Saving money is a priority for most people. Budgets have a bottom line, be it business or home.  This may make you ask yourself, “Can I use an alarm system without monitoring?” It is a valid question. But keep in mind, avoiding a monitoring cost causes a lot of features to fall at the wayside. Let’s examine the information and come up with the best option that fits your needs.

First a Few Questions

What exactly is a self-monitored security system?

Self-monitoring is about your security system detecting threats and communicating those to you.

What are the most considerable disadvantages of a self-monitored home security system?

No one is watching your property or family 24/7. It is up to the alarm system to notify emergency contacts. In the case of injury, consider the difficulty in calling for help yourself.

If there’s a real emergency and the homeowner can’t get to their phone, no one calls for help. If a homeowner is knocked out by a burglar or doesn’t receive an alarm notification when an intruder breaks in during the day because their cell phone doesn’t get reception at work, the police won’t be contacted.

What are the advantages of self-monitoring security systems?

No monthly monitoring fees are the first advantage on the list. The second is that there is no contract.

The rest:

  • New systems make it easier to monitor
  • Owning equipment outright
  • No calls from the monitoring company
  • Avoid false alarm penalties

More Eyes, Safer Home

Something to consider, without monitoring services, it is up to the homeowner to be on constant watch. It means being available for every alert, and having the phone in your hand 24/7.

Alarm companies exist to protect homes and businesses. It is their job to stay on top of alerts. Video after the fact might help catch the bad guy, but isn’t just easier to catch them in the act? Or even better, to deter them before they even commit a crime?

This applies to all emergency services. If no one is available to receive a notification from a smoke alarm, the fire department cannot be dispatched quickly.

With that Said

Options for alarms without monitoring do exist. It takes a bit of research to find the ones that offer high-quality protection without a subscription.

Things to look for:

  • Video monitoring
  • Two-way communication
  • Motion detectors
  • Carbon monoxide detector
  • Fire detector
  • Optimal control
  • Speedy alerts
  • Customization

Not every system that does not require a service will have all of the features. One may have a few, and another may only have oneBelow are several security devices that may help you answer the question “Can I use an alarm system without monitoring.”

A man using a tablet at a table.


In the area of DIY, iSmartAlarm leads the way and has no monthly fees or contracts. Control over home security is firmly in the hand of the homeowner.


  •  IFTTT
  • Alexa Capability
  • 110dB Siren
  • Free alerts including text messages, phone calls, app notifications, and email
  • High-Tech App Controls
  • Ease of Setup and Use

Bundle Includes:

  • 3 window/door sensors
  • 1 smart video camera
  • 1 motion sensor


Abode equipment works pretty well without a monitoring service. The company works to provide integration and a helpful app.


Full integration with Alexa, Echo, Nest, and Dot

  • Two-Way Communication
  • Ease of Placement

Bundle Includes:

  • Gateway (Base)
  • Built-in motion sensor
  • Remove keyfob


Oomi is unique in its approach to systems with a security alarm service. Homeowners literally have the power in their hands with their dedicated control tablet.


  • Integrates with Nest, Alexa, and other Z-wave devices
  • Night Vision
  • Remote On/Off
  • High-Tech App

Bundle Includes:

  • Oomi Cube
  • Oomi Touch
  • Infinity Dock
  • 2 Oomi Bulbs
  • Oomi Plug

Arlo 3

Arlo offers a 3-month trial for their security service, but their alarm systems work without one. It is a matter of what is worth missing out on.


  • Two-way audio
  • Built-in smart siren
  • 160-degree viewing angle
  • 2K HDR
  • Color night vision

Bundle Includes:

  • 2 cameras
  • 2 rechargeable batteries
  • SmartHub

Self-Monitoring — What It Takes

Self-monitoring is relatively new to the realm of home security. The options here are not the only options available, and new options are being introduced all the time.

Advances in home automation have been a benefit to self-monitored home security. Because of the explosion of choices, picking one is not going to be easy.

The responsibility of self-monitoring falls on the homeowner. It means staying alert for notifications and responding to emergencies swiftly. If that is your plan, know what is important in your self-monitored system:

  1. Notifies the owner if a breach occurs.
  2. Sends text and push notifications
  3. Can notify police, fire, friends, family, etc. in case of emergency

Mother in child sitting in a bed leaning in for kiss

More than Bad Guys

Let’s be honest. Self-monitored systems need to be super smart. Ideally, it works with other smart devices within a home to strengthen protection. But, ultimately, all of these smart devices are relying on one person to be available to respond to a threat before taking appropriate action. Simply being available 24/7 with your connected devices on and notifications active is a big ask for many people. Professionally monitored systems have the benefit of trained staff who are available 24/7 to assist in protecting you home.

Keep in mind, the job of protecting a home danger is not only about property loss but family safety, too. It may not be worth the savings to forgo the benefits of professional monitoring. With that in mind, it’s worth exploring all of your options for monitoring. Because regardless of whether you can use an alarm system without monitoring, should you? Contact Protect America today for a free quote to add a top-notch monitoring for 24/7 protection.