Home Automation Questions & Answers

4 of The Best Smart Home Devices for Any Home Automation Project

You might be surprised by which smart tech is best for your style and for your wallet!

Intro:

Your life should be your way, and your home should reflect that.

Most of us have busy lives that home automation could make way easier, but even if we have the luxury of a slower-pace, smart home gadgets are what’s happening and what’s cutting energy costs and saving you money!

Personally, I work from home so it is essential that I have fast wi-fi and that I am as distraction-free as I can be. And I feel that those needs are applicable to many homeowners (wherever they work) because we are so busy with work and family as it is.

After I upgraded my home office area with nicer shelves, a better desk and chair (better back support), and a more efficient organization system, I decided I needed to implement smart home upgrades for my lifestyle, which I could control from my workstation (limited distractions).

Smart home tech is amazing because it is highly customizable to your personal life. So, though I’m speaking from my experience, I know these gadgets will fit just about anyone’s lifestyle. Even people who struggle with technology, like myself, can easily control these gadgets. And if you still feel uncomfortable, you can easily get great professional help here.

Here’s my list of excellent smart home devices that will fit your unique lifestyle, whatever you may do for a living.

Table of Contents

Part 1:
Home Automation Hub

Part 2:
Smart Thermostat

Part 3:
Video Doorbell

Part 4:
Smart Lights

Part 1: A Home Automation Hub—The Heartbeat Of My System

a red google home mini

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I have the Google Pixel 2 XL phone, so it was natural for me to choose Google Home and Google Home Mini for easy connection throughout my house. However, the Amazon Echo can be a good choice for some as well.

This smart center point is amazing. It gives me my day briefing every morning, so that I don’t have to go looking for news or get distracted with Facebook. I can also set timers by voice command, play music when I need some inspiration, and even order coffee before I leave to pick it up, which helps me save time and distractions.

While this piece is a great place to start, it gets even cooler when you start to add other smart home tech to the hub that you can then control with just your voice.

Part 1 Takeaway:

Start with a hub that connects to other items but also fits your style.

Part 2: A Smart Thermostat

I’m only human…which means I can get distracted easily. If I’m feeling a little cold I’ll leave to get a sweater, then I see my little girl watching cartoons, which then leads to me curling up with her and getting sucked into good ol’ Sesame Street some mornings. Or I’ll see the fridge and decide I need a mid-morning snack right that second. Then I’ll forget the sweater or to adjust the temperature all together, and have to leave my desk again 20 minutes later.

Time waster!

With my Nest Learning Thermostat, I can ask my Google Home what the current temperature is and adjust the temperature of my home from anywhere in the house. I can also control it from my phone or laptop.

The other cool thing is that you can add names to the thermostats in different rooms and just control the temperature of that room too. So, if I’m feeling a little hot in my office, I can adjust comfortably without freezing out my home and wasting money on areas that don’t need it!

This tech learns which temperatures I like, programs itself, and can automatically adjust temperatures based on when I’m away so no heat/cooling is wasted. This also means that I save money on my energy bill every month (around $150 a year) because it is much more efficient.

Part 2 Takeaway:

Whether you are home a lot or not, a smart thermostat can save you a lot of money over the years. It’s super nice to schedule it around your life and to be able to control it remotely from whichever room you’re in.

Part 3: Video Doorbell

ring smart doorbell

I love the security in this feature. I think I have literally added years to my life just knowing my family can see who is at the door, stress-free, and not even have to open it to talk to whoever is outside.

We personally have a Ring Video Doorbell  which allows us to see in 1080HD and in wide-angle who is at our door without needing to even get up from the couch. Additionally, it has a microphone and speakers, so we can speak to whomever is on the porch from anywhere in our house. Oh, and the cloud storage (where you can save footage) is a nice safety perk.

If I’m in the middle of a project and need just a minute to get to my door, I can talk to the delivery person and let them know I’m coming before they assume I’m not home. I can also decide that a knock or ring isn’t important enough to interrupt my day.

It is also a great assurance with package delivery; I can be notified when a package has been delivered and I can watch the package if I’m not home to ensure no one steals it.

Linking this to my Google Home allows me to start recordings, set up motion alerts, and easily talk to people.

There are several different brands of video doorbells now that are able to link into your home automation hub, just be sure to do your research before purchasing one to ensure it will work for your needs.

Part 3 Takeaway:

The smart tech keeps you safe and is efficient and helpful. It’s got to be my favorite feature so far, and I know that just about anyone can benefit from the security this gadget provides.

Part 4: Smart Lights

bedside lamp that is turned on

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I purchased the TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi light switch for my lighting needs. It’s nice because you don’t actually need a hub to use it, so it’s a great place to start a home automation project if it is the most important feature to you. I also bought TP-Link bulbs which give a spectrum of light and hues.

I can control my lights with an app and my voice from basically anywhere. This has helped out every day; for instance, if we forget to turn off lights before we leave, or if I don’t want to get up to turn off the lights, I can even turn lights off or on from my bed if I wanted to.

And I love that I can control the hue in my work space. Sometimes really white light helps me stay alert, other times it gives me a headache. Being able to ask Google to adjust my lights without getting up or breaking concentration is helpful.

Security Feature

Smart lights are a great security feature too, you can turn them off and on from anywhere with your phone. If you’re on vacation and want to appear home, you can easily do so with this switch and an app.

Part 4 Takeaway:

Smart lights are a great way for anyone to cut energy costs. They are also one of the easiest and most affordable places to start on a home automation project.

So Now You Know…

This is smart tech almost anyone would find useful whatever their lifestyle. I highlighted what they do for me, but they are all so multi-functional, they make any life easier no matter what you do at home.

Many of these home automation products help you save money on energy costs, and help you use less energy overall, which just means more money in your pocket.

Smart Tech makes life a lot easier and you waste less time on unnecessary tasks and receive more time on quality life.

Plus, it’s just really cool.

Smart tech is a lot easier to set up than it was 20 years ago. Most items are wireless now, which means your home automation project is a lot less complicated. I was able to install most of the gadgets by myself in just one afternoon. So get started on that home automation project! You know you’ve been wanting to do it.

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