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Smart homes are powerful and ingenious. They allow you to save on utilities and enjoy more conveniences than you can ever imagine. True smart homes, however, can be costly. You need new appliances and a smart home system that cannot just connect to them, but to your home’s HVAC system and more.
With the Internet of Things, however, you can easily start to build a smart home on a budget, piece-by-piece.
Start With a Smart Home Assistant
One of the easiest ways to kickstart your budget home is to invest in a Smart Home Assistant. There are a variety on the market, from Amazon’s Alexa, Google’s Home, to the Apple Home Kit.
Smart home assistants aren’t the only way you can control your home, but they do add powerful voice command features to your smart home’s roster. Technically, however, you can build a smart home just through your phone.
Invest in Smart Plugs
Smart plugs are the best way to turn “dumb” appliances into smart ones! Or, in more accurate terminology, smart plugs allow your smart home assistant to control them. Lamps, toasters, your television – all of these are now in your control and can be turned off or on with your smartphone.
The only thing you need to remember when looking for smart plugs is that they should:
- Be able to integrate with your smart home assistant
- Be able to work with IFTTT (if this, then that)
IFTTT, in particular, is very important. What it means essentially is that you would be able to set certain parameters. For example, turn off the lights when you leave home. As you will need a lot of these, it’s always a good idea to look up if there are any coupon discounts before you buy them outright. Best Buy coupons are easy to get ahold of, so always check to see if there is a discount available before you check out.
Smart Home Security
Smart home security systems are incredibly powerful. They let you monitor your door, record when there is movement, and even allow people entrance to your home remotely. You will want to look into your options, especially as to get the full range of benefits you will need to change the locks on your front door (or whichever doors you have chosen to become “smart”).
Internet of Things
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a fancy term for, essentially, devices that can talk to and work together. IoT features are becoming increasingly popular, meaning you can upgrade your home piece by piece as necessary. From your television to even your fridge. There are many great inventions coming out, but you do need to be careful before buying.
There is not yet a single standard for these types of devices, so chances are they will be compatible with different tools. Third-party tools are typically good with being able to sync up with a variety of home assistants or apps, but go to Apple, and you will need a full range of Apple products to enjoy the benefits of a smart home to their fullest.
For now, the best idea is to keep to 3rd party devices, rather than lock yourself into one brand, which limits your options for building your smart home the way you want to.