Call it digital living. Call it the way of the future. Growing numbers of homeowners are ushering their homes into the 21st century by equipping them with the services and hardware they need to make them “smarter.”
Nearly everything in your home can be connected to the internet and controlled remotely with a mobile device. That’s one example of what it means to be “smart.” The process begins by choosing the right virtual voice-control assistant (Alexa, Siri, Google Assistant). From there, it’s up to you to decide just how smart you want your home to be.
Here are eight steps homeowners are taking to build smarter homes of their own:
Many people begin their quest for a smarter home by investing in smart light bulbs. They’re affordable, hassle-free, and a great way to make a home more efficient. They also come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors, making it easy to find the right fit for every room in the house.
Let’s talk home security. Internet-connected smart locks are the key to locking and unlocking your doors remotely. Homeowners like them because they’re as secure as traditional deadbolts, but they’re a lot simpler to use. Easy to install, durable, and reliable.
Smart thermostats allow you to create automatic temperature settings based on daily schedules, weather conditions, and your home’s specific heating and cooling needs. With a smart thermostat, you can make the most of your home’s heating system without wasting money or energy. Studies also show that the ease of use associated with a smart thermostat can lead to energy savings.
Smart cameras are an efficient, effective way to keep a watchful eye on your kids and pets. They’ll also help you monitor for intruders. You’ll be notified by app if and when the camera detects motion or sound. You can even stream live video to your iOS or Android device for remote monitoring footage.
What if you could wake up every morning to music? Your music. Playing music tracks as an alarm sound isn’t new, but having Alexa play a song from your Spotify collection as your alarm? Now that’s a great way to start the day. Personal assistants currently lack the ability to play music as an alarm, but the same function can be achieved using an always-on Bluetooth speaker. It’s as simple as passing the alarm function to your preferred mobile device.
Want to hear something cool? Replacing your existing air conditioner remote with a Smart AC Control can save you up to 40% on your monthly energy costs. The Internet-powered technology uses energy only when you need it, not when you don’t.
Controlling your smart locks, appliances and temperatures can all be done directly from your smartphone or even with the sound of your voice, thanks to what’s called the “smart hub.” A smart hub allows you to customize hundreds of commands for your exact needs. It doesn’t take hundreds of different apps, just one reliable smart hub.
How smart is your water heater? Does it plug into a converter that allows it to talk to your electric meter? At times of high electricity use, does it automatically switch to a different, electricity-saving mode? Most water heaters have a lifespan of 10-15 years. If yours is approaching that age, it may be time to call a plumber to inspect the unit and advise you as to how much life it may have left. It may even be time to consider installing a smart unit. Most pay for themselves in energy savings after just a few years. You’ll also be sending fewer pollutants into the air and pouring less money down the drain.
Home automation can be a true game changer. It can also be a light switcher, door locker, and garage opener. Setting up a smart home can seem like a daunting task. The smart way to go about it is one step at a time. The first step is to choose your assistant (Alexa, Siri, Google Assistant), then install your hardware, and start accessorizing. Before you know it, your home will be wired for the future and the savings will be adding up.
See? Bet you’re feeling smarter already.