Smart home technology is now everywhere you turn, from home centers to the home page of your favorite online retailer. And that’s great if you’re a whiz with technology — but for the rest of us, knowing where to begin can be a challenge.

New to smart home technology? Here are two great places to start.

Roost Smart Water Leak and Freeze Detector, $50

Frozen pipes and leaky water lines can lead to major repairs. Even a slow drip can result in costly (not to mention unhealthy) mold and mildew outbreaks. The Roost sensor nips these problems in the bud by sending an alert to your phone at the first sign of moisture. Slip one under your water heater, washing machine, and anywhere else water is a concern. The sensors will also alert you to humidity issues and serious temperature swings.

August Smart Lock, $150

This affordable smart lock eliminates the need for keys. Simply swipe your phone in front of the device — the lock opens automatically, then locks behind you once you’re inside. You can also unlock the door from anywhere using the smart phone app. I like August because it works with your existing deadbolt, meaning you don’t have to change your door’s exterior.

Dan’s Bottom Line

A leak detector and smart lock are two of my favorite places to start with your smart home, since they hit the sweet spot between security, convenience and value. Other favorite smart home starter products include smart thermostats, home smoke alarms, and cameras.

If you need help with the installation, a handyman or electrician from HomeAdvisor’s network of pre-screened professionals will be able to handle most smart home projects.


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