Inexpensive Ways to Simplify Life with Smart Technology

Written by
Home Controls
Published on
April 14, 2017 10:00:00 AM PDT April 14, 2017 10:00:00 AM PDTth, April 14, 2017 10:00:00 AM PDT

Turning your home into a smart home using inexpensive devices is a wonderful way to help simplify your life. Nowadays, there are more DIY home automation systems available than there were in the past that are affordable, easy to install, and simple to monitor. Just about any tech-savvy homeowner can convert their home into a place where lights, thermostats, security, and other home systems can be controlled with a wide range of devices that can cost no more than a few hundred dollars.

You don’t have to break the bank to make your home smart. Just remember that at the end of the day it’s an investment that in most cases can help you save even more money on your utility bill. Below are some examples of inexpensive smart home devices that can simplify your life.

DIY Home Controllers

In order for most of your smart home devices to communicate with each other you’ll need a home controller to manage them. Think of a home controller as the central brain of your home automation system that uses a unique wireless communication protocol (Z-Wave, Zigbee, WiFi, etc.) for communicating. In the past, home automation controllers were expensive and oftentimes needed a lot of wiring work done in a house. But with various wireless options available today, homeowners can pretty much set up their own home automation system without spending thousands of dollars. There are also affordable all-in-one home automation system controllers available, which include multiple common automation features and functions in one device to cover a single room. This gives you a taste of what is possible with a smart home network.



Besides turning on your lights, smart switches can also be programmed to turn on scenes. Just flip the switch, and a pre-programmed scene can come to life. So imagine waking up in the morning and as you walk to the bathroom, you flip a switch that could include a scene that turns on the bathroom lights, kitchen lights, coffee machine, television set, and thermostat to a certain temperature. By utilizing one smart switch, your morning routine can easily be simplified. Just keep in mind that not all appliances are smart-home ready, you will have to use plug-in modules to make them smart, which are pretty affordable on their own.

Plug-In Modules

For non-invasive and versatile automation controls, plug-in modules can fit home automation into virtually any installation. Plug-in modules behave just like smart switches, but most can only control a single plugged in device. Plug-in Modules either provide On/Off or Dimmer control, and are controlled by the switch that commands the outlet they are plugged into. Some plug-in modules include additional features such as energy monitoring, LED status lights, or wireless signal repeating. 


WiFi Enabled Video Doorbells

Have you ever been interrupted by an unexpected visitor after being comfortable on the couch, watching your favorite television show? Or have you missed an important delivery because you were at work or away from your home? Both scenarios are common and can now be avoided with the use of a WiFi enabled, video doorbell. The ability to answer your front door using a mobile device is now possible because WiFi enabled video doorbells offer a real-time video feed with two-way audio on your smartphone so you can literally answer your front door while you’re at work or on the couch in your living room. 


Add-A-Motor gained financial success with their simple but reliable Add-A-Motor Chicken Coop Motor, which opened/closed the door to chicken coops on a 24hr timer. Add-A-Motor also produces the Add-A-Motor Drapery Motor for Existing Drapery. This device only takes about 15 minutes to install and can be set to automatically open or close your draperies and vertical blinds. This means you can go about your day without having to worry about manually opening or closing your window coverings, which could come in handy if you have window coverings in hard to reach places.

Central Vacuum System

A central vacuum system may seem expensive at the start, but it’s really an investment that could save you money in the long run since you won’t have to replace it every few years like you would a portable vacuum. A central vacuum system can last for up to 10 years before needing to replace a major accessory. It also makes vacuuming a simple chore because you won’t have to lug around a heavy, portable vacuum or deal with its messy cords that never seem to be long enough. To vacuum your home, all you would need is a lightweight hose or a brush that connects to a network of valves that are typically located on walls or floors in various locations of your home. For a more detailed explanation of how a central vacuum system works, you can visit our blog: What is a Central Vacuum System, and Why Would I Want One?

If you would like to simplify your life using inexpensive home automation devices, Home Controls can help. Just call our toll-free number at 858-693-8887 (7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Pacific, Monday – Friday) for free support and product advice.