Vivint Home Security Review

Vivint is high-end security at a price to match, but its tech and full-service experience make it worth it.
Best overall
Vivint
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
  • pro
    Pro monitoring starts at $29.99/mo.
  • pro
    Advanced smart home tech
  • pro
    Customized security solutions

Info current as of publish date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change. 

Rebecca Edwards
Security Expert, Safety & Tech Reporter
November 29, 2022

With Vivint home security, your imagination sets the limits. Vivint security systems offer killer customization, high-end smart home integrations, and professional installation.

Vivint can come at a high price, but impressive new security cameras and one app for everything are just two reasons that Vivint’s smarter home security systems are worth the price of admission. We believe in this brand so much that it's our number one pick for best security system.

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Vivint deals

🔥 Vivint is offering free doorbell camera pro (gen 2) for a limited time! ($249.99 value) 

Info current as of publish date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change. 

pro
Pros
pro Total customization
pro Pro install, maintenance, repairs
pro Month-to-month contract option
pro $0 down with consumer financing
pro Quality equipment, advanced security features
con
Cons
con Higher overall costs
con Lingering customer service woes
con Limited third-party smart home integration


Compare Vivint monitoring plan costs

All of Vivint’s professional monitoring plans come with a $49 installation fee and the option to get started for $0 down with third-party consumer financing. The contract length for all plans is 42 to 60 months, or if you pay up front, there's no contract at all. You can learn more in our Vivint costs guide and Vivint cancellation guide.

Package
Photo
Monthly fee
Smart security features
Learn more
Smart Security Monitoring Vivint Sky Control PanelVivint app
Smart Home Monitoring Vivint smart home Vivint app
Voice commands
Smart thermostat
Smart lighting
Smart door lock
Smart Home Video Monitoring Vivint equipmentAll Smart Home plan features plus:
Smart Deter
Package protection
Live video streaming

Info current as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Are Vivint security systems right for you?

When we call Vivint a high-end, full-service home security system, we’re not kidding around. Here’s a quick look at what you’ll get from a Vivint home security system:

  • 24/7 professional alarm monitoring
  • Professional installation
  • Total customization to fit your home
  • Personal introduction to the system and the Vivint app
  • Vivint smart home app to control everything
  • Smart security cameras, including a doorbell camera, with advanced safety features
  • Professional security system maintenance and repairs
  • Lifetime equipment warranty
  • Multiple contract options

Even though Vivint systems have made big improvements to its customer policies, including a $0 down financing option and the chance to go contract-free with an outright equipment purchase, it’s still a pricier security system.

To take full advantage of Vivint home security systems' advanced tech and high-end security features, you’ll pay upwards of $40 a month, compared to the average $31 monthly pro monitoring cost among the security systems we've tested and reviewed.

That said, we think this is a case of "you get what you pay for"—and with Vivint, you get a whole lot of security innovation and quality service for your monthly fee.

If you’ve got room in your security budget and want the reassurance that comes with professional installation and cutting-edge home security equipment, Vivint should top your list.

How Vivint stacks up

Brand
Best for
Monthly costIcon Tooltip  Dark
Starter equipment price
Contract required
Smart home compatibilityIcon Tooltip  Dark
Learn more
Read review
Best overall$599.00
Icon Yes  LightNo *
Amazon,
Google,
Z-Wave
Budget pick$245.00
Icon Yes  LightNo
Amazon,
Google
Quality DIY pick$129.00
Icon Yes  LightNo
Amazon,
Google,
Z-Wave
Most experienced$0.00
Icon No  LightYes
Amazon,
Google,
Z-Wave
Best customer experienceQuote required
Icon Yes  LightNo
Amazon, Google

Info current as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change. Read full disclaimer.
Full ADT disclaimer

Vivint’s going to cost you more overall. But you get what you pay for, and Vivint is one of the only home security companies that’s constantly innovating and adding new bells and whistles to its equipment and app offerings.

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

And the addition of a no-contract option for professional monitoring shows that Vivint’s listening—and responding—to the demands of home security customers, unlike some of its competitors. 

Learn more about how Vivint compares to the competition in our head-to-head reviews:

Vivint pricing and contracts

Vivint offers a few 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!)

But Vivint recently told us that you can put $0 down when you choose to finance so that long-term contract might be worth it for little to nothing due up front. (We've got the scoop on how to get out of your Vivint contract too.)

Shopping in Canada?

Vivint's Canada pricing is the same as its US pricing, and it's always in USD. The only difference is financing: Canadian customers must finance systems for only 12 months rather than 60.

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.

You can learn more in our Canadian Security Systems guide.

Vivint equipment and fees

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.

Vivint security panel

Image: SafeWise

Vivint tech lineup

  • Carbon monoxide detector: $100.00
  • Flood sensor: $69.99
  • Freeze sensor: $69.99
  • Smoke detector: $100.00
  • Kwikset smart door locks: Starting at $151.90
  • Garage door controller: $99.00
  • Smart home appliance control module: $49.99
  • Lamp module: $50.00
  • Element Thermostat: $169.99
  • Nest L Thermostat: $249.99
  • Nest E Thermostat: $169.99

You can learn more about all the devices offered by Vivint in our Vivint equipment guide.

Vivint smart home keeps households connected

Best monitoring plan for smart homes
Vivint

Info current as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

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. These can be programmed to routines or adjusted remotely via the Vivint app.

No matter how busy you are, Vivint smart home technology helps you 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 with your existing security system—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. All of Vivint’s smart security cameras use motion detection, two-way communication, night vision, and instant alerts to keep you in the know both inside and outside your home. Plus, the new Smart Deter feature catches “lurkers” in the act and shoos them away with sound and light.
  • 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. Vivint smart locks are Kwikset locks. Learn more in our Kwikset smart lock review.
  • Save money and cut down on waste. Vivint's smart thermostat can help you save money every month. The Element 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.
  • Put a lid on oven fires (or any fires). Vivint's smart smoke alarm comes with a built-in transmitter that instantly connects you to the Vivint monitoring center when triggered, but the best part is that the Vivint smoke detector can actually shut down airflow to choke out flames while help is on the way. 
  • 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.
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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 doesn't 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.

Vivint outdoor camera

Image: SafeWise

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.

Learn more by checking out our Vivint compatibility page

Smart home featureVivint equipment Third-party compatibility
Voice controlN/AAmazon Alexa, Google Home
Climate controlVivint Smart Thermostat Amazon Alexa, Google Home
Lighting controlLamp Module Z-Wave devices
Smart home hubSmart Home Panel Amazon Alexa, Google Home, Nest
Smart lockVivint Smart Locks, Vivint Doorbell Camera Pro Amazon Alexa, Google Home

Vivint Smart Hub: Vivint smart home system

Image: SafeWise

For years, Vivint was 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 Smart Hub that acts as a smart home hub and can support up to six security cameras.

The most impressive 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 security video, the more cameras you have, the slower your Wi-Fi gets.

But the Vivint Smart Hub has home video 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 mobile app

The Vivint Smart Home 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 control 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, Vivint told us they have a whole team dedicated to keeping its app user-friendly, easy to use, and packed with features that boost both your home’s security and its smart home automation.

Of all the home security apps we've reviewed, Vivint's is our favorite. See how it stacks up in our full review of home security phone apps and check out our review of the Vivint app.

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Water safety feature

Vivint has a handy feature for the Vivint Outdoor Camera Pro that aims to make your backyard safer. It lets you create an additional detection zone around your pool using the Vivint app. When someone enters the detection area, the camera will automatically record a clip and send a notification to your phone.

How to install Vivint

Image: SafeWise

Professional installation is 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. Plus, the added perk of a personal training session on how to operate your new Vivint 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 Vivint 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

Vivint’s installation fees used to run from $99 up to $199. But Vivint changed its installation pricing to a flat $49 fee no matter which monitoring plan you choose or the amount of equipment installed. We’re not sure if this is a permanent change, so be sure to verify your installation costs when you schedule your installation appointment.

Vivint’s in-home security consultation

Vivint doorbell

Image: SafeWise

As part of its top-tier offerings, Vivint Home Security is one of just a few companies that provides a complementary 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.

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I rent an apartment. Should I still consider a home security system?

If you live in an apartment, you may wonder if you really need a security system. We've answered your questions in our security guide for renters.

Vivint customer service and support

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 for Vivint support and the company works hard to implement recommended changes. Those efforts seem to be paying off. Vivint has received many accolades and higher ratings from both home security system review third-party sources and Vivint customers.

You can learn more in our Vivint customer service guide.

*Ratings as of June 20, 2022

Final word

Vivint is a best home security system top pick because it 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.

Need more help? Here's how to choose a new security system.

Vivint FAQ

Yes, Vivint is available in Canada. In fact, Vivint has a corporate location in Lethbridge, Alberta.

Vivint security equipment, hardware, and service are the same in Canada and the US.

We spoke with Vivint to confirm. They told us the only difference is in financing: Canadian customers work with Vivint directly instead of a third-party lender, and their financing contracts are limited to just 12 months.

No, it doesn't. To find out more about Vivint fees, visit our page devoted to FAQs about Vivint.

No—unlike many of its competitors, Vivint does not have a money-back guarantee. 

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.

Yes. Vivint uses a cellular connection, so it will still work if your Wi-Fi is down. You won't be able to check the system or camera footage using the Vivint app until the Wi-Fi is up and running again, though.

Vivint and ADT are our two luxury, full-service home security brands. Here's a snapshot of how they stack up.

Similarities:

    • Pro installation
    • In-home security consultation
    • Long-term contracts
    • Extensive smart home integration
    • Higher prices

Differences:

    • No-contract option with Vivint
    • 140+ years of ADT experience
    • ADT has more monitoring centers
    • Innovative proprietary equipment with Vivint

We can help you dig deeper into how Vivint compares to other top security brands—we already pitted them against one another:

How we reviewed Vivint

Vivint yard sign

Image: SafeWise

For our Vivint Home Security review, 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 didn't just test our Vivint security system once, though. Our Vivint system is undergoing long-term testing in a real home.


For this Vivint security review, 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.

Related articles on SafeWise

Disclaimers

Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product. Safewise.com utilizes paid Amazon links.

Certain content that appears on this site comes from Amazon. This content is provided “as is” and is subject to change or removal at any time.

Rebecca Edwards
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 eight. Rebecca spends dozens of hours every month poring over crime reports and spotting trends. Her safety expertise is sought after by publications, broadcast journalists, non-profit organizations, podcasts, and more. You can find her expert advice and analysis in places like TechCrunch, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Miami Herald, NPR, HGTV, MSN, Reader's Digest, Real Simple, and an ever-growing library of radio and TV clips.

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