The rapid development of technology has made our lives easier. With smart home devices becoming increasingly popular through the years, it’s now more convenient to manage your appliances and devices.
If you’re curious to know more about smart home tech, want to know which devices best suit your needs, or wondering if it’s a better choice to have a professional electrician integrate these devices for you, then you’re in the right place — we’re going to cover all that in this article.
Making Your Home Smart
Turning your house into a smart home is both an exciting and intimidating project. You’re probably thinking, “Where do I even begin?”
A good place to start is to first determine what your needs are.
What’s your main purpose of upgrading to a smart home?
Are you looking for convenience?
Do you want to make your house more energy-efficient? Or do you want to improve your home’s security?
Another consideration is your budget. How much are you willing to invest?
Answering these questions will help you determine what components you need to turn your house into a state-of-the-art smart home.
Also to get started, you need to make sure that you have a strong, stable Wi-Fi signal that is available where you will place your smart devices. In addition, you will need a smartphone to control your devices via apps or a smart assistant that enables you to use voice commands.
The most popular assistants are Alexa from Amazon, Apple’s Siri, and Google Home. When choosing, you need to make sure that the devices that you will install in your home are compatible with whatever smart assistant you will be using.
7 Investment-worthy Smart Home Upgrades
Once you have decided which smart home assistant is the right fit for your needs, the next step is putting it to work. This is the most exciting part because you’ll be deciding what smart devices you will be incorporating into your home. To give you an idea, listed below are the seven most popular and practical components that you can consider investing in.
1. Smart Lighting
More than giving you the option to set the lights according to your mood, smart lighting conveniently allows you to control your lights wherever you are. Typically, this smart home tech mostly works via Wi-Fi, so you can access it from your smartphone even if you’re away from home.
Did you forget to turn off the lights in the kitchen before heading to bed? No problem! Just open the app on your smartphone and switch the lights off without needing to get up.
Are you going away for some time and want to have lights turned on your porch when the sun comes down? Smart lighting solutions allow you to program your lights to turn on and off at different times of the day.
What’s even better is that using smart lights can significantly reduce your energy use. While they do come with a higher price tag than traditional light bulbs, a smart light bulb costs you only $1 on electricity each year compared to an incandescent light that costs $4.80 a year to run. So imagine switching 20 of your old bulbs to smart lights, you’ll get your ROI in no time.
2. Smart Thermostats
Another popular device that will help you lower your electricity bill is smart thermostats. These smart techs learn your usage over time and then automatically adjusts the operations of your cooling or heating unit on their own. For example, these thermostats will limit energy consumption when you’re not around or when you’re asleep without you needing to adjust it manually.
Some of these devices also feature geofencing. This feature lets your thermostat know when you’re on your way home so it automatically adjusts the temperature in your house based on your liking even before you step foot in your door.
3. Smart Plugs
Continuing to making your home more energy-efficient, another smart device that you can add to your home are smart plugs. This tech, which looks like an adaptor, is super easy to use and is a great way to begin turning your house into a smart home.
All you need to do is to plug it into a regular outlet and connect it to a Wi-Fi network. Once it’s connected, you can then control the smart plug remotely through an app on your smartphone. This means you can turn on or off any device that is plugged into it.
This inexpensive device is an effective tool to ensure that you don’t have “vampires”, those appliances that suck energy even on standby, therefore helping you save on electricity costs. Some of the best appliances to use a smart plug with are televisions, computers, gaming consoles, coffee makers, microwaves, and slow cookers.
4. Smart Doorbells
Want to thank the FedEx guy for dropping your package without actually going to the front door? It’s possible to do that with smart doorbells. This smart home tech has features allowing you to monitor and even talk to the person at the door even if you’re not physically at home.
These doorbells are Wi-Fi enabled and could be integrated with other smart devices in your home. They are inexpensive smart devices that will boost your home’s security.
5. Smart Locks
Speaking of security, another component that you can add to your smart system is smart locks. These high-tech locks are keyless and are touchpad enabled so you don’t have to think about where you placed your keys. Plus, you can also lock and unlock your door remotely from your smartphone. This means you can let in a guest remotely even if you’re not at home.
Another great feature of this smart lock is that you can set personalized entry codes for different people. This way you can monitor real-time entry and exit logs — no need to worry if your child arrived home safely from school.
6. Smart Cameras
Think of surveillance cameras, but a more intelligent one. Smart cameras can be placed inside or outside of your home so you can monitor what’s happening in your residence wherever you are. Some devices even have a motion detection feature. Just like any smart device, these work using your home’s Wi-Fi network, which transmits the video to your smartphone or saves them into storage on the cloud.
7. Smart Smoke and CO2 Detectors
Maybe it’s also time to upgrade your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Think about it, while their alarms may be loud, but if you’re not in your home, it’s impossible for anyone to hear them.
Smart smoke and CO2 detectors send alerts to your smartphone when it goes off in your home. What’s even better, some of these devices have features that tell you where exactly the smoke is coming from.
Setting Up Smart Home Devices
If you consider yourself a handyman and into DIY, you may be wondering if hiring a professional is a practical choice — because paying for labor is another additional expense, right? However, with the help of a qualified electrician, you will actually save on installation fees, prevent reworks, and most importantly, ensure that your smart home devices are correctly integrated.
Get professional advice
Remember, smart home devices are dependent on electricity, so installing them may not be as straightforward as you think. Make sure to discuss with your local electrician what your requirements and needs are. A contractor who is experienced in smart systems will spend their time giving you advice and instructions before and after installation.
Ensure you have the right systems in place
Another reason why you need an electrician for a smart home upgrade is that you want to make sure that your current electrical system can take the load of a smart home. A trusted electrician will check your system, make sure that it’s in good shape and ensure that you don’t have issues with wiring.
Complete home automation
Should you consider having a complete home system installed, hiring a professional will save you from the guesswork of figuring things out. An electrician trained in smart home integrations will take care of everything for you from start to finish.
How do you choose the right electrician for the job?
Like with any home improvement project, it’s best that you ask for quotations from at least three contractors before closing the deal. Be clear of what your requirements are and see if they have the experience to complete the job.
Make sure that when you ask for estimates, every detail of the job is written down so that you have everything in black in white. Ask if they offer a warranty, what are the inclusions, and how long is the coverage.
It’s also not a bad idea to check for reviews or ask the contractors for references as proof of their work. Lastly, you have to ensure that the electrician you’re working with is licensed and covered by insurance.
Looking for a reliable electrician from your neighborhood to help you with your smart home upgrade? Find qualified electricians near you here!
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