We reviewed Canada’s top security system providers, so Canadians from the far flung reaches of the Yukon territory all the way to Montreal can be well-covered and protected with everything from a security camera and window sensors to carbon monoxide detectors and smart home automization.
ADT: Best for Professional Monitoring
What We Like • Responsive, professional monitoring • Remote control • Life protection • Home automation capabilities
ADT offers dependable 24/7 security monitoring and comprehensive package options like ADT Pulse®. This home security company includes add-on features such as remote control; home automation devices; and flood, fire, and carbon monoxide protection.
Most ADT contracts require a 36-month commitment. The alarm company offers three packages: Basic, Expanded, and Premium. The Basic plan works with a landline, while Expanded and Premium use a cellular connection. All plans require a one-time activation fee that costs around $99. You can also choose to add on extra devices or packages such as ADT Pulse®, Critical Condition Monitoring, Two-Way Voice, or CellGuard®, but know that the pricing can get pretty expensive since ADT charges you for every little extra feature. However, all package prices include life-saving devices like smoke detectors, so you don’t have to worry about hidden costs for home-safety basics.
Tech and Equipment
Alarm Guard and ADT hasve a combined 140 years of home security experience—so you can trust the tech and equipment to work effectively and consistently. ADT offers the latest tech, ranging from pet-sensitive motion detectors to touchscreen control panels to exterior security cameras with night vision.
ADT gives you two options for home automation. The first being the Premium Plan: it has a remote arm and disarm feature, but the package doesn’t include smart home devices. The other option is ADT Pulse®, which is a separate plan that specifically caters to home automation and has smart home equipment included. With this plan, you can remotely unlock or lock your doors, dim lights, or close the garage door.
According to customer reviews, ADT’s customer service is a bit of a mixed bag. Some reviews stated that customer service was helpful, pleasant, and kind, while other reviews were quite negative.
ADT provides professional installation and encourages you to work with the technician for a customized security system. Additionally, ADT has contracts with regional security companies—and since the company works with local servicers, your installation experience could vary.
If you opt for the Premium Plan, ADT includes fire, flood, and carbon monoxide protection. However, you can add life protection to any of ADT’s plans—just remember, it’s going to cost extra.
For Canadians in specific areas, ADT provides a variety of options to keep your home protected from flood, fire, carbon monoxide, and intruders. While package prices may seem lofty, the peace of mind you get from a security system may feel well worth it.
Remote access and control
Home automation devices included
Pet-sensitive motion detector
Yard and window decals
Our Favorite ADT Package: Expanded Plan and Pulse® Package Home automation and comprehensive security protection in one fell swoop.
Between customizable plans, DIY installation, and devices you can take with you if you move, Frontpoint makes its case for do-it-yourself home security enthusiasts, whether renters or homeowners. Frontpoint also has great customer service and covers almost all of Canada—with the exception of Quebec.
Frontpoint’s contracts start around $34.99 a month, with a $99.00 activation fee, and can last for up to three years. This can seem constraining, but Frontpoint has a 30-day, risk-free trial, so if the alarm system doesn’t work well for you, you’re able to cancel your plan and return the equipment.
Tech and Equipment
To offset its long contracts, Frontpoint allows you to take the system with you if you move, which most companies don’t allow you to do. Equipment, ranging from smart thermostats to indoor cameras to wireless outdoor security cameras with night vision, are up-to-date with recent trends and consumer demands. Additionally, Frontpoint makes sure to include carbon monoxide and smoke detectors in every plan.
Most of Frontpoint’s devices are smart-home friendly and compatible with hubs like Google Home or Amazon Alexa. But if you don’t already own smart home devices or a hub, Frontpoint has a variety to choose from.
Frontpoint’s team seems genuinely interested in what your needs are, and they’ll make sure you get the right system by asking plenty of questions about your habits, house, and lifestyle. And when an emergency arises, service associates communicate clearly and concisely, so you’re able to quickly tackle the issue. Don’t want to take our word for it? Check out our Frontpoint security review. Although the technical details are based on United States plans, the user testimonials on customer service apply across the border.
With Frontpoint’s DIY installation, you’re able to take the reins and decide where your control panel, thermostat, and motion sensors are placed.
Fire, carbon monoxide, and flood protection are available in all of Frontpoint’s packages. So if you forget to turn off the oven or your furnace suddenly malfunctions, you have an extra set of eyes on your home to protect you and your family in case of an emergency situation.
Despite long contracts, Frontpoint’s wireless devices and DIY installation make it easy for you to move the system around—to another location in the house or to a new home altogether.
Remote access and control
Home automation capabilities
Crash and Smash protection
Door and window sensors
Garage door sensor
Glass break sensor
Our Favorite Frontpoint Package: Interactive Plan The Interactive Plan offers a happy medium between remote control, home automation, and alarm monitoring.
Packages range from basic with no long-term contract to comprehensive with home automation devices, sensors, and carbon monoxide detectors. Think Protection’s pricing is, on the whole, quite affordable. The initial lump sum you pay upfront depends on which plan you choose: This cost covers the equipment, so you own your devices outright. From there, you’re free to add on plan features like Private Guards or Home Automation to your monthly monitoring fee. Plus, you get a 30-day, risk-free trial, so if you’re unhappy with the plan, you’re not stuck with it.
Tech and Equipment
Think Protection’s equipment is entirely wireless and functions using a Wi-Fi connection. If you opt to include smart home automation in your plan, you can use a control panel to control your equipment, from security cameras to a smart thermostat, as well as products from other vendors like the Nest Cam security camera. If you live in an area that has poor or no Wi-Fi access, Think Protection gives you the option to purchase a cellular connection. Ultimately, what connection you use depends on what’s available in your area. Reviewers stated that Think Protection’s equipment felt a bit flimsy, and there are reports of false alarms that are difficult to turn off.
Think Protection lets you upgrade your security system with a Z-Wave chip. This technology allows your security system to communicate and link with smart home devices, like a smart hub, smart thermostat, or smart lightbulbs.
According to customer reviews on TrustPilot.com, whether you’re calling because of an emergency or have a question regarding your alarm system, Think Protection’s customer service is polite, helpful, and concise.
Much like Frontpoint, Think Protection requires DIY installation. But unlike Frontpoint, Think Protection has a certified technician call you to walk you through the set up and answer any questions that you have.
Think Protection’s Premium Package is the only plan that includes fire, flood, freeze, or carbon monoxide detectors, but the company does allow you to tack on these devices to the plan of your choice for an additional cost.
It’s hard to beat Think Protection’s affordability and customizable packages. Plus, Think Protection services all of Canada—which is ideal for people who live in remote areas. But the low cost also means the equipment can be subpar, especially compared to other companies’ products.
Free mobile app
No long-term contract
30-day, free trial
Door or window sensors
Our Favorite Think Protection Package: Plus Package Simple and straightforward, the Plus Package is ideal for medium-sized homes. Think Protection allows you to add on extra devices, home automation features, or cellular connectivity, so you can customize as much as you like.
AlarmForce is a one-stop shop—the company offers home security, home automation, and life protection. Rather than owning the security system outright, you lease the equipment for the duration of your contract. This approach allows AlarmForce to forgo installation and activation fees, but you’ll end up absorbing the costs elsewhere.
In 2018, AlarmForce was acquired by Bell Canada—one of the country’s leading cellphone providers. This transition in ownership has impacted the company’s transparency, and it’s difficult to say what AlarmForce’s future is. We tried our best to find out specific information about the company’s regional coverage, prices, contract availability, and bundling offers, but due to the acquisition, it’s difficult to get any straight answers.
Your geographic location, any add-on features you want, and the type of installation or connection you need can all influence which alarm system will work best for you.
Because of Canada’s mammoth size and varied terrain, providers often have a difficult time servicing all territories and provinces. Be sure to check if your area is covered before contacting a company. That said, Think Protection offers Canada-wide coverage—so even if you live in a rural location, it should have a plan for you.
Type of Connection
In addition to your location, whether or not you have a Wi-Fi (broadband), cellular, or hardwire connection can also dictate the type of system you end up choosing. Some companies have strictly wireless home security systems, while others are primarily hardwired with a backup cellular option. So before you sign a contract, double-check to make sure the system’s connectivity is compatible with your home.
Whether you live in a remote territory or urban area, you could benefit from life protection services. Often times, this type of plan monitors for fire, flood, or carbon monoxide—but, to be sure, check with a provider for specifics.
Type of Installation
Alarm monitoring companies offer two types of installation: DIY or professional. When weighing your options, take into consideration how much customization you want. For example, think about which areas in your home are vulnerable and where you’d like motion or glass break sensors, a control panel, and security cameras to be installed.
FAQs about Security Systems in Canada
Will my location impact which company I sign up with? Yes. Since Canada is so large, it’s difficult for companies to cater to all provinces and territories. Some companies have less regional availability than others. For example, ADT Alarm Guard (ADT’s Canada brand) has limited coverage, while Think Protection is able to cater to the entire country.
What is life protection? Life protection is an all-encompassing term for fire, flood, and carbon monoxide monitoring. Be sure to read a provider’s fine print regarding coverage specifics.
What are some additional ways I can protect my home? A fire extinguisher can be a good place to start. If you accidentally start a fire in the kitchen, you’ll be able to respond quickly. If you live in a rural area with frequent power outages, consider a portable generator to keep your home and security system powered.
What are the advantages of remote control? Remote control offers a variety of perks for just about anyone, anywhere. For example, say you’re visiting family—you can make it appear as though you’re at home, even when you’re not. You can do everything from turning lights on and off and playing music to adjusting the thermostat temperature to prevent your pipes from freezing.
Our top Canadian alarm systems of 2018 were ranked in six categories—price and contract, tech and equipment, home automation, customer service, installation, and life protection. We evaluated each company based on BBB rating, customer feedback, and expert reviews. To read more about our methodology, click here.
Written by Monique Seitz-Davis
The SafeWise Team is here to help you keep your home and family safe. Whether you’re looking to pick a security system or identify and remove common risks in your home, we’re here to help you find the best products and well-researched answers. At SafeWise we combine our years of experience in home safety and security with user reviews and feedback to help take the guesswork out of living safe. Learn more