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Get the Best in Home Automation with Vivint

If you don’t know them for home security, you may know them as the sponsor for the NBA’s Utah Jazz’ basketball arena, the company with the orange sign throughout your neighborhood, or you saw the episode of Undercover Boss that featured their CEO. Whatever the case may be, even if you’re not familiar with home security, you’ve probably come across Vivint.

 

Vivint is the number one smart home service provider in the United States. They’ve built a reputation as the go-to company for customers who want home security and an automated home. If you’ve dreamed of living in a Jetson’s style abode, Vivint is as close as you’ll get. But what’s with all of the hoopla? Aren’t they expensive? Is Vivint worth all of the hype they get?

How it all Started

Vivint is based out of Provo, Utah. They were originally founded as APX Alarm Security Solutions in 1997. They rebranded in 2011 before being purchased by the Blackstone Group in 2012. They’ve been on Forbes list of America’s Best Employers and they were named one of Forbes Most Promising Companies in 2013. They service Canada and every state in the U.S.

 

Vivint products are more advanced than what most other companies offer. If you’re familiar with some of the high-tech that’s come to the home security industry in the last few years, and you want a security company that matches those capabilities, Vivint comes the closest.

 

They offer a free quote, free installation, and $0 to activate the product. All home security and automation devices come with a lifetime warranty, even if your products get beat up from everyday wear and tear. Their around the clock monitoring is fast with responses from emergency authorities, and their high-tech offerings include automation, cameras, video doorbells, remote control systems, thermostats, sensors, hearing devices, and integrations with more products.

What do You Get if You Buy Vivint?

They offer an array of sensors and equipment, some of which you’ll see with most other companies. This includes: recessed door sensors, glass break detectors, flood and freeze sensors, carbon monoxide detectors, tilt sensors, small appliance controls, and panic pendants.

 

Other devices include touch screen and control panels, smoke detectors, door and window sensors, and key fobs. Like other high-tech systems, you can arm and disarm the home without entering using a key-fob.

 

The Vivint Sky mobile app is one of the main appeals for customers. This remote access device is free to download with Apple and Android. Like other smartphone apps in home security, users can arm and disarm their home, view and record live video feeds, lock and unlock doors, and control temperature. These tools integrate with Amazon Echo, too, so you get to talk to the home and order it to complete tasks.

How Much Does Vivint Cost?

Vivint has two monthly service plans depending on if you purchase hardware up front. Users can monitor the system themselves if they’d like, but this means you opt out of mobile app and 24/7 tech support.

 

Here’s how pricing looks:

 

 

All of these tools will meet and connect with the SkyControl panel. This is a 7-inch panel that has color and touch screen display. A Panic and Burglary alarm are on the panel. With this device you can assign and edit user codes, adjust alarm volumes, tweak camera settings, arm and disarm the system, and run any diagnostics.

 

Vivint FlexPay

 

They added FlexPay recently, a payment option that was created after they received customer complaints. It’s made to accommodate more customers and it’s more cost friendly.

 

It works by paying for equipment over time. Customers just sign up for a service plan over the course of a loan agreement. Instead of the lengthy standard contract, this plan is 42 to 60 months, and users finance equipment. If you’re already a Vivint customer, you’ve got to live out the rest of your contract before you can choose this option.

What are Vivint’s Problems?

So far so good, right? Everything seems relatively standard, and you get a plethora of smart home gear. But Vivint starts to run into some problems.

 

The contract is just too long. Users have to sign up for a minimum of 60 months. (You read that right. That’s five years.) The industry average for a contract is 36 months (3 years), and if you want to cancel with Vivint, you’ve got to pay off the remaining balance in full. So you’re basically locked in unless you want to write what will likely be a big check. This is the most common complaint you’ll see with Vivint.

 

They’re also expensive. You saw above that their monthly monitoring plan starts at $39.99 per month, which doesn’t seem too bad, but this is as low as they go. Their rates only go higher, and to get the full benefits of automation and smart tech you start to pay top dollar. Users also pay a monthly subscription fee for remote access and extra money to install the Outdoor Camera ($99) and Doorbell Camera ($29), though nothing else has a price for install and they send professional installers.

 

The other notable complaints you’ll hear about Vivint are their sales tactics and customer service. They have a reputation for deceptive sales tactics and their reps don’t answer questions very well. This is a poor combination when you’re trying to uncover what you need with a security company. Customer are also unhappy with billing practices and the phone support and response they get from technicians when they call.

Should You Choose Vivint?

If you’ve got the money, Vivint is good at what they do. They’re wireless, easy to move from home to home, energy efficient, cellular monitored, have two-way talk, and they’re high-tech. Vivint integrates with Z-Wave technology, which lets you add more smart home products to the home, including Nest, Amazon Echo, and other devices.

 

Vivint also manufactures most of their products in house. Most security companies don’t do this. They get third party products instead. Having their own devices adds trust for Vivint and shows that they have total control of what’s going on without relying on outside services. The takeaway is this. If you want a secure home with all of the perks of automation, with a company that will continue to add more device options for your smart home, choose Vivint.