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#39
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Northstar Alarm

Biggest Customer Gripe: Contract Transparency (read reviews)

Our Score
5.6
User Score
4.5

Visit Site

Our Score
5.6
User Score
4.5
Rank this Company

Ratings Breakdown

Price

Monthly Payment
Undisclosed

Up-Front Costs

Activation, Install & Equipment
Undisclosed

Technology & Equip.

10/10 = BEST
10/10

Contract Length

Total # of months
60

Cancellation Policy

Can you cancel contract?
Undisclosed

Time in Business

Total # of years
15

B+

Customer Support

Good, Bad, Limited
Limited

SDM Rank

Top 100 Company Rank
34

Number of Reviews

User reviews here on BHSC
287

This Review is maintained by Isaac Ericksen

Review Last Updated: November 29, 2016

See if in your stateWith locations in 29 states, Northstar Alarm 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 some industry leaders.

Rank Chart
User Rating
Monthly Price
Upfront Costs
Review

#1

8.3
$44.99
$99-499

#2

8.6
$43.49
$35

#3

7.2
$14.99
$229.96

#39
northstar_alarm_services-130x130

4.5
Undisclosed
Undisclosed

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. Once the initial contract has expired, customers will only have 60 days to file a written request stating they wish to cancel; otherwise, Northstar Alarm will automatically renew the contract an additional 18 months.

5 yearcontract

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.

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287 Northstar Alarm Reviews

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  1. User Score
    1
    December 2nd, 2016 Bowie, MD
    0 people found this review helpful!
    This is the worst security company in the world!! Northstar will not let you cancel your contract, even if you no longer own the home. They think that you are suppose to tranfer their service to your new resident. I given offer to reimburse them for their crappy equipment, but this was not good enough. The want me to pay them for 2yrs of service which they will not provide to me. It is really impossible to work with this company. I believe I will be taking severe legal action against this company. Their customer service and billing practices are unprofessional, and their monitoring service is piss poor. I should have kept ADT!! Please stay away from this sleazy company!
    Read More
  2. User Score
    0
    December 1st, 2016
    0 people found this review helpful!
    I’m very disappointed with this service I would not recommend this for nobody in the whole wide world….
    Read More
  3. User Score
    0
    November 18th, 2016
    1 people found this review helpful!
    I would avoid this company at all costs. They are incredibly dishonest and customer service is dismal. Their business practices are shady. I would not recommend them to anyone. This is the sleaziest company I have ever dealt with.
    Read More
  4. User Score
    0
    November 15th, 2016 TX
    1 people found this review helpful!
    the contract is a terrible one where you continue to be billed and withdrawals taken from your bank account. The explanations differ everytime I call in to straighten this out. I was told in September my final billing would be In October. Now they are saying February. They blame me for not knowing the contract. there was no explanation of these terms in the contract. What a ripoff!!
    Read More
  5. User Score
    0
    November 14th, 2016 Corpus Christi, TX
    1 people found this review helpful!
    I moved out of the service area and cancelled Northstar service. They continued to bill my account. Had bank put a stop on their account. They changed their account number and continued to bill my bank account. I give them a zero (0) rating.
    Read More
  6. User Score
    0
    November 8th, 2016
    1 people found this review helpful!
    If you see Northstar just keep on looking.in my opinion Their contractual practices are predatory and it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been a customer or how timely you are with your payments if you move or need to break contract they will come for the MONEY for the whole term of written agreement. I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s where the bulk of their revenues came from. I had their service for years and it’s middle of the road but after factoring in trying to leave JUST DONT DO IT!!! Northstar…..you really let me down!!! Cost me 700$ to get away from you. In this country business just shouldn’t be done that way. Buyers READ CONTRACT!!!!!
    Read More
  7. User Score
    0
    October 31st, 2016 Lafayette, IN
    1 people found this review helpful!
    Had service put in didn’t work after one month then they want to send mechanic to fix it which cost you even more…I would never recommend this service to anyone….When the guy even put it up in the hallway he said it may not work and boy was he right….
    Read More
  8. User Score
    0
    October 27th, 2016 Lima, OH
    1 people found this review helpful!
    I would not use this company to secure a dog house. They refuse to service anything. My garage door continued to have a fault code and I was forced to figure it out for myself. I called because their system wouldn’t pick up a Wi-Fi signal was told what the problem might be and they will mail the part. That if I wanted a technician to come out that it would cost $35.
    Read More
  9. User Score
    0
    October 26th, 2016
    1 people found this review helpful!
    Don’t move your system. Although you have a free move unless your moving into an identical home they will charge you upwards of 1300 to secure your new house properly. Also you have to fight for your free move if it’s with in the first year of service. Although they admitted to breaching there end of the contract they refused to cancel the contract and suggested we fill out an online complaint. Also it’s impossible to get anything escalated to management. The reps pass the call among them selves after hours of getting nothing done. The automation is nice but make sure you have amazing internet because the upload requirements are almost unattainable. The sky bells have a very limited life expectancy and nothing works correctly. I’m very disappointed in the service I e received.
    Read More
  10. User Score
    1
    October 24th, 2016
    2 people found this review helpful!
    I have tried this service and wish to cancel. But when I call I am unable to get ahold of anyone to cancel. I was kept on hold for over 30 minutes. I have tried again to contact them to cancel.
    Read More
  11. User Score
    0
    October 17th, 2016 Kyle, TX
    1 people found this review helpful!
    They soldalarm quickly,had a tech come out immediately. Didn’t seem too experienced what should have been 2 hrs turned out to tech leaving at midnight. Following day panel is beeping with a low battery, go figure. We decided to cancel services and it has been an act of Congress to have it removed. Not very professional as far as communication and when l called the main office 6x obviously the tech was not answering his phone or email and nothing they could about it. Who does that? We aren’t being treated fairly and l will report to BBB. We also have not gotten our money back. That’s probably another act of Congress!!!!! I also asked to speak to a supervisor and l was told they’re wasn’t one available. What kind of business are they running? Definitely not referring them to anybody. Worse company I’ve had to deal with.
    Read More
  12. User Score
    0
    October 13th, 2016 Tallahassee, FL
    0 people found this review helpful!
    This has got to be the worst company in existence! A representative came to my door and insulted me in every way and even told me there was probably a murderer in my neighborhood. I had to close the door and leave him talking.
    Read More
  13. User Score
    0
    October 12th, 2016
    1 people found this review helpful!
    Do not use this company, if you sign up they lock you in for 5 years and you have to be senile, about to go to war or die to get out of this agreement. No fire, flood, hurricane or tornado will help. They will ask you to have someone else pick up the agreement.
    Read More
  14. User Score
    0
    October 11th, 2016 Saint Louis, MO
    3 people found this review helpful!
    This company is awful. I am locked into a 60 month contract with unreliable service.
    Customer service is dreadful and the equipment does not work properly. I must have been out of my mind to sign with them.
    Read More
  15. User Score
    0
    October 11th, 2016
    1 people found this review helpful!
    Northstar Alarm is very good at creating a service that is very difficult to cancel. They offer a non-standard 16 month contract to start — and that’s it. They automatically renew for 18 month terms after the 16 months. They do not allow you to cancel early for any reason, such as moving out of a home. Instead they inform you that if you get the new occupants to take over the alarm, they will release you from the contract. This is how I got suckered into dealing with them. You also must present the cancellation letter 60 days before the end of the contract.

    Considering that most leases are 12 months, they have a nice little system to get you locked in for longer than a normal rental agreement.

    Aside from the above, their business interactions are poor. I was told to write a cancellation sign it, scan it and send it to [email protected]. I did this 2 weeks ago and there has been no response from them indicating that the letter was received or was being processed.

    Their actions seem to border on predatory! Avoid them at all costs

    Read More
  16. User Score
    0
    September 16th, 2016 Salt Lake City, UT
    2 people found this review helpful!
    I called Northstar Alarm Services at the end of July. It has taken them over six weeks to get the system installed and working. I’m not at all hopeful that it will stay working. They sent an installer to my home that had no training and he stayed on the phone with another person learning what to do. There was a time during the six weeks that he was here every day and would come late and sometimes not show up when he said he would. The got the system “working” and then three days later the doorbell stopped working. I just had another installer here working on it and he assures me it will now work. Like I said I’m NOT convinced. This company has incredibly bad customer service and their product is horrible. The doorbell cam will not work on my iPad and the installer just told me that it isn’t his problem and his only job was to repair the doorbell. I have asked to be let out of the contract. I have not paid even one month of the fees yet because of all the problems and they refuse so now I am stuck with a company that has been ridiculous since the beginning and I have absolutely NO faith in their product or the company itself. Do NOT hire this company for your alarm system. They will not follow through with keeping your home safe.
    Read More
  17. User Score
    3
    September 12th, 2016 Las Vegas, NV
    3 people found this review helpful!
    This is the most sleazy company I have ever dealt with. Although I signed my contract with Northstar, Monitronics at some point took over monitoring the system. Both companies are a nightmare to deal with and have horrible customer service. They both enjoy pointing the finger at the other, which gets me nowhere. I constantly get false alarms for “breaking glass” which is bogus, but no one can come fix the problem. I sold my house and am now renting at a house where I can’t use the equipment and they won’t even let me pay a percentage of what is remaining on my contract to get out of it. Now I am stuck with a bunch of equipment in a bag and paying $53.99 a month for another 3 years for a system I can’t even use! DO NOT SIGN A 5 YEAR CONTRACT with this company!! Lesson learned on my end!
    Read More
  18. User Score
    0
    August 30th, 2016 MN
    4 people found this review helpful!
    this company really took my mother for a ride. she’s 70 years old and has disabilities. the with held and even lied to her as well as threatened legal action. this company’s policy with how to cancel your service is the most amazing thing ever. you must write in 60 days before the end of contract or you are auto renewed for 3 years.. wow . she was tricked into paying them for 3 more years . and they tried to pull the same trick after that scam but thanks to the BBB we got out of the contract. We do feel they need to pay her back for the 3 years that they worked her over . im filling complaints with everyone I can find.. beware people
    Read More
  19. User Score
    0
    August 30th, 2016 Longview, WA
    4 people found this review helpful!
    There customer service is terrible!!!!!!! I mean terible! I have been on hold of over 18 min. I have many many problems do NOT use them.
    Read More
  20. User Score
    0
    August 25th, 2016 Oakland, CA
    6 people found this review helpful!
    This company is so dishonest it makes me sick.. My 80 year old mother is being swindled out of money . They have used her age and disabilities to trick into letting her contract renew even though she has been trying to cancel for 2 years
    Read More

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Our Score
5.6
User Score
4.5
Rank this Company

Ratings Breakdown

Price

Monthly Payment
Undisclosed

Up-Front Costs

Activation, Install & Equipment
Undisclosed

Technology & Equip.

10/10 = BEST
10/10

Contract Length

Total # of months
60

Cancellation Policy

Can you cancel contract?
Undisclosed

Time in Business

Total # of years
15

B+

Customer Support

Good, Bad, Limited
Limited

SDM Rank

Top 100 Company Rank
34

Number of Reviews

User reviews here on BHSC
287
Our Score
7.8
User Score
8.6
Rank this Company

Ratings Breakdown

Price

Monthly Price Range
$43.49

Up-Front Costs

Activation, Install & Equipment
$35

Technology & Equip.

10/10 = BEST
5/10

Contract Length

Total # of months
36

Cancellation Policy

Can you cancel contract?
Fees May Apply

Time in Business

Total # of years
1992

A

Customer Support

Good, Bad, Limited
Good

Index

Quality Index (Below 413 is good)
77

Number of Reviews

User reviews here on BHSC
1,526