How To

How to Create a Dynamic Smart Home for Under $200

For under $200, you can create a dynamic smart home that will simplify your life and make everyday tasks a little bit easier. Here’s how.

Smart homes are often portrayed as something limited to the uber-wealthy, but they’re more accessible and affordable than you may think.

You can plug just about any device you can think of into your smart outlets, including kitchen appliances, lamps, and your television, allowing you to control your entire home’s energy use with ease.

For just under $200, you can create a dynamic smart home that will simplify your life and make everyday tasks a little bit easier.

Here’s my definitive how-to guide on making that happen.

FYI: It’s easier (and lighter on the wallet) than you think.

Smart Speakers: $50

When creating any smart home setup, you’ll need to start with a smart speaker. This technology allows you to control every other smart device in your home with your voice or your smartphone, acting as a hub to keep your entire home connected. 

I recommend either Amazon Echo or Google Home due to their versatility, affordability, and ability to connect to a wide range of smart home devices. 

While the standard sizes of these smart speakers can cost up to $100, the miniature versions work just as well for commanding your smart home. Both the Echo Dot and the Google Home Mini cost approximately $50 when not on sale, but they frequently have deals that put them at a very affordable $25.

While one smart speaker likely won’t be enough to control your entire house, you might not need one in every room. 

For a smaller home with an open floor plan and only a couple of bedrooms, two speakers may do the trick.

The easiest way to control all of your devices using your voice or your smartphone is with smart plugs.

Place them in the areas that you spend the most time while taking note of whether the speaker can hear you from nearby rooms. Adding an extra speaker to your smart home system will add another $25 to your budget, but it’s definitely worth it. 

Smart Plugs: $61

Once you have your smart speakers, it’s time to choose which appliances and devices in your home you would like to control using smart home tech. 

The easiest way to control all of your devices using your voice or your smartphone is with smart plugs.

You can plug just about any device you can think of into your smart outlets, including kitchen appliances, lamps, and your television, allowing you to control your entire home’s energy use with ease.

Since the cost of singular smart plugs can easily add up, we recommend using smart power strips to control your devices that are clustered in one area and saving the singular plugs for isolated devices. The Teckin Smart Power Strip can control up to 8 devices, is compatible with both Amazon Echo and Google Home and costs only $27.99. 

For the rest of the devices in your home, we recommend purchasing singular smart outlets in bulk, such as the Teckin Smart Plug 4-Pack, which costs $32.99 and is also compatible with both Amazon Echo and Google Home.

Smart Bulbs: $39

If you’re not so keen on using smart plugs to control your lights and want something a little bit more intricate, look no further than smart light bulbs. These bulbs allow you easily to control the lighting in your home, featuring commands to turn the lights on and off, to dim and brighten, and to put them on a schedule whether you’re at home or away. 

The Sengled Smart LED Bulb comes in a 4-pack for only $38.99 and is compatible with both Amazon Echo and Google Home.

Smart Camera: $26

No basic smart home is complete without a smart security camera. 

While typical smart cameras can cost hundreds of dollars, Wyze Cam is compatible with Amazon Echo and Google Home and costs only $25.99, making it perfect for a budget smart home. This smart security camera offers a 1080P Full HD live stream direct to your smartphone and instantly alerts you when it detects motion in your home. 

Total Cost: $176

The total cost of this simple smart home setup comes out to approximately $176, which is a steal for the convenience that this technology provides. Home automation doesn’t have to be expensive, and it’s entirely accessible for anyone who has a little bit of extra cash to spend. By connecting just a few inexpensive devices to your smart home hub, you can simplify your life while staying under budget.

Photo courtesy of Sefa Ozel on Canva.

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