How would you like to come home and open your door without a key, have the lights come on automatically and have the temperature inside just how you like it? Or press a single button and your lights dim, your blinds drop down and your TV turns on?
This is not some futuristic fantasy, home automation is a reality that is transforming the way we live and interact with our homes today. This is the ‘internet of things’ you may have read about, where all your devices are connected and controllable – and you don’t even need to be in your home to do any of this. You could be somewhere completely different, say at work or even in a different city or state.
What is a smart home?
A smart home is all about using technology to improve your lifestyle, by making your life easier and simpler.
By wiring or wirelessly connecting all the desired electrical devices or elements in your home, to give you total control over their functionality. You manage the whole system via a programmable hub or controller, for the ultimate in convenience and functionality. Together the technology can transform your lifestyle giving you superior comfort, security and even energy savings.
How can home automation help me?
Convenience is the most obvious benefit of automating your home. A smart home gives you the ability to control just about anything. Some of the most popular functions to automate in a smart home include:
Home access + security
Your options here could include all the bells and whistles such as an intercom, alarm with back-to-base monitoring, full access control with keyless entry, biometric finger scanners, CCTV, and SMS reporting/control. A series of ‘smart’ cameras at strategic locations throughout your property could give you the option of remotely monitoring what is happening, with all the footage recorded and stored safely in the cloud.
A smart lighting control system could take care of anything from switching off lights when you leave a room to integrating with your home security system. You could set the lighting in your entranceway to come on when you get home, or switch off at a designated time. This functionality will save you electricity and money while giving you peace of mind.
Home automation technology gives you the ability to control the heating, ventilation and air conditioning in your home. This includes automating the control of the heat lamps, extraction fans, floor heating, and even the heated towel rails in your bathroom. The ability to specify when, where and for how long this equipment runs is not only convenient, but can help save energy as well.
How much does a smart home cost?
The short answer is that it really does depend on your budget and what elements of your home you want to automate. Speaking to a dedicated home automation installer is the first step to getting a handle on costs.
How can I get started with home automation?
The first step is to decide what sort of functionality you want. A smart home system installer can help you decide what aspects of your home you can automate.
It is important that they understand your needs and expectations, so they can design a solution which meets your requirements and budget. This includes deciding which components you want to be ‘smart’ and where they will be located. If you are building a new home they can help you plan exactly where all your outlets should be, and ensure your home is future-proof. If you are retro-fitting into an existing home they can talk you through your options and what is possible.
They can then move onto producing detailed schematics of your installation and work with other contractors to ensure it all happens to a timeframe that is convenient for you. When the install is done they will program your system and show you how to use it.
Choosing a home automation installer
Your home automation installer should have a full complement of qualified and experienced staff, with the expertise to bring all the elements of your project together. These include tradesmen and technicians such as communication and electrical cablers, security experts, licensed electricians and IT specialists.
Besides the quality of the installation you also need to think about the kind of after sales support service the installer can provide. Technology may need TLC from time to time, so having a team that understands your home and the way things have been put together is important.
We have brought the latest home automation and audio visual technology to some of Sydney’s most beautiful homes and commercial properties. We can help make your smart home a reality.
CTA: Call us on 02 9938 3188 to create the smart home of your dreams