Home Automation For Dummies

By Bradly Spicer •  Updated: 03/02/20 •  5 min read

Smart Home Automation Guide for Dummies

This is my FREE ‘Smart Home Automation Guide for Dummies’. Please consider commenting below to let me know more about what you need!

Smart Homes are on the rise, so it’s fair to say to say that Home Automation is likely going to embed itself moving forward in the future. According to PWC, around 40% of UK home owners actually use Smart Home Technology.

It’s easy to get confused by home automation though and a lot of us will only stick to Smart Home Assistants like the Amazon Alexa or Google Home Assistant.

Smart Home Future is now

However, you can push it further by asking yourself “What is a Smart Home?” & “Is starting a Smart Home Hard?”.

In this post, I’ll break down what a Smart Home is, what you can do with a Smart Home, some cheap Smart Homes and the best beginners all-in-one guide for home automation beginners.

To confirm, Smart Homes are VERY easy and can be VERY cheap to set up!

What is a Smart Home?

What defines a smart home?

A Smart Home is a phrase used to describe a house which utilises a network of devices over a network that communicate to one another; basically, this is a home which utilises the following:

Benefits of a Smart Home

There are a ton of benefits for using a Smart Home which I have covered across my blog, one of the main ones is saving money with your Smart Home! It sounds counter productive but it’s actually really easy to do by following my simple guides!

How do I control my Smart Home?

A lot of Smart Home devices are managed remotely, whether it be a tablet, Computer or Smart Phone (Android seems to be the most popular device).

In most cases, you’ll actually be familiar with this to some extent with Siri on an iPhone or seen adverts for Amazon’s Alexa.

Whilst trying to avoid getting slightly complicated, Smart Homes communicate via various procols, these are Z-Wave, ZigBee and WiFi (Sometimes Bluetooth).

How Do I Get Started with Home Automation?

It’s very easy to get overwhelmed by Smart Home Automation, a lot of people get confused when they see massive charts or steps on ecosystems.

With this simple breakdown, I will cover what I regard as the easiest entry into the Smart Home world. These few steps will help you break down the best ecosystem and devices for your needs / lifestyle.

Step 1) What are you looking for?

Are you looking for automated lighting? Saving money? Not getting up from the sofa to find your TV remote? Those are all very basic steps into the Smart Home world!

If you’re not looking to buy a Smart TV, did you know you can turn a dumb TV into a Smart TV cheap & easily?

Step 2) Decide your spending budget

Smart Home set ups can cost anywhere from £20 – £1000, it really depends on what you need, your taste and if you’re willing to do a little bit of a hack job, don’t worry though! These posts should help push you in the right area:

I wouldn’t worry about looking for the most advanced areas of Smart Home Technology to start with, For example plugs which turn themselves off based on if you’re home or not.

Step 3) Research, research, research!

This sounds obvious, but check out my search page and type in any keywords you have as I’ll see anything missed and I can make some content for you. As well as this, it’ll pull up all the information you need!

Alternatively, I highly suggest checking out these other Smart Home Blogs as they’re the ones I have subscribed to RSS or read regularly.

Which Smart Devices should a Smart Home Beginner use?

This varies from person to person in terms of finding the ecosystem that best suits you. Definitely do check out this post on 5 Reasons Google home is better than Alexa.

Here’s my basic breakdown though, If you’re a total beginner or techphobe, stick to Alexa or Google as an ecosystem. Don’t bother looking into a hub like SmartThings yet (Definitely do in the future).

If you have Amazon Prime, Get the Alexa, it has a lot of built in features and allows you to control your Dumb/Smart TV with ease. Amazon also doesn’t throw away its projects as quick as Google does.

Amazon Prime Free Trial 30 days - Home automation for dummies
If you don’t have Amazon Prime, check it out before looking to Google because the use of Prime Delivery, Fire TV etc really are useful!

There’s a lot of DIY work (Like home CCTV cameras) or glowing toilet sets (Yes, they’re real) when you get into the nitty gritty.

Overall, Smart Home Automation is not as scary as you think, if you want more guides or want to be notified more often on Smart Home changes, detals or more sign up to my newsletter!

Bradly Spicer

I'm a Smart Home and IT Enthusiast that loves to check out new technology and gadgets! I enjoy reading your experiences and news, so if you want to share anything or chat smart homes, definitely send me an email!