Our Top 10 Favorite Home Tech Items

With many smart home options to buy these days, it is difficult to know which ones will bring genuine improvements to your home, and make your life a little easier. Some are clearly a fad! In this post, I am going to run through our top 10 home tech items… items that have made our lives easier, and will make your lives easier too! Let’s take a look.


What this post is about:

  • 10 of our favorite, and most useful home tech items!

Our Top 10 Favorite Home Tech Items

Top 10 Home Smart Home Tech Items


Video Doorbell

A video doorbell tops this list! It is one of the smart home products that is used on a daily basis.

Personally, I have the Ring Video doorbell 2, which gives me everything I need from a doorbell. Before that, I had a regular doorbell and since buying the Ring Video Doorbell 2, I have not looked back.

Reasons why is it useful

  • You can see your visitor before you answer the door
  • Any deliveries can be rearranged while you are out by using the app
  • Easy access to videos taken by the doorbell

How do I have it set up?

  • Linked to my Echo Show
  • Blinks my lights when I have a visitor at night
  • Announces on all Echo devices when I have a visitor
  • Alerts my phone when I have a visitor

Security Camera

I do not have 1 security camera, I have 3! Each one of them is a Ring Stick Up Cam, just because I have already bought into the Ring ecosystem.

I take security very seriously. There is nothing more important to me than my family. For that reason, I have all angles of my home covered. Security cameras are an awesome way of recording any strange activity around your home, and they are also excellent at deterring crime too.

In fact, 50% of burglaries are the result of an opportunistic burglar. A CCTV system would have prevented at least 50% of burglaries from happening! That is a good enough reason for me.

Reasons why is it useful

How do I have it set up?

  • 3 camera system, covering the whole house exterior
  • Linked up to Echo Show
  • Alerts come through to my phone

Lighting System

Philips Hue is the go-to lighting system for my home. There are tons of cheaper options out there, but at the moment, there is no total lighting solution that Philips Hues has.

I have tried the cheaper bulbs, and they work well, but they are difficult to link up with each other to work as well as Philips Hue does.

It isn’t just the simplistic way these are set up, it is the little things, like being able to pick a photo, and my Hue Play Bars will pick a couple of colors to display from the photograph. If you want to chill with a sunset color scheme, just ask!

Reasons why is it useful

  • You can turn it on and off using your voice (and Alexa/Google Home)
  • Settings can help with jet lag
  • Color changes can help with concentration
  • Perfect for waking up to
  • Excellent for parties

How do I have it set up?

  • Bulbs in the bedroom, living room, kitchen, and landing
  • Play Bars in the kitchen, bedroom, and living room
  • Bedroom lights are set to progressively change to mimic natural sunlight
  • Landing light set to switch on at a certain time of the morning, depending on the time of the year

Home Assistant

My house has a combination of Alexa and Google Home. Just because I want to test both of them…

Both options have positives and negatives. What I don’t like is when one refuses to connect to a product of the others, just because they are in competition with each other. C’mon guys, sort yourselves out! The customer comes first, right?

Reasons why is it useful

  • Voice control everything that is compatible.
  • Ask anything, in any room. One of them will hear you.
  • Knowledge at your fingertips.

How do I have it set up?

  • Echo Show in the kitchen
  • Echo dot in the garage (for workout music!)
  • Google Home in the bedroom
  • Google Mini/Echo Dots scattered around the house
  • All are linked to all smart home items – except Google/Ring… it just doesn’t work. I guess they are too competitive.

Smart Robot Hoover

There has been an explosion in the use of these robot hoovers over the last few years, and it is very easy to see why!

My hoover sits on it’s charging mat until it is time to move. Then, it spends some time hoovering, before getting back onto the charging point.

Reasons why is it useful

  • Set and forget
  • Hoovers when you are out of the house – come home to a clean floor!
  • Can work with Alexa/Google Home

How do I have it set up?

  • Set to hoover 1 time each day
  • Recharges when finished

Smart Thermostat

I have saved so much money by using a smart thermostat, simply because the heating only comes on when someone is close enough to the house!

Smart thermostats can be a challenge to fit, but it is totally worth it.

Reasons why is it useful

  • Save money
  • Warm the house up before you get it
  • Easy to use
  • Works depending on the outside temperature too
  • Fully automated

How do I have it set up?

  • During the cold months, it comes on when I am near the house
  • The temperature is lowered automatically for nights
  • It adjusts the temperature depending on the weather

IFTTT

Ok, so IFTTT is not necessarily a smart home item, but it can be the glue that binds it all together! There are literally tons and tons of recipes that you can use.

Do you want to turn your lights on at night when your Uber arrives? It can do that!

Want a text when you are out of the house and your Wyze cam pics up motion? It can do that too!

Reasons why is it useful

  • Take a look through the recipes on the IFTTT website to answer that!

How do I have it set up?

  • Log each time I get home into google docs
  • Announce on Google home if I get a visitor to the door
  • Too many more to list here!

Smart Plugs

For items that are not smart home technology, there is always smart plugs!

Sometimes, you just want a normal household item to work with the likes of Alexa and Google Home. You can link these up by having smart plugs to control devices.

I used to fill the coffee machine up before bed and switch it on, but leave the plug socket off. When my alarm woke me up, I used IFTTT to switch the smart plug on, and the coffee was ready shortly afterward!

Reasons why is it useful

  • Make any household electrical item into smart tech!

How do I have it set up?

  • Smart plug for a heater/cooler in the garage for my workouts
  • Plug for lamps that do not yet have Philips Hue bulbs in

Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detector

I don’t need to show you the benefits of using these, do I?

The alarms are vital for your home, but how do you hear them if you are not at home? What if you are out and a fire starts? You would want to know about it, wouldn’t you?

Reasons why is it useful

  • Know about any fires at home while you are out
  • Safety for your family

How do I have it set up?

  • To alert my phone in the event that an alarm is triggered

Garage Door Opener

This one speaks for itself! If I am in the car, wouldn’t it be awesome to have the garage door open as I pull up to it? Well, you can… with a smart garage door opener.

These work by using an app on your phone which picks up your position via GPS. If you are close, the door opens.

Reasons why is it useful

  • It opens the garage door ready for your return
  • Stops you reaching for your remote when you need to be concentrate on driving

How do I have it set up?

  • To open the garage door when I get close enough my my home

Conclusion

There you have it, our top 10 smart home tech items. I personally use each of these items almost daily.

Some offer security for me and my family, and some are awesome because I am either lazy or swayed very easily by technology!

Let us know if you have any more items on your list!

Good luck.

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