It’s 2016 and automated homes are no longer a dream of the future. You can realistically turn your humble abode into a smart home with just a handful of tweaks. And while there are thousands of different technologies on the market, you really only need a few specific solutions.
1. Smart Thermostats
One of the first technologies to consider is a smart thermostat. These devices have been on the market for a number of years, but are finally cost-effective and intuitive enough for anyone to use.
The value of smart thermostats is found in their versatility. “Not only do they allow for increased comfort and customization, but they provide tremendous cost-savings over the life of the device,” says Green Residential, a property management company that’s seeing smart thermostat adoption rates increase from month to month.
Just how much can you save? According to one study, the average home saves 10-12 percent on heating and 15 percent on cooling. This comes out to between $131 and $145 in annual savings.
2. Smart Lighting
Another staple in the smart home product sector is smart lighting. Dozens of manufacturers and brands are now selling these lights, but they mostly afford customers the same common benefits: energy and cost savings. Smart lights can be controlled remotely, which allows homeowners to turn lights on and off while they’re at work, on vacation, or simply upstairs.
While smart bulbs cost a bit more than traditional light bulbs, they also last exponentially longer. This saves money in the long run and removes the hassle of constantly having to replace dead bulbs. Here are some of the top brands on the market.
3. Smart Faucets
Over the past few years, we’ve all become accustomed to smart faucets in public restrooms. You know, the ones where you wave your hand in front of the sensor and the water turns on or off. Well, this technology is now becoming available in the home.
The biggest benefits of smart faucets are efficiency, comfort, and health. “We’ve all been there: first turn on the hot faucet and wait for the water to heat up, then turn on the cold faucet to bring the temperature back down to a comfortable level,” says tech writer Joel Lee. “How much water is wasted from that?” With smart faucets, you no longer have to deal with this annoyance. Simply set the temperature, wave your hand, and you’ve got the perfect water.
4. Smart Security Solutions
Smart security solutions are popping up all over the market. There are a variety of remote camera solutions that now allow homeowners to keep tabs on what’s happening at their home, regardless of where they’re located. This comes in handy when you’re traveling or have to leave the kids at home for an extended amount of time.
There are a number of smart security solutions, but the most popular cameras are Netatmo Welcome, Nest Cam, Canary, Honeywell Tuxedo Touch, and Piper. You can read more about these solutions and others by checking out this review from tech journalist David Nield.
5. Smart Speakers
Finally, who doesn’t want a smart speaker that plays things like music, news, and sports scores? Well, with the Amazon Echo you can enjoy all of these conveniences without ever lifting a finger. This Bluetooth speaker is completely voice-activated and works in conjunction with your smartphone.
Make Your Home Smarter
With a few of these technologies, you can transform your home into a revolutionary smart home that automates tasks, streamlines processes, enhances security, and increases efficiency.
Before you know it you’ll have a house that previous generations could only have fantasized about!