The Breakdown: ADT v. Vivint

We understand the frustration that comes with shopping for a home security system. That's why we have taken the liberty to breakdown two of the most searched home security providers.

ADT and Vivint are big-time players in the home security industry. But which company is better? We'll let you decide.

Up-Front Costs

It starts with the up-front fee. It covers the activation, installation, and equipment costs. Some companies don't charge up-front fees, but both ADT and Vivint do. ADT does offer promotional deals (throughout the year) where they wave those costs. However, most of the time, both Vivint and ADT charge $99 to set up the system and get it going. Unfortunately, with either company, there is most likely going to be a fee.

Monthly Payments

After you pay the up-front fees, there are also going to be monthly monitoring fees. This is where ADT beats out Vivint. ADT charges anywhere from $36.99-$57.99/month while Vivint charges $49.99-$68.99/month for monitoring. It's not necessarily cheap, but you can't put a price on your home and family's safety, so get ready to fork it over.

Contract Length

Then there is the contract. You know, that thing that locks you into payment and forces you to hand over your first-born child if you decide to cancel? ADT's contract lasts for 36 months, while Vivint's contract length is 42 months. It's only a difference of 6 months, but either way, you are stuck with a company for at least 3 years.


Now what happens when you try to cancel your contract? Be prepared to pay an arm and leg. Vivint requires that their customers pay the balance of the contract. ADT has their customers pay 75% of the remaining balance. Cancel the contract and these companies will be raking it in.

Time in Business

Vivint is a new-ish player in home security. They have been around for almost 15 years. On the other hand, ADT has been in business, well...forever (135+ years).

Monitoring/Response Speeds

In the event that your alarm goes off, it is critical that help arrives promptly. When an alarm/sensor is triggered, you can rest assured that both Vivint and ADT respond quickly.

SDM Rank

SDM Magazine is THE home security magazine. Each year, SDM Magazine releases a list of the top 100 companies in the home security industry. Let's put it this way, if you are in any way involved in the home security business, you want to be on the list (preferably at the top of that list). ADT is ranked #1 on SDM's list and Vivint is ranked #5. Considering how many providers there are out there, both rankings are REALLY good.

There you have it, both ADT and Vivint spelled out. The decision is up to you.

Real Customer Reviews

The home security reviews on our site are left by both customers organically looking to share their opinions and customers whose opinions have been solicited.

In order to ensure the legitimacy of reviews on, all reviews are moderated by real people. We check each review for fraud and violation of our review guidelines. Customer reviews are unbiasedly checked and used to rank the home security companies on our site. You can read the breakdown of how we rank companies here.