Smart homes are getting smarter, more efficient, and more convenient every year. But if you’re wondering what a smart home is and how you get your home to be one, don’t worry, Speck Family Electric is here to help. Here’s our simple guide for beginners on how to make your home smart!

Man tapping on tablet device with icons floating above it.

Some benefits of a smarter home include saving you energy, increasing security around your home, and simplifying your life. 

What is a Smart Home?

A “smart home” doesn’t mean your house has a high IQ, but rather a home that has a level of automation. Some items are built into the structure itself while some are added later, and the homeowner operates these with applications on their phone, with voice commands, automation, or using artificial intelligence.

So, why turn your regular home into a smarter version? Well, it can help save you energy, increase security around your home, and simplify your life so you don’t have to deal with mundane tasks. For some homeowners, making their home smarter can be as simple as buying color-changing bulbs that you can control through an app on your phone. For others, it can be linking several different products and installing new gadgets throughout their house. The choice is up to you!

Essential Components

The thought of changing your house in a way to benefit you is exciting, but don’t go out and immediately buy new devices and gadgets. Before buying anything, ask yourself: do I have the essential components to make a smart home work? If you’re unsure, here are the most basic things you’ll need:

Fast, Reliable Wifi

Smart devices require internet. The more devices you have in your home, the more essential it is to have a strong, stable internet connection. So, keep in mind how much bandwidth each item will need. Those that need a continuous connection should be given a larger bandwidth allotment. Devices that only activate when you give a command, smart light bulbs, and home climate control systems don’t require as much.

Smart Hub

A smart hub is the master control center of all your smart devices. Usually, each device will come with its own app. Pretty handy, but if you’re designing an entire smart home, that can be an overwhelming number of apps to sort through. The separate, multi-purpose hub lets you control everything from one place.

The type of hub you get will depend on what devices you plan to use, as well as how many you want to control. Some hubs are more versatile than others, but three popular hubs include the Google Nest, Amazon Echo, and Logitech Harmony Home hubs.

Determine the Features You Want
Smart home lock with person holding up phone with accompanying app.

Smart doorbells and locks allow you to keep an eye on things and make sure the entryway into your home is secured.

The best part of the planning phase is picking which custom feature you want in your home. It’s not only fun, but it’s also an essential step in the process. Here are some custom features to consider for your smart home:

  • Doorbells & Locks: Want to see who’s at the door? Or see when your package has been delivered? Or double-check that your door is actually locked while you’re out and about? Smart doorbells and locks allow you to keep an eye on things and make sure the entryway into your home is secured.
  • Smoke & CO Detectors: Yep, even these can be smart devices! The Nest Protect Smoke + CO Detector tests its sensors and batteries over 400 times a day and will send messages to your phone and alerts you when it detects smoke or CO.
  • Security Systems: Full smart security systems come with door sensors, motion sensors, sirens, and more. The app can also notify you of any unusual behavior.
  • Thermostats: Set and track temperatures in your rooms with a smart thermostat. Sensors can allow you to save energy and money by turning off the temp when you’re gone and turning it back on when you’re approaching home.
  • Lights: With smart bulbs, you can control individual or groups of lights right from your phone. You can even hook some up to turn on or off automatically by triggers or timers you set.
Your Tennessee Smart Home

Hooking all these devices up can be a big job and can be overwhelming. Instead of getting flustered, just call us at Speck Family Electric to do it for you! You’ve already invested a lot of money into your new devices, so have the reassurance the job will be done properly. We will help get your smart home safely set up and running in no time! We service those in Sparta, Chattanooga, Cookeville, Crossville, Gallatin, Lebanon, McMinnville, Mount Juliet, Murfreesboro, and Smithville.