Building a Smart Home: 11 Sleek Products to Do Just That

Posted in: I'm Moving, Home Improvement, Organization

Last week here on the HireAHelper blog, we kicked off a series on Building a Smart Home by sharing an introduction post on where to even start in the process.

This week we are diving just a bit deeper by sharing some specific smart home products to consider purchasing in order to transition your home into the future. Not only do these products help make your life more convenient, but we really love them because they can keep your property (and family) safer. To us, the investment is well worth it!smart_house_technology.03 PM

Here are 11 products to check out if you are looking to transform your house into a smart home:

Nest (estimated cost: $249.99)

The Nest is an electronic thermostat that is easy to install (a step-by-step tutorial can be found here). This smart thermostat allows you to control the temperature of your home from your iPhone, and over time, it even recognizes your family’s normal behavior/preferences when it comes to your home’s temperatures. Eventually the thermostat will adapt to your family’s preferences without you having to change it, which keeps everyone happy while saving you money.
Wemo (estimated cost: $49.99)
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The Wemo is a small plug-in that is inserted into any regular outlet. Once inserted, it allows you to plug-in any cord in order for that item to be controlled from your cell phone. In other words, if you plug-in your lamp to this outlet adapter, your lamps can now be turned on and off from the power of your phone. That sounds like a bright idea to us!
Chamberlain MyQ Smartphone Control (estimated cost: garage control $129)
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And speaking of turning on and off your lights from your phone, this app (available in both the Apple Store and the Google Play store) helps you not only control your lights from your cell phone, but it even allows you to control those lights (and your garage door!) from afar.
This app will even send you a notification if you forgot to shut the garage door. We love that you can keep your home safe even if you’re away on vacation or business!
Philips Hue (estimated cost: $50+ depending on # of bulbs + kits)smart_house_tech_products.42 PM-001
Want your lights to turn on right when you arrive? Or maybe your hands are always full and you want your lights to switch off automatically when you leave the house? Philips Hue Lights will do just this — it welcomes you home and sends you off without lifting a finger. Plus, you can set these lights on a timer, turn them on and off while you’re not home, or even just dim them during family movie night… all from your pocket!
Sonos (estimated cost: $199 speaker system)sonos.04 PM
As Apple explains it, Bluetooth is for music on the go while Sonos is for music in the home. This system allows you to stream music in your home through your phone. The music can continue to play in your house even while your phone rings and you take a call. Plus, you can even set up Sonos to play different songs in different rooms…. how cool is that?
Ring Video Doorbell (estimated cost: $199)smart_house_tech_products.54 PM
The Ring Video Doorbell is a device you hook up to your doorbell that actually lets you answer the door from your smart phone. Once the doorbell rings, not only can you answer the door, but you can actually see and talk to the person on the other side.
Arlo (estimated cost: $139.99)smart_house_tech_products.45 PM
And speaking of security, the Arlo is another device that can monitor the security of your home with cameras that sync with your smart phone! Whether you’re in your home or not, you can tune into these cameras to check up on your property at all times. Heck, these cameras even come with night vision and HD quality to make them effective and clear regardless of the time of day!
Alarms (estimated cost: 189.99+)smart_house_tech_products.17 PM
Both the Canary and the Piper are similar to the Arlo camera system, but these include options that can be set up to detect and alert you when there is motion in your home. This can be at night (with the convenient night vision component) or during the day, and will alert you via siren when there is unexpected motion in your space. During this time, you can see a live feed of the cameras (HD quality) and hear the audio, which can all be saved and backed up on the cloud.
Amazon Echo (estimated cost: $179.99)smart_house_tech_products.01 PMThe Amazon Echo is a hands-free speaker you control with your voice. Echo connects to the Alexa Voice Service (Amazon’s Smart Home version of Siri) to play music, provide information, look up facts, relay the news, sports or anything you or your family needs to do. The Amazon Echo works with “Alexa” to keep your family informed, entertained and even current on this week’s grocery shopping list!
Kwikset Smart Lock (estimated cost: $199.99) smart_house_tech_products.00 PM
Have you heard of those “smart cars” that lock automatically when the car senses that the key is no longer in the car? The driver turns off the car, puts the key in his or her pocket, and after a certain distance, the car automatically locks. Well, Kwikset Smart Lock has adapted the same idea for your home keys. You sync the lock with the Bluetooth of your phone and when your phone gets close enough to the deadbolt, it unlocks without you having to fumble for your keys! As long as your phone is in your pocket or purse, you can enter your house with your hands full and never have to go digging for that darn key again.
Dropcam (estimated cost: $270+)
smart_house_tech_products.43 PMThe dropcam is another security camera option that watches your home while you’re gone. Like the Nest, the dropcam can sync with your phone and turn on automatically when it senses that your phone (and you!) have left the property. Then you can watch what’s going on in your home while you’re away. Many parents use this as a baby monitor, as it’s a great option to keep an eye on your kids while you’re in the other room.
So what do you say? You ready to add some of these smart options to your home? We definitely have our eye on a few of these…

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