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How Much Are Security Cameras?

Most homeowners spend between $955 to $1,584 nationally.
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More and more homeowners are taking their home security systems to the next level by installing security cameras. Security camera installation doesn’t only protect you and your family, but home cameras scare away potential intruders and/or help identify those snooping around your home. Fortunately, home cameras are affordable. See all security camera prices and all cost factors below.

When you’re ready to contact security camera installers near you, ImproveNet can help!

National Install a Surveillance Camera Costs

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Median Cost


Minimum Cost


Maximum Cost
Average Range:


National Average Cost $1,379
Minimum Cost $54
Maximum Cost $3,500
Average Range $955 to $1,584
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How do we get this data? This info is based on 1748 cost profiles, as reported by ImproveNet members.

Table of Contents

  1. Security Camera Prices
  2. Security Camera Installation Cost Breakdown
  3. Home Camera Installation Cost Factors
  4. Surveillance Camera Types
  5. Security Camera Brands
  6. DIY Or Hire An Electrician?
  7. Security Camera Advantages
  8. Security Camera Disadvantages
  9. Find An Electrician

Security Camera Prices

Overall, the average security camera price across the nation ranges between $950 and $1,585.

Security cameras on their own, without the software or professional installation, start at $100. However, many security cameras come in packages and average to advanced surveillance camera packages can cost upwards of $1,600. These packages typically include multiple cameras, recording systems and monitors.

If you do not buy the package, you have to account for software and installation costs. Software helps maintain your cameras and saves as much data as you want (just like a DVR). Software and DVR prices hover around $500 for an average amount of data.

Finally, installing security cameras is not the easiest DIY project. If you hire an electrician, expect labor costs to hover around $300.

Security Camera Installation Cost Breakdown

Minimum Cost

Maximum Cost




Software & Other Equipment









Security Camera Installation Cost

Camera Costs

While it may complicate the average security camera installation cost, there are hundreds of different security cameras to choose from. We have seen security camera prices start at $100 for very basic cameras that do not move and have no audio capabilities. Advanced models that let homeowners zoom in or tilt the camera, control the camera via a mobile phone or even verbally talk through the camera to scare off potential intruders can cost upwards of $1,000 per camera.

To no surprise, more control and functionality will undoubtedly raise your surveillance camera installation cost.

Software & Other Equipment Cost

The cameras record all movement/data, but what you do with that content improves your home security. As such, you need to monitor and check in on your home security system. First off, some security camera installers want to you log into their system to monitor your home’s activity. Other, more advanced security camera systems let you connect the software to your computer or phone and you can monitor from there. As you might expect, the latter option costs more and the former starts at just $200.

In the unlikely situation that you do get robbed, the police will ask for your security camera footage. Fortunately, just like recording TV, your security camera system saves the footage up to a certain point. It all depends on how much storage you buy or how much storage your security camera installer offers. The average storage and equipment cost is $500.

Installation Costs

Installing a security camera is not the most difficult project. If you need to keep costs down and purchase basic security cameras, you can install them on your own. There won’t be as much electrical or technical setup, making the installation process that much simpler.

However, if you opt for a more expensive home camera installation, say more than $500, we recommend you hire a local electrician. Everyone is entitled to fair pay and according to security camera installation projects across the country, most homeowners spend between $0 and $500 on installation fees.

Home Camera Installation Cost Factors

Security camera prices above are great starting points, but like any remodeling or home security project, there are certain factors that can increase or decrease the total cost. To keep your security camera installation cost down, consider the following elements:

Camera Type

The biggest cost factor is of course the type of camera. High-tech cameras that connect to smartphones, can tilt, move in, zoom or monitor at night will cost more than your basic $100 security camera. In addition, the shape of the camera affects the total price. Dome, bullet and C-mount cameras are popular designs. C-mount cameras can handle different lenses based on its location. As such, they cost more.

Certain cameras come with more bells and whistles such as infrared capabilities or tamper-resistance. If you live in a somewhat fragile area, you may need to spend more on an upgraded camera or augment it with window security bars.

Wired Vs. Wireless Cameras

In addition to the actual cameras, all packages come with various cords and software. Wired cameras come with actual wires that need to run through the house. In some cases, you may need to drill large holes in your walls or ceilings, and special tools may need to be purchased to complete the installation properly and safely. This doesn’t only add to the equipment cost, but labor cost as well. Therefore, many homeowners install wireless cameras. These security cameras run via the Wi-Fi. As such, your Internet must be very strong to run wireless cameras. If so, your surveillance camera installation cost just went down!


While burglars are most likely not yelling as they enter your yard, security cameras with audio capabilities are useful. Certain security cameras can pick up the faintest noises. Sometimes, a voice is all the police needs to find the burglar. Given that so many robbers wear masks, it makes sense to add audio to your camera package. The extra security comes with a cost and will certainly raise your surveillance system installation.

Home Camera Installation Cost

Surveillance Camera Types

There are hundreds of security cameras on the market. Fortunately, they are typically grouped into categories. Before you dive into the most popular security camera types, answer the following questions:

  • Do you want color or black and white images?
  • Do you plan to install outdoor cameras, indoor cameras or both?
  • Are you planning to record the footage from your cameras or just monitor it?

Once you have those answers, you can pick from the list below:

  1. Dummy Cameras: Sometimes, the idea of security is all you need. If you want to scare off intruders without actual security, consider a dummy camera. These cameras start at $20.
  2. Dome Cameras: These cameras look like domes and you often see them inside homes or casinos and retail stores. They blend in much better than bullet cameras. Some dome cameras have infrared and tamper-resistant capabilities. Additionally, you can zoom in with most dome cameras. Dome cameras start at $80.
  3. Hidden Cameras: Sometimes, you don’t want anyone to know you’re watching. If so, hidden cameras are placed in fake smoke detectors or alarm systems, yet still track all movement. Ironically enough, these cameras are also called hidden spy cameras. All hidden cameras start at $120.
  4. Bullet Cameras: These cameras are generally smaller and mount to the wall or ceiling. They look like a large bullet. Some have infrared capabilities. Bullet cameras start at $120.
  5. Outdoor Cameras: These cameras operate just like indoor cameras. The biggest difference is their weatherproof enclosing. Cameras need to avoid rain, snow and other moisture. As such, they must be covered. Outdoor cameras start at $130.
  6. Box Cameras: These cameras look like your 1980 home camera, but they can still do a lot in terms of security. They can move, zoom and tilt like any other camera and really capture certain details other cameras can not. As such. Box cameras start at $200.
  7. License Plate Capture Cameras: Finally, there are special cameras on the market that only focus on license plates. In fact, license plat capture cameras can even track moving cars, even if it’s pouring rain outside. There’s quite a bit of technology in these cameras. Therefore, license plate capture cameras start at $480.

For more tips, please see the Top Home Security Cameras of 2017.

Security Camera Brands

The surveillance industry is more popular than ever and as such, more companies and brands are releasing new security cameras every day. In fact, one of the most popular security cameras today is the Nest Cam. Google purchased Nest in 2014. If a company like Google enters the arena, you know it’s about to get competitive.

Besides Google and Nest, there are other dominant brands on the market. As long as your security camera belongs to one of the following brands, rest assured you made a smart decision.

  1. Swann
  2. Sony
  3. Samsung
  4. Logitech
  5. Hikvision
  6. Dahua
  7. Q-See
  8. Lorex
  9. Defender
  10. Uniden
  11. Zmodo
  12. Vivotek
  13. Axis

Surveillance Camera Types

DIY Or Hire An Electrician?

As we said earlier, simple surveillance systems or home automation systems are simple and easy to install. In fact, hanging a dummy camera is just like hanging a picture. More often than not, most homeowners can install very simple home security cameras.

However, the more popular option is to let a security professional take care of the installation. If you do, you may receive better equipment at a lower price when you sign a monitoring contract. Additionally, many security monitoring companies offer free installation of security cameras and systems when you agree to a contract. If this isn't the case, installation costs range between $50 and $500, all depending on the size of your home, the number of cameras being installed and how complex your new security system is.

Security Camera Advantages

Security cameras are a lot like insurance. You pay for it because you know you need it, but you hope to never use it. Home cameras, dummy or real, don’t only deter potential burglars or neighborhood hooligans, but they also help you find those responsible if a robbery does occur. If you were robbed while away, there’s little chance the police will find the invaders without security camera footage.

The added security, in addition to the added peace of mind that comes with any home security or alarm system, is reason enough to find security camera installers today.

Security Camera Brands

Security Camera Disadvantages

All home elements come with a few drawbacks as well. With any security system, the major drawback is cost. Honestly, we do not 100% need security cameras. It’s not like a roof. As such, the cost is optional. Some homeowners opt to save that $950 to $1,585 or spend it elsewhere in the home.

Ironically, the other disadvantage revolves around appearance. Some burglars see surveillance cameras and associate that household with money. Despite extra security, they could target your home over one without cameras. As weird as it may sound, they associate a bigger prize from homes with surveillance systems. After all, if you spent money to protect or monitor your home, you must have something valuable (perhaps besides your family).

If that is the case, you want to add a safe. Most homeowners spend between $700 and $900 to install a security safe.

Find An Electrician

We oftentimes take our security for granted. Don’t leave your family’s safety up to chance. For only $1,000, you can install multiple security cameras throughout the home, guard your loved ones and go to sleep knowing you did all you can to protect your family.

If you’re ready to install security cameras, ImproveNet can connect you to up for four electricians in your area today!

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