Complaints Lodged as ADT Fails to Honor Brink’s Contract Terms

Posted by , , at 2:49 pm

It’s been over a year since ADT acquired Broadview (the name that Brink’s adopted not long before selling out to ADT). After Brink’s was absorbed, the alarm industry wondered aloud what would happen to the one million-plus loyal and happy Brink’s customers: after all, Brink’s was famous for excellent customer service, and ADT was known by many for just the opposite. I’ve been watching the industry press and the review sites for indication of how it’s going, and let’s just say that it has not been going that well. For one thing, ADT suffered the defection of many Brink’s authorized dealers (smaller alarm system “resellers” who create new accounts under the umbrella of the larger company, and sell them to the larger company). There are also plenty of former Brink’s customers lodging complaints against ADT, and by reading them you can learn a lot about ADT’s business philosophy. Here’s a great example:

I have been a Brink’s (Broadview Security) customer for several years. Now that ADT has purchased Broadview Security, they refused to honor my existing contract, when I bought a new home and wanted to relocate my services to the new address.

The Sad Details

ADT has gained quite a reputation for this type of customer-unfriendly policy, which makes it easier to understand why they have so many complaints. In this case, the solution was a simple one, but ADT took what I consider the low road.

My old address was in St. Pete, FL 33705. I was told I would be required to sign a new 3 year agreement and that my rate would no longer be honored. I submitted an email to the company about a month ago and have yet to receive a response. I also spoke with customer service and received no follow correspondence from their management.

Why Existing Customers Should be Treated Like Gold

Most businesses have learned that it costs a lot less to keep an existing customer than it does to create a new one. That’s certainly true in the alarm industry, which is why smart companies treat their customers well, since every customer they retain is one less they have to replace as they grow. In fact, low customer attrition is one of the biggest “value drivers” in the home security sector. The last words of the customer complaint indicate ADT still has something to learn in this regard.

I also submitted a BBB complaint, since ADT refused to at least honor my existing rate. This is a classic example of lack of respect for loyal customers.

Great Customer Reviews are Also Like Gold

Earlier this week I posted on alarm company review sites, since so many folks research and shop on line. This recent ADT complaint was posted on a site I do not generally follow named www.measuredup.com. Like most review sites, this site has more negative than positive commentary. I am happy to report that when you search the site for FrontPoint, there are no complaints: just like almost every site you can find! We’re more about good news. And by the way, our customers may move their FrontPoint systems from one home to the next at will, with no new contract, and no monitoring increase.

On-line shoppers quickly learn why we are the nationwide leader in interactive, wireless home security: our long list of five-star reviews spells out very clearly why we’re the #1 ranked alarm company in the US. Being on top means we have to prove ourselves in every aspect of our business – and with systems that are safer, smarter, simpler, more affordable, and virtually impossible to defeat. And best of all, there is never a salesperson or technician in your home. Now that’s peace of mind!

Comments (8)

Post a Comment | View Comments
  1. ADTClassAction

    I had a horrible experience with ADT, and am currently trying to get enough people together to file a class action lawsuit against the company. For more information visit: http://www.adtclassactionlawsuits.com/

    Here’s my story.

    ADT came to our house and showed us different alarm panel options. I chose the pulse system. Richard Castro was the salesman and showed me various pictures of panels and keypads. When they installed the old, out of date, possibly used, old fashioned looking keypad I contacted Richard to find out why it was not the digital keypad that he showed me pictures of and said would be installed. He told me this old keypad would work better than the digital one. This was an obvious case of bait and switch. He agreed to upgrade them, but tried to raise the price by 50% from the original quote. Stating it was more work than he thought. After discussing it, I agreed on a 25% increase in the price just because I had gone so long without an alarm. My alarm was working before they came, but he sold me on the digital panels, the cameras that were never installed and being able to operate it from my cell phone. You would think that when you use a big company they would have credibility and integrity. This turned out to be a total scam. We have been trying to get a hold of someone at ADT, no one will call us back.

    • Peter M. Rogers

      Eric – Very sorry to hear of your bad experience. Wish I could say that yours is the first we have heard of, but it’s not. We all know that no company is perfect, and even FrontPoint makes mistakes that we have to rectify. The difference is that FrontPoint has maintained a “small company” approach to meeting and exceeding our customers’ expectations: and no matter how large and successful we get, we are committed to that same philosophy of treating each customer with respect. It starts with transparent marketing, followed by a consultative sales process, capped by world class support. I know from my time working at Tyco, ADT’s parent, that size can get in a company’s way, instead of being the advantage it should be – and when you are working so hard to create new customers, you may not care so much about the ones slipping out the back door. That’s the sad part, because it costs a lot less to keep a customer through good service than it does to create a new one from scratch. Good luck to you in your pursuit of what you believe is fair.

  2. ADTClassAction

    I had a horrible experience with ADT, and am currently trying to get enough people together to file a class action lawsuit against the company. For more information visit: http://www.adtclassactionlawsuits.com/

    Here’s my story.

    ADT came to our house and showed us different alarm panel options. I chose the pulse system. Richard Castro was the salesman and showed me various pictures of panels and keypads. When they installed the old, out of date, possibly used, old fashioned looking keypad I contacted Richard to find out why it was not the digital keypad that he showed me pictures of and said would be installed. He told me this old keypad would work better than the digital one. This was an obvious case of bait and switch. He agreed to upgrade them, but tried to raise the price by 50% from the original quote. Stating it was more work than he thought. After discussing it, I agreed on a 25% increase in the price just because I had gone so long without an alarm. My alarm was working before they came, but he sold me on the digital panels, the cameras that were never installed and being able to operate it from my cell phone. You would think that when you use a big company they would have credibility and integrity. This turned out to be a total scam. We have been trying to get a hold of someone at ADT, no one will call us back.

    • Peter M. Rogers

      Eric – Very sorry to hear of your bad experience. Wish I could say that yours is the first we have heard of, but it’s not. We all know that no company is perfect, and even FrontPoint makes mistakes that we have to rectify. The difference is that FrontPoint has maintained a “small company” approach to meeting and exceeding our customers’ expectations: and no matter how large and successful we get, we are committed to that same philosophy of treating each customer with respect. It starts with transparent marketing, followed by a consultative sales process, capped by world class support. I know from my time working at Tyco, ADT’s parent, that size can get in a company’s way, instead of being the advantage it should be – and when you are working so hard to create new customers, you may not care so much about the ones slipping out the back door. That’s the sad part, because it costs a lot less to keep a customer through good service than it does to create a new one from scratch. Good luck to you in your pursuit of what you believe is fair.

  3. Linus

    I had an awful experience with ADT. If you look for alarm monitoring services, look elsewhere. Every interaction with ADT was a huge disappointment, from sales to service, and in particular one individual [name deleted at the request of the ADT employee] with the Customer Relations department turned out to be a liar.
    In May 2011, I decided to seek out a large, reputable alarm monitoring service company and mistakenly chose ADT without adequately researching other customers’ experiences. The sales woman misled me into signing a three year contract, the terms of which were buried in the fine print and not disclosed verbally. I only found out much later, when I tried to cancel my service.
    A week or so later the installation crew showed up. They complained that they weren’t really that good at programming these systems. Well they were right. After the installation, the alarm system starts beeping in the middle of the night scaring us half to death. It turns out that it’s trying to find a landline telephone signal, although we installed a cellular based system. I called ADT to get a service technician out there to rectify the problem. Sure, they could come out the following Thursday! So after we suffered through several sleepless nights, with the beeping starting around 11 pm, another team of service technicians came out. They also failed to fix the problem. On the third try they managed to actually repair the system.
    However this was just the beginning. Now we started getting phone calls from ADT saying that there was a problem with our alarm system. Several service appointments failed to repair the system. I suspected that the cell signal was too weak for the communications unit in our closet, and said so several times to ADT. This proved to be correct even though no service team even correctly diagnosed the problem.
    After months of taking time off work to get incompetent service technicians trying to repair our alarm system, I finally had enough. When ADT once again called to inform me that my alarm system was not working properly, I asked to cancel my contract. The lady I spoke with said no problem, consider it done.
    About six weeks later I find out that ADT is still charging my credit card $48 in monthly service charges. I call customer service and they inform me that I have to pay out the full value of my three year contract if I want to cancel my contract. This was the first I heard of the three year term. I proceed to write a strongly worded email to the President John Koch and the PR director Tucker.
    On September 22 I get a reply from the Customer Relations department’s John Fullop. I explain to Mr. Fullop that I want ADT to let me out of my contract. He proposes the following: at my next scheduled service call, ADT would get one and only one more chance to repair the system. If they would fail to do so, he would refund all installation and monthly service charges to date and cancel our contract. I agreed.
    On September 29, I again take time off work to go meet the service technicians at my house. The appointment window is from 3 to 5 pm. Nobody shows up or calls, despite me requesting that they call my cell phone before the appointment to confirm. No shows were quite common, so I’m not very surprised at this.
    On September 30, John Fullop claims that the service technician showed up at 2:36 pm, but was denied entry by my wife saying we didn’t need service. My wife was at work at the time as I was. Besides, 2:36 was outside the scheduled window, so I request that Mr. Fullop honor the agreement made and refund me my money. He says he is going to look into it and call me back that afternoon. He never calls. I call him several times and leave messages as well as email him. Mr. Fullop never contacts me.
    On October 3, I again call Mr. Fullop. He doesn’t answer the phone so I leave a message. Then I write an email to Tucker, Koch, and Fullop, stating that I will start reviewing ADT service and complain to the Better Business Bureau. Now John Fullop finally calls back, only to change his story to say that the service technician was there not at 2:36, but at 2:58! I maintain that is outside of the window. Fullop then goes on to say that he was on site for five minutes, thus hitting the window. However I never got a knock on the door or a phone call inside the window. Fullop refuses to refund me the money, a total of $458.

    • Peter M. Rogers

      Linus – I am sorry to hear about your experience, truly. It’s no fun to be scared, or to feel abused by a service provider. While I can’t say that we’re perfect (because we’re not!), I will say that the negative experience you have shared would not have happened with FrontPoint. Sadly, this kind of service nightmare is not unique in the alarm industry. We read a number of these comments (about ADT and other companies), but I am sharing yours because it incorporates so many of the issues that plague the alarm industry: inadequate explanations, poor response times and service, and lack of follow up. I’d like to say that ADT is unique in the scope or type of complaints we see, but they’re not. But, there is hope. the company reviews you can find on line usually tell the truth, since the good ones are easy to see through if they are fabricated, and the bad ones are hard to suppress. We like people to shop, and be informed: we don’t insist that our customers “sign up right now” – we want you to have the time to research us, as well as the competition. It does take a little extra time, but that is time well spent. I know a lot about ADT service. I worked at a company ADT acquired, and over the 12 months after they bought our company, they managed to lose about 30% of the accounts they bought (several times higher than our normal cancellation rate), primarily for service reasons. We had “spoiled” our customers with same or next day service, and suddenly people were being asked to wait two and even three weeks by ADT. Peace of mind about your home and family is too important to wait that long for. Again, sorry to hear of your bad experience, and good luck to you. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Linus

    I had an awful experience with ADT. If you look for alarm monitoring services, look elsewhere. Every interaction with ADT was a huge disappointment, from sales to service, and in particular one individual [name deleted at the request of the ADT employee] with the Customer Relations department turned out to be a liar.
    In May 2011, I decided to seek out a large, reputable alarm monitoring service company and mistakenly chose ADT without adequately researching other customers’ experiences. The sales woman misled me into signing a three year contract, the terms of which were buried in the fine print and not disclosed verbally. I only found out much later, when I tried to cancel my service.
    A week or so later the installation crew showed up. They complained that they weren’t really that good at programming these systems. Well they were right. After the installation, the alarm system starts beeping in the middle of the night scaring us half to death. It turns out that it’s trying to find a landline telephone signal, although we installed a cellular based system. I called ADT to get a service technician out there to rectify the problem. Sure, they could come out the following Thursday! So after we suffered through several sleepless nights, with the beeping starting around 11 pm, another team of service technicians came out. They also failed to fix the problem. On the third try they managed to actually repair the system.
    However this was just the beginning. Now we started getting phone calls from ADT saying that there was a problem with our alarm system. Several service appointments failed to repair the system. I suspected that the cell signal was too weak for the communications unit in our closet, and said so several times to ADT. This proved to be correct even though no service team even correctly diagnosed the problem.
    After months of taking time off work to get incompetent service technicians trying to repair our alarm system, I finally had enough. When ADT once again called to inform me that my alarm system was not working properly, I asked to cancel my contract. The lady I spoke with said no problem, consider it done.
    About six weeks later I find out that ADT is still charging my credit card $48 in monthly service charges. I call customer service and they inform me that I have to pay out the full value of my three year contract if I want to cancel my contract. This was the first I heard of the three year term. I proceed to write a strongly worded email to the President John Koch and the PR director Tucker.
    On September 22 I get a reply from the Customer Relations department’s John Fullop. I explain to Mr. Fullop that I want ADT to let me out of my contract. He proposes the following: at my next scheduled service call, ADT would get one and only one more chance to repair the system. If they would fail to do so, he would refund all installation and monthly service charges to date and cancel our contract. I agreed.
    On September 29, I again take time off work to go meet the service technicians at my house. The appointment window is from 3 to 5 pm. Nobody shows up or calls, despite me requesting that they call my cell phone before the appointment to confirm. No shows were quite common, so I’m not very surprised at this.
    On September 30, John Fullop claims that the service technician showed up at 2:36 pm, but was denied entry by my wife saying we didn’t need service. My wife was at work at the time as I was. Besides, 2:36 was outside the scheduled window, so I request that Mr. Fullop honor the agreement made and refund me my money. He says he is going to look into it and call me back that afternoon. He never calls. I call him several times and leave messages as well as email him. Mr. Fullop never contacts me.
    On October 3, I again call Mr. Fullop. He doesn’t answer the phone so I leave a message. Then I write an email to Tucker, Koch, and Fullop, stating that I will start reviewing ADT service and complain to the Better Business Bureau. Now John Fullop finally calls back, only to change his story to say that the service technician was there not at 2:36, but at 2:58! I maintain that is outside of the window. Fullop then goes on to say that he was on site for five minutes, thus hitting the window. However I never got a knock on the door or a phone call inside the window. Fullop refuses to refund me the money, a total of $458.

    • Peter M. Rogers

      Linus – I am sorry to hear about your experience, truly. It’s no fun to be scared, or to feel abused by a service provider. While I can’t say that we’re perfect (because we’re not!), I will say that the negative experience you have shared would not have happened with FrontPoint. Sadly, this kind of service nightmare is not unique in the alarm industry. We read a number of these comments (about ADT and other companies), but I am sharing yours because it incorporates so many of the issues that plague the alarm industry: inadequate explanations, poor response times and service, and lack of follow up. I’d like to say that ADT is unique in the scope or type of complaints we see, but they’re not. But, there is hope. the company reviews you can find on line usually tell the truth, since the good ones are easy to see through if they are fabricated, and the bad ones are hard to suppress. We like people to shop, and be informed: we don’t insist that our customers “sign up right now” – we want you to have the time to research us, as well as the competition. It does take a little extra time, but that is time well spent. I know a lot about ADT service. I worked at a company ADT acquired, and over the 12 months after they bought our company, they managed to lose about 30% of the accounts they bought (several times higher than our normal cancellation rate), primarily for service reasons. We had “spoiled” our customers with same or next day service, and suddenly people were being asked to wait two and even three weeks by ADT. Peace of mind about your home and family is too important to wait that long for. Again, sorry to hear of your bad experience, and good luck to you. Thanks for sharing.