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Home security: CPI Security review

CPI is unique in that it designs, installs, monitors, and services its own security system.

CPI Security offers a lot of the benefits of working with a large provider, with the added perk of actually being a regional company. This Southeastern home security company operates in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Virginia, Maryland, Alabama, and Florida. If you live in the area (and plan on doing so for the foreseeable future), a home security contract with CPI Security will equip your home with up-to-date security and automation devices (hello door cams and temperature control), all easily controllable by app, plus exceptional customer service as only a local outfit can provide.

CPI Security

CPI is unique in that it designs, installs, monitors, and services its own security system. Video and sensors are professionally monitored out of CPI's North Carolina headquarters. The plan, the app, and the devices carry the same name: inTouch. This holistic system allows CPI to make guarantees that other companies, selling third-party devices and giving DIY monitoring options, can't. For example, CPI offers a No False Alarm Guarantee. If a system malfunction leads to a false alarm and you get charged a fine, CPI will credit your account for the cost.

Pros:

  • High-quality, in-house equipment
  • Free professional installation
  • No False Alarm guarantee

Cons

  • Professional monitoring only
  • Limited geographical range

CPI Security packages and prices

Packages

Price

Equipment starts at

Type of Installation

Best for

inTouch Essentials

$29.99

$499.99

Professional

Basic smart home security without video

inTouch Essentials Plus

$39.99

$499.99

Professional

Most smart home security households

inTouch Edge

$49.99

$499.99

Professional

Smart homes with outdoor security cameras

Date effective 02/10/20

Professional monitoring comes with all three of CPI's home security plans. So does smartphone control. But if you want to upgrade your kit with a video doorbell or with an outdoor security camera, you'll also need to upgrade your monthly agreement. Still, it's impressive that a 7-inch touchscreen hub and the solidly rated CPI app can be used with the Essentials Package, the same as the Edge package.

Another standout: free professional installation. Right there, you're saving around a hundred dollars compared to other professional installation-only providers like ADT. The major perk of leaving the installation to the pros is proper functionality. A faulty installation is the cause of many false alarms. If you have a false alarm and get fined, the company will credit the amount to your account with CPI.

Who is each CPI Security Systems plan best for?

  • inTouch Essentials: Best for light technology users who aren't interested in including cameras in their home security system.
  • inTouch Essentials Plus: Best for homeowners who plan on making a video doorbell the center of their smart home security system.
  • inTouch Edge: Best for smart home security connoisseurs who plan on installing outdoor cameras or keyless locks.

CPI Security prices

Both equipment and monthly monitoring costs are in the middle-to-high range for home security prices. Cheaper systems often eschew professional support at both the installation and monitoring stages, resulting in upfront costs of a couple of hundred dollars and monthly charges of $20 or less. CPI, like other traditional home security companies, doubles both of these prices. It's not a bargain, but the customer support and system guarantees from CPI are outstanding.

CPI Security ease of use

Touchscreen and smartphone control promises an intuitive user experience. And that free professional installation also means you will have a knowledgeable technician to walk you through customizing and controlling your system from the outset.

CPI Security types of installations

Professional packages

CPI Security Systems require professional installation. This may be less convenient than DIY options like SimpliSafe, but other than the potential issue of scheduling, professional installation from CPI is a positive -- it's free. Other companies charge $50-$250 for professional installation, depending on the size of your system.

DIY packages

DIY installation is not available from CPI Security Systems. The initial professional installation is free, but you might have to pay a fee if you move and want to take your equipment with you. This transfer fee is waived if you've been with the company for more than 24 months.

CPI Security types of monitoring

Professional packages

CPI Security Systems includes professional monitoring with every plan. Alerts are fielded out of CPI's local North Carolina command center.

DIY packages

While you can't self-monitor a CPI system, smartphone control is included at every monitoring tier. The CPI app commands a solid four out of five stars (averaging its Android and iOS ratings) and allows you to control your system remotely.

Additional benefits:

  • Flexible contract options: CPI Security Systems offer a 39-month contract to break up equipment costs over time. Once you pay off your balance, or if you buy your gear upfront, you're eligible for a low-commitment, month-to-month contract.
  • Smart home compatibility: CPI Security Systems work with Amazon and Google smart home assistants and products, as well as Z-Wave devices.
  • Potential homeowners insurance discounts: A professionally monitored system, which is the only type CPI Security Systems offers, could make you eligible for a home insurance discount depending on your provider.

Additional drawbacks:

  • No trial period: While other home security companies allow you some time to change your mind after installation (ranging from a few days to a month or more), CPI Security doesn't do a trial period. Once the equipment is installed, it's yours.
  • Surveillance cameras require upper plan tiers: You will have to pay $40 - $50 per month if you want to include a video doorbell or a smart security camera in your system. The cheapest plan, at $30 per month, still supports smartphone control.

Compare home security providers


CPI Security

ADT

Frontpoint

SimpliSafe

Types of Installation

Professional

Professional

DIY

DIY
Professional

Starting Price

$30/mo

$36/mo

$45/mo

$15/mo

Package Options

3

3

3

2

Contract Length

Month-to-month
39 Months

36 Months

12 Months
36 Months

Month-to-month

Details

View Plans

View Plans

View Plans

View Plans

Who is each home security provider best for?

CPI Security: People looking for a regional company that provides service guarantees and smart home security.

ADT: The smart-home-curious who value company reputation.

Frontpoint: Those who will pay more for customer experience.

SimpliSafe: Budget-minded homeowners looking for sleek, flexible systems.