Over the past five years, smart-home devices have become progressively more available. There’s a broader range of products coming to market continually, plus items are becoming more affordable, too.
If you’re looking for ways to make your home life more enjoyable, as well as take advantage of the newest tech time-savers, consider setting yourself up with a smart home this year. Doing so will bring your property into the new age and even make it more appealing to buyers if you’re keen to sell soon. Check out some tips to make the process go more smoothly.
Decide How Much to Spend
Firstly, create a budget. Decide upfront how much you can afford to spend on your smart-home setup that you feel comfortable outlaying. This way, you won’t be so likely to blow too much money on new gear when you start shopping.
Once you have a final number in mind for the project, work back from there. You’ll likely want to contribute a significant proportion of the total towards the central smart-home hub. Don’t forget, though, to set aside some of the budget for things like electrician or other installer costs and new wiring.
Plus, it pays to leave some money to invest in additional warranty products to cover your purchases. American Home Shield, for instance, sells home warranty options for an assortment of items, including electronic equipment. Check out https://www.ahs.com/home-warranty/ for more information.
Develop Goals and a Plan of Attack
Next, to get the smart-home design that’s right for you, think about what you ultimately want to achieve. Kow your goals for your new tech-savvy home, and how you want the internet-enabled products you buy to change your lifestyle, cut costs for you long-term, or otherwise add value.
With outcomes in mind, you can start planning the project. Doing this job is crucial because you don’t want to buy devices willy-nilly and then discover you have a bunch of things that don’t talk to each other or achieve what you want to. Determine which goods you need to buy now and what can come later as you have more finances available or more time to test products.
Planning is also vital if you’re planning to renovate your property and thereby need to incorporate new wiring or power points etc. to get the ultimate setup.
Compare Product Offerings Closely
You won’t end up with the best products for your needs if you don’t do plenty of research before you start buying. Compare product offerings closely to find items that match your budget, current and future needs, and goals.
With so much available on the market these days, you can easily get overwhelmed if you try to pick goods without doing preliminary reading. Research the key brands in each product area you’re interested in and compare their products to see which ones have the main features you require. As you compare devices, don’t just concentrate on costs, though. Also analyze things such as warranty, security, scalability, the way different gear will talk to each other, ease of set up, and reliability.
Always check out reviews and testimonials to see how other people have found the products you’ve shortlisted, too. Concentrate on feedback given on social media sites and public forums, or written by an impartial magazine and blog reviewers and the like. You want to focus on genuine reviews from real users rather than brand created or sponsored posts. Plus, chat with your friends, family members, and colleagues to get first-hand opinions about products if anyone in your circle already owns the tech you’re interested in purchasing.
Another element of setting up a smart home in 2020 is protecting your devices from hackers. Internet threats are many and varied and must be taken seriously. The more connected gear you have in your home, the greater the risk is that a cybercriminal might break into it. As such, take steps to protect yourself.
Password protect your modem with a robust code that hackers won’t guess. Always change the default login settings that come preinstalled on devices by the manufacturer. You should also install security software on the computers you use to control your smart-home products. Keep firmware and software updated at all times, too, to stop cybercriminals from finding an “in” via an old version.
Smart homes are the way of the future and are within reach of most households these days. Follow the steps listed above to get yourself set up with this kind of gear, and you’ll soon be enjoying the results.