If you are selling your home or buying a new home, changing smart home, automation, security and Wi-Fi passwords and access is often an overlooked task. Within the busyness of financial transactions and the logistics of packing and moving, this important factor can be inadvertently pushed aside. This can cause major headaches early in your move or sell if you don’t plan ahead, and can even leave your home at risk.
In your lists of things to remember should be a smart home ‘to-do’ list. Some of the items below focus more on sellers, and some more on buyers. Either way, there are important things to remember with regard to devices and passwords.
Take inventory: make a list of your devices, manuals, vendor/manufacturer websites and customer support numbers
Disconnect: for sellers, disable all administrative and user access
Notify: let vendors and manufacturers know about changes in ownership
Revert to defaults: reset all devices to factory defaults, thereby enabling a ‘clean slate’
Update: be sure all smart devices and software have been updates to ensure current security and encryption
Your New Home
Compatibility: if you are bringing smart devices into a new home, check for compatibility between devices you already own and existing smart home technology in your new home
Prior access: if you are moving into a smart home that was set up by the former owners, verify that all prior owner access has been disabled
Budget: in adapting to a new smart home, set aside a budget for items to work with your new technology; even smart lightbulbs are costly, but over time they will save you money on your electric bill
Multiple manufacturers: home products from multiple manufacturers tied together through a hub or smart speaker (i.e., Amazon Echo, Google Home) have cloud services that require password protected accounts where each account is registered to the homeowner; you will need to set up each device with new passwords and access
Transfers to new owners: when a device is de-registered from the seller and assigned to an account setup by a new owner, all configuration, programming and connections to other services are lost; new owners can be left with much hardware that will not function properly; many people will not leave smart speakers but in the event that they do, there is a process to be followed to ensure they’ll work properly
Control4 Automation Tips
Try to get from your home sellers the name and contact information for the Control4 dealer. They will help you set up your account and provide tech support. Depending on when the system was installed, you may need to do some updating. As each system is unique and customizable, you’ll need to know what controls the sellers set up, such as lighting, A/V, security and HVAC. You should also find out if the seller is planning to take any peripherals with them, such as touch screens or remotes. Once you move in, you’ll want to get your internet service and wireless network up and running as soon as possible. Many Control4 functions are dependent on a home network, so you need to get the service up in order to determine what work if any needs to be done to make your Control4 system work seamlessly.
Protect Your Home Network
In your new home, be sure to take precautions to protect your network and your safety. Be sure to use encryption on your router and use a secure password. Use a name for the router that isn’t associated with your name or address. Never use default names or passwords for any devices! In addition, be sure to create a guest network that does not allow access to your devices on the network. This way, friends can get online, but will not have access to smart devices. Be sure to use a firewall on your router. There are options for how to do this, but even a firewall built into your router or modem is better than nothing. Last, be sure to keep all internet-connected devices updated.
Wi-Fi, smart homes and automation—what a pleasure! If you want to be certain that your new home—and the one you are selling—is secure, there is a lot of work to do. IDS Audio/Video & Technologies can put your mind at ease. We can assess your entire home and network and take care of all the updates, upgrades and password access changes for you. Leave this job to us and you’ll be able to fully enjoy your new home in no time! For more information, reach out to us today! Email or phone us at 516-625-6060.