Smarter Than Alexa

“Alexa, let me know when someone is breaking into my home,” said no one ever. Let’s assume her response would be honest, as in, she can’t. As technology evolves to make our lives easier, smart homes are the newest addition to technological convenience. Although digital assistants, like Amazon’s Alexa or Apple’s Siri, can recite the weather or play your favorite song, they cannot stop an intruder from entering your home. Luckily, smart home security systems can. There are several smart home security options to choose from. Make sure to do some research before you put your house on lockdown.

Smart Locks

Pretty self-explanatory, these are replacement locks for exterior doors that can be controlled by your smartphone. It is an easy way to manage your locks from afar and to never lock yourself out of your house again – unless you lose your phone.

A smart lock can range from $100 to $300, depending on how advanced the options. Most smart locks include an easy-to-use app in which to lock and unlock it remotely. The most advanced smart locks offer features like voice activation; auto-locking, that locks after its been unlocked for a specific amount of time; and geofencing, which automatically locks after your smartphone leaves a preset perimeter around your home. In some cases, installation might be complicated. Hiring a locksmith knowledgeable in new technology will help get your locks installed quickly and correctly.

According to PCMag.com the top choice for a smart lock is the August Smart Lock Pro + Connect. It costs under $300.00 and is easy to install. Its features include geofencing, voice activation, and IFTTT support.

Smart Home Security

If you want to upgrade more than just your locks, a smart home security system is an option. Although it’s more expensive than the alternative smart lock, it offers a more comprehensive security system to keep intruders out and your family and belongings safe.

Options depend on what you are looking for and how advanced you want your security to get. There are self-monitoring systems with 24/7 surveillance by professionals who will notify the police or fire department if suspicious activity occurs.

A smart home security system uses Wi-Fi to connect to your home and can be monitored by an app. Most programs usually include window and door sensors or a motion detector that communicates to a wireless hub. More comprehensive programs include door locks, garage door openers, smoke detectors, surveillance cameras, lights, and more. The app will allow you to access, control, and customize all the features the security system offers, and will also notify you if any of the options are triggered.

If you want eyes on the outside of your home, an outside camera can provide 24-hour surveillance accessible from your phone. According to PCMag.com, one of the top choices for a smart security system is the ADT Pulse. It offers the best app and web services with fast and knowledgeable service reps and comprehensive security options. However, it is on the spendy side and requires a three-year contract with a termination penalty.

Overall, regardless of your budget, there are several options to improve your home’s security intelligence. From a simple, smart lock installation to a comprehensive smart home security system with 24-hour surveillance, as technology advances there are more and more options with “smarter” solutions to help keep you and your home safe and secure.

 

Cari

Cari Barron, owner and founder of Contractor Hotline, purchased a home in need of various repairs in 2002. The process to find a quality home remodeling contractor proved to be a complex challenge. The first-hand experience was the inspiration behind founding Contractor Hotline in 2006. Connect with her on Google+

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