It’s a new year, which means it’s time to reassess the annual budget. This year, you can actually save on some serious cash AND energy usage by upgrading your home and smartphone with high-tech apps. From smart AC controllers that automatically switch off when you leave the house to a home security system that makes theft virtually impossible, these 12 smart home apps will make 2016 the year of saving.
1. AirPatrol: Imagine being able to control the mode, room temperature and fan speed of your air conditioner from the palm of your hand no matter where you are. Your energy costs from 2015 are a thing of the past with this smart app. With AirPatrol’s ability to adjust the AC when you’re away from home and to send regular updates about your power cuts, you can say goodbye FOREVER to unnecessary energy usage and ridiculous bills!
2. Canary: Canary’s live-stream HD video and high-quality audio not only lets you check up on your kids and pets, but also protects your home from theft with its impressive 90+ dB siren, motion-activated recording and auto-arm/disarm. To reduce false alarms, its sensor data helps it to learn more about your home and sends you only relevant video notifications whenever it senses anything outside the norm of your home’s routine activity. Once you plug in Canary and connect to WiFi, you’re all set. There are no costly tools or installation required. Simple, right?
3. ecobee3: Say hello to the world’s first and only Apple HomeKit-enabled smart thermostat. The ecobee3 mobile app can help you save by automatically switching to Home or Away mode based on your proximity to the home. Automatic savings never sounded so awesome.
4. iSmartAlarm Home Security System: Are you looking for a smart home security system minus additional cost from monthly fees and contracts? Then the iSmartAlarm is the one for you. DIY, self-controlled and self-monitored, this home security system allows you to arm, disarm and monitor your system from anywhere. Plus, for added insurance, the app can even place a call to the police. Burglars, beware!
5. OnSwitch for Philips Hue: Aside from its beautiful array of 30 animated and static lighting effects, this smart home app comes with a built-in timer to turn off your lights at bedtime. You won’t have to ever worry about accidentally leaving the lights on, draining energy or increasing your electricity bill. If you have Philips Hue lights, this app is a definite must-have.
6. Lockitron: Replace your keys with this smartphone app and never worry about the expense of replacing lost keys or making copies for friends and family ever again. Lock and unlock Lockitron-enabled doors, monitor who enters and leaves and even invite friends and family members to use your lock. You won’t ever have to waste time or gas to rush home and let your brother in because he forgot his keys. If he has his smart phone, he’s good to go!
7. MyDoorOpener Elite: Instead of purchasing multiple remotes, save with MyDoorOpener Elite. This app is compatible with opening/closing/monitoring your home garage door, alarm systems, gates, gas fireplaces, lamps, electric motors and just about any other device that can be relay controlled.
DL It: $6 on iOS
8. Nest App: Did you know that your Nest smart home gadget has its own app? Personalize your Nest Learning Thermostat to save you energy, receive alerts from your Nest Protect to keep your home healthy and happy and stream your home in HD with Nest Cam and Dropcam. Nest users everywhere, make sure you have this app!
9. Petnet Mobile: This smart feeder for cats and dogs allows pet owners to manage feeding times, portion sizes and food supply, all from their smartphone. If you’re a busy pet parent, it can be tough juggling work, kids and your pets. Keep from overfeeding and save yourself time and money from having to rush home from work to feed your pets with this useful app. Your pets will thank you.
DL It: Free on iOS
10. Smartify Remote: Save yourself the headache of having to deal with troubleshooting problems from a remote control. Smartify comes with a keyboard, a touchpad and a list of channels for your LG smart TV. Just connect your smartphone and TV to your wifi, then sit back and relax!
DL It: Free on iOS
11. Sonos Controller: Not only will this system of HiFi wireless speakers and audio components allow you to control your music throughout the entire home with just your smart phone, but it’ll also save you from having to buy multiple home audio systems. Stream different songs in each room or hear the same everywhere. It’s as easy as pushing a button on your phone, tablet or computer.
12. WeMo: Save money and make your life a little easier with this smart app. Once you connect your home to WeMo, you can set a bedtime curfew for your kids’ TV, keep sprinklers automatically off when the forecast predicts rain and even have your lights and electronics light up to keep potential burglars at bay when you’re on vacay. The possibilities are endless!
Want more techy goodness? Check out our Pinterest for more smart home inspiration!