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How We Made Our House into a "SMART" Home...Saves Major $, More Efficient, Convenient, & Safe!

September 10, 2018



Hey guys!  It feels good to blog again!  With the summer having ended and the school year here in NJ just starting...I wanted to soak up as much as I could with my family before the school year began! I think this may be the most beneficial blog post I have ever written.  I have always had a love for technology.  I actually have my masters degree is special education/assistive technology! However, I was super reluctant when my husband told me as we were newly in our new home...that his goal was to make this house a "SMART" House!  But, I can honestly say that I am so happy we did because it has saved us SO much money $, is super easy, cool, and fun! Oh and not to mention keeps us super SAFE! :)


What Do I Mean By"SMART House"?!


Everything is pretty interconnected in our house! " In our house almost all the appliances, lighting, heating, air conditioning, TVs, computers, entertainment audio & video systems, security, and camera systems that are connected and have the capability to communicate with each other and work together.  They can  all be controlled remotely by a time schedule, from any room in the home, as well as remotely from any location in the world by phone or internet.  It is honestly really cool!



Benefits/technology we have:

-Our house is 2000 square feet bigger than our old house.  I was super nervous to see what our utility bills would be on our new house would be!  The pervious owner said her bills averaged anywhere from $400-$800 a month for heating and air!  We didn't even want to see the first bill before installing NEST thermostats.  Our utility bills for both have never been higher then $280 total (our old house was around 300-400 a month!)  We also convinced my parents to switch to NEST and they are averaging a savings of $250 a month!  Insane!  


Click To Shop NEST Thermostat $215

We have 2 in our house (1 for upstiars and 1 for downstiars)  The price is totally worth the money saved!  My husband (I love him but he is not super handy was able to swtich out of old ones himself) It also comes with a regtangular plate that can go behind it so you don't have to repaint or have an ugly patch!  It also has an ECO mode that we have on almost all the time, which saves the most money!  We cant control this totally from our NEST app on our phone! (Ties in with our Alexas too)  





Click To Shop NEST Smoke Alarm/Carbon Monoxide  $122

We have have 5 of these in our house!  It gives us so much comfort knowing that this advanced technology can be a life saver and does not have to be hardwired!  It can all be monitored on your phone from the NEST App as well! (Ties in with our Alexas too)






Click To Shop NEST Security Camera $176

We have have 3 of these in our house!  One of them I actually use as a baby monitor in Athena's nursery.  I had a really nice baby monitor, but nothing compares to this!  It is also on the Nest App and ties in with our Alexas too.  It is pretty cool because you can also choose to speak through the camera as well!  I can tell our Alexa Show (keep reading) to pull up any nest camera I want as well to see the current video footage!




 Click To Shop this RING Doorbell $249

This is the RING doorbell that we have at our front door!  You need previous doorbell wiring there to be installed but its another one my husband installed all by himself!  There is a RING App that is connected to your RING doorbell and it picked up motion, video, records, and you can also talk to the person through your phone when someone is at the front door (even if you are not ad home!)  We had one at are old house too but we couldn't take it with us since it is considered "hardware" and had to stay with the house!  I can also pull up the RING video on our Alexa Shows in the house!





Click To Shop this RING LED Flood Light, Motion Detector, $ Security Camera 

This is installed on the side of our house above our garage doors!  The flood light turns on every time a person or car pulls into the driveway, which is super nice! it is interconnected with our ring app and Alexas too! We had an electrician put this one in!






Click To Shop these Lutron Swtiches! $59

We replaced almost all of the light swtiches on our first floor with these Lutron switches!  They are SMART switches and are totally wireless!  You can time your lights, dim them, ask Alexa or your phone to turn on and off your lights and tell them what percent of brightness you want your lights on!  We have all of our outdoor lights on timers with these switches as well!






Click To Shop these SMART Light Bulbs $42

Not only are these energy efficient, they can be controlled by Alexa, your phone, turn any color you want (thousands of colors to choose from) and are super fun!  They have totally added to our reduced utility bills too!









Click To Shop Amazon Show $129

To say we love this product is an understatement!  We have 3 of these babies!  It brings you the love of Alexa...but it shows you all the things!  It is connected to all the technologies that I have showed you above and can even start our cars!  Click on the picture to find out more!








Click To Shop Our Smart Lock & Handle $264

We had these on our old house and have a new one waiting to put on our new front door when it comes in a few weeks!  It is so easy and you don't have to carry a key around!  & super safe so win -win!








Click To Shop This Alexa! $99

We have a few of these in our house and conects to the other Alexa products, which makes things very easy!











Click To Shop This Alexa Dot! $49

Okay yes I know we have a lot of Alexa products but its not for no reason....it is because they are awesome! This is a simple budget friendly option that have in our guest room!







Click To Shop this music streaming SONOS $499

We have this in our office and it connects to all of the built in speakers we have in out house and outside.  It also connects to our TVs for surround sound!  It it totally controlled by the SONOS application on our cell phones!  







Click To Shop SONOS  Beam $399

We have this in our basement for surround sound!  We also are a family who loves fitness & video games so it's great for workouts & game time! haha








Click To Shop our Rumba that is connected to our Alexas & phones!

This is amazing esepcially for all of our cat hair!  

I hope you found this helpful!


I appreciate you coming by to check out my blog!  I know some of these things are very pricey but they really have helped us save money and feel super safe in our home! Don't forget to subscribe to stat up to date and follow me on my home account @happyhomeonhighbridge & my fitness account @jenray_fit 





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