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Vivint Smart Home Security Review

Written by | Updated September 1, 2020

Overall Rating

4.6/5
  • No-contract options
  • Advanced smart home tech
  • Customized security solutions

How Vivint home security stacks up

Vivint is a slam dunk for people looking to protect their home and enjoy the latest smart home tech. No other security company does a better job of marrying the convenience of smart home automation with the reassurance of 24/7 professional monitoring.

Plus, if you can afford to buy your equipment up front, you don’t have to worry about getting stuck in a long contract. But Vivint’s equipment is on the pricey side, and every system requires professional installation.

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How we reviewed Vivint

To evaluate Vivint, we got our hands on Vivint equipment, went through demos with Vivint technical experts, visited Vivint’s headquarters for a behind-the-scenes look at how Vivint tech is developed, and participated in multiple interviews with Vivint representatives. We also dove into dozens of expert reviews and hundreds of customer reviews. Some of the top points of comparison we used to evaluate Vivint are listed below.

  • Overall value
  • Equipment and monitoring costs
  • Smart home features and compatibility
  • Mobile app control and functions
  • Customer service
  • Company reputation

Learn more about how we rate and rank home security services in our full methodology.

Compare Vivint pricing

Package
Photo
Monthly fee
Installation fee
Smart features
Contract length
Link
Smart Security Monitoring Smart Home Monitoring Smart Home Video Monitoring
Vivint Sky Control Panel Vivint smart home Vivint equipment
$29.99 $39.99 Starts at $44.99
$99 $149 $199
Sky app Sky app
Smart door lock
Smart thermostat
Sky app
Smart door lock
Smart thermostat
Doorbell camera
Live video streaming
42 or 60 mo.

None with up-front equipment purchase
42 or 60 mo.

None with up-front equipment purchase
42 or 60 mo.

None with up-front equipment purchase
View Plan View Plan View Plan

Data effective 09/01/2020. Offers and availability subject to change.

All Vivint smart home and security packages come with

  • Cellular monitoring connection
  • Professional installation
  • Installation fee ($99–$199)
  • 120-day warranty

Vivint home security vs. the competition

Brand
Lowest monthly monitoring price
Starter equipment price
Contract required
Installation
Smart home compatibility
Learn more
Read review
Best overall Smart home pick No-contract pick Most well-known Techie pick
$44.99 $29.99 $14.99 $27.99 $19.00
$0.00* $599.00 $229.00 $0.00** $399.99
X
No
X
No˄
X
No

Yes
X
No
DIY Pro DIY Pro DIY
Amazon Alexa
Google Assistant
Z-Wave
Amazon Alexa
Google Assistant
Z-Wave
Amazon Alexa
Google Assistant
Amazon Alexa
Google Assistant
Z-Wave
Amazon Alexa
Google Assistant
Z-Wave
View Packages View Packages View Packages View Packages View Packages
Read review Read review Read review Read review Read review

Data effective 09/01/2020. Offers and availability subject to change.
*$0 due up-front with consumer financing.
**With $99 installation charge and new monitoring agreement. Early termination fee applies. See SafeStreets.com for full offer details, terms, and conditions.
˄No-contract options available with outright equipment purchase.
† Professional monitoring provided by Brinks Home Security.
‡ Landline monitoring only. Some restrictions apply. (Full disclaimer)

Pros

  • À la carte customization
  • Abundant smart home offerings
  • Portable, wireless equipment
  • Cellular connection
  • Month-to-month contract option
  • High-end, proprietary equipment

Cons

  • Expensive up-front cost
  • Lingering customer service woes
  • Limited integration with third-party smart home devices

Vivint’s going to cost you more—that’s a fact. But you get what you pay for, and Vivint is one of the only home security companies that does security the way they think it should be done.

Instead of offering the same white-label equipment and cookie-cutter app that many other companies do, Vivint has made its own. This is a big reason why we think the company’s higher prices are worth it.

And the addition of a no-contract option for professional monitoring shows insight and adaptability to the demands of home security customers.

Payment and contract options

Vivint offers two payment options. You can choose Vivint Flex Pay and finance the cost of equipment (which will be on top of your monthly monitoring fee), or you can pay for your equipment up front and pick up monitoring on a month-to-month basis. If you go the contract route, you’re looking at a commitment of 42 or 60 months (that’s five years!).

If you pick the no-contract option, the up-front equipment cost can run you upwards of $1,000 to outfit your home with the basics. That’s a lot of sticker shock, especially when you look at DIY security companies like SimpliSafe that offer basic equipment packages starting under $300.

Pricing summary

Vivint isn’t going to be a cheap home security option, and we think that’s okay. It’s more of a luxury brand, along with ADT, that offers you a different home security experience—it’s perfect if you have a larger home or want complete customization.

For homes with multiple points of entry or busy households with lots of people going in and out the extra security proved by smart locks and alerts made a lot of sense. Not to mention the energy savings from a smart thermostat that helps compensate for doors with a never ending stream of traffic that sucks the life out of climate control systems.

vivint ping camera mounted on the wall

Vivint home security tech and equipment

Rather than employing a third-party distributor, Vivint designs most of its own equipment. All devices function using Z-Wave and are wireless (including cameras and smart thermostats), which makes the equipment transportable.

Equipment that moves with you

That means you can take your Vivint Smart Home equipment with you if you move. Or you can reconfigure your sensors without leaving giant craters in the walls.

Not all home security systems that are as comprehensive and high-tech as Vivint are that easy to move—with ADT you usually have to leave all of your equipment behind and start over if you change your address. And because you own your Vivint equipment, you only pay for it once, which makes a big difference over the lifetime of your security system.

Cellular connection

Vivint home security is 100% cellular, which is one of the most effective and secure connections for any security system. But without a Wi-Fi or landline backup (like SimpliSafe), the cellular connection limits availability if you live in a rural area or somewhere else with little to no cell service.

Professional installation

Another caveat is the company’s insistence on professional installation. This ensures that your system is set up properly, but if you prefer a DIY solution like Frontpoint, this might make Vivint a less appealing option.

Stay safe during an in-home visit

During the pandemic, we're all being more cautious about having people in our homes. Here are some tips to keep you and the tech installing your Vivint system safe during COVID-19.

Talk about it. Let technicians know your household's exposure to the coronavirus and ask about theirs.

Go contactless. Find out if things like payments and signatures can be provided electronically.

Ask about precautions. Will the tech be wearing a face mask and gloves? Do they want your household members to do the same? Work these details out in advance so everyone's prepared.

Keep it separated. If you have multiple people at home, corral them into one room during the visit, if possible.

Provide protection. Have soap, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant at the ready. Invite the installer to wash their hands before and after their work, and disinfect the faucet and basin after they leave.

Vivint smart home equipment

Vivint ping camera

Vivint Ping indoor camera

Vivint Doorbell Camera Pro

Vivint Doorbell Camera Pro

Vivint smart lock

Automatic door lock

Vivint window door sensor

Door and window sensor

Vivint Sky Control Panel

Vivint Sky control panel

Vivint Element Thermostat

Vivint Element thermostat

Vivint key fob

Key fob

Vivint carbon monoxide detector

Carbon monoxide

Vivint tech and equipment standouts

SkyControl panel and NEW! Smart Home panel

On the whole, Vivint’s control panel offerings are more advanced and user-friendly than what you find from other home security companies.

For years, Vivint has been a standout with its innovative Vivint SkyControl Panel that was the first to offer built-in two-way voice communication. And now Vivint is making smart home and security history again with its new Smart Home Panel that will act as a smart home hub and can support up to six security cameras.

The coolest part is that Vivint has solved the problem of multiple cameras bogging down your home Wi-Fi connection. Because security cameras use Wi-Fi to stream live video, the more cameras you have, the slower your Wi-Fi gets.

But the new Vivint Smart Home Panel has technology that lets you set up all the cameras you need to keep an eye on your home without eating up all your bandwidth.

Vivint is currently phasing out the SkyControl Panel and will soon be offering the Smart Home Panel exclusively.

Sky mobile app

The Vivint Sky app is an easy way to keep tabs on your home 24/7 no matter where you are. You can check the live video feed from your home’s security cameras or remotely arm and disarm the alarm system from your phone.

The app is comparable to the navigation you’ll find on the control panel, which makes flip-flopping between the two a bit easier. Plus, you get a live feed of all video cameras in your home.

To find out more about how Vivint’s app stacks up, read our review.

Vivint smart home features

We’ve said it before (and now we’re going to say it again!)—but you won’t find a security system with more smarts than Vivint. From security cameras and smart thermostats to automatic door locks, Vivint has a variety of home automation devices to choose from.

Proprietary products (which make up the bulk of Vivint’s offerings) like the Ping Camera come with upgraded features like two-way voice and motion-sensing capabilities.

Learn all about Vivint’s video surveillance options in our Vivint camera guide.

Vivint smart home keeps households connected

For busy families, Vivint’s smart home capabilities can do everything from increasing face time after school (thanks to Vivint’s interactive smart cameras), to cutting down on wasted electricity with a smart thermostat that can be programmed to routines or adjusted remotely via the Vivint Sky app.

No matter how busy you are, Vivint’s forward-thinking smart home tech gives you the ability to manage (and protect) your home from anywhere and at any time. Because Vivint Home Security has integrated smart home with home security, all the different pieces work together—without having to buy different devices from a multitude of companies (and crossing your fingers that they’ll work together).

Here’s a rundown of the smart home perks that make Vivint stand out in the field of home security and home automation.

  • Watch and listen from anywhere. Vivint’s Ping Indoor Camera and the Vivint Doorbell Camera Pro both use motion detection, two-way communication, night vision, and instant alerts to keep you in the know both inside and outside your home.
  • Keep things locked up tight. With smart locks, you can control access to your home even if you’re across town (or at the beach). Whether you have kids coming home after school or need to let in the pet sitter, you can skip making copies of keys thanks to easy keyless entry.
  • Save money and cut down on waste. The Element Smart Thermostat can help you save money every month. The thermostat learns your habits and adapts to your needs. If you usually turn up the heat before settling in to binge on your latest Netflix obsession, this thermostat might click on before you can grab a blankie.
  • Never leave the garage door open again. Vivint’s Garage Door Controller lets you know if you drove away without putting the door down—and you don’t have to turn around to go home and close it. You can use remote control to close the garage door from the gym, the grocery store, or your office.

Vivint smart home compatibility

Surprisingly, Vivint Home Security has limited compatibility with third-party brands, but they make up for it with their full suite of proprietary smart home products.

The downside is if you’ve already started down the smart home path you might be disappointed to find out you need to buy duplicate items because the Vivint system isn’t compatible with what you’ve already got.

On a broad scale, Vivint is currently compatible with only Google Nest and Amazon Echo.

Smart home feature
Voice control
Climate control
Lighting control
Smart home hub
Keyless entry
Vivint equipment Third-party compatibility
N/A Amazon Alexa, Google Home
Vivint Element Smart Thermostat Amazon Alexa, Google Home
Lamp Module Z-Wave devices
Vivint Sky Control Panel
Smart Home Panel
Amazon Alexa, Google Home, Nest
Vivint Smart Locks
Vivint Doorbell Camera Pro
Amazon Alexa, Google Home

Vivint customer service

This used to be one of Vivint’s weaker points. The company got off to a bumpy start when it first hit the home security scene, but it’s made big strides in this area over the past few years.

Vivint told us that customer feedback is a top priority and the company works hard to implement recommended changes. Those efforts seem to be paying off in accolades and higher ratings from both third-party sources and Vivint customers.

  • Trustpilot rating: 3.6 stars out of 5, Average
  • Vivint Smart Home app on Google Play: 4.5 stars out of 5
  • Vivint Smart Home app on Apple App Store: 4.6 stars out of 5

*Ratings as of September 1, 2020

It’s nice to see customers rating their satisfaction higher, but Vivint doesn’t have a lot of customer-first policies. It doesn’t offer a trial period, and although you can get out of a long contract if you buy your equipment outright, Vivint’s contract terms are strict.

Unlike most other home security companies that require a 36-month contract, Vivint’s contracts range from 42 to 60 months—that’s five years.

And its pricing is confusing. Vivint Home Security advertises a starting monthly monitoring fee of $29.99, but the fine print says there’s a required minimum service contract of $49.99 per month. It looks like the lowest monitoring price is only for those who purchase equipment up front.

It’s confusing information like this that leads to people feeling misled and can result in the type of customer dissatisfaction that’s hounded Vivint over the years.

Vivint installation

We hope you want professional installation, because it’s your only choice with Vivint Smart Home. But we think that’s a good thing, especially when you’re dealing with this level of home security technology and smart home integration.

We like that you get to see exactly what’s happening, and the added perk of a personal training session on how to operate your new home security system is a valuable bonus.

Timing

The biggest downside of pro installation is the time commitment—and if you work full time that could mean using up precious PTO hours. Vivint doesn’t have the best track record for quick installs, either.

Depending on where you live, you could wait up to a week to get your system installed. That’s a long time for people who are eager to have their home and property protected after a break-in or buying a new house.

Installation costs

Another drawback is the installation fee. Vivint’s installation fees run from $99 up to $199. That isn’t the steepest in the industry, but it’s still an extra cost you have to plan for.

Vivint’s in-home security consultation

As part of its top-tier offerings, Vivint Home Security is one of just a few companies that provides a complimentary security consultation. A Vivint security technician conducts an assessment that identifies security risks and offers solutions.

The consultation ensures you have all the equipment you need to protect your home. And it makes sure that equipment (like window, door, and motion sensors) is installed in the right location to maximize your home’s security.

The assessment takes place in tandem with your professional installation. The plus side is that you can add equipment you overlooked or eliminate extras you don’t really need. But the biggest drawback is that this opportunity for positive customer interaction can come across as salesy, which makes it hard for some customers to trust the recommendations.

Other home security options

If you’re still wondering if Vivint is the right choice to protect your home, here are some more options to consider. We can help you dig deeper into how Vivint compares to other top security brands—we already pitted them against one another.

Vivint FAQ

Does Vivint have a money-back guarantee?

No—unlike many of its competitors, Vivint does not have a money-back guarantee. To find out more, visit our page devoted to FAQs about Vivint.

Does Vivint have an equipment warranty?

Yes. Vivint has a 120-day warranty for its proprietary equipment, which includes its smoke detector, doorbell camera, motion detector, and outdoor camera. But Vivint will repair or replace equipment after the warranty period for a service charge (around $45).

And you can elect a Premium Service Plan, which extends the warranty for as long as you’re using Vivint to protect your home. If you purchase a third-party device that works with your Vivint system (like a Google Nest thermostat), the brand’s warranty will apply.

Does Vivint have an activation fee?

There isn’t an activation fee, but you will be charged an installation fee that ranges from $49 to $199.

Does Vivint have cloud storage?

Yes—it’s called Vivint Smart Drive. This convenient service, once known as Space Monkey, provides secure storage much like an external hard drive. It allows you to stream and seamlessly upload all security camera clips with little to no effort. So you can forget about losing any important security recordings or even family photos once a device has kicked the bucket.

Privacy concerns?

If you're worried about video footage being uploaded to the cloud, Vivint has you covered. We asked them how they protect customers' privacy.

“Vivint does not track data from customer’s video footage. Video footage is encrypted from the Vivint Smart Hub all the way to the cloud and back. Only customers can decide who is allowed to access their Vivint system, including their video feeds.”

Is Vivint’s mobile app easy to use?

Yes. According to customer reviews, the Vivint smart home app is very user friendly and offers an intuitive feel. Both iOS and Android users rate the app high, which isn’t always the case.

Is Vivint’s tech compatible with Nest or Amazon Echo?

Yes. Vivint is compatible with both Nest and Amazon Echo products.

Do Vivint’s home security plans come with yard signs?

Yes. But be aware that the sign is smaller than Vivint’s competitors’ signage. We recommend using a solar or battery-powered light to keep the sign visible at night as well as during the day.

Does Vivint have a smart garage door opener?

Yes. This is another security feature you can tack onto your alarm monitoring plan. Smart garage door openers can increase your home’s value and safeguard your valuables from thieves.

Can I control lights remotely with Vivint?

Yes—again, one of the company’s strongest selling points is the home automation capabilities.

Can I cancel my plan at any time?

If you choose to pay Vivint up front for the entire cost of your equipment, you’re automatically eligible for Vivint’s month-to-month contract and professional alarm monitoring. With this plan, you can cancel at any point in time. But if you don’t buy the equipment outright, you’re locked into a contract that could last up to five years.

Is Vivint also a solar energy company?

Yes. Vivint is the second-largest solar installer in the US. The company is committed to offering energy-saving solutions to homeowners through both solar energy and smart home options.

Conclusion

Vivint lets you take the wheel when it comes to putting together the right security system for your needs. Everything is 100% customizable, and you won’t find a smarter home security solution. But Vivint’s high-end equipment comes at a price and requires the expertise of professional installers.

Thankfully, the company has brought its monthly monitoring fees in line with industry standards, so you’re not going to pay much more for 24/7 protection from Vivint. Even so, DIYers and budget-constrained folks may want to look elsewhere for the right home security solution.

Disclaimer

ADT $27.99 Essential package: $99.00 Customer Installation Charge. 36-Month Monitoring Agreement required at $27.99 per month ($1,007.64). 24-Month Monitoring Agreement required at $27.99 per month ($671.76) for California. Form of payment must be by credit card or electronic charge to your checking or savings account. Offer applies to homeowners only. Local permit fees may be required. Satisfactory credit history required. Certain restrictions may apply. Offer valid for new ADT Authorized Dealer customers only and not on purchases from ADT LLC. Other rate plans available. Cannot be combined with any other offer. The $27.99 Offer does not include the 6-month guarantee or the Quality Service Plan (QSP). Quality Service Plan (QSP) is ADT’s Extended Limited Warranty. Landline monitoring only.

Written by Rebecca Edwards

Rebecca is the lead safety reporter and in-house expert for SafeWise.com. She has been a journalist and blogger for over 25 years, with a focus on home and community safety for the past six. Rebecca spends dozens of hours every month testing and evaluating security products and strategies. Her safety expertise is sought after by publications, broadcast journalists, non-profit organizations, podcasts, and more. You can find her work and contributions in places like TechCrunch, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, HGTV, MSN, and an ever-growing library of radio and TV clips. Learn more

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  • Ninjaneer

    After reading this whole article , why isn’t security covered ? As in how the panel responds when you enter the house and that delay for entering the code to disarm ?

    If i rush the panel and smash it with in the 15 second window , is the monitoring station made aware ?

    This is a good article on the product but where is the safety of how the security system works is not discussed which is important for a house alarm system

  • Luka Miller

    Very expensive and terrible system and even worse customer service when trying to problem solve. Im locked into a 5 year contract and regret it. While out of the country or sitting in my home the ‘recording activity’ is completely inaccurate if anything at all. I had a break in at my front door and police confirmed the damage to my door, in front of the door bell cam, and recorded nothing, yet a leaf blows in the wind and I get a notice. TERRIBLE!!!

    • Lawson Maria

      U can get out of the contract. Call billing. I was able to break contract because I had to move from a mold infested house. I couldnt use the system in my new home. read my comment above…. dont give up! Once u pay off equipment at bank u can be released…make sure u send in writing that you want service canceled after u hurry & pay off bank. But call Billing to set this up….not reg agents!!

  • Oldcargirl62

    This artivle should be updated. Not only have we had issue after issue, but the panel wouldn’t support recording and saving video as we were first told. I ended up buying the space monkey and they’ve discontinued the main app. The ONLY way to access the drive is from a mobile. Go ahead, try and review SECURITY video on your small phone. Then try and select and save clips that are 30 sec, 90 sec or 5 min. That’s your only choice. Takes for ever and half the emails have no attachment so you get to do it all over again. It removed the original date and time stamp rendering it useless as evidence.

  • Gavin Williams

    I have to agree with most everyone here. Vivint is a horrible company to deal with and is a joke of a security system. I had a system installed in two different homes. During the install of the security systems at home #1 the technician was extremely lazy and didn’t want to install the camera or hook up any of the pre existing vivint products from the previous installation. I had to have a second installer come out to finish the installation and still none of the window sensors are tied to the install. During the installation of home #2 I had another lazy installer that didn’t want to install the camera as well did a poor installation of the few pieced of equipment as well. The new motion sensor fell off the wall causing a false alarm and breaking the motion detector. The one camera that was installed on the second installation has failed as well and no longer works. These problems aren’t even the worst of it.

    To this date, I have never been given a invoice of what actual equipment had been installed in either house and what I’m paying for.

    Last but not least, I am selling one of the houses. They are attempting to charge me over $2000 for canceling my account for the one home. This is totally ridiculous. To top it all off, the system doesn’t work worth a crap anyway. I can never see the video from the doorbell quick enough to see who is there before they leave and it isn’t a fault of the internet connection. I have a super quick and dependable commercial internet account. Stay away from Vivint and ignore this sales add on this page.

  • STEVE ORT

    I would do your research into this company before using them, they tell you one thing and do another just to get you signed up. I was suppose to have my system installed on Sunday but they canceled on me because the installer never showed up to work. When we rescheduled they tried to set it up for monday 12/2, I could not take off so we rescheduled for Tuesday 12/3 between the hours 10-12, when i called to see if i could get an earlier time they said my install was pushed back till 12/10. So you are telling me that i am getting punished for your installed canceling on me. I am about to spend over 1600 dollars on equipment and over 50 dollars a month for this service and this is how they treat there Customers, NO THANKS!!!! INSTALL WAS CANCELED!!!

  • Lawson Maria

    Vivint is very hard to get out of 5 year contract! I had issues health wise in a house & had to move. I talked to 10 agents who each told me different things and it was a nightmare. I was told send a email stating that i was canceling….and i would be out of contract. Well months later I was sent into collections! Bill was $3,000! Finally my mom who is a very smart lady & tough mama bear called them & found out I couldnt get out until I paid the bank $600.00 for the Equipment . So I did this & finally Vivint man in billing reviewed my special circumstances & did release me but said would settle for 5 months payoff /write off of $300.00. So I did & thank God im out of the nightmare!! This would have ruined my credit if mom didnt help me! I never even knew I had signed a 5 year contract which is crazy! Be careful what u esign!

    Dont get into a contract with Vivint. They dont have everyone trained to tell you the true facts . If you dont get out of the contract you will be held responsible for the remainder of it at whatever months are left and what u pay each month. They lie & say you can turn in the system & be out but thats also a lie! Depends on who you talk to.

  • The Bee

    Dear Vivint:

    A sales rep came by on a Friday afternoon saying Vivint is looking for model homes to offer trials of their equipment and services. I agreed to the trial and the rep said he was going to work hard to make sure we got a good deal of $20 only to have the system and monitoring in our home for 3 days on a trial. He also said that he could get us the trial for 7 days instead of 3.

    The appointment took so long that I had to go to a doctor’s appointment but afterwards, he came back and we discussed it again. He said that actually the amount would be $70 for the trial. Strange.

    I still thought that we were getting a deal though, at 10 dollars a day for 7 days. I had him provide written confirmation that we would get the trial for 7 days, risk-free.

    The installation began within 20 minutes of talking to the rep – He was still on my couch when the installation tech showed up ready to install. I wouldn’t have agreed to this trial if I’d known I wouldn’t be able to schedule a time for the installation. This was in the middle of me needing to pick up my daughter from preschool. Guy wasn’t done until after my daughter had been in bed for an hour and a half – it took nearly 5 hours for the installation to complete.

    My husband and I tried to cancel later that evening. When my husband called, he sat through two waiting periods before finally being told that he would need to call back on Monday to speak with the Customer Loyalty Department about cancellation. During his phone call, however, he was also told that our rep should have never told us that he could get us 7 days instead of 3 because we would have been put under contract after the third day. I should also mention that the “assistant manager” who came to install the equipment also boasted that he could try to get us a full month before canceling the “trial”. Things started feeling sketchy at around this point in the ordeal.

    Anyway, the following Monday I called Vivint’s Customer Loyalty line and was very cordial when I explained that we wanted to cancel the trial. The rep said he would make a note in our account and gave us the date and time of our scheduled uninstall, which was going to be in 6 days. Great, fine.

    Later that day I was looking at my online banking statement because my debit card was declined during my lunch break. Come to find out, I was double charged the $76.46 (and my bank had a serious system failure causing no one’s deposits from the last three days to post which contributed to this issue, but I digress.)

    So I called Vivint a second time, livid, but didn’t swear. I think anyone in this situation after only 2-3 days would be absolutely equally upset, if not more so. I asked him when I could expect my refund of both charges. Justin said that one of the charges was from Citizens Bank and that it’s part of the trial. I said that can’t be right because they both show as identical charges. Regardless, I asked when I could expect to see my refund since I would be out nearly $160. He said that refunds couldn’t be issued until the equipment is removed from my home in 6 days. And he was very matter-of-fact, as if to say “sorry ’boutcha luck!”, when he said it.

    So essentially, I’m missing the better part of $200 for nearly a week, all because I decided to try out this new home security system. This has by far been a surprisingly terrible experience from day one, which only continues to get worse.

    The same rep, Justin, said that in order for cancellations to officially process I would need to submit a written request via email. This is something everyone in the line before him neglected to mention. And judging from the way our experience has been thus far, I’m not confident that the company would’ve acknowledged the error on their part – by not informing us – and not put us on the hook for the entire cost of the equipment plus monitoring – because of THEIR mistake.

    Nonetheless, I submitted the email and made sure to include the verbiage Justin said we needed to include in the email. I asked for a receipt of the email and have been told that most receipts are sent the following day of the request being sent. Alright, fine.

    Now, I spoke directly with my bank to ask them about this double charge. They said that they are both from the same entity, that there was no “Citizens Bank” anywhere that they could see. So they agreed to remove the second charge of $76.46 because it hadn’t posted yet.

    Afterwards, I called Vivint one more time to clarify this “double charge” because my bank gave me different information. The last rep I spoke to, Bain, said that there should only be a $76 charge AND a $52.41 charge. “Really?”

    As it turns out, the $52 charge came from Citizens Bank as a loan for the equipment / monitoring service — a charge I was told on the day the rep came to my house wouldn’t happen if I canceled within the 3-day (or 7-day) trial period. The rep told me that ONLY IF we decided to keep the system that we would be charged an additional cost of around $52. So basically, another lie.

    And then it begs the question – Why did Justin pretend that two identical charges of $76.46 was normal when, in fact, the actual amount should have been $52.41? Is it incompetence? Or was he just being passive aggressive because a JUSTIFIABLY ANGRY customer let him know how upsetting this experience has been and demanded to know when to expect a full refund?

    Bottom line, clearly no one at this company seems to know very KEY information about how this trial is supposed to work. Everyone we’ve encountered since the day the sales rep showed up at our door has only compounded the issues we’ve had by either misinforming us or just omitting information altogether.

    I’ve kept all emails, phone logs, bank information etc. and I plan to continue documenting every interaction with this company until every last piece of equipment has been removed and I receive every single penny that was taken from my account. I cannot recommend Vivint to anyone because of the way this was deeply mishandled every single step of the way.

    • Celeste Tholen

      Thank you for such a detailed comment and review of your experience! We’ve noted this for future rankings.

  • jd

    DO NOT BUY VIVINT. Their equipment does not work without a monitoring service, so paying “up front” to avoid a long-term contact gets you nothing, and once you discontinue the monthly fees, you have nothing more than decorative wall hangings. It took four days to get through to their ‘customer loyalty’ group to discuss terminating my service–only to be told the only way to cancel was IN WRITING. Safe yourself a headache and avoid this company.

  • cleveland thomas

    Don’t waste your time doing business Vivint they will promise you the world and deliver nothing their customer service is sub par you will waste your time and money doing business with Vivint I waited three weeks for a install that never happened they will try to lock you into a long term agreement and give you dollar store equipment you have been warned.

  • Dayna T

    This review of Vivint is so different than my actual experience with Vivint that it makes me question all reviews on this site. Vivint’s equipment is buggy as can be. Your options with the motion detection doorbell camera are either to be so sensitive it is constantly going off from wind blowing through trees or so insensitive they don’t pick up anything. The thermostat constant disconnects from the panel. I could go on, but that is just the equipment. Heaven help you if you ever move.

  • Donald Carlson

    After reading the comments on this page I went to Armorax’s site to see what they offered; they’ve partnered with another security company and their starter package I believe starts at $0 down. The panel and sensors are Qolsys, so that’s good. Monitoring is priced well too, so all in all a great deal.

  • Kelsey Negron

    Hmm, a lot of people seem to be talking about Armorax. Why? What do they offer that the rest don’t?

    • Melissa Gilmore

      I believe why you see a lot of comments on Armorax here is because they’re a known home security company, usually listed in the top 10 on most security review sites, but they’re not here on this site, and it wouldn’t be unfair to say that they offer a real good security product and monitoring service. They just partnered up with another security provider, so their pricing should become more competitive now too, or so I hope!

  • Hazel Kahl

    I ended up getting my system through Armorax as well after reading the comments here. It’s a Link system with the Qolsys control panel. Really like the pricing though. Paid $99 down and $30sh something per month.