With fibre, wi-fi and Bluetooth becoming standard, catering to a modern lifestyle is as easy as using a phone.
Here are some technological innovations that can modernise your existing home - and possibly save you money in the long term.
Video intercoms have been available for many years. Now there is the video doorbell, which is really simple to install. All you need to do is fix the doorbell module to the outside of your front door and plug in the phones.
When someone rings the bell, the system takes a photo and sends it to all the indoor phone handsets - as well as your smartphone, if you choose. You can then open the door or start the streaming video from the doorbell unit and talk to your visitor through the phone.
The video doorbell also stores photos of everyone who rang when you weren’t home – day and night. The handsets can also be used as an in-house two-way radio.
A wide range of remote home monitoring systems are available. Each system consists of a main hub and modules that plug in around the home and are all connected to each other.
Once the system is installed – and you can probably do this yourself - you can use your smartphone or tablet to switch lights on and off, and control electric garage door openers and geyser thermostats. You can also programme indoor and outdoor lights to turn on and off at different times.
If you also install motion sensors and cameras, you can keep tabs on any movement in your home. This is especially handy if you need to keep an eye on children and pets while you are at work.
Assuming you already have wi-fi installed, one of the easiest ways to take advantage of the internet-everywhere signal is through smart televisions.
Smart TVs have built in wi-fi capability that allows you to access the internet, make use of services like Netflix and Showmax, stream music videos and take advantage of apps on the big screen in your living room.
Touch screen fridge
Smart fridges come with LCD displays built into the door that function like mini tablets. You can control temperature settings and ice-making functions from the touch screen. You can also leave notes for other family members, find recipes and even check on the weather.