Smart homes seem to be getting smarter every day. As digital and smart technologies improve, they are changing the way people live in, and think of, their homes. But how can homeowners maximize the smart home concept? After all, the smart home paradigm is already complicated enough for people who do not fully understand it.
The first thing to know is that smart home technology is really just coming into its own. It is currently in a state of rapid and incrementally large development. Like the first two or three generations of cell phones, the smart home devices people invest in today are likely to be obsolete a year or two from now. But this is no reason to shy away from home automation.
Take a Look at Your Life
Everyone’s smart home journey starts at a different place. From that place, you create a plan that will get you where you eventually want to go. How do you develop a thoughtful plan? By taking a good look at your life right now. Your life will dictate how home automation can best help you.
Here are just a few examples to illustrate the idea of looking at your life:
- The Business Traveler – Imagine a busy business executive who travels a lot. They are on the road for up to three weeks every month. The ideal home automation starting point here would be home security with video cameras. Temperature control would also be good.
- The Active Family – Imagine an active family with two parents, a toddler, a preteen, and a teenager. Smart locks would be ideal so that the older kids can come and go without keys. Security cameras would make it easier to keep an eye on the little one.
- The Young Single – Imagine a young single person living in an apartment. Their lease limits smart device choices, but there are options. Smart light bulbs would be a money saver while one or two interior cameras could keep an eye on the apartment.
Vivint Smart Home, one of the most recognized brands in home automation, does a particularly good job of explaining the plan concept on their website. You might want to check out this post to get a better idea of how to look at your own life in relation to making it better through home automation.
Plan the Financials
Another aspect of the home automation plan is the financial aspect. This is where so many people fall. They either don’t spend enough to make the smart home concept worthwhile, or they spend more than the budget allows. Either extreme isn’t good.
It goes without saying that diving into the smart home pool requires a financial investment. Devices like video cameras and smart locks are not free. But it is also true that you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars to build a good system with clearly measurable benefits.
What is the point? The point is to come up with a spending plan that fits comfortably within your budget. Then find out what you can get for that amount of money. Chances are pretty good that you’ll be able to find a comfortable starting point on which you can build.
Plan Until You’re Confident
Whatever you do, do not abandon your plan and jump right in. Even if the planning stage takes longer than you would like, plan until you are confident that you’re making the right choices. That way, you can get started in the smart home arena without the guilt that you are somehow doing something wrong. You can jump in with confidence.