The best home security systems are designed to help you keep an eye on your home from any location, giving you peace of mind and alerting you to any potential criminal activity before it's too late.
As we edge closer to winter, many of us begin thinking about home security in more detail. But with so many options available, it can be difficult to know where to start. Our top picks make the most of the latest technologies and include everything from cameras and sirens to motion detectors and more.
You'll want to start by reading our top tips on how to buy a home security system. Then, keep scrolling for our full product reviews.
- Wondering whether you actually need a home security system – smart or otherwise? Read our handy guide: do you really need smart home security cameras?
- Find more advice and information on our technology home page: The Hub
What is the best home security system?
Recommended retailers for home security systems
The best home security system is the Canary All-In-One Security System. Compatible with Android and iOS systems, it's designed to make monitoring your home easy and efficient. Plus, it looks sleek and stylish.
In terms of its capacity as a home security system, this smart model boasts a high quality camera; the option to stream real-time video directly to your smartphones; motion detection; an impressive 90dB alarm and two audio, should you wish to interact with someone on the other end of the camera.
Find our complete list of the best home security systems below. Then, keep scrolling for our full product reviews:
- The best home security system: Canary All-in-One Indoor Security System
- The best home security system for two way talking: Nest Cam Indoor Security Camera
- The best home security system for larger properties: Panasonic KX-HN6012EW Home Monitoring & Control Kit
- The best whole-home security system: Yale Smart Home Alarm
- The best basic smart home security system: Samsung Smart Things Starter Kit
The best home security systems
1. Canary All-In-One Indoor Security System
The best home security system: a simple, high quality system that won’t look out of place in your living room
Reasons to buy
Reasons to avoid
The Canary All-In-One Indoor Security System monitors your home while looking sleek and stylish at the same time. Here's everything you need to know about it:
High quality camera
Whether you place it on your coffee table or your sideboard, the high quality, 1080p HD camera will stream real-time video to the connected app, enabling you to check up on your home wherever you happen to be.
If your device does happen to pick up anything out of the ordinary, it’ll send a notification to your phone (or any other first responders you've listed) so you can see what’s happening. This allows you to tap through quickly to the authorities. The siren is loud at 90+dB, too.
There's a built-in speaker and microphone, too, so you can talk through the camera (Canary Membership required).
Thanks to automatic night vision, it's possible to monitor the security of your home around the clock. So, should you hear a bump in the night, you can check what's going on, without having to leave the safety of your bedroom.
No installation required
Unlike some systems, this model does not require installation, meaning it can be set up in a matter of minutes. Simply download the free, accompanying app, place your camera in your desired location and connect it to the internet.
Plus, if you're looking to share the responsibility of monitoring your home's security, it's worth noting that more than one smartphone can be connected to the camera via the app.
As if keeping your home secure wasn't enough, this offering from Canary also monitors air quality, temperature, and humidity, so you can improve the overall health of your home. Finally, it has a privacy mode that completely shuts down the camera and microphone.
2. Nest Cam Indoor Security Camera
The best home security system for two way talking: a touch more intelligent, a touch more expensive, but still super stylish
Reasons to buy
Reasons to avoid
While not as subtle in appearance as some of the other models in our round up, the Nest Cam Indoor Security Camera certainly won't look out of place amongst your living room smart tech. Here are our favourite features:
Live stream straight to your smartphone
Designed to live stream full HD 1080p video, straight to the app on your phone, you'll never have to worry about what's going on, when you're not home. Plus, you can expect to benefit from a wide-angle view, enabling you to pan out and view a large proportion of your room.
If you’re at work and you want to check in with everyone at home, the Nest Cam allows you to two way communicate with the people in the room. Be that the cat, a burglar or a partner who should be doing the housework. We're joking about the latter.
Intelligent motion sensor
With its intelligent motion sensor, this camera also sends notifications to your phone to alert you to any out-of-the-ordinary movements and a Nest Aware subscription opens up a whole host of other intelligent features, too.
In the instance that something untoward does happen, this model also allows users to go back in time with three hour history. This footage could be the difference between the police catching a trespasser, or not.
3. Panasonic KX-HN6012EW Home Monitoring & Control Kit
The best home security system for larger properties: an intelligent system that does more than just protect your home
Reasons to buy
Reasons to avoid
This clever Panasonic KX-HN6012EW Home Monitoring & Control Kit is perfect for larger properties. Plus, it allows users to expand other elements of a smart home system. Here's everything you need to know about it:
Create a cohesive smart home system
Designed to enable users to build a cohesive smart home security system, this model comes complete with a camera, motion sensor, window and door sensor and a smart plug that can be used to control lights and appliances.
All of the devices connect together using Ultra Low Energy (ULE), as opposed to Wi-Fi, meaning you're at lower risk of your home security system being vulnerable to hackers.
Designed with larger properties in mind, this system works over a range of up to 300 metres, so you can ensure your entire property is protected.
Expand your smart home system
Using a combination of the smart plug and the app, you can set up your smart home, too. This is perfect for those looking to design a large smart home system that's interconnected.
Live stream straight to your smart phone
As with other cameras, the Panasonic home security system can live stream to your phone and send you notifications triggered by the sensors. This is perfect for those who want to keep on top of their home security from remote locations.
4. Yale Smart Home Alarm
The best whole-home security system: a smart, intricate system with the price point to match
Reasons to buy
Reasons to avoid
With a whole host of features on offer, the Yale Smart Home Alarm has plenty to offer those looking to build a comprehensive home security system. Here are our favourite features:
Whether you’re setting the alarm system using the number keypad, tuning into the real time video via the app or using the smart plugs to remotely control the lights from wherever you happen to be, Yale gives you free rein to design the best home security system for your home. Mix elements of old security systems with modern approaches for a system that best suits your requirements.
Enhance your home security system with accessories
In addition to the basic home security system, there is a vast array of accessories that you can connect up to your system, including key fobs and key pads, a smoke detector and a pet friendly PIR motion detector, for additional protection.
Those worried about connecting their system up will pleased to learn that Yale pre-connect the elements to the hub, so it’s just case of putting a component in its rightful position.
5. Samsung SmartThings Starter Kit
The best basic smart home security system: a hybrid that hooks up to Alexa
Reasons to buy
For those looking to set up a basic home security system, the Samsung SmartThings Starter Kit has plenty to offer. Here are some of our favourite features:
Build a home security system that suits you
Although this starting kit doesn’t include a camera, you can easily connect video cameras from Arlo and Samsung, should you wish.
The pack does come with three sensors – the Multi Sensor, Motion Sensor and Presence Sensor – which will provide you with accurate notifications should there be a reason for you to be alarmed.
Connect to the Alexa ecosystem
You can hook the system up to any Alexa-enabled device, which is handy for pre-setting tasks while you’re asleep. With the option to also connect up Bose speakers, connected door locks and a Moisture Sensor, this is a great home security system once it’s fully set up.
How to buy the best home security system
When shopping for the best home security system to suit your needs, there are a few factors worth bearing in mind. These include:
What's included in your kit
If you're buying a home security system, off the peg, you'll need to think about what your chosen kit includes. Do you want your cameras, or sensors to be installed up and out of the way? Or would you be better suited to a freestanding model that doesn't require professional installation and can be placed on a bookshelf, coffee table or somewhere similar?
Do you intend on using your home security system indoors or outdoors?
Where you intend on installing your home security system – most notably indoors or outdoors – will also influence your ultimate decision.
Most of the models in this round up are better suited to use indoors, so if you're looking for an outdoor solution, you may find the following guides of use:
- Best video doorbell: enhance your home security and see who's calling with a smart doorbell
- Best outdoor flood lights: 5 security lights for your garden
Can you expand your home security set-up over time?
If you're taking your first steps into the world of home security, you may wish to start with just one or two cameras, which can be added to over time. It's worth considering whether the home security system your considering allows for this.
If you're looking to connect your home security system to a wider smart home set-up, you'll want to check whether the camera system you're considering is compatible with the smart ecosystem you already have in place – or one you plan to invest in.
If you are going for a wireless home security system – which will, of course, be easier to fit than a wired in one – check how often the batteries will need changing in the various elements. Also check how practical it is to replace batteries based on their proposed positions. If they are in a hard-to-reach corner of a stairwell, or up high on the exterior a wired option might be better.
If you're conscious about the aesthetics of your home, it's worth bearing in mind that not all home security systems are born equal when it comes to appearance. Consider which option will best blend into your scheme if you're looking for a subtle approach to home security.