Ben Franklin famously said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” And though he said that all the way back in 1735, it’s just as relevant today as it was back then—particularly when it comes to your home.
These days, smart home devices give you a whole lot more than just an ounce of prevention. They can help to make your home safe and secure, lower the chance of needing to file an insurance claim (and reduce the overall severity of damages) and even save you money on homeowners insurance.
Let’s take a brief look at some of the smart home device categories and explore all the ways they can come to your rescue as a homeowner.
Smart home devices to protect from water damage
One of the most common varieties of smart home device is for detecting—and in some cases, stopping—water damage. Water leak detectors can attach to your home’s water meter or can even be installed on your main water supply line. If a leak is detected via its sensor, some brands will send an alert to your smartphone, so you can shut off the water. Other varieties come with an automatic shutoff feature, so if a leak is detected, it will shut the water off automatically.
As any experienced homeowner will attest, losing power during a powerful rainstorm can often result in a wet basement. That’s why an automatic backup power source for your sump pump is essential. It ensures your sump pump keeps pumping away, even if you experience a blackout. Your house may be dark, but at least it will be dry.
Smart home devices to alert you of fire
You could make a strong argument that the first smart home device was invented decades before anyone even thought about computers. George Andrew Darby patented the first heat and smoke detector all the way back in 1902.
Since then, smoke detectors have come a long way. Today’s smart home smoke detectors can provide you with alerts delivered straight to your phone, so if you’re out of the house and a fire starts, you’ll know right away. Some of them can also automatically shut down any HVAC equipment in your home, so smoke doesn’t get spread to other rooms.
Another smart home option: smart thermostats. These are among the most popular devices on the market, and when you look at all they can do, it’s easy to see why.
They automatically learn your heating and cooling preferences and create a schedule to maximize efficiency. And of course, they are all fully controllable from an app on your mobile device. But maybe the biggest benefit are their safety applications. Smart thermostats can integrate with your home security system or notify your local fire department in case of fire.
You can also equip them with a camera, so you’ll have video footage of the fire’s origin. Some models also have carbon monoxide detection functionality.
Smart plugs and power strips are also a good option. They’re affordable, and easy to install.
Smart home devices to guard against theft
Perhaps the most well-known smart home devices are for home security. Smart security cameras, doorbells, motion detectors and window sensors are popular for a reason—they’re easy to install, moderately priced, and you control everything from your mobile device.
They’re also quite customizable, allowing you to stay in control of every facet of your home security. These smart home devices give you plenty of choice. You can install a system that you monitor yourself, or you can subscribe to a service that has your home professionally surveilled.
If you’re not ready for all that, you can start simple with standalone devices. These allow you to monitor your home from anywhere and include security cameras at your doorbell, as well as giving you motion sensors and smart lock capabilities.
Smart home devices save you money with FMI
How effective are smart home devices at preventing potential problems (or worse)? So effective that simply having them installed in your home can save you up to 15% on your Homeowner Insurance premiums!
Talk to your FMI Agent about how you receive discounts on your premiums with the following smart home devices and/or systems:
- Burglar alarm
- Fire alarm
- Water detection
- Water detection with shutoff
- Video surveillance
Though not technically smart home devices, you can also get discounts on:
- Sprinkler systems
- Automatic generators
Learn more about FMI HomeAssist, our free app and service exclusively for FMI policyholders.
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