How much does a smart home automation really cost?

How much does a smart home automation really cost?

July 18, 2020 Off By Natalie Leary

How to create a smart home automation?

There are two main options: attract a company (the so-called installer) or do it yourself.

What affects the final cost of implementing a smart home automation:

  • cost of equipment
  • software cost
  • infrastructure (for example, wires, their laying – if a “smart” house is created on wired equipment)
  • installation services
home automation

Let’s start with the equipment

Installer companies often use equipment:

  • Knx
  • Z-wave
  • large western holdings (schneider electric, ABB, etc.)

This equipment is extremely expensive. For example, how do you like a temperature sensor for 60-70 euros?

Installer companies use such equipment for obvious reasons:

  • Additional income thanks to dealer discounts. The more expensive the equipment, the more earnings.
  • Installers learn from manufacturers, and using familiar equipment is easier

Those who make a smart home automation with their own hands use a hodgepodge from different devices: from different manufacturers that work on different protocols.

This comes from a simple desire to save. A smart home automation doesn’t have to cost like a small spaceship.

There is equipment on the market (primarily from China), which is 2-3 times cheaper than what KNX and z-wave offer.

This is not a “gray” technique. The equipment is produced at specific plants, they have their own brands (for example, now Xiaomi is the most popular).

At the same time, a lot of no-name equipment is available on the market that costs ridiculous money ($ 1 per sensor, for example). But, accordingly, no one is responsible for the quality and reliability of such devices.

The key problem with the do-it-yourself approach is how to make this “hodgepodge” work together, establish interaction between devices running on different protocols, and combine them into a system.

And here we come to the next component of the “smart” home – software.

home automation

Software – what happens

Each manufacturer tries to close the user inside its ecosystem and develops its own software. If you use all the equipment for a “smart” home automation from one manufacturer, then additional software is not needed.

Installer companies create a unique interface for customers to manage a “smart home” using paid, but very cool software of the Russian company iRidium (a popular global brand)

If we save and make a “smart” house with our own hands, collecting equipment from different manufacturers, with different data transfer protocols, we need a third-party solution.

There is no universal advice – you should choose what is more convenient for you personally to work with. I will list the most famous open-source solutions in Russia and other Russian-speaking countries:

  • MajorDoMo
  • OpenHab
  • ioBroker
  • Domoticz
  • Home Assistant

Wires

Unfortunately, you won’t be able to save on wiring (only if you are not an electrician yourself). From the point of view of the budget, it makes no difference whether the electrician Petr, whom you will call yourself, will do this, or, for example, Vasily, the representative of the installer company.

Customization

To deal with all the nuances of setting up a “smart” home automation, you need to be patient and willing. At the same time, setting up is a very significant part of creating a “smart” home, so prepare from 4-5 thousand dollars for these services.

Summary

A “smart” home is not a dream from the future, but a reality that costs quite concrete and lifting money.

If you make a “smart” home automation with your own hands – it will cost 2-3 thousand dollars.

Main expenses:

  • purchase of equipment
  • purchase and installation of electrical wiring

If you like risk and want to save even more – instead of factory equipment, you can use no-name devices or DYI kits from Aliexpress.

The second option is to attract an installer company. With all the nuances that I wrote about above, installing a Smart home automation will cost from 10 thousand dollars.

What will the money go to in this case:

  • purchase of expensive equipment from KNX and other top suppliers
  • iRidium management software , the price of a license for which starts at $ 300
  • purchase and installation of electrical wiring
  • setup company services