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Smart Living Journal

DIY Home Automation Systems


DIY yourself projects are fun at first, but gradually the fun can turn into frustration and maybe even destruction. Smarthome DIY projects aren't any different. It's pretty common nowadays for many people to start something but never finishing. It's not because people aren't capable of learning and executing, but what they do lack is time and effort.

Time is our most valuable commodity, and DIY projects usually aren't our main concerns at any given time. You might have the brilliant idea of connecting all your home appliances and computer systems into a single hub for easy access, but are you willing to put out the time to make it happen?

Figuring out how things work take time—some more time consuming than others, and a big project means more time is necessary. For instance, how would you link up a fridge to your smarthome hub or how would you begin to figure out what systems are compatible with what? Again, everyone has the capability to figure out how things work, but the only question is whether or not they have the time.

Effort here is basically asking yourself how badly do you want to make this happen. We all have our short spurts of motivations. When things aren't falling into place like we envisioned, how prone are we to giving up?

Let's just say you went through all the trouble of researching the best smarthome hub or switch, but found out later on that some of components in your home aren't compatible. By this time, you might have already cut a chunk and drilled a couple of holes in your wall. Are you willing to patch up the holes and start all over?

The size and scope of DIY projects seem doable at first, but in reality many projects turn into headaches and salvage projects rather than the clean and smooth process that we all hope for.

A smarthome project isn't like putting together some IKEA furnitures. It requires you to look into basically all facets of your home. Do you know how your home is wired, and what are some of the risks you'll take if you alter the configurations?

Time and effort mean money at the end of the day. If what you want out of a project is knowledge and money isn't a major concern, then by all means make the mistakes so you can learn from it.

If you want smarthome functionalities that work out of the box, then you'll likely want the assistance of a professional. This is a person that has done all the homework necessary to ensure you get what you want the first time around.

How much money you'll save by doing it yourself vs. how much money you'll spend on a professional all depends on the scale of the projects. Setting up a smart TV to interact with your iPad is a DIY project. Hooking up your baby room with a CCTV system that lets your monitor everything remotely is a bit more challenging. Overhauling the home to make it truly 'smart' is probably not what we should consider a DIY just yet.