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Best Security Systems Without a Contract

abode logo png
Best forBest for flexibilityBest for interconnectivityBest aestheticsBest self-monitored option
Starting at$14.99
$19.00$19.99$8 for 3 days
Learn moreView systemView systemView systemView system
Best for
Starting at
Learn more
abode logo png
Best for flexibility Best for interconnectivity Best aesthetics Best self-monitored option
$19.00 $19.99 $8 for 3 days
View system View system View system View system


We get it—contracts can be intimidating. In the home security industry, 36-month terms are pretty common, and with that, most companies require you to pay back the majority of your contract when you cancel early.

If you don’t want to get tied down to a company for three years or more, plenty of viable no-contract security systems offer more freedom and flexibility. We’re going to break down a few of our favorite contract-free security systems to give you a better sense for which system might be best for your needs.

Compare contract-free security

CompanySimpliSafeNest SecureScoutAbode
Best forBest for flexibilityBest for interconnectivityBest aestheticsBest self-monitored option
Lowest monitoring price$14.99/mo.$19.00/mo.$19.99/mo.$8/3 days
Mobile access Not with cheaper planNot with free plan
Smart home techLimitedOnly with plan
Equipment ratingStandardCutting-edgeMinimalStandard
Learn moreView systemView systemView systemView system
Best for
Lowest monitoring price
Mobile access
Smart home tech
Equipment rating
Learn more
SimpliSafe Nest Secure Scout Abode
Best for flexibility Best for interconnectivity Best aesthetics Best self-monitored option
$14.99/mo. $19.00/mo. $19.99/mo. $8/3 days
Not with cheaper plan Not with free plan
Limited Only with plan
Standard Cutting-edge Minimal Standard
View system View system View system View system

SimpliSafe review

Best for flexibility

SimpliSafe pros and cons


  • Easy setup
  • Optional short-term professional monitoring
  • Affordable equipment
  • Customizable equipment packages


  • Limited home automation integration
  • No mobile access with cheaper plan

Why we recommend SimpliSafe

SimpliSafe is one of the most affordable security systems on our list, but we like its systems most for their flexibility. SimpliSafe sells a wide range of base packages that you can further customize to include cameras, smoke and CO detectors, and other equipment to make your system more comprehensive. SimpliSafe offers no-contract monitoring that you can turn on and off with no penalties, giving you a lot of flexibility in your monthly payments.

>>Learn more: Read our SimpliSafe review

Nest Secure review

Best for interconnectivity

Nest Secure pros and cons


  • Quality equipment
  • Painless setup
  • Comprehensive smart home interconnectivity
  • Professional monitoring available through Brinks


  • Expensive
  • Limited security equipment

Why we recommend Nest Secure

Nest Secure is a great option if you already own Nest equipment or you want to invest in a system that supports smart home integration. Its equipment is high quality, and you’ll have to pay more for it upfront. If you want monitoring, Nest Secure systems can be professionally monitored by Brinks, though you’ll pay a bit more per month for the contract-free option.

>>Learn more: Read our Nest Secure review

Scout review

Best aesthetics

Scout pros and cons


  • Unobtrusive, modern-looking equipment
  • Cellular and backup battery protect from outages
  • Easy self-monitoring


  • Limited equipment selection
  • No third-party equipment without plan
  • No control panel

Why we recommend Scout

Scout is a great choice for those wanting a simple DIY security system with high-quality, aesthetic equipment. Scout offers a pretty affordable no-contract monitoring plan which also gives you access to third-party equipment. That’s a big perk given that Scout’s proprietary equipment selection is pretty limited.

>>Learn more: Read our Scout review

Abode review

Best self-monitored option

Abode pros and cons


  • Short-term professional monitoring options
  • Ample home automation integration
  • Easy installation and monitoring


  • Starter kit likely requires additional equipment

Why we recommend Abode

Just because you’re looking for a home security system without a contract doesn’t mean you can’t benefit from professional monitoring. You can self-monitor your system for free through the app. But Abode also offers some convenient short-term professional monitoring options ($8 for three days, $15 for seven days) to give you some peace of mind during quick weekend trips or week-long vacations.

>>Learn more: Read our Abode review

Our recommendation

Whether you want to self-monitor your security system or opt for professional monitoring on a month-to-month basis, the above options will give you that flexibility without locking you into a contract of three years or more.

That said, whether you should SimpliSafe, Nest Secure, Scout, or Abode will come down to each company’s pros and cons and which you value most.

  • SimpliSafe: If you want an affordable home security system with an array of different equipment and package options, go with SimpliSafe.
  • Nest Secure: If you want to invest in an ecosystem home security and smart home equipment, go with Nest Secure.
  • Scout: If you want a relatively simple DIY home security system with clean, modern aesthetics, opt for Scout.
  • Abode: If you want a self-monitored home security system and occasionally need short-term on-demand monitoring, go with Abode.

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