Smart homes

When people hear about smart homes, many think of something futuristic and complicated. But in reality, a smart home should make your life so much less complicated.

“What we do is incorporate all your electronics inside your home or business and we simplify them into one integrated solution — so that’s one remote, or for a lot of people, one app,” says Jeff Stubbs, owner of Custom Integrators, which installs smart home automation and control throughout central Texas. They work closely with clients to make sure every smart home is customized for individual needs.

“We determine all this: what’s your routine, what’s a day in your life, what you want to accomplish,” Stubbs says.

“Every one of our systems is different and designed around particular customers’ needs, wants and desires.”

Here are four smart home upgrades that will make your life so much easier.

1. The Home Entertainment System You’ve Always Wanted

You’ll never need to go to a movie theater again when you have a home theater with surround sound. But it doesn’t have to be limited to just one room – you can get multi-room video and whole-home audio so you can seamlessly watch TV or listen to music throughout the entire house.

And the beauty of it all? All the hardware will be hidden behind the scenes.

“You’re not going to see wires and boxes hanging from the TV. It all goes behind walls, so when you watch TV, all you see is the display,” Stubbs says. “We also have invisible speakers formed into the walls or ceiling so you never see them, but they have great sound quality.”

2. Energy-Efficient Smart Lighting

Too many switches and controls all over the place is known as “wall acne.” Instead, you could control all your lights with one app. Plus, smart lighting turns on and off as you need it, which will bring down your energy bill.

3. Stay Cool (and Safe) With Automated Shades

“Imagine having shades in your house you never have to touch, because at dark they’ll go down, and when the sun starts to rise, they’ll come up,” Stubbs says.

These go hand in hand with energy-efficient lighting because they go up and down based on energy controls and what you’d like to accomplish. They also help with home security, because you can have them go down when you’re not there, or at night when you are.

4. Make Your House Look Lived In — Even When You’re Away

“The other thing about smart homes that’s really cool is they learn your routine,” Stubbs says. This is a big part of home safety and security because your home will appear totally lived in.

“You can hit the vacation button on your way out and then be gone for a few days or a few weeks,” Stubbs says, “and your house will act as if you’re living in it, turning on lights and TVs to give the appearance that everything’s normal.”

Custom Integrators installs Control 4, the leading automated control solution, for many of these upgrades. Stubbs actually used Control 4 in his home before eventually starting his own company because he “fell in love with the integration and simplicity of it all.”

“It’s not about the bells and whistles,” Stubbs says. “It’s about simplifying and making your life easier.”