Professional vs DIY Smart Home Installations

With DIY “smart” devices such as the Nest Learning Thermostat or the Ring Alarm System becoming increasingly common, you might be wondering if installing your own home automation system is the best option. Both have their own advantages and disadvantages; the real question is, which one is best suited for you.

Before you continue and incase you haven’t already, I suggest you read a previous post that will give you an introduction to smart homes in general and will focus more on the mainstream consumer grade systems.

DIY Smart Home

With a DIY home automation system, you are the one in control of choosing the system, buying the right devices, as well as configuring and maintaining your smart home.

Pros

Cost – One of the biggest advantages of installing a DIY smart home system is the low cost as many DIY devices have become increasingly affordable. This is the perfect solution if you’re on a tight budget but still want to update your home with smart technology.

Variety – With so many options for smart devices on the market, you have the option to mix & match an assortment of these to create your own smart home solution. Of course, this can also be a bad thing, as compatibility starts to become an issue when you have different devices from different manufacturers all trying to talk to one another.

Cons

Time Consuming – Setting up a DIY smart home requires you to spend considerable time researching the many different solutions available, deciding which one will work best for you now as well as in the future, and have the technical know how to be able to set up, configure and maintain your system.

Tech Savvy – While some people will like the “challenge” and are up for the task, sometimes you can run into issues that can be difficult to troubleshoot and resolve without spending even more precious time looking for a solution. Updating your device firmware and adjusting your settings on a regular basis should be considered when setting up your own system.

Limitations – Since DIY devices are intended to be simple to connect and set up, their capabilities are usually limited. This means you can only reach a certain level of customization (if at all), as they don’t allow you to configure them to your exact specifications.

Multiple Apps – The freedom to choose whichever devices fit your needs will also add more apps needed to control them. It’s typical to expect 8-10 different apps to be able to control your home using a mix & match DIY solution.

 

 

 

Professionally Installed Smart Home

Professional smart home integrators will design, build and maintain a custom solution that is tailored to your specific needs. These systems make use of the most advanced, reliable technologies and hardware that are usually only available through distribution channels. When it comes to a professional installation, make sure the company you choose has the expertise and knowledge to create a high-end solution, as well as understand the importance of ongoing customer support.

Pros

Done for You – The main advantage of hiring a professional to set up a custom smart home system for you is that you won’t have to worry about anything – just tell the company what you want, and they’ll take care of it for you.

Customization and Scalability – A professional system is created specifically for you and your requirements and will be tailored and configured to your specific needs. Having a customized multi-room audio setup as part of your home automation system is well worth hiring a pro over doing it yourself. A professional system is also scalable and can be expanded at any time.

Warranty and Maintenance – To ensure that home automation systems work properly, they often need more TLC than you would expect. With the introduction of many new devices to the network, your configuration may need to be tweaked or wires may need to be redirected to provide adequate bandwidth rates. This is something a specialist is very familiar with, and you can be assured that the device can work optimally regardless of the challenge. A smart home pro is always a phone call away to assist you if you have a problem with your system months or years down the line.

Ease of Use – Your system will be built to be intuitive and user-friendly. Each system is designed with the user in mind, and after a quick walkthrough, you will know exactly how your system works, leaving you in total control of your home. As always if you have any questions, someone is always there to help.

Single App – You’ll be able to monitor your lighting, audio, video, security, climate control, and more from a single app. Control is expanded to mounted tablets, remote controls, and keypads. See what’s happening inside your home whether you are home or away and you will be able to close the garage door, see who is in your backyard, and so much more.

Cons

Cost – The overall cost of having a custom smart home solution installed is higher than the DIY route, but considering all the points above, this hopefully makes sense.

Time – Depending on the level of customization and the nature of the technology, setting up a system will take some time. This is due to the fact that your needs and requirements as well as the layout of the house are taken into consideration before a system can be designed, installed and configured.

Which system is right for me?

  1. I’m looking to have a custom solution for my home
  2. I don’t have the time or patience to deal with any issues that may arise
  3. I just want something that works the way I want it to
  4. I am willing to invest a bit more to make sure I get the ideal smart home that will fit my needs
  5. I can appreciate paying extra if it means I don’t have to worry about anything and always have someone I can count on maintaining my smart home

If most of the above statements describe you, then you are ready to have a smart home system professionally installed.

In Summary

Hopefully, this post will be able to help you decide which system is right for you – here are a couple more thing you might want to consider:

If done properly, a professionally installed system is built to be stable, reliable and scalable. This allows you to start off small and expand to the rest of your home at a later time. This way, you can take your time before deciding which features (lighting control, motorized shades, climate control, and so on) you want in other areas of your home.

Interested in learning more? Contact us today for a free consultation and get ready to elevate your lifestyle!