We’ve recently started renovations on our new home. Yay! One of the top things I spoke with my contractor about was trying to create a smart home environment – on a budget. I had really hoped to get to CES (Consumer Electronics Show) but with the closing date on the home up in the air I had to cross it off my list this year. Fortunately for me a mini version was about to come to Miami and I was excited. Techlicious (Tech Made Simple!) partnered with CTA (Consumer Technology Association) and CES for a special Lunch and Learn right in Miami – it’s like I won the lottery. Even though we have the ability to hardwire ourselves to create a smart home, it’s simply not in the budget. Which is exactly why I was ready to learn about how to upgrade to a smart home on a budget – and even more excited to share this information with you so you too can learn how to upgrade to a smart home!
How To Upgrade To A Smart Home On A Budget
I’ve done all the leg work for you, including searching out cheaper prices and/or free shipping via Prime on Amazon – those links include my affiliate links and are the best deals I found for less than the suggested manufacturers pricing. Now it’s time to use this guide on how to upgrade to a smart home on a budget to get it done!
This August Homes Inc. key-less entry and doorbell camera system are at the top of my list for the new house. No more lockouts requiring a locksmith, no more running to the door just to find a solicitor offering to re-pave your driveway with his overstock supply (yes, this is always happening!).
Your smartphone is now a smart key—and more. Lock and unlock your door, create virtual keys for guests, and know who comes and goes, all from your iOS or Android smartphone. The August Smart Lock easily installs on the inside of your door using only a screwdriver. Keep your existing exterior door hardware and use your traditional key any time.
- Your smartphone is now a smart key—and more
- Lock and unlock your door with your smartphone
- Control who has access and when, from anywhere
Never leave keys under the mat again. Create unique entry codes to give to family, friends, your dog walker, handyman, or guest to unlock your August Smart Lock without a traditional key or smartphone. An accessory product to the August Smart Lock, August Smart Keypad is simple to set-up, easy to use, and controls your August Smart Lock via secure Bluetooth technology. Runs on two AAA-batteries. No wiring required.
- Never leave keys under the mat again
- Create unique entry codes to unlock door
- Lock your August Smart Lock with one touch
August Doorbell Cam – $199 (Get it for less on Amazon!)
Always know who’s at the front door, even when you’re not home. Whether you’re upstairs, at work, or away on vacation, August Doorbell Cam alerts you every time the bell is rung and lets you see and speak with visitors from your smartphone, from anywhere. Enjoy extra peace of mind with instant notifications when Doorbell Cam detects motion from visitors, identifying people at your door. One-way HD camera gives you a clear view of visitors from your smartphone while ensuring your privacy. Combined with the August Smart Lock, you can also choose to securely unlock/lock the door to let your visitors in. The Doorbell Cam is easy to install and replaces your existing doorbell.
- Always know who’s at your front door
- See & speak with visitors from your smartphone
- Monitor activity at your doorstep with live, on-demand video
Put Siri to use with this smart light switch! Great for when you have your hands full. My elbows could use a break.
With Eve Light Switch, experience the comfort of connected lighting. Switch your lights on and off using Siri, or with a quick tape on your iPhone. Eve Light Switch transforms any single or multi-bulb setup into an intelligent lighting system, so you can use your existing bulbs regardless of their shape, size or color.
- Use your voice or phone to control existing bulbs regardless of their shape, size or color
- Uses Bluetooth low energy technology to ensure easy setup, reliable operation, and power efficiency
- Transforms any single or multi-bulb setup into a Siri-enabled lighting system
- World’s first light switch with HomeKit technology for the most seamless light control experience
Another great tool that would get much use in my office – alerting me to when the kids try to sneak in and peek at projects I’m working on. Or sync it to turn things off or on when activated!
Let your presence bring your home to life. With Eve Motion, cue the perfect ambience simply by entering your room, and know of activity as it’s happening. Receive notifications on your iPhone or iPad whenever movement is detected. Be alerted when someone enters your private space. And with Apple TV at home, keep tabs on your abode while you’re on the go.
- Eve Motion enables users to create individual HomeKit automations
- Eve Motion can detect the user’s presence or absence and then enable or disable power outlets, HVAC systems or lights
- No need to open an app or speak a Siri command, Eve Motion communicates directly with your iPhone, iPad or Apple TV, without requiring an additional bridge
Need an all in one starter kit? from sockets, to switches, and even outdoor switches, this kit will put the power into your control in minutes.
An Apple® HomeKit™ and Alexa-enabled system featuring three iDevices Sockets (connected light bulb adapters), five iDevices Switches (indoor connected plugs) and two iDevices Outdoor Switches (rain-tight connected plugs). Unlike other smart home systems on the market, the iDevices Smart Home Essentials kit requires no central hub, gateway or bridge. This premium selection of smart home products comes with a first of its kind, exclusive Concierge Service, giving users priority support access and the ability to set appointments with iDevices’ smart home experts for everything from product setup to advanced use tutorials.
We’ve been JAMming for a while now with out regular Bluetooth speaker – imagine how much more fun one can have with a speaker that accepts commands!
The most cost-efficient speaker with Amazon Alexa Voice Services Technology in the lineup, the JAM Voice is the perfect entrant for consumers looking for a great speaker who can take commands. It also features Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Pairing multiple speakers can give a much fuller stereo sound, or have music in every room in the house.
- Wifi and Bluetooth speaker that uses Alexa Voice Service technology to answer a myriad of questions and everyday tasks
- Users can teach “skills” to the speaker such as asking Uber for a ride using only voice commands
- Use the embedded microphone to make and receive calls for hands-free phone conversations
See who is coming and going in the palm of your hand – plus it works with the ADT Canopy system, and it features night vision for catch those late night snack munchers.
LG Smart Security is a new plug-and-play monitoring solution and home automation hub and it’s the first device to be secured by ADT Canopy, a new no-contract service for 24/7 professional monitoring. LG Smart Security is the perfect solution for users looking for augmented security with simple setup and professional security service options with no long-term contract required. It also offers the flexibility of home automation control via a mobile device app (iOS or Android). LG Smart Security is also compatible with Amazon Alexa, further enhancing your smart home’s ecosystem and increasing functionality. Homeowners will enjoy easy remote access to crisp, clear video delivered to their mobile device, tablet or computer thanks to a Full HD camera with digital zoom capability. The LG Smart Security camera can capture virtually an entire room with minimal image distortion, as it features a 130-degree field-of-view. Users can even monitor their homes at night thanks to the device’s night vision capability with up to 15 feet of visibility.
This light bulb instantly turns any of your light fixtures into a smart light without any need for an electrician – saving you even more!
Control your lighting from anywhere with the LB120. The smart bulb installs as easily as a standard light bulb, and connects to your home Wi-Fi in no time through the free Kasa app. Kasa lets you manage your lights with your smart phone or tablet, including adjusting brightness, setting schedules and scenes, and tracking energy used. The LB120 also lets you tune its white temperature to create lighting suited to your mood, from bright daylight to soft, relaxing whites. For added convenience, you can use voice commands to control the LB120 when paired with Amazon Alexa, including tuning its white temperature.
There are so many things this little plug can do! They do say the best things come in small packages right? Simply plug things into and now anything can be turned on or off from your smart phone or the sound of your voice.
With remote access you can control devices connected to the Smart Plug wherever you have Internet using the free Kasa app on your smart phone. Schedule the Smart Plug to automatically power electronics on and off as needed, like setting lights to come on at dusk or turn off at sunrise. With the away mode feature you can easily turn your devices on and off at different times to give the appearance that someone is home. For added convenience, you can use voice commands to control the HS100 when paired with Amazon Alexa or The Google Assistant!
Now that you know all of my secrets on how to upgrade to a smart home on a budget, which of these amazing products would you want to own first? Learning how to upgrade to a smart home has never been easier.
A special thank you to CES, CTA and Techlicious for inviting me and allowing me to experience these products first hand! Learning how to upgrade to a smart home was very valuable for me as a new homeowner. I hope I’ve helped you learn how to upgrade to a smart home on a budget! Check all the fun we had by searching #CTAMiami across all your favorite social media channels. You can follow Techlicious and CTATech on Twitter for more info!