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For decades, the smart home was just a dream of many people who wished that all the drudgery of turning off the coffee pot, shutting off the air conditioning when it was not needed, and the home itself would prepare for your arrival. And the future is now! Thanks to the many innovations of advanced digital technology, many new home constructions have smart features built in. You can even purchase smart appliances and air conditioning units that run far more efficiently while creating the perfect environment.

While all of this may seem beyond the reach of many people who currently live in a “dumb” home, the truth is that many smart home innovations are inexpensive and can fit most budgets. Here are a some ideas you can use to help create your own smart home without breaking the bank.

1) Smart Hub

Before you start buying specific smart home items, you will need a way for them to be connected. A home hub costs around $50, is simple to set up, and ties in many smart home devices or products together so they can be controlled from a single device. Once you have your hub in place, the next step is getting smart light bulbs.

[easyazon_link identifier=”B010NZV0GE” locale=”US” nw=”y” tag=”nerdsquawk16-20″]Samsung SmartThings Smart Home Hub [/easyazon_link]

2) Smart Light Bulbs

While you may see some sets of smart light bulbs retailing for upwards of $200, you can purchase those that work with your hub for as little as $15 each. While $15 sounds like a lot for one bulb, consider that they will last on average 22 years and use 20% of the power that traditional light bulbs use. So, in the long run you will be saving money while operating their brightness from your smartphone. You can even use them with home assistants like the [easyazon_link identifier=”B00X4WHP5E” locale=”US” nw=”y” tag=”nerdsquawk16-20″]Amazon Echo[/easyazon_link] and Google Home.

TP-Link Smart LED Light Bulb, Wi-Fi, Dimmable White, 50W Equivalent

3) Smart Power Strip

Instead of installing dimmers which can cost a considerable amount of money, you can instead purchase lamp dimmer adapters, a power strip that lets you plug lamps in with the smart bulbs attached and control their brightness for a fraction of the money. Plus, they can be programmed to turn on and off automatically.

[easyazon_link identifier=”B01B2ASI6Y” locale=”US” tag=”nerdsquawk16-20″]NTONPOWER Smart Power Strip[/easyazon_link]

4) Smart Mattress Cover

This remarkable mattress cover starts the coffee pot, brightens the room, controls the thermostat, and even works the alarm clock all to your sleeping habits. The mattress cover, which fits over existing covers, sends signals to your smart hub when awaken in the morning. The cover has sensors that detect when your body is waking up and when you remain in a deep sleep. So, even if you wake up at different times during the week, everything starts when you wake up.

[easyazon_link identifier=”B01LZQPR6F” locale=”US” nw=”y” tag=”nerdsquawk16-20″]Eight Sleep Tracker – Smart & Connected Dual Zone Mattress Topper[/easyazon_link]

5) Nest System

This is a combination of thermostat, door sensors, and other devices that coordinate to your needs. For example, when you leave for work in the morning, the door sensor sends a signal to the thermostat to adjust the temperature for more energy savings while you are out of your home. You can connect several devices to the Nest System that turns your dumb home into a smart one.

[easyazon_link identifier=”B01GPC0SCQ” locale=”US” nw=”y” tag=”nerdsquawk16-20″]Nest Thermostat and Security Camera Bundle[/easyazon_link]

Some smart home devices are expensive, but many you can get at an affordable rate to meet your needs. Goals vary from saving money to added convenience. Consider what is most important to you as you work towards having a smart home.