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For example, you can create an applet that says if a garage door is opened to turn on the floodlight. Whether you decide to go with a DIY system or opt for a professionally installed system, you'll have to pay a monthly or annual fee if you require monitoring, and in some cases, you'll be hit with a monthly fee to pay off the cost of hardware components. With most DIY systems, such as the SimpliSafe Home Security Kit, the Ring Alarm Security Kit, and the Nest Secure, you purchase the hardware outright and can avoid any monthly fees if you decide to self monitor. If you add monitoring, fees will vary: SimpliSafe charges $14. 99 per month for its no contract monitoring service, while Nest charges $29 per month. If you commit to a three year contract, the price of the Nest service drops to $19 per month. Ring's Protect Plus plan goes for $10 per month and doesn't require a contract. Monitoring for professionally installed systems tends to be more expensive. The ADT Pulse monitoring service starts at $28. 99 per month and requires a three year contract, but you also have to figure in the cost of things like hardware components, cellular backup, and installation. When we reviewed the Pulse system, our upfront cost was more than $3,000, with a monthly fee of over $60.

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This is sold as the Nest Secure alarm system, commanding a premium fee of $399, and it includes a base station, two Nest Tags, and two sensors. The Nest Tag is a key fob style device that can arm or disarm the system when in proximity with the base station – other options for arming include a passcode, Google Assistant, and the Nest App. The sensor is Stick Nest Detect, which is a versatile piece of hardware, as each one can be used to secure a window, door, or even a wall, as it detects motion, with additional sensors available for $49. All of these sensors feed their information through the base station to the Nest App. Nest Secure works over Wi Fi, but cellular access as a backup is a $5 additional monthly option. The system can also be expanded with options for indoor and outdoor cameras, and compatible Yale electronic locks.