Best home security system: the best security kits for greater peace of mind

For those who are really serious about protecting their homes, putting a single security camera on the porch or by the back door just won’t be enough. Thankfully, modern technology has made it possible to have an entire home security system protecting your property for a reasonable price. You can now feel safer with access sensors, motion sensors, cameras and more besides all monitoring the inside and outside of your home.

Not only does this ensure that anyone trying to enter without permission (or getting up to no good outside) can be detected before they get any further, but having these devices will also warn potential criminals not to attempt anything in the first place.

We’ve taken a look at some of the best home security systems available right now to see which ones are best for beginners, security experts, smart homes and more, rating them on what’s included as well as their ability to expand into larger set-ups down the road. Scroll down to see what we thought and, once you’ve chosen, take a look at our rundown of the best security cameras to help complete your system. 

The best home security systems 2021 

best home security system: Samsung SmartThings Starter Kit (Image credit: Samsung)

1.

Samsung SmartThings Starter Kit

Best home security system for long-term: an easy to use system with brilliant third-party compatibility

Specifications

Components: Hub, multi sensor, motion sensor, presence sensor Dimensions: 15 x 15 x 3cm Weight: 1.2kg

Reasons to buy

+Great smart compatibility +Easy to set up

Reasons to avoid

No cameras in starter kit

Samsung has been trying to take the lead in the home security market for some time, and it may have finally achieved supremacy with its impressive SmartThings system.

Not just a security investment, but a complete smart system for your home. The range boasts compatibility with a massive range of third-party products from leading brands like Sonos, Philips Hue and more. That means, alongside Amazon’s Ring (see below), it’s really the best option for those looking to expand to a future-proof smart home set-up over time.

The basic kit itself includes a hub, multi sensor, motion sensor and presence sensor, so you will need to purchase other products if you want video coverage, but you can set up routines and timers through the app. The SmartThings kit is also compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant so, if you already have a smart assistant you can get started building automations and voice commands straight away. Livingetc rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars 

best home security system: Ring Alarm Home Security System

(Image credit: Ring)

2. Ring Alarm Home Security System

Best home security system for smart homes: Ring’s best home security solution

Specifications

Components: Base station, keypad, contact sensor, motion detector, range extender Dimensions: 16.9 x 16.9 x 3.6cm (base station)

Reasons to buy

+Affordable+Room for customisation+Can be connected to other Ring devices

Reasons to avoid

Security cameras not included

A close second in our home security ranking, the Ring 5-Piece Home Security System is (almost) a one-stop-shop for keeping your home secure.

The set includes a base station, keypad, contact sensor for doors and windows, motion detector and even a range extender for larger homes. The keypad is easily mounted onto a convenient wall, and you can also control the alarm via the Ring app. Although it doesn’t come with a security camera included, you can hook the system up to other Ring products such as a Ring Video Doorbell, and it’s also simple to use with smart home systems such as Amazon’s Alexa.

This compatibility makes it super-easy to build out an wider-ranging system. If you already have some smart devices in your home and want to make better use of them, then Ring’s offering could be your best choice. Livingetc rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars 

best home security system: Simplisafe Security System

(Image credit: Simplisafe)

3. Simplisafe Security System

Most comprehensive home security system: a 7-13 piece kit for your whole house

Specifications

Components: Base station, keypad, entry sensors x 3, motion sensors x 2 Dimensions: 30.5 x 28.7 x 17.5cm

Weight: 2.2kg

Reasons to buy

+Includes largest number of devices+Highly customizable 

Reasons to avoid

Quite expensive if you want the full set 

A smaller version of Simplisafe’s security system that can be connected almost completely without wires, the 7-piece system (pictured) includes a base station, keypad, three entry sensors and two motion sensors.

5-piece and 13-piece versions are also available. The multiple sensors mean you can protect multiple areas of your home at once, meaning if you want to add an entry device to your front door, back door and bedroom window, you can do so without paying out for extras. As said, there are a few different combinations you can try with the 13-piece set being the most comprehensive with a SimpliCam, glass break sensor, wireless siren, panic button and 2 key fobs also included.

The company also claims its devices are smash proof and can run on 4G should your Wi-Fi fail for any reason, providing an additional level of protection.

best home security system: Arlo Pro 3 Smart Home Security System (Image credit: Arlo)

4. Arlo Pro 3 Smart Home Security System

Best camera-only home security system: a 2K HDR security system for indoor or outdoor use

Specifications

Components: Base station, camera x 2

Dimensions: 40 x 1 x 45cm Weight: 1.36kg

Reasons to buy

+Weatherproof for outdoor use+Built-in siren and spotlight+Wireless set-up

Reasons to avoid

Just camerasExpensive

As the price tag suggests, the Arlo Pro 3 Smart Home Security System is a step up from many of its competitors but, offering just security cameras without extra sensors, is most suitable for those just starting to build their system. The video quality is excellent with night vision and the ability to zoom into footage for a closer look, and there is a built-in siren alarm that can be activated manually from your smartphone.

The newest Arlo model also includes an integrated spotlight, which will help to deter unwanted visitors and aid video capture of any incidents. You can also use the system with Alexa, Google Assistant or Apple HomeKit.

best home security system: Honeywell Home (Image credit: Honeywell)

5.

Honeywell Home

Best home security system for beginners: a DIY system for those starting out

Specifications

Components: Base station, key fob, access sensor x 2 Dimensions: 7.3 x 3.6 x 3.6cm Weight: 0.5kg

Reasons to buy

+Built-in Alexa+Easy to set up+Camera built into hub

Reasons to avoid

Subscription fee for expanded online storage 

With just two access sensors, a base station and a key fob, the Honeywell Home security system is a brilliant place for beginners to start their journey to a safer home.

The space-saving base unit acts as a motion detector that will record crisp 1080p HD video when it senses movement and, if you want video coverage outside, you can connect third-party sensors and cameras to the hub. And the Honeywell system isn’t just compatible with Alexa, it’s actually more of a security-focused Alexa device in and of itself, allowing you to access things like Amazon Music, weather information and audiobooks through the base station.

How do security systems work?

Building on the safety provided by the best security cameras, home security systems include tools such as motion sensors, smart locks and entry sensors that can detect when someone has entered the home – whether they have been invited or not. This makes it much harder for unwanted guests to enter without detection even if they are able to evade a security camera’s field of view.

The biggest role of security devices is no doubt their role as a deterrent as, if potential criminals are faced with a home that has cameras and motion sensors installed, they are less likely to attempt a break-in in the first place. And now that almost all security systems are connected to smartphones through an app, immediate alerts are now possible even if you’re not physically at home.

What are entry sensors? 

You may notice that many of the products listed here include something called an ‘entry sensor’ or ‘access sensor’. These are devices that come in two parts – one attached to a door or window and the other to the wall beside it.

These two parts are able to sense when they are close together or far apart so, if the window or door is opened without you knowing, an alert will be initiated. 

Which is the best home security system?

In our opinion, the best home security system available right now is the Samsung SmartThings starter kit.

While the system itself is somewhat basic in what it includes, we rated it highly due to its ability to connect to hundreds of third-party products, including those from Google and Amazon’s Alexa. 

Coming in second is the Ring Alarm Home Security System, a 5-piece set that covers almost everything you need and is easily boosted by devices such as a Ring Doorbell or security cam.

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