation. For example, they offer a 30 day money back guarantee so that you can live with the service and equipment before committing. They also offer incentives to sign a 36 month contract but will allow customers to commit to just 12 months.

ADT has been around for a very long time, their business has always been home security, and there is comfort in experience. ADT will visit your home and help you develop a plan for placing the system and various components before returning for professional installation.

To help you compare ADT and Frontpoint we charted two of their home security packages side-by-side. While we did not choose the least expensive packages, we chose packages with similar monthly fees that had popular features like smartphone control.

Company
Call855-806-1188855-716-7833
View Plans
Read Review
Package NameInteractivePule Select
Monthly Price$44.99$47.99
Monitoring TypeCellularLandline or Cellular
InstallationDIY (professional option)Professional
Contract Length12-36 Months36 Months
Return Policy30 Days0 Days*
Locked-in Rate
Remote Access and Control
Light Automation
GEO (location-based) Service
Fire Monitoring
Life Safety
Environmental Monitoring
Carbon Monoxide Monitoring
Free Mobile App
Company
Call
855-806-1188
View Plans
Read Review
Package Name
Interactive
Monthly Price
$44.99
Monitoring Type
Cellular
Installation
DIY (professional option)
Contract Length
12-36 Months
Return Policy
30 Days
Locked-in Rate
Remote Access and Control
Light Automation
GEO (location-based) Service
Fire Monitoring
Life Safety
Environmental Monitoring
Carbon Monoxide Monitoring
Free Mobile App
Company
Call
855-716-7833
View Plans
Read Review
Package Name
Pule Select
Monthly Price
$47.99
Monitoring Type
Landline or Cellular
Installation
Professional
Contract Length
36 Months
Return Policy
0 Days*
Locked-in Rate
Remote Access and Control
Light Automation
GEO (location-based) Service
Fire Monitoring
Life Safety
Environmental Monitoring
Carbon Monoxide Monitoring
Free Mobile App

*ADT offers a 60-day money back guarantee but it is not a return policy. The 60-day money back guarantee basically states that ADT will refund your purchase amount should you have an equipment or technology issue that they cannot resolve. On the other hand, Frontpoint offers a no questions asked 30 day money back guarantee.

ADT Security Features and Monitoring

ADT Pulse offers an array of home automation features that extend into home security controls so you can have full transparency into the runnings and safety within your home whether you’re present or away.

The features seem pretty standard and it would appear that even the entry and mid-level packages get great features, but what’s the cost? Well, it was actually pretty hard to find it because ADT will not list prices at each level up front and really push for customers to call in for quotes, so we’re not totally sure if the prices they’re quoting for monthly monitoring is the same across the board. Just to require that much research to find a monthly monitoring price was very off-putting and goes back to our biggest concern with ADT not being as customer-friendly as one would hope for how long they’ve been doing business, meanwhile most other leading competitors have no problem listing it for potential buyers.

Company
Package NameRemote AlarmControlLive Video
Monthly Price$47.99UnknownUnknown
24/7 Monitoring
Cellular Connection
Fire & Smoke Monitoring
Carbon Monoxide Monitoring
Water & Temperature Detection
Remote Lock/Unlock Door Control
Light & Temp Control
Remote Video Surveillance
Company
Package Name
Remote Alarm
Monthly Price
$47.99
24/7 Monitoring
Cellular Connection
Fire & Smoke Monitoring
Carbon Monoxide Monitoring
Water & Temperature Detection
Remote Lock/Unlock Door Control
Light & Temp Control
Remote Video Surveillance
Company
Package Name
Control
Monthly Price
Unknown
24/7 Monitoring
Cellular Connection
Fire & Smoke Monitoring
Carbon Monoxide Monitoring
Water & Temperature Detection
Remote Lock/Unlock Door Control
Light & Temp Control
Remote Video Surveillance
Company
Package Name
Live Video
Monthly Price
Unknown
24/7 Monitoring
Cellular Connection
Fire & Smoke Monitoring
Carbon Monoxide Monitoring
Water & Temperature Detection
Remote Lock/Unlock Door Control
Light & Temp Control
Remote Video Surveillance

A couple basic controls you’ll get with the ADT Pulse packages:

  • Arm/disarm your system and lock/unlock your keypad on your door
  • Receive security trigger alerts to your phone or email
  • Remotely control your temperature. ADT has even partnered with Nest thermostat and will include one if you sign a 36 month contract with Pulse Control or Video service packages.
  • Control your home lighting and any smart appliances
  • Create custom home modes that fits the lifestyle for your home
  • Tune in and watch live video surveillance from your security cameras at any time and monitor the activity within your home.

Buyers seem to love the remote video monitoring capabilities so they can tune in and even screenshot areas of the home at any time. The perk of arming and disarming your security system remotely is pretty standard for ADT Pulse. Their model is that anyone should be able to arm their home from anywhere in this modern day and age.

Major pricing observation: At first glance, while the “Remote Arm” is the entry-level package of ADT Pulse, all the features you get are lacking at the $47.99 starting price. Keep in mind, you get full video and home automation features and controls with Frontpoint’s top-level Ultimate package which goes for $49.99 each month for professional monitoring. So when it comes down to pricing and features, Frontpoint’s highest tiered package still offers a better, more straight forward deal than ADT Puls’s entry-level package.

ADT Pulse in Home Automation

Through ADT Pulse, you can control your lighting and temperatures in your home remotely. You’re welcome to set your home on an auto-pilot mode where it will learn your schedule to ensure you never come home to an unlit house or wake up to a chilled household.

You can also get alerts in emergency conditions through your home automation settings. Specifically, if your temperatures drop dangerously low or alarmingly high due to a fire while you’re away.

ADT Pulse boasts that they can now support the Nest thermostat, but like Frontpoint, ADT Pulse is built with Z-Wave technology and should be compatible with other thermostat and smart device options too. ADT specifically lists all the approved Z-Wave enabled devices they support on their site.

This might be another weak spot for ADT Pulse in comparison to Frontpoint. ADT Pulse has a strict list of devices that will work for their systems and state that if you use a non-ADT-approved device, it may be unresponsive or be complex to integrate with you system. However, they are open to expanding the list and as soon as a new device is approved, they update the list. But again, this list is pretty short at the moment. Meanwhile, while Frontpoint will list several alternative models for thermostats, light controls, or door lock keypads, they are always open to taking calls and inquiries to see if something new is compatible. From what I’ve found in the ADT-approved device list, the majority of their alternative Z-Wave devices are for light switches and dimmers.

ADT Pulse Pros

  • Home automation features are built with Z-Wave
  • Well over 100 years in home security industry

ADT Pulse Cons

  • 60-day refund only if it’s a hardware or tech issue
  • Overwhelming amounts of customer complaints that span over decades
  • Low transparency into pricing and rates
  • Price rate isn’t fixed and can change over time
  • Offers less monitoring features for the nearly the same price as top-level competitor packages

Where Frontpoint Beats ADT Pulse

  • 30-day risk free trial, no questions asked
  • Top-level Ultimate package offers video surveillance at $2 more than ADT Pulse Remote Arm entry-level package
  • Higher app ratings and ease of use
  • Allows DIY installation
  • Equipment and pricing listed clearly throughout website

The Verdict: Frontpoint Wins

When we look at the side by side comparison and then factor in user reviews and overall reputation, it’s clear to us that Frontpoint is the clear winner and our #1 rated home security company. Not only are their products and services made to be reliable, consistent, and completely secure, but their “customer first” mentality and offering additional measures to give buyers a satisfied experience with their security system heavily outweigh ADT’s poor ratings and pricing fluctuations over time, despite being around for so much longer.