Ask Yourself These Questions Before Setting Up a Smarthome

A two-storey house with a neat garden.
Alexmisu / Shutterstock

Are you planning to start Smarthome? Awesome! But do not jump directly without a plan. That's how you end up doing common smarthome mistakes of beginner. Before you buy anything, you need to ask yourself some common sense questions.

What changes can you make to your home?

Creating a smarthome involves the installation of new technologies at different levels. Some gadgets, like smart plugs and voice assistants, are as simple as plugging the device into an outlet. Others involve bringing a physical change to your home, like changing locks or doorbells.

But depending on your situation at home, you may not be able to make these changes. If you rent, for example, you may not be able to change locks without authorization. In some cases, the answer could still be no.

In other cases, the installation of tech can appeal to a particular expertise. Are you comfortable with electric work? What about working with the plumbing of your home? If you do not do this, it prevents you from installing devices directly connected to your home or connected to your pipes. You will have to pay a professional to complete the installation, which adds to the price.

What do you want to accomplish?

A Nest Hub, a wireless charger, a lamp with a smart bulb and a light.
Do you want smart lights that you can control by voice? Josh Hendrickson

Once you know what kind of change you can make, it's time to ask what you want to accomplish. Nowadays, manufacturers seem ready to slap a radio on almost anything, just to call it smartly and sell it to you. For this reason alone, there are all kinds of devices to avoid.

But to determine which ones are right for you, you need to have a good idea of ​​what you want your partner to do for you. If your main concern is to reduce energy consumption, smart light bulbs, plugsand one thermostat is your starting point.

On the other hand, if your goal is security, you will want to invest in smart locks, video doorbells, and other cameras. Smarthomes technology can meet a variety of needs and desires, and in most cases, it solves even several problems. But start simple. Choose a goal to reach and then continue. Then expand.

Do you want to do it yourself?

How-To Geek often focuses on smart self-made technology, but you do not have to do it yourself. Various companies like Control4 and Learned offer customized customized systems that you can buy. Typically, you will purchase a centralized hub (sometimes a traditional hub, but most often a full computer such as a Mac Mini), as well as a variety of peripherals such as smart plugs, light bulbs, and more. even smart blinds for your home.

Control4, Savant and others offer a unique solution to control your handheld. And they usually work with outside services such as Google Home and Alexa. These companies do all the hard work for you, but at an additional cost.

If you prefer to save money, you can choose the path of DIY, that is to say choose your hub, your devices and manage them yourself.

How much do you want to spend?

Once you have chosen a complete system or a DIY path, you must determine the amount you want to spend. Comprehensive systems usually offer packages. This is the way of DIY that involves more choice and choice.

You can build a property starting smarthome for around $ 400but it is not necessary to start immediately with all these devices. If you know your voice-activated lights goal and want to spend less than $ 40, then Wyze light bulbs are an excellent choice. On the other hand, if you have a bigger budget, you can go to Philips Hue light bulbs.

This question is not a single demand scenario. You need to plan the following steps: "How much should I spend now? In six months? In a year? "Rolling out your project in stages will help spread the costs.

Which voice assistant should you get?

A Nest Home Hub next to an Amazon Echo show
Google, Amazon

Although automation is the true superpower of a smarthome, most ordinary people control their smarthome with a voice assistant. If you want to let the cloud enter your home, Alexa or Google Assistant can be the most intuitive and powerful component among your smart devices.

But they are not the same. For example, Amazon Echo devices come in a wider variety of formats, while Google is better at natural web and speech search.

Some smart devices only support Alexa or Google Assistant, while others support both. Even among those who support both, the features are not always equal. The Schlage Encode Wi-Fi Lock supports unlocking voice with pins and routines on Alexa, but not on Google, for example.

It's a bit like choosing Android or iPhone. Both systems are able to meet most of your needs. But the little details make the difference. That's a missing application only on iPhone or a missing integration only available in Google Assistant.

Will your family and guests love your Smarthome?

A happy family carrying boxes in a house.
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock

Do you live alone? If not (and to a certain extent, even if you do), other people will interact with your character. If the family, friends or roommates who live with you hate your character and refuse to use it, you will have a harder time using yourself.

That's true when customers come too. If you do not prepare them for a complex reality, they may feel uncomfortable and unwilling to come later. You can mitigate these problems with a few steps to make your smarthome easier to use for friends and family. But it all starts with a conversation about the benefits of a smarthome.

In the end, if you have a spouse or children who hate the idea of ​​the smarthome, think twice before investing in smart gadgets. At the very least, you should address these issues significantly, so that everyone feels comfortable at home.

Do not make the mistake of diving directly into the first smart gadget you like. Good planning for your computer will avoid having to fix errors and re-buy gadgets in the future. And you will appreciate your smarthome more for that.

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