ADT home security after contract expires

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OCDinvestor
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ADT home security after contract expires

Post by OCDinvestor »

We started with ADT about 2.5 years ago, which includes multiple glass-break alarms, door open alarms, a few fire/CO alarm and several outdoor cameras. We enjoy the service, but for ~$59/mo. service, we are contemplating life after our 3 year contract runs out.

Has anyone successfully negotiated with ADT to bring their price down?

Has anyone just stopped monitoring services? I'm assuming all the equipment will still work, alarms will still go off, cameras will still work, but ADT just stops monitoring it? Do we still have access to ADT app for the camera usage if we stop?
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RickBoglehead
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by RickBoglehead »

ADT has a great gig. Install free or low cost equipment, tie people into a contract that is many times higher than available elsewhere. Most people sign up having no idea what they are getting into.

You need to read your contract. If ADT owns the equipment, then you can't have anyone else monitor it, and they COULD remove it.

If you own the equipment, then you could switch monitoring.

If you terminate the contract, expect ADT to take steps to lock you out of it. Another monitoring company MAY be able to undo that.

Note that a centrally monitored alarm system provides discounts on homeowner's insurance. These discounts may include one for burglary and fire, one for leak detection, one for freeze detection, etc. If you don't have central monitoring, you lose the discounts.

You will have zero app access if you discontinue your ADT contract.

A great company for monitoring is Alarm Relay. $8.95 per month for year 1, $9.95 per month for year 2, and $10.45 per month for years 3 and on. Again, they MAY be able to take over the equipment, IF you own it. Can't speak to the camera capability.

In our house, the equipment was installed and monitored by a company who refused to give us access after we bought the house. Via the internet, I found the default manufacturer's codes, removed their access, changed the codes, and switched to Alarm Relay.
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Flyer24
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by Flyer24 »

Topic is now in Personal Consumer Issues.
JBTX
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by JBTX »

I used to work in that industry years ago. Usually they are pretty motivated to get you to renew. After they've covered their initial investment, which can be substantial in a case like this, between the install costs, equipment costs and sales commission could be into 4 figures. Used to, maybe still, most of ADP hook ups were done by independent dealers and they sell ADT the contract. ADP probably paid $1500-$2000 for a $59.99 contract. The model is if you can keep customers around 7 years or more then it makes money. 3 years they don't. They are betting you will stay.

The incremental cost of monitoring is low, so letting customers walk away isn't good business. But I really don't know what their price points are. $59.99 seems awfully high.

If ADP installed the equipment you may not be able to use the equipment right off, although I have to imagine a technician could fix that - but I have no idea. Or they just put a new panel in, your house is already fully wired.

If your house came with a built in alarm system then yes it will function just as before. The only difference is when the alarm goes off it will try to make a call out but there's nothing to call.

If you can figure out the brand and model of the key pad you can google it and probably find an owners operating manual. Or try you tube.
lazydavid
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by lazydavid »

ADT raised our bill by $3.59/mo every year like clockwork. When it hit $64.36, we had enough and cancelled (as in, actually cancelled-no service). At the time we intended to go to SimpliSafe or similar. But within a month, someone from retention called and offered us $14.99/mo for a year and then $20.99 indefinitely after the year, and we took it. After the first year was up, the bill reset to $64.36, we called and yelled, and it was reset to $20.99. Been fine ever since.
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galawdawg
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by galawdawg »

OCDinvestor wrote: Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:26 am We started with ADT about 2.5 years ago, which includes multiple glass-break alarms, door open alarms, a few fire/CO alarm and several outdoor cameras. We enjoy the service, but for ~$59/mo. service, we are contemplating life after our 3 year contract runs out.

Has anyone successfully negotiated with ADT to bring their price down?

Has anyone just stopped monitoring services? I'm assuming all the equipment will still work, alarms will still go off, cameras will still work, but ADT just stops monitoring it? Do we still have access to ADT app for the camera usage if we stop?
I have no experience dealing with ADT, but before you stop monitoring services completely, you may want to check around to see what alternative monitoring companies are available to you that would be able to take over monitoring once your contract with ADT ends. For example, one provider In the Atlanta area, EMC Security charges $16.95 per month for monitoring. The savings I get on my homeowner's insurance for having central monitoring more than pays for the monthly cost.

You'll probably need to know what type of system you have in order to get accurate information on alternative monitoring services. Here is a website that will help you identify the manufacturer of your alarm system: https://www.myadt.com/systemIdentificat ... ate=select

So I'd suggest you do some research on the cost of monitoring services available to you from other providers and check with your homeowner's insurance company about what the discount is that you receive for having central monitoring. You may find, as I did, that the monitoring service more than pays for itself with the insurance savings.
HoosierJim
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by HoosierJim »

Do you really need monitoring? A typical thief wants to be in and out in a few minutes. Long before the cops or a service can arrive. An alarm that makes noise is 99% of the solution.
HomeStretch
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by HomeStretch »

If you decide to cancel, be sure to follow the cancellation provision (which likely says you have to give written notice xx days in advance of contract auto renewal date) in your agreement with ADT. Per online reviews, they will charge you the full cancellation fee if you don’t give adequate notice.
Topic Author
OCDinvestor
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by OCDinvestor »

We own the equipment as we paid for all of the hardware when it was installed. I will negotiate toward the end of our 3 year contract due to some of the above posters. Thank you everyone.
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RickBoglehead
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by RickBoglehead »

HoosierJim wrote: Thu Oct 17, 2019 7:14 am Do you really need monitoring? A typical thief wants to be in and out in a few minutes. Long before the cops or a service can arrive. An alarm that makes noise is 99% of the solution.
Do you want to give up the homeowner's policy discount? I pay $10.45 per month, i.e. $125.40 a year, for monitoring. I save more than that off my homeowner's insurance. In other words, I make a profit by having central station monitoring on my home alarm system.
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HoosierJim
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by HoosierJim »

HomeStretch wrote: Thu Oct 17, 2019 7:19 am If you decide to cancel, be sure to follow the cancellation provision (which likely says you have to give written notice xx days in advance of contract auto renewal date) in your agreement with ADT. Per online reviews, they will charge you the full cancellation fee if you don’t give adequate notice.
Get multiple confirmations of cancellation - get name of rep you spoke with. ATD is the Hotel California of alarm companies -
You can check out any time you like
But you can never leave!"
.
HoosierJim
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by HoosierJim »

RickBoglehead wrote: Thu Oct 17, 2019 7:26 am Do you want to give up the homeowner's policy discount? I pay $10.45 per month, i.e. $125.40 a year, for monitoring. I save more than that off my homeowner's insurance. In other words, I make a profit by having central station monitoring on my home alarm system.
We were getting about $3/month discount but the monitoring was about $35 month. Your situation is a no brainer. Will check next time we shop the insurance.
Last edited by HoosierJim on Thu Oct 17, 2019 9:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
TheOscarGuy
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by TheOscarGuy »

OCDinvestor wrote: Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:26 am We started with ADT about 2.5 years ago, which includes multiple glass-break alarms, door open alarms, a few fire/CO alarm and several outdoor cameras. We enjoy the service, but for ~$59/mo. service, we are contemplating life after our 3 year contract runs out.

Has anyone successfully negotiated with ADT to bring their price down?

Has anyone just stopped monitoring services? I'm assuming all the equipment will still work, alarms will still go off, cameras will still work, but ADT just stops monitoring it? Do we still have access to ADT app for the camera usage if we stop?
You should get away from ADT. It is very expensive and the DIY solutions have much better service + cheaper. I have simplisafe.
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RickBoglehead
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by RickBoglehead »

TheOscarGuy wrote: Thu Oct 17, 2019 8:22 am
You should get away from ADT. It is very expensive and the DIY solutions have much better service + cheaper. I have simplisafe.
The reason that Simplisafe is a good choice for some people, is ease of installation combined with no contract. If you already have equipment, and can get features (like a phone app to arm, disarm, etc.), then Simplisafe's $24.99 per month cost isn't a good deal, especially considering you have to buy the equipment, which for many can run $500 or more.

We have Simplisafe on our cottage. Needed a quick install (in-law's medical crisis moveout).
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TheOscarGuy
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by TheOscarGuy »

RickBoglehead wrote: Thu Oct 17, 2019 8:25 am
TheOscarGuy wrote: Thu Oct 17, 2019 8:22 am
You should get away from ADT. It is very expensive and the DIY solutions have much better service + cheaper. I have simplisafe.
The reason that Simplisafe is a good choice for some people, is ease of installation combined with no contract. If you already have equipment, and can get features (like a phone app to arm, disarm, etc.), then Simplisafe's $24.99 per month cost isn't a good deal, especially considering you have to buy the equipment, which for many can run $500 or more.

We have Simplisafe on our cottage. Needed a quick install (in-law's medical crisis moveout).
I like that someone else is monitoring the alarms when they are armed, and will pay the monthly service fee for it. We have had occasions where we were out and alarm tripped, the service called us within seconds and asked if we are OK, and sent cops to check it out. It turned out to be nothing, but having someone check it out when you aren't home is a huge benefit to us.

I do agree that if you don't care for those monitoring features, the price is steep, if you already have something else in place.
Thegame14
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by Thegame14 »

OCDinvestor wrote: Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:26 am We started with ADT about 2.5 years ago, which includes multiple glass-break alarms, door open alarms, a few fire/CO alarm and several outdoor cameras. We enjoy the service, but for ~$59/mo. service, we are contemplating life after our 3 year contract runs out.

Has anyone successfully negotiated with ADT to bring their price down?

Has anyone just stopped monitoring services? I'm assuming all the equipment will still work, alarms will still go off, cameras will still work, but ADT just stops monitoring it? Do we still have access to ADT app for the camera usage if we stop?
I did, I called and asked about a program they have with Pulse, and decided not to get it, and asked if there was any new promotions to save me money and he said he could drop my bill like $15, so I said I'll take it and that was it. They lowered it in 2018 to $40.90, it went up in 2019 to now we pay $43.88
hookemhorns
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by hookemhorns »

ADT is a ripoff and you should switch to a competitor as soon as possible. We use old ADT equipment (installed by the previous owner) and a regional alarm monitoring company which only charges $200/year. ADT quoted us $60/month and required a 3 year contract for the same monitoring service.
Flyer24
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by Flyer24 »

Keep in mind that you will lose the home owner insurance discount if your alarm system is not monitored. It is usually around a 10% savings of your premium. Factor the discount into your monitoring cost. It is almost a wash on my Simplisafe plan (14.99/month).
rich126
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by rich126 »

I do my best to avoid contracts when it comes to this stuff. Fortunately I found a company that I bought the equipment, and I pay a monthly fee and can cancel at any time. Ditto for my gym membership.

You do need to run the numbers. Take a guess how long you will live there, the upfront cost of the equipment and the monitoring cost. In most cases it is best to buy the equipment in return for a contract-less monitoring fee. Although the options vary depending where you live.

Currently I don't think I have any ongoing contract stuff going on, especially w/o cable tv.
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bertilak
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by bertilak »

OCDinvestor wrote: Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:26 am Has anyone successfully negotiated with ADT to bring their price down?
Yes.

After my contract ran out I called them up and said I could get monitoring cheaper elsewhere. I gave them a quote from another company so they would take me seriously. They lowered my rate.

OK, finer detail: This all happened before ADT took over the company that did the original installation. So I didn't actually bargain with ADT, but with the original company, whose name I no longer remember.
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erictiger12
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by erictiger12 »

My original monthly fee was $59. After the contract expired, I called to cancel. ADT offered to lower my fee to $10/month.
zlandar
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by zlandar »

The cameras are likely specific to ADT and I doubt they will work after you cancel the ADT contract. You can install your own (Ring, Dropcam, Arlo). If you are tech knowledgeable Blue Iris with POE cams is a subscription-free method. It takes a fair amount of PC setup and you have to have to wire your own cameras.

Depending on the monitoring equipment you can hire an independent monitoring company. When your contract is almost up I would shop around. Typical monitoring cost is $15-20/month and $3-5 more for a cellular connection.
mhalley
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by mhalley »

I seem to recall that many of these types of contracts have an auto renewal clause, and many people get stuck with another year or two when the forgot to cancel. Be sure to check and see if your contract auto renews.
OnTrack
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Re: ADT home security after contract expires

Post by OnTrack »

"Usually alarms are considered third priority (no lights or sirens) because the vast majority is false."
"In many cities, such false alarms often number in the tens of thousands each year, waste millions of dollars of officer time, and detract from attention to reducing crimes."
https://www.urban.org/sites/default/fil ... arms_0.pdf

For this reason, many cities are now issuing fines (or "fees") for false alarms.
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