Vivint vs. ADT

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When your family’s safety is at stake, it’s important to choose the best protection available.

If you are looking for a home security system, Vivint and ADT are probably at the top of your list. Both providers offer solid security systems, so you may be struggling to determine which is best.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through an in-depth comparison of both security systems. You’ll learn what each offers, how they stack up against each other, and why Vivint is often the best choice.

Table of Contents
Key Takeaways
  • Vivint and ADT both offer high-end security systems with smart home integrations and security camera support
  • With Vivint, you will pay less per month, own your equipment, and may not have to sign a contract. ADT requires a minimum 36-month contract with every plan and only leases its equipment
  • You will get professional installation with both options, though you will have to pay $99-$199 for ADT’s service
  • Both companies offer professional monitoring support, though ADT has additional monitoring centers for more extensive redundancies
  • High-quality equipment – Both companies lead the industry with the quality of their security equipment and capabilities, which you can customize for your home
  • Smart home integrations – Enjoy both security and convenience as you integrate a broad range of smart devices with your system
  • Professional services – Get professional monitoring and installation with every package for both brands
  • Vivint allows you to own your equipment through upfront payments or financing while ADT leases its equipment through mandatory contracts
  • ADT charges higher fees for its monthly monitoring service
  • You will have to pay for ADT’s professional installation, but Vivint’s service is free

Vivint vs ADT: Overview

Vivint and ADT lead the home security industry for many reasons. Both companies are established brands with exceptional reputations for safety. They have both evolved to meet current security challenges, often pioneering solutions.

Though they have many similarities, these providers do have differences in pricing, equipment, and services. Before we get into the comparison, however, let’s look at a quick overview of each brand.

Who is Vivint?

Vivint has been providing home security solutions for over 20 years. Along with its high-quality security technology, this provider has made a name for itself through smart home automation and integrations.

It focused on creating products and systems that work together as a full network. By building off of each device’s capabilities, Vivint creates home security systems that prioritize convenience while also achieving exceptional safety results.

Your security doesn’t end with your system, so the brand also offers an efficient, 24/7 professional monitoring service that takes care of your safety needs. 

Together, Vivint’s products and services set the standard for luxury home security. Though you will pay a premium price for its system, it provides a value that matches the price tag.

Who is ADT?

ADT has been providing security solutions for nearly 150 years. It has continued to meet customer demands and security needs throughout the decades, offering a home security system that remains at the top of the market today.

When you use ADT, you will enjoy high-quality equipment that meets modern needs. Like Vivint, it also offers smart home options, though they are not as interwoven as the other provider’s. You can also get the support of 24/7 monitoring.

Both home security systems offer a cutting-edge, luxurious product, but which is better?

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What is the difference between Vivint and ADT?

On the surface, Vivint and ADT’s security systems look fairly similar. Both brands offer wireless equipment with smart home integrations, as well as professional monitoring and installation services.

As we dig into the specifics of each provider, you’ll see why Vivint is often ranked above ADT when it comes to home security systems.


Each security provider offers an extensive line of high-quality equipment. While many of ADT’s products come from third-party providers, however, Vivint has designed its own high-tech security devices.

As you’ll see below, Vivint’s technology and special touches are what help it stand above its competitors.

Security cameras

Both brands offer indoor, outdoor, and doorbell cameras for your home. With both ADT and Vivint, you will receive cameras that include:

  • Clear, sharp video
  • Live video feeds that you can access through your phone 
  • Infrared night vision
  • Two-way communication capabilities
  • Smart surveillance zones
  • Analytics that ensure your system doesn’t react to unimportant movement
  • Smart system integrations
Vivint Security Cameras
ADT Security Camera

Though ADT cameras are good enough to protect your home, they don’t offer the same level of convenience and proactive security that Vivint’s cameras do. Going with Vivint’s smarter options means enjoying:

  • Smart Sentry, intelligent software that automatically lights up and sounds an alarm when someone lurks too long outside your home
  • Package detection and protection with your doorbell cameras
  • One-touch calling through your indoor camera
  • 24/7 video recording from all of your cameras

ADT’s doorbell camera is a Google Nest Doorbell. It has the added perk of facial recognition, but it can’t integrate with an Amazon smart home system or offer as many features as Vivint’s Doorbell Camera Pro.


Sensors are some of the most basic parts of your home security system, but they are also your first line of defense. Both companies provide both security sensors and safety alarms that guard against a variety of threats, including:

  • Door/window sensors
  • Recessed door sensors
  • Motion sensors
  • Glass break sensors
  • Smoke detectors
  • CO detectors
  • Flood/water sensors
Vivint Sensors

The sensors for both security providers are similar. The two biggest differences between each brand’s equipment are:

  • ADT offers more types of door and window sensors, including both wired and wireless options. That said, Vivint provides both traditional door/window sensors and recessed door sensors to make sure they can cover every entrance of your home.
  • Vivint’s safety alarms, including smoke, carbon monoxide, and water sensors, feature more smart capabilities. The smoke and CO detectors network with your existing sensors to cover your entire home with replacing each device. These alarms also automatically adjust your HVAC system’s airflow, unlock smart locks, and disarm window/door sensors if they detect smoke or carbon monoxide. The water sensors also include temperature monitoring to help you prevent frozen and burst pipes.

Smart home automation

When researching Vivint, its home automation capabilities are often the most praised feature of its system. And for good reason. Vivint has carefully crafted an extensive network of devices that offers customers the best of home automation. Since it uses many of its own products, you can enjoy seamless integration and performance.

ADT’s system can also integrate with a number of smart devices, but you have to get most of them from a third-party provider. 

ADT Smart System

Some of the benefits of using smart home automation with your security system include:

  • Controlling your system and devices from anywhere on your phone
  • Creating conditional automated actions, such as disarming the system when you open the garage door or recording a clip through your doorbell camera when the door unlocks
  • Monitoring who is coming in and out of your home through your smart locks

With both companies, you can build a smart home security system that includes devices such as:

When you’re customizing your Vivint equipment package, you will also have the opportunity to add:

  • Smart thermostats, including Vivint Element and Nest Thermostats
  • Philips Hue smart lighting
  • Car Guard

If you want to add your own smart devices to either system, you can integrate any options that operate on Z Wave protocol. This includes smart home systems such as Amazon Echo and Google Home.

Vivint App Control

Adding these smart assistants to your home allows you to control your smart devices with voice commands. This applies to both security providers. 

As mentioned, the biggest difference between the smart home capabilities for both Vivint and ADT is the high-level connectivity offered by Vivint. These devices and their software were made to work together, so they integrate more smoothly and offer extensive customizations.

You will also save time and effort when you can contact one team for your smart device support needs, rather than connecting with multiple companies.

Security system controls

A high-tech system deserves a high-tech control panel and both Vivint and ADT deliver.

Both systems offer a touchscreen control panel that gives you full access to and control over your home security system. These devices allow you to:

  • View and adjust your security system’s settings
  • View live and recorded footage from all of your security cameras
  • Set custom actions and automated behaviors
  • Connect and control all of your integrated smart devices
  • Get in touch with the professional monitoring team
  • Use voice commands with your smart assistant
  • Arm/disarm your security system

You can get the Vivint Smart Hub and ADT Command with every security system package. If you prefer a keypad, you can add the simpler control panel to the system you build with either brand.

Mobile app

Vivint includes access to its mobile app with every plan. You can use your phone to arm/disarm your system, view live video feeds, set custom rules, and more. The Vivint app is highly-rated, with many customers praising its features and ease of use.

ADT also has an app with similar capabilities, but you can only get access to it with its two highest monthly plans.


Both Vivint and ADT offer features that can help protect customers in more unusual situations that threaten their safety.

If you or a loved one experiences a medical emergency, for example, both systems are equipped with a medical response feature. You can connect with the monitoring team through your control panel or voice commands if you can’t get to your phone.

You can also get a medical alert system through both providers, which includes a medical pendant that connects with the monitoring center when pressed. 

You can also use Vivint’s medical alert pendant as a panic button, though ADT offers a separate two-button pendant for emergency situations.

In the event of a hostage situation, both security providers have a duress code feature. If the intruder tells you to turn off the security system, you can input this code to get assistance from the monitoring team without alerting the intruder.

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Vivint vs ADT: Pricing

For both of these security companies, the adage “You get what you pay for,” is undeniably true. Neither option is cheap, but both offer some of the best devices and services you can find.

In addition to getting home protection you can trust to monitor every threat, you can also create a smart home system that offers the utmost convenience. Pair these benefits with professional installation and monitoring and you can see why Vivint and ADT are the top-rated security providers on the market.

Though both charge a premium price, you’ll find that Vivint’s prices are lower and more flexible than ADT’s. This is one reason that Vivint often edges ADT out as the best home security system available.

Vivint’s plans & pricing

When you sign up for Vivint, you will work with a representative to design the perfect system for your home and needs. Once you’ve finalized the equipment you want to purchase, you will have two choices for payment.

First, you can choose to pay for your equipment upfront. These products aren’t cheap, so this may be too much for your budget. If you choose this option, however, you will own your equipment outright. You will be able to keep your devices and won’t have to be locked into a contract with the company.

If you can’t afford the first option or would rather spread your payments out, you can also finance your equipment through Vivint’s FlexPay plans. You will agree to a 42- or 60-month contract that breaks up the cost of your devices. This option is available for as little as $0 down, so it is a great option for those willing to stick out the contract to keep a little more cash in the bank.

You will also need to pay for a monthly monitoring plan. This is a requirement for Vivint’s system, so be sure to factor in the added cost to any contract you sign. If you buy your equipment upfront, you can cancel your monthly plan at any time.

Vivint offers three options for its monthly plans. Each includes free professional installation and professional monitoring. These plans include:

  • Smart Security Monitoring – With this plan, you can use Vivint’s basic security devices, such as door/window sensors and motion sensors. This is the most basic option and doesn’t offer the features that help Vivint stand out.
  • Smart Home Monitoring – You can add smart home devices to your security system with this option. From smart thermostats to smart locks, this plan provides both safety and convenience.
  • Smart Home Video Monitoring – Security cameras, especially those equipped with Vivint’s smart features and analytics, are a powerful addition to your security system. With this plan, you can add up to six cameras to your system. Each camera adds an additional fee to your monthly plan.

Though Vivint’s prices can be high, you get all the brand offers for a price lower than some of ADT’s more limited options.

ADT’s plans & pricing

ADT uses a different pricing structure for its equipment. It only leases its devices to each customer, so you can’t buy your equipment upfront. Instead, you will need to sign up for a minimum 36-month contract.

When you join ADT, you will get its basic security equipment for free. These devices are generally not enough to offer the level of security you need, so you can also pay to add extra products to your plan. Like Vivint, you will choose the equipment package that works best for your home and needs.

Every contract includes a monthly monitoring plan. Like Vivint, ADT offers three different options for your monthly plan. Because this company combines its equipment costs and monitoring prices, you will choose one package that includes the devices you want and the monitoring option that ADT requires for that equipment. If you want to add smart home options or video to your plan, you will have to pay a bit more per month.

ADT’s plans include:

  • Build Your Own ($45.99 + equipment costs) – Though this is the lowest tier plan, it gives you the ability to design your security system from the ground up. You will start with the Command control panel, a motion sensor, and door/window sensors and add devices from there. Each device adds an additional cost. If you go with this option, you won’t be able to use the app with your system.
  • Smart Home ($49.99 + equipment costs)  – With this plan, you also get smart locks included with your starter equipment. You can purchase additional smart products while building your system or connect your current devices during set-up. This plan also includes app access at no extra cost.
  • Video & Smart Home ($59.99 + equipment costs) – Like Vivint, the top-tier plan includes support for your video security cameras. You get the same equipment included in the smart home package, plus any devices you want to add. This system supports up to 40 cameras. You will pay an additional charge for every camera added to the system.

If you aren’t sure about your ADT system, you may qualify for its six-month, money-back guarantee. Vivint doesn’t offer a trial period.

Vivint vs ADT: Professional installation

Professional security system installation can be either a benefit or an annoyance, depending on which provider you choose.

With Vivint, for instance, professional installation ensures that your system is installed correctly. First, a security expert will visit your home to understand what you want from your system and what would best suit your home.

On installation day, the technician will survey your home to find the best locations for each device. Their experience means that your system will be perfectly placed to capture every intruder.

They will then install your equipment for you. You can sit back and relax as they do all the hard work. The installer might also recommend additional products if they see any gaps in your security. 

Once your devices are in place, the technician will then walk you through using and adjusting your home security system. By the time they leave, you can have confidence in your system and your ability to use it.

Best of all, you get all of these perks for free.

ADT’s professional installation service is similar to Vivint’s. They will start by evaluating your home to see what your home needs. A professional installer will then come to your home to set your system up. They may even be able to come the same day you order your system.

Though it is nice to have a professional install your ADT system, this service comes at a price. When you have to pay either $99 or $199 for this service, depending on the devices you choose, you may wish you could opt-out.

Professional monitoring

Your security equipment might deter intruders or alert you to their attempts, but it can’t send the help you need on its own.

As luxury security providers, Vivint and ADT provide professional monitoring services to all of their customers. Whenever your alarm triggers, the monitoring team will get an alert. After contacting you to check for false alarms, they will then dispatch first responders to your home.

Both companies have security experts monitoring your system 24/7 to make sure someone is always ready to respond to your needs.

ADT has a slight edge over Vivint with its monitoring service. The company has nine monitoring centers across the country. Even if one or more centers experiences an outage or high volume of calls, this redundancy means ADT can always respond immediately.

As you can see, Vivint may be the best option for your home security needs. Give us a call at 855-707-3746 today to start building your ideal security system.

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