We all know that it makes good sense to take out insurance on our homes. But it makes even more sense to secure our homes well in the first place, and modern innovations are going a long way in helping homeowners do just that.
Smart technology involves gadgets including light fittings, garage doors and thermostats which are wirelessly connected via Wi-Fi and are able to be controlled with cell phone apps or through voice. ‘Smart Homes’, a term you may have heard before due to its increasing popularity, therefore refers to homes which use smart technology to great effect. This is particularly so in the realm of home security. The best part is that there’s smart security tech to suit every budget.
This might seem like a no-brainer but the smartphone is one of the devices that is currently being utilised to help people better secure their houses. It’s essentially a portable remote control that enables you to change your home security settings wherever you may be. Gone are the days of asking your neighbour to keep an eye out for you when you’re off on holiday. You can do that yourself if your smartphone is connected to smart cameras.
Video monitoring with cameras helps you identify who or what is inside or outside your home - are there actual intruders or just pesky neighbourhood critters setting off the sensors? Nowadays, many cameras come with impressive clarity, night vision, two-way audio, motion and sound detection as well as storage capabilities at an affordable price. And if you can't afford the real thing, splash a little cash on imitation cameras. Fake it and they probably won't make it into your home for fear of having their activities surveilled.
Smart Doors and Doorbells
Smart doorbells enable you to communicate with any individual at your door thus making them unsure of whether you're at home or not. You can use your smartphone to lock and unlock your front door and/or smart garage door so if you forget whether you locked up or not, you have a second chance to do so from miles away. Keypads also eliminate the need for a key which can be misplaced or stolen and copied.
Many windows and sliding doors also come with glass break sensors so whether you’re snug in bed or partying the night away, your phone can send you an alert if someone’s attempted breaking and entering. Apps can also put you through to relevant local authorities as soon as you notice something amiss.
Smart Plugs and Sockets
Smart plugs make remotely switching standard appliances on and off a cinch. So you can, for example, turn devices other than your TV on to make it seem like people are home. Of course, maintaining the pretence of being home extends to opening and closing curtains and blinds which, rather conveniently, also come in smart form. And all these things don't have to be tediously switched on and off one by one. There are apps like Workflow that allow you to carry out functions simultaneously.
Equipped with timers, you can set your smart lights to go on and off as and when you want to. Smart lighting can also make an impact outdoors. There are solar powered exterior lights on the market that illuminate areas when any movement is detected. This can be a powerful deterrent to any would be thief. The fact that solar lights don't rely on electricity means that you're still afforded some protection if you live in an area that experiences the occasional power cut, provided your area also happens to get a steady supply of sunshine.
One of the concerns about smart homes is that they're hackable, but many devices now come with better protection from cyber attacks attempting to compromise the systems put in place. It's also fairly easy to update security software with the latest defences and to have two-factor authentication.
So there you have it. The home of the future is already available. Intelligent, intuitive and most importantly, protective, your smart home can give you peace of mind like never before and it doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg.
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