5 Slick Smart Home Upgrades You Can Pull Off Even While Stuck In A Rental

PEDESTRIAN.TV and Telstra are teaming up to teach you how to turn your dumb home into a smart home with some wild new technology that’s available right bloody now. So quit living in the dark ages and keep reading.

When most people think about smart home technology, they think one of two things – it’s either incredibly expensive, or they don’t have the know-how required to install and maintain it. 
If this is you, I would like you to promptly take those thoughts, squash them into a neat little ball and throw it in the trash. Do it now. 
Not only is upgrading your home in 2017 incredibly easy, it’s also affordable and far more common than you’d think.

“But Pedestrian, I live in a rental and am therefore not able to make modifications to my abode as per the contractual agreement with my landlord,” you say? 
Good news: there a plenty of smart home upgrades you can do to your rental that A, you can take with you when you move and B, will not damage the property. So get up on outta here with your stinkin’ contract. 
All you need to get started is a WiFi internet connection, a smartphone and a smart home hub (which will come with most starter kits). 
Here’s some handy upgrades for all you renters out there. 

Have you ever left the house and freaked out an hour later because you feel like you might have left the iron on? Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. 
That’s the kind of feeling that eats at you all day, too. Will your house burn down? Maybe it will. Oh no. If you’re particularly concerned, you’ll run home and check, but with an easy smart plug upgrade, you can check from anywhere with phone reception. 
A smart plug looks like any other power adapter and once set up, you’ll be able to turn it on or off from anywhere. Peace of mind to the extreme. 
Furthermore, you can use them to automate your day. Set one to whack the kettle on automatically when you wake up every morning or pair it with a sensor to turn on a lamp when you walk into the room. 
It’s the control you never knew you bloody wanted. 
Sometimes you just wanna be able to keep tabs on your home, right? Of course you do.
The good news is, it can be done heaps easily with a bunch of different sensors. Some will trigger when a room or hallway is entered while others can tell you when doors or windows are opened. 
Most of these bad boys will use adhesive to stick to surfaces, just like the 3M hooks you use to hang your fancy art. The best thing is, these can be easily removed and taken with you when you move. 
Once again, these devices can be hooked up to your mobile to alert you if someone’s snooping around your house while you’re not home. 
And if you’re the kind of person that’s perpetually fangin’ for a cup of coffee, you can set up a sensor on your door that, when opened after a long day at work, will automatically trigger the kettle to boil. 
Automation, baby. It’s got your caffeine-ridden back. 

Pets are great fun. They’re always ready to hang out and will never say anything bad to you or about you. That’s in part because they can’t talk, but mostly because they’re extremely pure beings. 
But leaving them at home sucks. No doubt about that little fact. Luckily, it’s already the future and you can hang out with them via the power of the internet. We even made a video about how it works which you can watch below. 
Pretty rad, huh? The best part is, the video components of monitoring are essentially just webcams, so you can put them wherever you like without the need to screw them into anything. Put them on a desk, a shelf or use some easily removable adhesive to put them on the wall. You do you. 
And who knows, your little pal could score you the next viral video, like this furry dude.
Aside from the smartphone automation – which you can absolutely do with a smart lightbulb – these puppies will also save you power. 
They fit into your run-of-the-mill sockets and use power-efficient LED lights. You can set them to turn on and off at certain times, so you don’t have to worry about leaving them on when you leave the house. Easy peasy, m8. 
Arguably the most useful upgrade you can do to your home, but also one you might need to speak to your landlord about first, as you’ll need to change the whole lock.
Smart locks will let you lock or unlock your door remotely, which is amazing if you regularly accidentally leave it unlocked during a morning rush, or even just to let a delivery driver drop a package inside without you there. 
They’ll keep logs of the times people come in and out and also alert you if someone enters while you’re not home. 
Traditional locks are easily replaced afterwards, so you won’t be damaging the property, which is always a bonus. 
Photo: Moon.