Many of the concerns people have when starting their journey towards building a smart home, stem from how expensive it can be to retrofit your home for automation and there's no doubt that converting your home into a smart home can be a slightly daunting task.

Being an early adopter of new tech can indeed be costly, but building out a solid smart home doesn’t need to break the bank.

In the latest installment of our #amaysimHacks series, we’ll show you some simple ways to help build a smart home ecosystem, without a high-tech budget.

connect your hero device

Amazon Echo

The key to getting all your smart devices to communicate in your home is to have a device that links everything together.

Amazon’s Echo range (which starts at just $58 for the Echo Dot) integrates seamlessly with a variety of home automation hubs, such as Wink, Insteon, and SmartThings.

You can also hook up other smart devices like Philips Hue Lights, Belkin WeMo, Sensi, Ecobee, and control lights, the temperature of your home, and even turn on video recording with a simple command.

take full control of your lighting

Whether you’re away on vacation or a simply too far from a light switch, smart home lighting systems are a great way to control your smart home.

Aside from remote access and the extra security that this brings to your home, you can tweak the intensity of the lights to set the mood in any rooms, or program lights to turn on and off at a scheduled time - neat trick to save time and reduce your energy consumption.

Although there a Smart Bulbs on the market that cost well over $200, you can purchase less expensive options that still have great feature sets.

For a low cost alternative, Sengleds Range of Smart LED Bulbs which are Wi-Fi compatible, start from just $20 and can be paired with your Amazon Echo or Google Home.

smart plugs

Smart Plugs are an insight into future of living and make it easy to manage your appliances by connecting to your WiFi, allowing you to use apps on your smartphone to control and switch off your appliances remotely – who said the future isn't already here!

For a cost conscious entry point, check out TP-Link's smart plugs which start from $59.

smart thermostat

Thermostat

One of the key benefits of investing in smart technology, is that it’s not just convenient, but it can also be extremely energy-efficient.

According to Energy Star, a programmable thermostat can save households up to $180 per year in heating and cooling costs.

These devices optimize your energy use by only heating your home when you’re there, or when you’re awake to enjoy it.

The Nest Thermostat for example, automatically adjusts the temperature after users set it manually for the first few days to establish usage patterns and preferences - mind blown!

At just under $250, a Nest thermostat isn’t exactly low cost , but if you're looking to control every aspect of your energy usage, it’s a great option and in the long run, will very likely help you save money.

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