Once you have stabilized your home network (and remember EVERY TIME YOU CHANGE YOUR INTERNET ROUTER, be careful) you can move back to the broader smart home hub. A search of Indiegogo and Kickstarter reveals a whole lot of devices that operate in the space
Note: The number one rule when building a system is make sure any one part can easily be replaced. In many cases the type of router and the configuration of that router may impact your home automation system. For example in some cases you have to modify the outbound router rules for video feeds. So when you change your router be very careful. Backup your router to a computer (its normally an option when you connect to your home router via the web page of the router). Make sure you update the router configuration every time you change something on the actual router. Then if you have to replace the router, you can either upload the old config or quickly install the new router with the old settings.
Again we go back to the first blog in this series pick the initial project you want to do. Door locks are a good project to start with. I prefer the Yale locks myself but there are many other brands and types. They operate in a number of modes. The first is the ability of the lock to have one time passwords or to have multiple passwords. Multiple passwords allows you to manage who is in your house and when they are in your house. This allows you to let the cleaning service into the house or a trusted repair person.
The locks are a combination of traditional Yale locks, Yale has been in business since before I was born with new age touch pads. They are reasonably easy to setup and connect to the automation system you are using.
Now from an enterprise project perspective which is ultimately really important for doing home automation projects, you stop once you get the door locks up and running. The stability of your system depends on moving slowly and making sure each of the installed components is working and stable before going to the next one.
Rushing a project like this will in the end hurt you. A dear friend of mine used to always say “plan the work and work the plan” I don’t think he invented that saying, he just used it a lot. So your plan is stabilize and improve your home network. Evaluate the options for door locks and select the one that works for you. Now picking a hub is a lot easier. If the hub you are looking at doesn’t support the door locks you have installed, then don’t get it.
The greatest stumbling blocks are often in the actual planning process. I can’t tell you how many mistakes I’ve made because I didn’t initially think through an overall plan. Had I simply created a goal sheet and a plan I would have been a lot further a lot quicker.
Step 1: get your network ready and then back it up.
Step 2: take the easy project and install door locks.
Step 3: select your hub, making sure it works with your router.