Whether we like it or not, Smart homes or Connected Houses are the future and they’re here to attempt to make our lives easier, more secure, and, drum roll please, more entertaining! Imagine being able to control your home’s temperature, lights, blinds, curtains, and security with just a quick tap on your smartphone, or asking your smart speaker to play your favorite tunes. The possibilities are endless, and in this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the pros and cons of smart homes and some of the more popular smart home solutions.
Pros of Smart Homes:
- Convenience is King: Who wants to waste precious time fiddling with knobs and buttons when you can control your home with a quick tap on your smartphone or by barking commands at your smart speaker? With features like voice control, remote access, and automated routines, you’ll feel like you’re living in a futuristic palace.
- Energy Efficiency = More Money in Your Pocket: With smart home solutions like smart thermostats, you can potentially reduce your energy consumption and lower your monthly utility bills. Who says being eco-friendly can’t be profitable?
- Security? No Sweat! Smart homes are designed to keep you and your loved ones safe. With features like security cameras, smart locks, and burglar alarms, you can sleep soundly knowing that your home is protected. And if someone does try to break in, you’ll receive an alert and can call the police with a quick tap on your phone. Automating lighting scenes during your Christmas vacation away to keep an appearance you might be home, or even activating sound or music are all possibilities. Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it too?
- Entertain Me!: Smart homes are not just about convenience and security. They also offer a wide range of entertainment options, including whole-home audio integration, movie servers for all devices, and whole house networking. Imagine being able to play music in every room of your home with just a few taps on your phone. No more fumbling with CDs or fighting over what to listen to! Or plug your vintage record player in and experience sounds of nostalgic originality.
Cons of Smart Homes:
- Ain’t Nothing in Life is Free: Adding “smart” to your build can get expensive. There is a wide range of types and services available, which can range from expensive to very expensive.
- Not for the Technologically Challenged: Smart homes require a certain level of technical proficiency to operate and maintain, so you might need to brush up on your tech skills. Maintenance is the keyword here. It’s important to pick a local provider who has a strong business presence in the area you live. That can survive the varying business environments of today so that they will be around to service the issue that will eventually present themselves. But don’t worry, once you master the art of smart home management, you’ll feel like a tech wizard and eventually you might be able to depend less on the supplier.
- Privacy Concerns: With so many connected devices in your home, there’s always a risk of your personal data being compromised. This is one of the biggest issues for me personally. I don’t like the idea of my sensitive information and personal household activities being monitored or used without my consent. And unfortunately at this time, consent is required. When their are listening devices in everyone room and video cameras spread out for security, it makes me wonder who is really watching and with those in the home, you have given up your rights to privacy to some extent.
Here Are Some Popular Smart Home Solutions To Consider:
- Crestron: This is one of the more expansive options for a smart home. Crestron is a well known industry leader in smart home technologies and their systems will be easy to find at your local suppliers.
- Control4: Control4 is another well known industry leader. Top of the line equipment and many options. Also should be easy to find at your local supplier.
- Savant Systems: Savant is another leader in the industry. You can’t go wrong with this system and it should be easy to find with a local supplier.
- Vivint: The Vivint Smart Kit is a great starter system which includes door and window sensors, smart locks, and security cameras. With this kit, you’ll be ready to tackle anything life throws at you (and your home).
- Lutron: A staple in electrical switches, dimmers, and outlets, Lutron offers a more basic level of automation than the others. But quality is top notch.
- Elan: I am not familiar with this brand, but might be something to consider depending upon availability in your area.
- Dwello Smart Home: With this smart home platform, you’ll have complete control of your home’s lighting, heating, and appliances from your smartphone or tablet. Who needs to actually get up from the couch anymore.
- Hubitat: This system is not for the technology challenged, but for someone who is the DIY type, this is a great way to save some money and manage the system yourself.
- Matter Smart Home: This is a very popular smart home protocol that has taken the CES 2023 by storm. This smart home platform uses open-source technology, making it more affordable and accessible to a wider range of people. Now even those on a budget can live like royalty. Expect to see this system expand quickly and may be a good entry price point for your new home.
I hope this is a worthy introduction into various options for your Smart Home – Connected Home.
Contact me if you are interested in Designing and Building your Dream Home today.