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#61
Northstar-logo

Northstar Alarm

Similar to: Vivint

Our Score
4.6
User Score
4.0

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Our Score
4.6
User Score
4.0
Rank this Company

Ratings Breakdown

Price

Monthly Payment
Undisclosed

Up-Front Costs

Activation, Install & Equipment
Undisclosed

Technology & Equip.

5/5 = BEST
3/5

Contract Length

Total # of months
60

Cancellation Policy

Can you cancel contract?
Undisclosed

Moving Policy

Can you move with system?
Undisclosed

Number of Reviews

User reviews here on BHSC
426

This Review is maintained by Chase Sagum

Review Last Updated: February 8, 2018

With locations in 29 states, Northstar AlarmĀ is one of the fastest growing home security and automation companies in the country. The company provides a number of important security features that compete with top home security companies; however, with a history of poor transparency, the company does not come as highly recommended as someĀ industry leaders.

The Good

  • False Alarm Protection
  • Video Monitoring
  • Home Automation Options

In the event that a false alarm occurs while your home is being monitored by a Northstar Alarm system, Northstar will provide you with the necessary paperwork to dispute the charge associated with that alarm and get your money back. Few home security companies offer this kind of protection, and the feature helps to set Northstar Alarm apart in the industry. Northstar alarm offers customers the choice of two impressive home security cameras – one that has pan/tilt capabilities, and the other that is static. Both cameras operate on a cellular network, meaning that even if your power goes out, your cameras will still be running. Customers can view live video streams or record and playback security footage from a mobile app or desktop.

Northstar Alarm also offers a number of home automation options. Through the mobile app, customers can control thermostats, lighting, and garage doors. Customers can even remotely power off small appliances.

The Bad

  • 60-Month Contract
  • Automatic Contract Renewal
  • High Service Fees
  • Poor Transparency

Several of the problems surrounding Northstar Alarm have to do with its contract. People who go with Northstar Alarm will be locked into up to a 60-month contract, which is nearly twice as long as most home security companies’ contracts. And if customers decide to cancel their service before the contract has expired, they will be required to pay 100% of the remaining balance, which at up to over $75 a month for up to 60 months, can be thousands of dollars. Customers must file a written request stating that they wish to cancel at least 60 days prior to the end of any initial or renewal term; otherwise, Northstar Alarm will automatically renew the contract an additional 18 months.

While Northstar Alarm does provide a lifetime warranty on some of its equipment, not all equipment is covered. In cases where a Northstar service technician is called to repair or replace equipment not covered by the warranty, customers will be required to pay $80 per visit, as well as the cost of the equipment being serviced or replaced. Unlike many companies in the industry, Northstar will charge customers to move and reinstall the system at another location.

Northstar provides little useful information regarding its contracts, both on its website and in-person. While the company provides adequate descriptions of equipment and packages, specific information like the number of sensors included in each package. Customers have also reported being pressured into signing up for a Northstar Alarm home security system without being given full disclosure on contract terms.

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The Bottom Line

Northstar Alarm offers a number of impressive home security and automation features that compete with larger, more established companies. Its false alarm protection is a big plus, and its security cameras high-end. However, the company rates poorly in terms of online transparency and customer service. Customers investigating Northstar Alarm are strongly encouraged to examine their contracts and compare with other home security systems before making a decision.

Rank Chart
User Rating
Monthly Price
Upfront Costs
Review

#1

8.1
$19.99-$42.99
$0

#2

9.9
$15 - $45
Undisclosed

#3

5.6
$34.95-49.95
$99

#61
Northstar-logo

4.0
Undisclosed
Undisclosed

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426 Northstar Alarm Reviews

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  1. User Score
    2
    February 20th, 2018 Sacramento, CA
    0 people found this review helpful!
    We entered into a contract with Northstar, our sensors started failing and sending false alarms which ended up with us being fined by the Sheriff. When calling Northstar you will be put on hold for anywhere from 10 minutes to 30 minutes. They stated they cancelled the sheriff on the false alarms but then our neighbors would say the Sheriff’s were there. When my husband called to cancel our contract they never told us that we still had a year left, instead they offered lowered fees and sent paperwork to my husband over a cell phone saying it needed to be electronically signed for the lower fee and the Norhstar employee directed my husband where to sign, turns out it was a contract extension of an additional 3 1/2 years. Now we are in contract until 2021 with faulty equipment. Called customer service to complain that my husband was on the phone for over 20 minutes and never once did their employee say anything about contract extension and they should either let us out of the contract or at minimum just hold us to the 16 month standard extension and their response was basically “too bad” your husband signed it he shouldn’t have let the employee rush him and if someone just says the number 42 during conversation any adult should know that means 42 month extension. This company is beyond shady and could care less about customers. Customer service even had the audacity to say they’ve had customers who love them so much that they call a year before their contract expires and voluntarily extend 3 1/2 years with old products. Nonsense, no one would do that, especially when their contract would automatically extend 1 1/2 at the end of the 1st contract and thereafter. This is the worst company I have ever dealt with in my life and we are stuck with them until August 2021 with faulty equipment that they will replace for a high price.
    Read More
  2. User Score
    0
    February 19th, 2018
    1 people found this review helpful!
    I wouldn’t recommend this company to anybody Horrible customer service horrible contracts horrible equipment horrible equipment stay away
    Read More
  3. User Score
    0
    February 14th, 2018 Saint Petersburg, FL
    1 people found this review helpful!
    Contract 60 ,months. I may not live that long. High priced. Would never recommend. $2000 to cancel. These people should be wearing masks.
    Read More
  4. User Score
    2
    February 14th, 2018
    1 people found this review helpful!
    It is impossible to get out of a contract with them unless you are willing to pay the cost. I have a sensor that has not functioned since installation because of the location. When I called for them to replace I was given instructions instead of them sending someone out.

    Sales rep was smart and engaging. Was willing to help and assist with initial setup costs and the like. I know for a fact the contract period was not discussed.

    Monthly monitoring cost 59.99

    Monitoring service is excellent, everything else about them is suspect. I wish I had done more research when I made this decision.

    Read More
  5. User Score
    10
    February 12th, 2018 Edison, NJ
    0 people found this review helpful!
    Amazing home security and customer service! Dulce D. was so very helpful when I had a billing issue and needed certain documents! She is so very thoughtful and treated me like a truly valued customer- not just another number. She’s a HUGE asset to Northstar! Thanks again!
    Read More
  6. User Score
    10
    February 8th, 2018 Folsom, CA
    0 people found this review helpful!
    Dulce was a terrific installer. He was on time, very knowledgeable, and patient in dealing with two seniors.
    Read More
  7. User Score
    2
    February 6th, 2018
    1 people found this review helpful!
    Needed service on system, instead got salesman who sold my husband a 2 yr extension., a doorbell camera that he assured us would be in working order. That didn’t happen..were now paying for a system not in full use. Batteries for the cheap wireless monitors are expensive, if you can find them. $10.00 each. Not happy, can’t wait until 2.6 years are up. Will go back to old company. I give them 2 for showing up.
    Read More
  8. User Score
    0
    February 4th, 2018
    2 people found this review helpful!
    Do Not! I repeat Do Not contract with this company. They will hold you hostage in disconnection service when your contract expires. You have to complete a form to release yourself. They also say they never received it. It will take you weeks to free yourself from this scam. You will wind up having to contact them multiple times to free yourself from them. Practically have to beg. You will spend allot of your time doing all this. Please do not even consider using this scam. Tell you friends. As evidenced, look at the various reviews about this scam. They tried to entice with add on features only to raise on multiple occasions. Total scam. Don’t get caught up in this vicious scam. Why do you think they do not have a review section on their website.
    Read More
  9. User Score
    0
    January 25th, 2018 College Station, TX
    1 people found this review helpful!
    First the North Star rep. Said that it was a 2yr contract. He did not have any written information he consulted his phone to give answers when asked question,
    2.the camera were install improperly, wanted to charge to remount them to actually be effective.
    3. When I finally received the contract I found it was a 5yr contract with no way out.
    4. Big hole in wall with lots of wires and huge box attached to wall.
    I have taken down the ugly wires and boxes fron the wall which disabled the cameras that showed nothing but the ground and the back of the cars.
    I have no Manuel to help with programming pf the unit.
    I wish I had found these reviews before I got this unit.i agree with all this company is a SCAM!

    Why is it that this company permitted to continue to swindle American citizens. Is there a low to help consumers? This company lawfully fraud people.

    Read More
  10. User Score
    0
    January 21st, 2018 Big Rapids, MI
    3 people found this review helpful!
    Do not trust these people. My husband and I told salesperson that we could possibly be selling our home and relocating before the contract expired. We were told that there would be no charge to change service to another address, Three years later, we moved and sold our house. When I contacted Northstar, I was told that it would cost almost $200 and that my contract would automatically be extended for services at my new home. There was no such language in the contract that I signed. o I was told that I could either pay off the rest of the contract @100% or pay to have system installed at my new home and contract would be extended. According to the contract that I signed, if I refused to pay, I would only have to pay 80% of unused services. Normally I would fight with them, but didn’t want my credit report trashed. I had to pay over $800 (for services that will never be provided) to these people. Do not trust these people.
    Read More
  11. User Score
    0
    January 19th, 2018
    3 people found this review helpful!
    Customer service has to be the worst there is!they don’t have their business together!Tried to cancel several times .First time was the third day after contract. We were canceling because we were told lies about certain products . Never did they cancel my contract! How I found out that they didn’t cancel it,was through them calling about how the service guy did his job.ITold them I cancelled my contract. Then I was being accused of lying because “they didn’t have that on their files” so I gave her the Time and date and how long the call lasted and what number we called. She said that’s not the number we should’ve called . Told her that’s the only number they gave us! Was really frustrated at this point spent almost an hour on the phone! Then it mysteriously showed up. They Said the person we spoke to didn’t actually cancel it because they were trying to get the salesperson to try and save the deal… I told her we cancelled and nothing more to say, and was told a second time not to worry it was cancelled. Come to find out they did not cancel me they charged me!!!a late fee as well!!!on top of that have no service!!! We called again and told them they changed us even though contract was supposed to be cancelled. They said we needed it in writing. What! They never told us that before. This was the first time hearing of this. Why didn’t they say that in the beginning?We said we expect to be reimbursed . They Said don’t worry they will.So we sent in a letter telling the date we cancel. Apparently the letter doesn’t work either! Now they are trying to charge us again! And a late fee! I’m done with trying to talk and resolve their problems with incompetent people.About to call better business bureau, and a Attorney.
    Read More
  12. User Score
    0
    January 12th, 2018 Washington, DC
    2 people found this review helpful!
    The have poor customer service skills. Having problems with the cancellation of service and product install.
    Read More
  13. User Score
    1
    January 11th, 2018 Portland, OR
    3 people found this review helpful!
    The support is unbelievable. Have spent hours trying to resolve an issue with our system. To no resolve. I can call one support person who will give me one answer while chatting with another support person on the internet to hear 2 completely different scenarios. They have no idea what they are doing. AND I HAVE THIS SYSTEM FOR 5 YEARS! YIKES!
    Read More
  14. User Score
    0
    January 10th, 2018
    3 people found this review helpful!
    I thought my contract was completed with northstar, so I changed company .I discovered I still had 8 months left so I continued to pay both alarm companies. I followed protocol so I thought, by sending in signed email cancelling service. Northstar continued to bill me through auto pay. I had to stop auto pay through my bank. I spoke with many representative concerning this matter, never once did anyone advise me if not received before cancellation date it will be renewed. I had A five year contract never missed a payment. Never used their service after having new alarm system put in. Then they sent me past due notices. Their reason is because my contract end date was September , they didn’t receive my cancellation until October 8th.Your contract is automatically renewed another 18 months if not cancelled before than. Please read the fine print in contract. I will never ever use their service again . This is unethical , not concerned about customer just greed for the company.
    Read More
  15. User Score
    0
    January 9th, 2018
    4 people found this review helpful!
    This company is an Absolute SCAM ..You think you are getting a home protection system to keep THIEF’S out but as soon as you let NorthStar Alarms in you’ve just been robbed.!!!!They showed up at 6 pm on a Sunday supposedly to do up grads Rude but anyway came in had us sign for supposed work but it was some long term contract.Now threating us to pay fhem for $4000.00 or their going to lein our property ect ect .These people100 Percent SCAM
    Read More
  16. User Score
    0
    January 8th, 2018 Royal Oak, MI
    4 people found this review helpful!
    This place is the biggest rip off- if they come to your door SHUT IT!!!!! they said they were with ADT and were just “Switching out” out dated equipment. After they have all the old equipment taken down and the new put up they then tell you they are Northstar and then they sell your contract to someone else for service.. Giant rip off
    Read More
  17. User Score
    1
    December 28th, 2017 Houston, TX
    2 people found this review helpful!
    Fulfill my contract with them and call them on three separate occasions and sent emails to cancel my service but they continue to withdraw money from my account for the last 3 months. Next step is to go to my bank and stop payment because Everytime I call they say my account is still active.
    Read More
  18. User Score
    1
    December 26th, 2017
    3 people found this review helpful!
    I strongly encourage ALL to think twice before signing up w/ NorthStar alarm service. I made the mistake of signing up 1 1/2 years ago. Here are the liabilities associated w/ this service. The service commitment is for 5 years, but the warranty for their products are only a year. The extra pad for our back bedroom quit working, which resulted in the total program not working. Rather than offer to send someone to the home to fix the program, I was told to take the panel off the wall myself and disconnect two screws. When I encountered problems in removing the panel and asked for assistance from the company, I was told I would encounter a service call due to the system no longer being covered by warranty. I do not consider myself to be very handy in repairing things, so I agreed to the fee. I have to await a call back from the company to know when someone will come. When I was an ADT customer, never once was I given this type of advice. So, now I am stuck w/ a less than user friendly service policy for another 3 1/2 years. I STRONGLY ENCOURAGE ALL OF YOU TO THINK BEFORE YOU SWITCH!!!!!!
    Read More
  19. User Score
    1
    December 26th, 2017
    5 people found this review helpful!
    Save your money and a major headache! I tried to cancel my service and was told that I am bound to a 5 year contract. The only way out is to transfer the contract and equipment to another homeowner. Or, I must pay off my monthly billing ($50 for the remaining months left on the 60 month contract! The only copy of the contract that I have is the initial agreement, where it does not list that I am bound to 5 years with this company. The sales person who signed me up turned out to be very deceptive and did not make me feel like a valued customer. He was all about the sale. I feel very ripped off and deceived by their sales person Danny and the lack of empathy from their customer service. As a side note, I did ask for a signed copy of the contract that states that I am locked into a 5 year agreement, and that still has not materialized. Worst experience ever!
    Read More
  20. User Score
    0
    December 11th, 2017
    6 people found this review helpful!
    Stay away! Terrible customer service!
    Read More

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Our Score
4.6
User Score
4.0
Rank this Company

Ratings Breakdown

Price

Monthly Payment
Undisclosed

Up-Front Costs

Activation, Install & Equipment
Undisclosed

Technology & Equip.

5/5 = BEST
3/5

Contract Length

Total # of months
60

Cancellation Policy

Can you cancel contract?
Undisclosed

Moving Policy

Can you move with system?
Undisclosed

Number of Reviews

User reviews here on BHSC
426
Our Score
9.0
User Score
8.1
Rank this Company

Ratings Breakdown

Price

Monthly Price Range
$19.99-$42.99

Up-Front Costs

Activation, Install & Equipment
$0

Technology & Equip.

5/5 = BEST
5/5

Contract Length

Total # of months
36

Cancellation Policy

Can you cancel contract?
Pay Balance

Moving Policy

Can you move with system?
Free

Index

Quality Index (Below 413 is good)
77

Number of Reviews

User reviews here on BHSC
2,089