If you’re currently in the process of building a new home, or plan to get work started over the coming months, it’s a good idea to think about incorporating smart home elements into the design. Clever tech that lets you control appliances, security, lighting, and more from the touch of an app is cheaper and easier to use than ever, and can also add to the value of your home. However, with so many products now on the market, it can be a little daunting trying to work out which ones to pick. Read on for some tips you can follow today to make the process easier.
Building a Smart Home
Take the Time to Plan in Advance and Set a Budget
The first step you should take when building a smart home is spending time planning early in the process. There are lots of potential different elements you can choose for your property, from lighting and air conditioning to security systems, home theaters, locks, voice command, ovens, and more, so it is important to decide which areas of automation you want to cover.
When it comes to the home intelligence system you use, ensure you choose something that will be scalable over time if you don’t want to pay for all the smart devices on your list straight away. It pays to consider what it is you want to achieve and in what spaces too; plus keep in mind that your builder needs notice to include the right type of wiring and fittings.
Since it’s so easy these days to spend thousands of dollars on smart home setups and gadgets, it is also wise to set a budget for this area of your new home design if you want to keep spending in check. Having a set amount that you allocate for products and installation will help you to concentrate on the items which sit at the top of your list.
Compare Products Carefully
Of course, it is also necessary to really compare the various devices which are available so that you can find the best options for your budget and desires. As you examine products, carefully consider the features, security, and scalability of each, as well as how compatible they are with other gadgets.
Keep in mind that, typically, the smart home controller, or “hub” of your system is the most important purchase you will make, since it does a lot of the work and will be the device that most of your products connect to and interact with. Make sure you really choose this element with care as a result.
In addition, be aware that while you certainly don’t have to buy devices which are all manufactured by the same brand, keeping to just one or two brands can be helpful. For example, aesthetically they can all look alike, which you may like; plus these items can also tend to talk to each other well through their proprietary networking standards. Furthermore, you may find that you can use the appliances more easily because you get to know their specific system.
Read Testimonials and Reviews
Before you go ahead and spend your hard-earned money on smart home devices, it is worthwhile reading testimonials and reviews that have been written about products online or in magazines. Alternatively, chat to people you know who own the products already. Doing these things will give you great insight into some of the key pros and cons you need to consider, and may alert you to features or issues that you would otherwise not have known about.
Don’t Just Rely on Wi-Fi
While an excellent Wi-Fi router is an important part of having a functioning smart home, when you’re building a new home you also have the chance to spec it out with additional Ethernet networking cable in every room for a lower cost. These fittings will help home-automation installers set up your systems quickly, and will also ensure that you get a nice, strong signal throughout your entire property.
Keep Devices Secure
Lastly, remember that while having a smart home can make your life easier and more enjoyable in many ways, this will be negated if you end up having your personal information hacked or held for ransom, or your systems crashed, because of the smart devices you use. As such, it is vital for all gadgets to be secured as much as possible as soon as you set them up. Put a strong password and a firewall on your router, and update the logins and passwords on every device you buy (they come with default ones that anyone can guess). Don’t forget to keep software updated at all times too.