Best DIY Home Security Systems of 2023
Consumer Reports' tests reveal the best choices to protect your home
Today’s home security systems do far more than protect your home from potential break-ins or trespassers. They also integrate a variety of convenience and safety features that include lights, locks, thermostats, smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, video doorbells, and more. What’s more, they allow you to monitor and control all of these remotely, with an app on your smartphone.
But that variety of features can also make it difficult for consumers to compare home security systems because of their different components and pricing.
To help you make sense of your options, Consumer Reports has tested a variety of do-it-yourself systems from brands big and small, such as Abode, Blue by ADT, Cove, Ecobee, Eufy, Honeywell Home, Kangaroo, Ring, SimpliSafe, and Wyze.
5 Best DIY Home Security Systems
The top models from our tests include systems with optional professional monitoring. With professional monitoring, dispatchers at alarm-monitoring centers immediately notify you and the police when your alarm goes off. Self-monitored systems send an alert to your smartphone, but it’s up to you to contact the police.
We note each system’s type of monitoring and the monitoring costs. Because these DIY systems are sold as kits, we also list the components included in the box.
For even more options, check out our complete DIY home security system ratings.
Security System Jamming
Consumer Reports’ Digital Lab has tested DIY home security systems for digital privacy and security and found that a number of systems are vulnerable to jamming attacks. The video below explains how jamming attacks work and what you can do to prevent them.
Security Systems 101
Self-installed security systems are becoming more popular, but there are a few things to consider. On the “Consumer 101” TV show, Consumer Reports expert Dan Wroclawski explains to host Jack Rico what to look for when buying one.