I read an interesting article about 44% of Americans seeking a new home were more interested in a smart home, than a non-automated house. I did, on further examination realize that what most people consider home automation is a lot less than what I would expect, but the bar was a little higher than I thought it would be.
So, first off, home automation is a broad topic. It goes anywhere from creating a more secure home environment (as you fly away from home, is my front door closed? Did I close the garage doors? Did I turn off the iron?) or true security (notification, someone is in your house.). Those are the easy ones. The next tier is the concept of scenes. The garage door opens and it is night. Turn on the garage light, turn on the hall light and the kitchen lights. The next tier beyond that is one button automation of all the media devices in your home (anywhere in the home on any device).
Most people consider home automation the first tier I mentioned, home safety. The next two tiers are sometimes met with “you can do that?” But the reality is home automation is here to stay. The question is what would you build, if you could build everything into a new hosue? There is, as I mentioned, automation to make your home safer. That would include by the way, gas detectors and water detectors. Knowing when your house has a gas leak (based on recent events this is CRITIAL) and knowing when there is water where there shouldn’t be water in your hosue are critical notifications.
Automation 1: Doors and dangers
· Automated door locks. Why? SO you can let people into your house (maid, repair person) automatically.
o Train your dogs to hear a sound and go to a specific place so that you can remotely shut the door. That way repair people afraid of dogs aren’t well, scared.
· Automated notifications for gas leaks, water leaks and wall power being consumed by irons. Notification of stove and oven being on would be nice.
· Internal and external video system. Why? Why not? They are reasonable in price and provide you with fast and quick resolution of the remote question is someone in my hosue?
Automation 2: Comfort and coolness
· Lights, blinds and doors: automatic shutting, launching and scenes integrated into what you need at the moment. Coming home at night, light up the house.
· Air-conditioning and heating: manage heating and cooling when you are home and when you are away.
First off just these two are pretty simple for a new house. I would also add that wiring the house for Ethernet is critical. As the number of IoT devices in your house increase (each of the various seniors and switches you install is a device) having Ethernet and two distinct Wi-Fi networks reduces the impact of bandwidth disappearing for Netflix.
I would, also run a video distribution cable to each room. That way you can integrate your external video with your internal viewing. Nothing is nicer than not having to get up when you hear a noise in the back yard. Or you can see who is at the front door, without leaving your chair.
Now, this is easy for a new house. If you are doing this in an existing house you are going to have to consider several things. One of which is can you run wiring to the rooms of your house. If you can’t then create two distinct WI-FI networks in your hosue. Only connect IoT devices to one of them. Then make sure that both WI-FI networks have a direct connection to your internet router. Trust me, when you start burning network bandwidth with surveillance video, you will thank me.
Home automation geek