What Should You Be Looking for in a Home Automation System?

Whether you happen to be a tech junkie or simply an individual with a taste for fashionable convenience, home automation is probably a trend you’ve either already indulged in or hope to do so in the future. What makes home automation so famous and lovable is the good amount of benefits the process brings about. Not only do you have the power to control the security of your home without being physically present in your home, you can also conveniently monitor the temperature and lighting of your home.

But, as is the case with everything else that you spend your hard-earned money on, you need assurance that you’re investing efforts into the right system, don’t you? And to be able to assure yourself of the long-term value of your investment, you need to be able to identify the most distinguishable features of a complete and nearly perfect smart home. So, what is it that makes a smart home top-class and worth the trust?

Relevant Functionality:

A smart home is a pretty fabulous thing to look at. Walk into one and you’ll immediately spot a number of features you’d want for your own home. However, be very realistic when you decide what features you want your automation system to support and whether you can afford these features at all! The best smart home system will be convenient to use, will save your energy consumption, cut down your utility bills, provide remote access and improve the security of your home significantly, all at a price that you are willing to afford.

Compatibility with Devices:

What essentially controls the functionality of your smart home is the hardware controller. To maximize the utility of your smart home ensure that the hardware controller of your system can manage as many devices as possible. The more inter-operable the system is the easier it will be for the different peripheral devices such as lights, thermostats, security hardware and other electronics to integrate with one another. For instance, using a single voice command of “leaving home” you may instruct the system to turn off the lights and thermostat simultaneously.

Upgrade-able:

New technological innovations hit the marketplace every day. And of course there might come a time or two when a latest smart trend or feature makes you drool. Look for a smart home system that has the ability to accommodate future upgrades and trends so that usability is maintained.

Reliable Technical Support:

While a lot of smart home features can be classified as DIY, there are many installations that require professional and expert help. Companies with a good customer service and support staff that is both accessible and helpful will extend the value of your automation system.

Remember, your smart home does not need to be doing everything but only the things YOU want for it do. Choose a system that gives you relevant functionality, comes with dependable professional support and is compatible with a maximum number of devices.

When wiring your home its best to do this while the house is still in the stage of being built, as the cabling will become easy and hassle free, however, there are instances where the cabling is carried out after the house is built. Most often, the building management system will be carried out by the contractor, even if it’s running a wire or two in the home or building.

When you decide to build your home, future cabling needs can be very costly, especially if you have already made a budget for the building and completion of the home, especially when you are not doing the work yourself, but will have someone attend to it professionally.  Most contractors and builders will generally not allow you to do this kind of work while the home is under construction for safety and insurance reasons. So you may have to wait or have the contractor help out so that it is safe and no other problems occur.

With a good wiring plan, all cables are run to a central point, for safety reasons with a switchgear to one area of the home, most often in the basement. Most of the builders and contractors will run the cables, from one room to another room. For instance, if the builder is adding a phone line to your kitchen and master bedroom, they will run fiber optic cable from the basement to the kitchen to the bedroom. The proper cabling system would be to run a line from the basement to the kitchen, and a second wire from the basement to your bedroom. This is due to various reasons such as, if there is a problem in the connection you only need to look at the two ends, you don’t have to backtrack and check everywhere that the wire passes through, running cables from one room to another room you are limited in what you can do with the cables and even though its alright to run a phone line from one room to another room it can affect the internet network cables. Most builders and contractors may run separate cables for the internet and phone lines, and you should do the same. If you run the cables in series, then only one of the rooms will be able to make use of the wire as a network cable.

If the home you’re building or have already built does not have a basement then you will need to find some other central location to run the cables to. Make sure to ask the builder for suggestions so that it’s safe. Draw up a plan for the cables and make sure to plan everything out before you begin. Decide what cables will run where, and make sure there is enough and more cables instead of making the cables too little. Unused cabling costs very little and when you decide to expand its easy, as opposed to installing new structured cabling to accommodate your expansion plans. Make sure to read the guide on what cables to run and the guide on wire types to help you plan. You may also want to research some sample online projects for ideas.

Once you have a cabling plan and you’re ready to get started you will need to use a cabling guide to help you run the cables. You can complete the cabling job and terminate all the connections at the same time, however, unless the builder has agreed to give you time to work on the home it is best to leave that work until after you move in. Much of the finishing work must be done after the walls are painted and have dried.

Once you have completed your cabling, it’s time to have the cable, satellite, phone, internet companies come in and do their thing.

Check this out