The sweltering heat of another record-breaking summer is finally coming to an end. That means cooler temperatures, holiday travel, family gatherings, and plenty of time spent indoors getting cozy. If you want to go into fall with confidence, these smart tech investments can keep your wallet happy and your home secured.
 Stay Warm with a Smart Thermostat
As we move into fall and temperatures start to drop, you’ll probably spend more time indoors—and you’ll probably turn up the temperature on your thermostat as well. You can make sure your home stays warm while saving some energy by installing a smart thermostat.
Products like the Nest Learning Thermostat or Ecobee 4 adjust themselves to your preferences and keep the temperature where it’s most comfortable, and they can even alert you to temperature drops so you won’t have to worry about your heat failing while you’re visiting family. They also help lower energy use by automatically adjusting the temperature up or down while you are away, which can add up to some solid savings over the course of the year—up to 12% on heating bills. Nest reports that its thermostat can pay for itself in under two years, and after that, it’s all money in your pocket.
 Keep an Eye on Packages with a Doorbell Camera
Fall also brings the start of the holiday season, which likely means more deliveries and packages on your doorstep. Unfortunately, package theft is an increasingly common problem—as many as 30% of Americans living in a house or townhome have had a package stolen. A doorbell camera can help with that.
Doorbell cameras give you both convenience and security —you can see who’s at the door and communicate with them without getting up off the couch. Some video doorbells can also be set to alert you and record when there’s motion. If the presence of the camera isn’t enough of a deterrent, it can catch footage of the theft.
 Make Traveling Safer with Smart Locks
As summer ends, many folks will be squeezing in last-minute vacations. And with the holiday season approaching, many more will be visiting family and friends. If you’ve got travel plans this fall, smart locks on your doors can make securing your home more convenient.
With a smart lock like those from August, you can control or check on your locks remotely from your phone, so there’s no need to worry about forgetting to lock your doors. Many models also allow you to enable guest access—say, for a pet sitter—and then revoke that access when you get home without having to worry about copies of your physical key floating around.
 Keep Walkways Safe with Smart Lighting
The end of summer means shorter days. As it gets darker earlier, temperatures drop, and ice begins to form on surfaces, so you’ll need to see where you’re walking. Falls are a major source of injury for adults, especially as they age, and the effects can be serious. Good outdoor lighting can help reduce the risk of a fall, and smart home technology can make it even easier to have.
There are a few ways you can implement smart lighting. You could set up your smart lighting on a timer, or you could use the motion sensors from most home security packages. Motion sensors may be the most useful, since you know the lights will be on when you walk by, rather than needing to worry about manual controls. Strategically placed lighting can also help keep potential burglars away by illuminating shadows.
Furthermore, aging adults can benefit greatly throughout their home by making smart and safe home improvements as part of a room-by-room age-in-place strategy. This can go a long way toward preventing injuries.
 Reduce Fire Hazards with a Smart Smoke Detector
With temperatures dropping, many people like to spend time by the fireplace relaxing, and the holidays also mean lots of family gatherings with home-cooked meals. Both events mean an increased risk of fire in the home. In fact, Thanksgiving is the number one day for cooking-related house fires in the US.
Smart smoke detectors like those from Nest can help alert you of smoke and carbon monoxide in your home, even if you’re not there. They can also give early warnings that let you know which device is sounding in which room—so if you are woken up in the middle of the night, you can instantly know which part of your home is in danger before a fire gets out of control.
Smart Tech for All Seasons
Smart homes aren’t just about convenience and the cool factor. They’re genuinely useful and can help keep you and your family safe. And these smart home safety ideas aren’t just perfect for fall—they’re great all year round. Pick which ones will benefit you the most, and put them to use today!
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Last update on 2019-04-24 / Affiliate links and images from Amazon Product Advertising API.