How Many Cameras Do You Need for Home Security?

The options can be overwhelming if you are looking to install multiple cameras for a home security system for the first time. Where do you start? What system will work best for your home?  One of the biggest questions you have to answer is how many cameras do you need for home security? We outline what cameras you will need for what area and their purpose.


Security cameras are responsible for detecting intruders in the house and capturing as much detail as possible. The United States experiences 1.4 million burglaries each year, with 67.2% happening on residential properties.

Cameras for Indoor Security

Cameras for Indoor Security


Indoor cameras allow you to view any activity going on inside the home. For some homeowners, an indoor system is adequate. All they want to do is monitor family, pets, or what goes on in the house. They work by providing live feeds and alerting you via an app of a disturbance. The footage provides evidence in the event of a break-in, vandalism, or theft.


Some systems provide a communication system that enables owners to speak to people inside the home. If this is something you want, make sure your camera is equipped with a two-way radio system.


Night vision will allow you to view events during the nighttime. Motion detectors will trigger your video surveillance camera only when it senses movement. Its HD resolution provides high-quality footage of events that are occurring. Furthermore, you can access your cameras through an app. You will need a Wi-Fi connection to allow the security system to sync to other devices.


A cost effective solution for indoor security would be light bulb security cameras. I wrote an article on the best light bulb security camera reviews which can be found here.

Surveillance for Outdoor Security

Surveillance for Outdoor Security


Outdoor cameras work well for deterring potential crime. Homeowners can also check strange motions or noises outside the house at night. If it is an intruder, you will be aware of it from the security camera feed indoors. You can then contact law enforcement.


An outdoor CCTV camera aids in protecting packages left on the porch. They can protect vehicles as well. The feed will help police identify the culprit(s) if a break-in or vandalism occurs.


Outdoor cameras will aid in helping pets and family members. You will be able to monitor them while they are playing outside. With these cameras, you may want specific features. Considering how much crime happens at night, night vision becomes a necessity. Motion detection is a must, as cameras will  automatically record any movement that transpires.


HD resolution is essential if you want your evidence to be clear. Also, an outdoor camera must be weatherproof. They must be resistant to temperature fluctuations and weather like snow or rain.

How Many Cameras Do You Need for Home Security?

The number of cameras you purchase will depend on your priorities. If you want to prevent break-ins, you will require outdoor security cameras. You will want additional cameras to cover the interior to watch those inside the house.


The other things that will require consideration are the property and home size. More significant properties will require more cameras, as will any outbuildings containing anything of value.


Generally, here are the numbers of cameras required per area:


  • 1 doorbell camera
  • 1 outdoor camera for porch/front entrance
  • 2 outdoor cameras for back and front yard
  • 4 indoor cameras for the living room
  • 3 outdoor cameras for each side of your home
  • 2 indoor cameras for a child’s room
  • 4 indoor cameras for hallways
  • 2 indoor cameras for areas with safes or valuables

Where Should I Install Them?

Where to place security cameras is crucial when setting up an effective security system. Cameras should be placed where most of the action in the home occurs. It should also cover vulnerable areas. Asking a professional how many cameras are required for the square footage of your home will enable you to obtain the correct amount.

Places with Valuables

You should monitor master bedrooms and other areas containing valuables with a camera. These are areas that intruders will frequently steal from.

Main Stairs or Halls

You will need to cover the main passages within the home to make it challenging for intruders to go undetected. If someone breaks in through an unmonitored area, they will not be able to move any further into the house undetected.

Common Area

Cameras should be placed in high-traffic places like a kitchen or living room. This will allow you to monitor what family members are doing. You can see if the children are doing their homework, or if the babysitter is paying attention to the kids. You can also watch anyone doing repairs.


Security cameras allow homeowners to check on their vehicles, sports equipment, tools, or anyone touching them. Outdoor cameras keep you connected if your garage is separate from the home. You will need to secure this with a video feed if it is attached. You may also want to put one at a gate to view any suspicious activity.


Outdoor security cameras will provide a feed of the yard and will help you to see who may be watching your house. It is also helpful for checking in on your children playing outside.

A great option for outdoor cameras are solar powered security cameras. More information on the best solar-powered security cameras can be found here.

Front Door

Do not make the false assumption that a burglar will attempt to enter by using side entrances. Studies have shown that 34% of intrusions begin at the front door. This also tends to be the location where people steal packages, too.


Adding an outdoor security camera to your main entrance allows you to watch who enters and exits the house. It will include sitters, maintenance people, family members, delivery people, and anyone else that comes and goes through the front door.

Side/Back Door

Side and back entrances are convenient areas for people to break in as they can go undetected by neighbors. If a secondary door is used often or frequently compared to the main entrance, a security camera system may also be necessary. This will provide complete knowledge of people exiting or entering the home.



How many cameras you need for home security depends on your priorities and the reasons for installing them. It is not as simple as buying four cameras and thinking your entire home is being kept safe. To fully arm your home, you will need several cameras on your property, as outlined above. How many you choose depends on what you are looking for.


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