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Automated home system at affordable price

May 18, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
Imagine automating your home so you can run your lights, security, door locks and thermostat at the touch of a button, or remotely with your smartphone or tablet computer. Usually systems like that would cost you a lot of money. But there is a new system one company is using that is quite affordable.

Raymond Izaac likes technology so much that when he added a security system to his Northridge home, he went several steps beyond a way to stop thieves from breaking into his house.

"It's simple, it works," said Izaac.

What Izaac has that works is home automation. So his door locks, lights, heating and air conditioning can be completely controlled by a keypad in the house, or when he's away, by his tablet computer or smartphone.

"Wherever I am, if I look at the thermostat remotely and if I see it's 60 degrees, or 65, and if I want the home to be warm by the time the family arrives, set the thermostat at 72 remotely, come back -- it's done," said Izaac.

Home automation can be adapted to your everyday needs. Say you want to turn on a coffee pot or some other small appliance remotely. You plug in a module, you plug the small appliance into it, and then you can control it with your smartphone or computer no matter where you are.

"Mothers love the system," said Megan Herrick, Vivint Home Security spokesperson. "Because you can monitor your kids whether they're little ones home with the nanny. For teenagers it's great because you can see when they walk through the door, you can get a text message on your phone when those door locks open and those kids walk through the door."

And she's talking about the camera that comes with the system so customers like Izaac can keep an eye on the family, even on the go. Typically home automation like this would cost thousands of dollars, but Izaac didn't pay anywhere near that much.

"You can get a home-automation system for as low as $199 as an activation fee, when the equipment is worth thousands of dollars, and then have a low monthly payment of anywhere from $35, to a full home automation system runs around $68 a month," said Herrick.


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