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The best cheap home security cameras, starting at $25

These days, it's easy to protect your family and home, thanks to home security cameras. But first, you need to find the right one for your budget. We can help with ZDNET's best cheap home security cameras.
Written by Lena Borrelli, Contributing Writer on
Reviewed by Allison Murray

There are over one million home invasions in the U.S. each year,  making it critical that you have some sort of protection and security device in your home. 

Also: How I made my home smart on a budget

However, not everyone has the budget to spend thousands on a new home security system. That is where we come in: we keep our fingers on the pulse of the market, watching for new products and deals that can help protect your family and home. 

So we've rounded up the best cheap home security cameras under $100 so you can protect your home for less. 

More: 

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Weather-resistant
  • Versatile
  • Affordable
Cons
  • No smart features
  • Need a subscription for some features
More Details

Features: Type: Wired | Resolution: 1080p | Weather-resistant: Yes 

The Wyze Cam v3 gets our vote for the best cheap home security camera overall. Because it is a wired security camera, you will face a little more installation time than a wireless system, but it is weather-resistant, allowing for greater flexibility in its use. It is a versatile pick, allowing for both indoor and outdoor use with an IP65 rating. 

There are also special features like night vision, sound detectors, motion sensors, and two-way audio for easy communication.  

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Alexa-compatible
  • Infrared night vision
  • Motion activation
Cons
  • Need a subscription
  • Indoor use only
More Details

Features: Type: Plug-in | Weather-resistant: No | Resolution: 1080p

The Blink Mini is a small, compact home security camera with a 1080p HD camera for a better performance than you would expect. It has a simple plug-in design means set-up is done that much faster with easy smartphone connectivity for all of the rest. There are also other features like motion detection and two-way audio. 

The live view keeps you in the know at all times, plus you can use the two-way audio to communicate with family and guests alike. You can even customize motion detection zones for specific areas of your home or office.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Alexa
  • 2-year battery life
  • Motion alerts
Cons
  • Lacks major features
  • Must use Wi-Fi
More Details

Features: Type: Battery-powered | Weather-resistant: Yes | Resolution: 1080p

The Blink Outdoor Security Camera uses wireless connectivity with an easy set-up that skips the wiring and professional installation. It uses a battery-powered design that runs up to two years on the AA batteries that are also included. 

Features are attractive, too, including infrared night vision, motion detection alerts, customized motion zones, and live view with two-way audio. You also have the option to upgrade to the Blink Subscription Plan in order to access the cloud for storage. 

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Wide field of vision
  • Simple installation
  • Compatible with Google Assistant
Cons
  • Minimal cloud storage available
  • Limited weatherproofing
More Details

Features: Type: Wired | Weather-resistant: No | Resolution: 1080p

As the name suggests, the Nest Cam Wired is a wired model that requires installation. Once complete, however, you have the option of using the Google Home app for easy integration into your home. Intelligent technology means smart alerts with object detection so you can tell the difference between a person and an animal, a car from a bicycle. 

You will also receive beautiful 1080p HDR video and three hours of local storage for your videos. 

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Super affordable
  • Wireless connectivity
  • Local storage
Cons
  • 2K video
  • Subscription required for certain features
More Details

Features: Type: Wireless | Weather-resistant: No | Resolution: 1080p

TP-Link Tapo is a wireless indoor model that lacks any weather resistance but still manages to pack a punch with multiple features. For daytime use, there is a Pan/Tilt IP camera that allows for scanning with a wider field of view. At night, enjoy night vision up to 30 feet away with a motion sensor with instant push notifications and two-way audio. 

Other features include a built-in siren that you can sound whenever a threat is detected. This is a home security camera that is perfect for surveillance of your home, office, or other area that you want monitored.

What is the best cheap home security camera?

The best cheap home security camera is the Wyze Cam v3, combining excellent features with outstanding value. With a clear picture and water resistance, this is a versatile camera you can use both indoors and out. 

To see how it compares, this is an overview of the best cheap home security cameras.

Home security camera

Cost

Resolution

Weather-resistant

Wyze Cam v3

$36

1080p

Blink Mini

$30

1080p

Blink Outdoor Security Camera

$55

1080p

Nest Cam Wired

$70

1080p

TP-Link Tapo

$25

1080p

Which is the right cheap home security camera for you?

It really depends if you're looking for an indoor or outdoor camera, what area coverage you need, if certain video features like night vision are important to you, and what price you're willing to spend. 

To help you find the best cheap home security camera for you, our expert recommendations can help.

Choose this cheap home security camera...

If you want...

Wyze Cam v3

The best overall option

Blink Mini

Something compact to handle a smaller area

Blink Outdoor Security Camera

To monitor the grounds

Nest Cam Wired

To use Google Assistant with your home security camera

TP-Link Tapo

A feature-rich camera with 3K video

How did we choose these cheap home security cameras?

When searching for the best cheap home security cameras, these are some factors to consider that helped shape our decision.

  • Location: Not all home security cameras have the weatherproofing to work outdoors. Be sure to double-check which home security cameras have the type of build you need based on the intended location. 
  • Wired: If you decide to purchase a wired home security camera, be sure to keep in mind that professional installation will likely need to be involved. 
  • Camera: The standard for home security cameras is a 1080p resolution, but there are also models these days with 4K video. Anything less than that will deliver a subpar picture that lacks all of the sharpness and clarity you would otherwise receive.
  • Features: Whether it is motion detection or two-way audio, there are many features that can make a cheap home security camera the best pick for you.

Do security cameras have a monthly fee?

Most cheap home security cameras come with a monthly fee if you want upgraded features. However, it is typically possible to continue to use the camera without a membership, although you will likely lose access to features like live video and night vision.

What is the easiest home security camera to install?

There are many cheap home security cameras that use a wireless design for extra convenience. Wired models typically require installation, which can easily get pricey. Be sure to carefully shop your options and consider installation. 

Are there alternative cheap home security cameras worth considering?

In our search, we also found these options to help you find the best cheap home security cameras. 

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