18 Oct Is It Time to Upgrade to a Smart Home?
Technology is making leaps and bounds daily! Nothing has made home improvement and ownership easier than some of the advances in technology over the past decade. Things like thermostats that adjust the temperature from anywhere in the world to light bulbs that can be switched on/off via your smart phone are all available right now! It is easy to see why upgraded Smart Homes are becoming one of the biggest draws in the Denver/Boulder homes for sale market and are one of the most fun home projects! Here are the basics to get you started on your Smart Home upgrade today!
1. Smart Hubs
If you plan on investing in a smart home technology revamp, the most important device is going to be your ‘hub’. Google Home, Samsung SmartThings, and Staples Connect are the most popular mainstream hubs that act as central control units for all the smart home technology devices in your house. This ensures that all your motion sensors, security cameras, mobile light dimmers, and thermostats are accessible remotely through an app or website. As new technology pops up, feel free to keep adding more to your hub and soon you’ll have the smartest home in the neighborhood!
2. Smart Switches
One of the easiest, and most innovate ways to make your home smart, is by installing ‘smart plugs’ that let you control various small appliances without needing to be in the room. Since they are easy to use and very affordable anyone with a smartphone can get in on the convenience of smart home technology. At their most basic, smart plugs will let you control other devices, such as lamps and coffee makers by just using your smartphone. However, other smart plugs have additional features, such as a built-in Wi-Fi range extender, or provide a running estimate on how much an appliance costs to run on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. While there are some limitations for what kind of control you can have over the appliance there’s no question that home switches will make your life a little bit easier while helping you save money.
3. Smart Smoke Detectors
Between the annoying chirping that signals low battery power to accidentally triggering in response to cooking fumes, smoke detectors can be infuriating. Thankfully, Roost and Nest are two brands that offer a lot of options for alternatives to the traditional smoke detector along with additional smart home flair. The Nest Protect is an all-around thermostat, but the Roost Smart Battery is essentially a lithium battery for your current smoke detector that lets you monitor and control it. If the alarm goes off, you’ll be alerted by mobile app and given the options to snooze, notify emergency services, or contact a trusted monitor/friend who also has access to the system.
4. Smart Speakers
The most popular smart home speaker is the Echo by Amazon. This interactive speaker connects to the Internet and links to Amazon’s universe of services to become a personal assistant that helps you shop, get news and sports updates, and can even predict traffic. If you can’t decide on what to listen to, it will suggest music and stream an Amazon Prime or Pandora play lists. In addition to its voice-recognition tech, the Echo features a 2-inch tweeter and a 2.5-inch woofer to produce well-balanced audio.