The Best Smart Home Tips and Tricks

January 5, 2018 | Smart Home

Setting up a smart home can be a daunting experience. There are so many different solutions, variables and settings that it can be difficult to determine which devices are right for you and your home. While The Jetson’s home may be far in the future, there are plenty of ways to automate and revolutionize your daily routine in all areas of your current home here in the Windsor and Essex County area. It seems like there’s always something newer and better hitting the market but the variety means that solutions exist at all price points so you don’t have to be a millionaire to convert your house into a smart home. The cool thing is that you don’t have to own a home to take advantage of these solutions, even renters can convert their spaces! So how do you get started? Let’s go over the basics together:


Controlling Your Smart Home

The whole point of a connected smart home is to minimize the effort on your part so the devices you use to control it are important. Smartwatches are a fantastic way to control all your devices since they’re always easily accessible on your wrist. Whether it’s a smart thermostat, an entertainment system or a security camera, there’s likely an app for that. IFTTT is also a great way to connect smart home solutions with your wearables. What’s important is that you find something that works well for your needs so you don’t invest in creating an advanced smart home only to drop the ball because it’s too difficult to connect everything.


Choosing A Smart Home Assistant

It seems these days that everyone has a smart home device so your options are plentiful! Whether it’s Amazon, Google, Apple, Microsoft or the dozens of others, there’s bound to be one that works well for you. While these assistants have plenty of tricks, they can also talk to third-party smart home appliances so you can tell them to turn down your smart lights or lock your door for you. An assistant really helps pull the whole smart home together and ensure that your smart solutions are integrated in a way that makes them easy to use.


Lighting Solutions

Want to fully control the lighting in your home from? There’s plenty of smart lighting options on the market ranging from single bulbs to full connectivity kits. Whether you’re travelling and want to keep your home well-lit from across the globe, or you just want more control over your lighting in general, Philips Hue even offers bulbs that not only let you control the intensity of the light, but also the colour! This can definitely get pricey but the system has been on the market for a long time and works with just about every other system out there (AlexaIFTTT, Siri etc).


Kitchen Tech

If your fridge doesn’t have wifi, are you really an adult? From connected coffee pots to grills with gadgets, there’s plenty of ways to include tech in your kitchen. The Perfect Bake Pro takes the guesswork out of baking while the June Intelligent Countertop Oven comes with built-in artificial intelligence that allows it to weigh, monitor and cook just about anything without requiring much input from you at all. Smart appliances can help you take your foodie status to the next level!


Smart Thermostats

Being able to control your home’s heating/cooling from your smartphone is truly remarkable. Devices like the Ecobee or Nest Learning Thermostat have built-in wifi so you can crank up the heat or turn down the air from your connected device anywhere in the world. Great for saving money on utilities and monitoring usage patterns over time. Don’t have central heating/air? You can try out the Hisense 10,000 BTU wifi compatible air conditioner that can be controlled via a smartphone and can be easily moved from room-to-room.


Sleep Trackers

Sleeping is one of the most important things we do in our homes so why not stay connected while resting too? Whether you choose to wear it on your wrist with a tracker like the FitBit Alta HR or you want to keep it under the sheets using a tracker like Beddit 3, there are a ton of options on the market and there’s bound to be one that suits your needs. Some will sync data with other health apps on your devices and overtime, they’re bound to become more connected to other smart home devices too.


Home Security

Security has become an important investment for many people and as the technology advances, it gets more vigilant. While camera systems are great (try the Nest Cam Outdoor), it’s important to consider a smart locks for your door as well (consider August Smart Lock Pro + Connect). There’s still some unknown area when it comes to smart locks (what happens when they crash?) so make sure to do your research. The good news is that they’re ever-evolving and offer you features that a simple deadbolt could never compete with


Outdoor Tech

The connected world has caught up with horticulture and the outdoors. Whether it’s the Rachio Smart Sprinkler Controller, Robomow, Polaris pool cleaner, or sensors for the garden that measure light, temperature, soil moisture etc, there’s plenty of ways to automate and simplify your yard work task list!


Whether you want to start small or go big right out the gate, there are plenty of ways to make your house a smart home regardless of budget. Do your research, check reviews, ask for recommendations and have fun exploring everything the tech world offers for your home!

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