Do Home Security Systems Require a Landline?

A home security system should not be an isolated system. It should have means of communicating with the homeowners and the monitoring company.

How this communication is handled can vary, but the most commonly used method was using the phone line. (Some even needed two landlines.)

But not everybody needs or uses a landline today, which can raise questions like whether home security systems require a landline?

Not all home security systems require a landline. Most modern home security systems need an internet connection or cellular service and do not need a landline. Old hardwired security systems require a landline, but some can be modified with a cellular or internet module and work without a landline.

In this article, I will explain more about how home security systems work. I have also included examples about the most popular home security companies today and whether they require a landline to work.

So let’s take a more in-depth look.

Do Home Security Systems Require a Landline

Can You Get a Home Security System Without a Landline?

You can get a home security system without a landline. Many of the modern home security systems do not need a landline to work because they are using your WiFi network or have cellular service.

One of the first things to look for when choosing a home security system is how it works.

If it requires a landline, this should be clearly stated by the security provider.

If the security company says that their home security system uses your WiFi or has cellular connectivity, then it does not require a landline, and you may not be able to find any mention of a landline.

That being said, some home security systems that require a landline to work can have a cellular backup.

If something goes wrong with the telephone line, the security system will switch to cellular and continue to work as before.

However, the cellular backup is usually intended as a backup safety net only and not as the security system’s primary way of operation. Regularly using the cellular backup can incur additional mobile data fees, or you may be subject to certain limitations.


Pros and Cons of Home Security Using Landline

Using phone landlines for home security is an outdated practice. Landlines are still used by some home security systems simply because it is one of the cheaper methods for monitoring the system. This typically results in lower monitoring prices for the end-user.

Landline home security may not be as easily affected by blackouts as it may be able to continue working even without electricity. Other home security systems will usually need to be battery or solar-powered in order to work.

Landline home security systems are often not capable of offering much in terms of smart features and home automation, something newer wireless home security systems are designed for.

On top of that, these systems are usually hardwired, which makes the installation process a lot trickier.

This also results in additional installation fees for the end customer. Even moving the security system to a new place can be a costly and challenging task.

However, telephone landlines can be very reliable, but only if the wires are not compromised in some way. This is probably the biggest downside to landline security systems, as an experienced burglar can disable them. That said, older telephone wires can also start to fail due to natural wear and tear.

Some home security providers do not recommend using landline security systems because they can be unreliable, offer slower communication speed, and burglars can even disable telephone lines.

That being said, even internet wires can be cut, disabling your internet and WiFi security system. This is why many of the modern home security systems usually have an option for a cellular backup.


Can You Remove Your Landline but Keep Your Landline Home Security System?

Phone landlines are a thing of the past. With the increase in the popularity of mobile phones, the need for landlines has dropped dramatically. In some areas, providers are even considering discontinuing landline services altogether.

As a result, it is not uncommon for homeowners to be interested in getting rid of their phone landline because they can also cut down on their expenses.

But the problem is that some home security systems will be tied to the phone line, and homeowners often continue to pay their phone company simply because of their security system.

Homeowners can get rid of their landline and keep their landline home security system if it is compatible with cellular or internet modules. This will allow the system to continue working using the cellular network or internet.

However, this typically increases the monthly monitoring fees, and it may involve installation fees as well.

Alternatively, most modern security systems can offer better functionality, smart features, automation, and freedom for the homeowners willing to switch to a new home security system.


Do All Home Security Systems Require a Phone Landline to Work?

Not all home security systems, burglar alarms, or fire alarms need a phone landline to work. The majority of home security systems today do not use a landline to work. Most home security systems require WiFi or cellular service.

Nonetheless, there are still home security systems that may require a landline.

So let’s take a look at the most popular home security providers.


Does Ring Require a Landline?

Ring does not require a landline to work. Ring devices and security systems use your existing wireless internet connection and cellular networks in order to work and communicate with the monitoring center.


Do ADT Home Security Systems Need a Landline?

Not all ADT home security systems will require a landline, depending on the type of monitoring plan you go with. The Traditional plan requires a landline to work, while the Remote and Video & Home Automation plans come with the ADT’s CellGuard feature allowing the system to connect over the cellular networks.

For more details, refer to our article on Does ADT Require a Landline?


Does Blue by ADT Require a Landline?

Blue by ADT does not require a landline in order to work. Blue by ADT home security system requires a good WiFi internet connection in order to work, and it can also come with a cellular backup.


Does SimpliSafe Require a Landline?

SimpliSafe security systems do not require a landline to work. SimpliSafe uses the wireless internet connection in your home or the cellular networks to work. That being said, SimpliSafe systems can work even without wireless or cellular service.


Does Vivint Require a Landline?

Vivint does not require a landline. Vivint security systems and equipment use your wireless internet connection to work. The central smart hub that Vivint home security systems come with also offers cellular backup, allowing the system to work even without WiFi.


Does Brinks Require a Landline?

Brinks’ home security systems do not need a landline to work. They require a WiFi internet connection to work, but some monitoring plans also come with cellular backup, allowing the system to work even without WiFi internet.


Does Frontpoint Require a Landline?

Frontpoint home security systems do not require a landline. Frontpoint home security systems require a wireless internet connection or a cellular connection to work. The Frontpoint central hub has a cellular backup allowing the system to work even without WiFi.


Does Cove Require a Landline?

Cover home security systems do not need a landline in order to work. Cove works by using the cellular network to communicate, which means they do not need WiFi either.


Does Nest Require a Landline?

Nest security equipment does not require a landline in order to work. Nest products are all entirely wireless. Nest Secure can also be purchased with a cellular backup.


Does Wyze Need a Landline?

Wyze equipment does not need a landline in order to work. Most of their devices work wirelessly but do not have a cellular backup.

However, not all devices are completely wireless.

Some Wyze devices like the base station may need to be connected with a wire to the internet router during the initial setup or be powered with a USB cable, like the Wyze Cam v3.


Does Scout Require a Landline?

Scout home security systems and devices do not require a landline to work. Scout’s security devices connect wirelessly to a central control hub that uses your WiFi network. If your internet goes down, it has a built-in cellular backup. 


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Edward Clark
Edward Clark, with 15 years of hands-on experience, is a distinguished expert in smart locks and home security systems. He holds a B.S. in Computer Engineering with a focus on Cybersecurity and is a member of the Electronic Security Association (ESA). His credentials include certifications from ASIS International, IAPP, CompTIA, NTS, and CEDIA. With expertise spanning risk management, electronic security, and data privacy, he's been featured in The Guardian, Forbes, Wired, and more. Edward's mission: guiding individuals toward secure homes using the latest technologies.

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