If you want greater functionality and security in your home, you don’t have to look far. Innovative products continue to develop, evolve and surprise. With countless smart devices and smarter product designs available, now it’s easier than ever to find new options that will maximize the convenience and safety of your home.
- Transformative kitchen tools
A workstation kitchen sink will add style, flexibility and functionality to any kitchen. An option includes a cutting board and metal colander that sit on tiered ledges inside the sink bowl and can be placed exactly where you want them. “These are features that have been added to the standard sink to make working in your kitchen more functional,” says Katie Darval, owner/contractor, Beyond Kitchens. “It’s one of those products you don’t know you need until you see it in person, which is why we decided to include it in our showroom.”
Advanced kitchen faucets go beyond functional with a wide range of creative styles, from the pull-out spray option to touch, motion and now voice-activated features. For example, the Brizo SmartTouch faucet can be turned on and off by touching it anywhere, making cleaning up a breeze. “The faucet also allows you to add on voice activation,” says Darval. “This pairs with Amazon and Google and allows you to dispense the exact amount of water you need—hands-free.” It can also warm the water and turn the faucet on and off.
Smart appliances bring significant convenience, and they can be controlled and managed from anywhere with a smartphone. “You can preheat a smart oven while on your way home to help save time,” says Darval. “Along with built-in cooking modes, you can select an option like ‘salmon,’ and it will cook at the correct temperature and time. The oven will tell you when to take your food out, and it also has a built-in air fryer, which eliminates another small appliance on your countertop.”
Pro tip: Think about the features you would like to have. Explore ideas online, go see the products in person and discuss with the appropriate specialists.
- Innovative lighting for the home and yard
Fun, popular lighting products include color-changing, app-controlled light fixtures and smart-light controls and dimmers. You can set timers or create schedules to light your way when it’s dark and turn on a lamp without reaching for the switch. Dim your lights or change their colors for different times of the day or year and for parties and holidays. The possibilities are endless.
“The purpose of the color-changing and app-controlled fixtures is to create personalized moods or atmospheres,” says Becky Holmen, lighting specialist and interior designer at Haley Lighting. “There are also health benefits to having color changing technology in your home.” Different types and colors of lighting can affect your sleep, mood and overall wellness.
The cost of lighting technology has decreased with ever-changing, improved options, making it easier to add these products to your home. Plus, the apps are easier to use and customize with your own settings.
Pro tip: Before making a purchase, ensure that the product is compatible with existing smart systems and that your internet and Wi-Fi are compatible with the new products. Visit a lighting showroom for a personal consultation.
- A security system for everyone
“Technology is always evolving in our industry, which is exciting to see,” says Melissa Brinkman, CEO, Custom Alarm. “The main security system we install now is the QOLSYS IQ 4 Panel.” The all-in-one keypad system has unique and intelligent features such as a camera, built-in glass-break detector, photo frame and the ability to stream Bluetooth music.
Custom Alarm also installs outdoor Wi-Fi security cameras with multiple features, including the ability to create custom schedules. Imagine one click of a button to disarm your system, turn on an outdoor light, unlock the garage door and receive a picture of your home. The device can even control your pool filter.
“One of our main goals is to leverage technology to make your life safer, easier and less stressful,” explains Brinkman. “There are many ways to look at why this technology is essential for anyone at any phase and stage of life.” Consider additional products such as water detection sensors, light/lamp modules, smoke detectors, keyless door locks, thermostat modules and garage door openers. You can also receive notifications when your kids get home and can check on aging parents or grandparents—or your furry friends.
Pro tip: Be involved when talking about security, technology and convenience in and around the home. Consider how your lifestyle could be easier and seek a professional for a custom solution that will be adaptable as life changes.
Envision how your home could be more accessible and protected—and the innovative possibilities ahead. ::