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It always starts with owning one smart device, like a smart TV or an Alexa. Then you spiral down the rabbit hole of asking yourself ‘what else can I manage from my phone? What else can I have set up to be automated?’ With these tips, you can set yourself on the path of building your own smart home the way you want.

What’s the problem?

First step to building your smart home is going into each room and figuring out what are the various “problems” that you have. Do you want the lights to turn on as you enter? Should certain appliances start running automatically at a certain time or when variables are met? It’s better to know what you want in each room before buying the products to minimize buying things you don’t actually need.


There are various types of smart devices out on the market now from light bulbs to switches. It’s best to research all the different options available to you and if it would make the most sense for your space.

  • Home sensors – Smart home sensors become basically the eyes of the home. They can be as simple as detecting motion, but could also track different factors such as humidity, temperature, light, and vibration.
  • Light bulbs – Smart bulbs are great if the goal is to be able to adjust the brightness level or color of the light; some even have the ability to play audio from them. A downside, though, is unlike normal LEDs, they usually only come in a pack of one, so be wary of how many bulbs you need as they can get quite pricey. And if they ever break, replacement starts to become expensive
  • Smart plugs – These usually serve a very simple function of automatically turning any device plugged into it on and off
  • Smart home panels – Home panels are pretty versatile, from being able to control lights, to viewing security cameras, and even adjusting A/C temperature & humidity levels. As great as they are, they do also require some knowledge of electrical wiring to install them as they tend to replace already existing light switch panels
  • Hubs – All smart devices have to connect to a central location, called a hub. The best example of this is Alexa. Hubs are necessary and allow you to control all devices from one app, instead of having a clutter of apps to sort through on your phone.


It’s important to make sure your devices are compatible with one another. Certain smart bulbs or plugs may only work with Alexa. Apple is pretty proprietary on device compatibility, so they are best if you prefer to stick with just Apple-based devices. Samsung TVs can be easily controlled through a Samsung device, but has no compatibility with a Google phone, etc. Checking the details of each device before buying it is recommended to make sure you are able to control it with what you already have.

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