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Tech toys for second home

Posted by smiles33 (My Page) on
Mon, Sep 16, 13 at 16:07

I'm not sure where to even post this thread, but I figured I'd drop it here since some of this is related to electronics. We are in escrow now for a second home about 2 hours for us and we hope to be there regularly (weekends, longer vacations, etc.). We do not plan to rent, but our entire extended families are within 45 minutes' drive so I suspect we will have visitors when we aren't there. Thus, I want ways to monitor the property when we're not there (e.g., make sure no one leaves the AC set for 70 degrees, water cut-off if there's a leak, etc.).

It's in a rural area so my plan right now is to:

1) Install an alarm system that I can remotely monitor. We use FrontPoint at our primary home and I get text alerts when sensors are triggered (e.g., back sliding glass door is opened during business hours when no one is home). It can also include water detection sensors, glass break sensors, etc.

2) Put in a thermostat we can monitor from home (probably Nest, as we love it in our primary home, though I've read of complaints here).

3) Put in a FloodStop system to automatically cut off water if a leak is detected.

4) I don't know if we need a gas earthquake shut-off valve (we are in CA) as the second house is on a propane tank. We have one at our primary house but it is on natural gas. Anyone know?

5) I may move our Dropcam to the second home, as we currently use it just to monitor our dog at home. But I don't know how helpful it is to have video monitoring when we're still 2 hours away.

7) Put in keyless deadbolts (we have a Schlage on our garage entry door).

What else should I consider? At most, we'd be there every weekend during non-summer months (it's too hot then). It's below the snow line so temps should stay above 30 degrees.

Thanks for any help!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Tech toys for second home

You should go ahead and install a Phillips Hue lighting system, and report back here in one month on its' practicality... you know, just in case there are forum members that are considering them.

Earthquakes are something we don't deal with here in Missouri (even being on a fault line), but I do know they have electronic sensors for gas tanks as well that can report and inefficiencies or uncharacteristic behavior to your phone.


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