There were a couple of reasons why we chose the builder that we did:
- The floor plan was perfect for us
- The location is great
- The lot we chose has wooded views in the back
- It’s a smart home
Now I’ve read horror stories about builders claiming that their new homes are “smart” and then they include the cheapest products that will likely become obsolete in a year. But everything that our builder includes in our smart home, we were going to purchase and install anyway. So this was definitely a selling point for us.
The home includes these items as a standard feature:
- One Amazon Echo Dot
- One Ecobee 4 thermostat
- One August smart lock
- Ring Pro doorbell
- Two Lutron Caseta smart switches
- One data panel and 8 data cables in our rooms of choice
I am definitely not the worlds most tech savvy person, but I am so excited about making our home a little bit more smart. We already have a few Amazon Alexa devices in our apartment, 4 WeMo smart plugs, some IKEA smart bulbs and we have Samsung Smart Things talking to everything, but there’s only so much you can do in an apartment. This house will really let us shine.
Once it’s finished, we will essentially have smart home tech in the most important rooms (kitchen, living room, bedroom, etc.).
We are wanting to pick up some more Amazon devices to add to the places that we habitat the most (kitchen, living room, bedroom and garage for Brygham).
One pretty cool thing that we added to the house at the design center is our stove (more on that in this post). We had to add a backless stove to accommodate the pot filler that we also added, but I’m pretty happy with the outcome. This stove works with Alexa. What?! It’s laziness to the next level, but I can’t wait to ask Alexa to pre-heat the oven for some homemade chocolate chip cookies from the comfort of the couch.
Some other tech items we have planned are a smart garage door opener, arrival and motion sensors, and indoor and outdoor cameras. The plan is to have all of these items incorporate with our Smart Things and/or Alexa devices so things can just happen automatically in the house at certain times or occurrences.
If you are looking to incorporate smart devices into your home, I would highly encourage you to look into a smart thermostat. It’s a serious cost saver (I’ve seen stats of savings of up to 20%) and also good for the environment. The whole idea is that the thermostat “learns” our routine and will set the thermostat slightly warmer/cooler during the day when we would be out and then returns to normal when we come back home. We are getting an Ecobee, and we’re pretty excited to have it up and running.
An easy smart home idea is to get some smart plugs and use for those items that you’re pretty sure you turned off. We are going to use ours for things like my curling iron, the crock pot and our tart burners.
As far as lights go, it’s much more economical if you can install smart switches rather than buying smart bulbs. We plan to have smart switches all through the bottom floor and upstairs since we don’t need any bulbs that do any sort of fancy colors in those areas. Brygham wants smart bulbs that have color in his man cave, so we are only buying colored bulbs for that area of the house. The lamps will all get cheap(er) IKEA bulbs or something similar.
Other than just the coolness factor, I think smart homes are a fantastic security system just by themselves. When we are away, we will be able to randomly turn devices on and off, and we have some technology (smart plugs mainly) that does this automatically for us.
We also have the August lock, which allows us to lock and unlock the house from anywhere. I love this idea since there’s always that thought in the back of your mind when you’re on vacation and concerned about whether or not you locked your doors.
It’s a hobby for sure, but we’re pretty excited to see what this house can do. Once everything is set up, I’ll post about what we’ve got going on in our setup!