Technology continues to advance at rapid speeds, but is your home automation and security keeping the pace? Chances are, you may not have any home security at all. A recent survey found that only 30% of U.S. homes have some form of a security system.
Meanwhile, there are over 2.5 million burglaries a year in the United States alone, meaning those without security are running a major risk. And we’re willing to bet that most of those who have security aren’t using the most updated tech either, which can still leave them quite vulnerable.
So what can you do to upgrade your home automation and security system? Let’s dive into the basics of security and automation and some technological must-haves.
A home security system is a group of physical components that protect your home and alert you to any concerning or suspicious activity going on around your home.
This makes it easier for you to contact law enforcement when a home invader tries to enter your home and helps ensure all of your belongings and your loved ones are secure.
Home Security Essentials
We believe every home should have some level of security. But what does that look like? We’d recommend including at least the following four devices as a basic home security system:
- Security cameras. An obvious choice, security cameras can give you a picture of what’s going on inside and outside your home. You can set them up around critical access points to better track who is leaving and entering the house. Plus, seeing a security camera on a home can deter criminals from even trying to break in in the first place.
- Motion detecting lights. These lights are attached to a motion sensor and turn on when movement is detected. If the lights are positioned next to windows, you may be able to spot suspicious activity from inside your home before they can do anything. Additionally, motion-detecting lights may help your security cameras to get a better glimpse of potential intruders.
- Break-in alarms. Windows and doors can be fitted with devices that trigger when they are opened. If they are triggered, a blaring alarm will sound to alert the intruder, along with the whole neighborhood, that law enforcement is on its way.
- Security keypads. Some security systems offer keypads that make it easier to manage your system or contact the right services in the case of a break-in or other emergency. Because sometimes, clicking a button is easier than dialing a number when you’re in a stressful situation.
While most people are familiar with the concept of home security, here’s a term you may not be familiar with: home automation.
Home automation is the automatic control of various electronic devices throughout your home through an internet connection. A primary example is Amazon Alexa and other virtual assistants who can control your home products through voice commands.
The real benefit of home automation is twofold: to make your home more efficient and to save money on energy costs. How can it manage that? Let’s look at some home automation services that illustrate these benefits.
Home Automation Essentials
As home A.I. assistants have grown in popularity, so has home automation. But automation can be so much more robust than what Alexa offers. The following are home automation innovations that can help any home run more efficiently and save money on your electricity bill:
- Smart thermostat. Like Nest and Honeywell, smart thermostats allow you to schedule your temperature settings from your home. If you ever worry about having left the heat on, you can check an app on your phone and either turn down the temp or cut the power entirely.
- Automated lights. Your lights are no longer bound to your light switches, thanks to smart light bulbs. Several brands, like Phillips and Sengled, offer light bulbs that you can change their brightness, color, and on/off state from your phone.
- Voice assistants. As mentioned previously, voice assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Nest can make automation even easier—instead of opening your phone, you just have to say a few words.
How to Upgrade Your Home Security and Automation
What do home security and home automation have in common? You might have caught on by now: you can use home automation to streamline your home security.
Sounds like a dream come true, right? It is! With today’s technology, you can easily check in on the state of your home’s electronic devices and security from your phone.
If you have all of those essential home security and automation devices, great job! But keep in mind that there’s always room for improvement when it comes to securing your belongings and loved ones. Here are some ways to consider upgrading your home automation and security systems.
1. Update Your Security Panel
Too often, home security panels have lagged behind the technology we now have in our pockets. But now, you can access panels that are as smart as your smartphones.
Depending on the brand you choose, you may run into any number of exciting bells and whistles on your new security panel. The following are some of our favorite features of modern security panels:
- Built-in router. Your panel shouldn’t have to rely on your WiFi network (and if it does, it could be targeted in a cyberattack). Instead, many panels include a secure private network.
- Secure encryption. Along with the private network, panels with encryption signals are incredibly secure and prevent more hack attempts.
- Z-wave. Z-wave is a wireless communication protocol specifically designed for smart home networks. This tech allows your panel to connect with all of your smart devices and is an essential feature of a modern security panel.
- Integrated cameras. Panels that include a camera can take photos and videos of anyone who makes changes to your system. If you ever see suspicious changes to your protocols, you can check the tapes to see if it was a suspicious individual or just one of your kids smearing their fingers on the screen.
- Glass break sensors. When glass breaks, the glass itself creates a unique sound frequency. Modern security panels will trigger an alarm whenever they hear this sound.
Since so many modern security panels use a touch screen, home automation and security can be as easy and intuitive as how you use your phone.
2. Integrate Geofencing
Geofencing is a technological process that uses GPS information to create a virtual geographic boundary around a specific location. But what does this have to do with home automation?
Using GPS information from your phone, you can trigger your house to lock up and shut down when you leave home. That means lights turn off, doors lock, the thermostat turns down, and your security system is armed the second you leave your driveway.
Then, when you come back, everything turns on again and unlocks in a flash. This home automation service makes it so you never have to worry whether or not you remembered to turn a light off or arm your security system—you can set it and forget it.
3. Get an App for All Your Automated Devices
When people first start their home automation journey, there’s a common problem they often run into. They have too many apps on their phones! They need one app to install smart light bulbs, another to control their voice assistant, another to check their security footage . . . and the list goes on and on.
With the right home automation and security service, you can control all of your smart devices from a single application, offering you total control in the palm of your hand.
Upgrade Your Home Automation and Security Today
Investing in the right home automation and security services can give you peace of mind, knowing your home is safe and efficient even when you’re not around.
Are you ready to better secure your belongings and loved ones? Visit AMP Smart to learn about all the latest and greatest security and automation technologies available today.