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Read the full reviewBest User ExperienceAbode$279 View at AmazonCheck Walmart?Most user friendly system we testedStrong smart home compatibilityEasy to installMost expensive professional monitoring feeCellular backup requires additional feeOne year warrantyThe thing we liked most about abode is that it's more user friendly than other DIY home security systems we tested. You can set up different modes such as home, vacation and away and specify which devices are active in each mode. There's no monthly fee for self monitoring, but you pay extra if you want cellular backup and security camera backup $10 for your system. You can also get monthly professional home monitoring $30, which includes the backup features mentioned above. One of the best things about abode is you can buy the amount of professional monitoring you need on a monthly, weekly or even a three day basis. This is particularly convenient when you can't monitor the system on your own during vacations. To install abode, you need to connect the base station to your router using an Ethernet cable and set up the sensors with the mobile app. It takes about 10 minutes to set up. When we tested the built in siren, it was one of the loudest, making it hard for intruders to ignore. There's a 10 hour backup battery that keeps your system functional when the power goes out. Another thing that makes abode so easy to use is its ability to talk to devices from Nest and Amazon, as well as Z Wave and ZigBee devices.

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These finicky locks can leave your home vulnerable if your house sitter doesn’t know how to manipulate them. Mention windows/doors that don’t close entirely You may have some windows… Read moreDogs are a man’s best friend, but they can also be a man’s security guard. Actually, a dog can be an entire family’s security guard. With an impeccable sense of smell and sensitive ears, dogs can be aware of a threat long before you. Sure, they do the adorable thing of wagging their tails and running around the house when a loved one pulls into the driveway, but they can also do the very helpful thing of growling, barking, and sounding the alarm when a not so loved individual shows up. That being said, dogs are just four legged friends in the end and are capable of human error—or, rather, canine error.