Feeling safe in the home is extremely important and installing a security system is the go-to option for keeping burglars out. However, security products usually come with a high cost and have to be installed, which may not be felt by everyone. However, there are affordable options you can consider with basic smart home products, such as cameras, locks, sensors, lights, and speakers. You don’t necessarily need to buy expensive products. You can scare off intruders with products you already have or cheap products that won’t break your budget.
In combination with online services, you can have them communicate with each other and trigger actions to keep trespassers away. Read on to find out how to secure your home without spending a fortune and installing a complicated alarm.
Start by checking your hardware compatibility
While you might be tempted to buy new products or buy all your smart stuff from the same brand, you don’t need to go through all of that trouble. However, you will need to make sure that your devices can communicate with each other, and there are various ways to achieve this.
The easiest way is to check if the devices you own or plan to buy are compatible with IFTTT, as the platform allows you to connect a lot of services with each other. Otherwise, you can get products that work with apps in the Google Play Store, like SmartThings or Smart Life, which let you create scenes with conditions and triggers. If you’re buying a new device, you might want to make sure it’s compatible with Matter, as the new protocol will make it easier for smart devices to communicate with each other.
Alexa also allows you to create some custom scenes, but the triggers may be less customizable, depending on the smart device. Although Google Assistant lets you create routines, it doesn’t provide enough customization to work as a reliable way to set up a DIY theft prevention system.
Choose the right smart devices for maximum protection
Now that you’ve chosen a platform – or more – to make your devices from different brands communicate with each other, it’s time to identify the smart devices that will help you keep people away from your home. It’s always best to avoid intruders trying to break in in the first place, and the best way to prevent that is to make them think you’re home.
There are various ways to do this, such as randomly turning on certain devices, such as smart lights, speakers, and televisions, and opening and closing curtains. All of the above platforms will help you simulate that presence, depending on what devices you have at home.
On top of that, you’ll also want to convince hackers to leave if they can break in. Although good security cameras are a reliable way to monitor your home and yard, they often send false notifications and cannot be relied upon to bomb the alarm. However, a simple dial or motion sensor is a cheap option, as it is less sensitive and more accurate at notifying you of trespassers. Using them as triggers, you can automatically trigger a siren sound effect on your smart speakers, turn on sprinklers, send text messages or call relatives, letting them know that something is going on.
How to configure your routine to keep hackers out
Once you’ve thought about the type of automation you’d like to achieve and the rules you’d like to define, it’s time to configure it. The process is not very complicated, but it takes time and concentration. Here are some instructions on how to do this, depending on your chosen platform or app.
To configure your automation through IFTTT, you will need to create an applet that can be triggered by a condition. While this is easy to achieve, a free membership only allows you to perform one action per trigger, so you may want to consider a paid membership to get the most out of it.
Here’s how to define your rules:
- Open the IFTTT app or go to the IFTTT website.
- click Create in the upper-right corner.
- under So thisAnd the Add the condition that must be met to start the automation.
- Add many actions in Then this. You can only make one with the free version.
- click Complete to save.
If you buy affordable products from Amazon, they most likely work with Smart Life. What’s especially cool about the app is that you can use it to pair and control your devices, as well as create routines and automations.
Pairing and controlling your devices is straightforward:
- Open the Smart Life app.
- Faucet view in the bottom bar.
- Click on + icon in the upper-right corner.
- Faucet When the state of the device changes to select the trigger.
- under then add the actions you want to trigger once the scene is triggered.
- Faucet Memorizes to complete.
Depending on your device skills, Amazon’s AI assistant Alexa can do wonders when it comes to automation. Setting the routine isn’t very intuitive, but once you define it, it works perfectly.
Here’s how to set up a routine on Alexa:
- Open the Alexa app.
- Faucet more in the bottom bar.
- Faucet routine.
- Click on + in the upper-right corner.
- Faucet when this happens And the smart home To specify the trigger action to start the routine.
- Add the actions you want Alexa to trigger, which are under it smart home.
- Faucet Memorizes to complete.
Although SmartThings may be less popular, it supports a wide variety of products and makes it easy to create a routine.
Here’s how to create a routine with SmartThings:
- Open the SmartThings app.
- Faucet automation in the bottom bar.
- Faucet Create a routine.
- Faucet habit in the lower left corner.
- under if In the section, add the condition that must be met to start the automation.
- Add the actions you want to perform then.
- Faucet Memorizes to complete.
Make your home smarter with automation
No matter what smart devices you use and what rules you set, you can easily avoid buying an off-the-shelf security system. These can work with each other even though they’re from different manufacturers, thanks to smart smart home platforms, which allow you to create smart automations that make people think you’re home and drive them away if they try to break in.
And while Google Assistant may not be the best way to create a DIY home security system, you should consider automating different parts of your day and responding to commands in a smarter way.