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Smart Homes In The Real World

Man uses a mobile phone with smart home app in modern living room

Photo: Getty Images

What does “Smart Home” even mean? A smart home is any system that reduces your time or effort or contributes significant benefit or convenience.

It's not up to Dean to tell you how 'smart' your home should be. But, there's a difference between 'practical' smart stuff and 'flashy' smart stuff that is simply a waste of time and money. Here are Dean's takes on what you need and what you don't.


  • Lutron Caseta with Pico remotes
  • Smart Bulbs or Smart Switches
  • Smart Thermostat - Nest, Amazon, Ecobee
  • Smart Blinds - Eve Smart Blinds @ Blinds.com
  • Smart Security - Video Doorbells, Cameras, Ring Always Home Drone
  • Smart Smoke Detectors, CO2, Air Quality
  • Smart Leak Detectors, shut off valves and electrical panels
  • Smart HVAC - Filter alerts, remote diagnostics
  • Smart Irrigation
  • Smart A/V - SONOS


  • Smart refrigerators
  • Robot vacuums
  • WiFi Toasters

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