DIY vs. Professional Home Security System Installation: Which One Is Right for You?
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Home Security

DIY vs. Professional Home Security System Installation: Which One Is Right for You?

By Ring on May 10, 2023

There’s a lot to consider when choosing a home security system. But there’s one question you can ask right away that will help narrow down your options and make the research process a little easier. Do you want to go the DIY route and install your own system or call in a professional?

If you’re not sure which option is right for you — or what exactly the difference is — keep reading to learn about the features and benefits of each.

What’s the Difference Between DIY vs. Professional Security System Installations?

Whether you handle install or call in a professional, both methods achieve the same goal — they help protect your home and provide peace of mind. But there are a few key differences between self- and professionally installed security systems that go beyond the initial setup.

Pros of a Self-Installed Security System

Don’t let the “do-it-yourself” in DIY fool you — just because they’re easy to install doesn’t mean they offer any less security than a professionally installed system. And they come with a range of benefits that are great for you (and your bank account):

  • Easy installation: DIY security systems are designed with practically everyone in mind, which means you don’t have to be super handy to install your system. Most come with simple, straightforward instructions that walk you through each step.
  • Customization: If you realize you want a few more contact sensors or motion detectors after installing your alarm and cameras, you don’t have to schedule a consultation or service visit to add them. Instead, you can grab a few extra sensors at the store or online and put them up as soon as you get them. Plus, many systems integrate with other smart home devices, like smart locks and thermostats, so you can control everything from one place.
  • Transportability: Whether you’re moving from a one-bedroom apartment to a spacious condo or upgrading to your dream home, you can pack up your self-installed system and take it with you. While you may have to pick up a few more sensors after the move, you won’t have to start from scratch.
  • Affordability: There are self-installed kits available at every price point, and you don’t have to pay anything for installation (unless you want to!).
  • No contract required: You have the option to self-monitor your system, although many companies also offer security subscriptions if you want professional monitoring services, video storage, and more. You can opt out of your subscription or enroll at any time.
  • Want to learn more about DIY security systems and the different components that come in your kit?
    Read Our Guide to DIY Systems

    Self-Installed Security System Considerations

    If you want to take a completely hands-off approach with your security system, the DIY route may not be for you. However, some companies offer professional installation for a fee, so you can get the perks of an affordable, no-strings-attached system without setting it up yourself.

    Pros of a Professionally Installed Home Security System

    Person plugging in a Ring Alarm Pro.

    Pretty much anyone can install a DIY security system, but that doesn’t mean it’s the best option for everyone. If you’re considering a professionally installed system, here are some of the perks you’ll enjoy:

  • Expert recommendations: Before you choose a professionally installed home security system, you’ll have a consultation with a security expert. Instead of guessing how many sensors or cameras you may need, you’ll get recommendations based on your home’s footprint and your security needs. Plus, you won’t have to worry about issues that leave blind spots or vulnerabilities. Keep in mind that some self-installed security system providers, like Ring, offer online quizzes or phone consultations to help you determine how many devices you need. That means you can get expert recommendations with the convenience of a self-installed system.
  • No self-installation or setup required: With a professional system, you don’t have to carve out an afternoon to install your system and get everything connected to an app. But you still have to schedule an installation time (or window of time) and be home when the technician shows up — so you may lose a few hours anyway.
  • Professionally Installed Home Security System Considerations

    Professionally installed security systems may offer equipment financing options, but you’ll usually end up paying more in the end. And if you decide you want an extra motion detector for the upstairs hallway, you can’t just buy one and set it up immediately — you have to let your security company know and schedule another service visit. Plus, you may have to deal with unsightly wires running through your home, which can negatively affect your clean, uncluttered aesthetic.

    If you haven’t found your forever home, professionally installed systems can be a pain. Each time you move, you won’t be able to just pack up your old equipment and load it onto the moving truck — you’ll most likely have to pay an installation fee again for a technician to come and set up a system in your new place. Plus, if you’re renting, your landlord may not allow a professional system at all.

    Get the Best of Both Worlds With Ring Alarm

    Still can’t decide whether you would prefer to pick a security system you can DIY or go with a professional installer instead? With Ring Alarm, you don’t have to choose. Our innovative security products give you all the benefits of a self-installed system and the perks of a professionally installed home security setup, like the option to schedule professional installation, subscribe for professional monitoring1 and an extended warranty2, take a quiz to get recommendations tailored to your needs, and finance your equipment over three, six, or 12 months3.

    Visit our blog to learn more about DIY installed systems, or browse our Security Systems to see how our easy-to-use products protect your home and help create safer neighborhoods.

    1 A compatible Ring Protect subscription is required to enroll in the Ring Alarm professional monitoring service. Professional monitoring service is available only within the U.S. (all 50 states, but not U.S. territories) and in Canada (excluding Quebec). Ring does not own its own professional monitoring center. Smoke and carbon monoxide monitoring is not available for a business or commercially zoned address. See Ring alarm licenses at: Additional permit or false alarm fees may apply depending on your local jurisdiction. Additional charges may apply in areas that require permits or guard response service for alarm verification. 

    2 For extended warranty coverage, "Eligible Ring Devices" are Ring devices covered by an active Protect Plus/Pro Plan, if the Ring device was under the 1-year manufacturer’s warranty period at the time you added the device to your Protect Plus/Pro Plan. Non-Ring and other third-party devices are not eligible for the extended warranty. In the U.S., in lieu of the Ring extended warranty, Eligible Ring Devices are covered via a service contract administered by SquareTrade, an Allstate company; SquareTrade/Allstate terms are available here. The cost for the Allstate Protection Plan is included in the cost of the Ring Protect Plan.

    3 Previous purchases are ineligible for financing. Subject to credit check and approval. Payment options depend on your purchase amount, and a down payment may be required. Offer may change at any time. Payment options through Affirm are provided by these lending partners:

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