Whether you're looking to automate some lights, turn on your heat pump before you get home, or something bigger, like controlling every switch in your house from an iPad in the kitchen, then the team at Kāpiti.IT can help turn your home, into the ultimate smart home.
Over the last few years, we've turned our own home and business into something dreams are made of (think, 100 lights on demand scenes, instant party starter via the iPad on the wall, to automatically opening the garage door when getting home) and now we're offering the same services to our clients by applying our tried and tested smart home solutions to their property too.
Whatever your budget, we can tailor a custom solution for your home, after all every home is different, and every client has different needs. We've worked with budgets from $500 up to $50,000.
From new builds, to existing homes, we would recommend contacting us early on in your journey, especially if you're building your own home, as adding done for you smart home packages from builders can be problematic as they are often incompatible with a lot of other tech! You definitely don't want to be locked in to one operating system, and one set of light brands given how many tech startups ultimately fail.
We use open-source and brands from Google, Microsoft and Apple. These companies aren't going anywhere, anytime soon! There's plenty off-the-shelf solutions too which we can supply, install, configure and train you on, or opt for our complete done for you solutions, that will add value to your home (if you sell), as well as change the way you live and work at home forever.
A smart home is not buying and setting up an Alexa or Homepod speaker, however these can be used to get your smart home started, if you have received one as a gift! - Book a Callout instead and we'll get you sorted within an hour.
Continue reading below for some common smart home tasks, and further down the page you'll see our smart home packages.
Below are some common smart home related tasks we do for our clients to give you an idea on what we can do/help you with too.
We can help you with one aspect, or help you build an entire smart home which will add value to your home*
You'll need to decide how to control your smart home before you start buying all the equipment. While it sounds do-able, no one wants to use 5 different apps on their phone to control their home, so we recommend building a dashboard with one application to control all your equipment.
However, all equipment can be integrated into one dashboard using a small computer which we connect to your home network and connects to your dashboard.
For simplicity, we recommend Apple Homekit dashboard (you'll need an iPad/iPhone though). Or for more advanced requirements, HomeAssistant which can be used on Android and iOS (Apple).
We can help build a dashboard for you once all your equipment has been installed and configured.
For any smart home to work you'll need to ensure your home wireless coverage is top notch throughout. Most free ISP routers won't cut it for large homes, so we recommend upgrading to commercial grade (home use) equipment from Ubiquiti or Aruba.
We can supply and install this. Most homes will need a router, a switch and atleast two access points. We like to internally cable these so roof space is beneficial and avoids the need for hiring a contractor to run this cable.
For larger installs we recommend installing a server cabinet in a cool place (i.e. garage) or a room within the house that is easy to run cabling back too. We can discuss individual requirements during your site visit.
We'll setup various wireless networks for all your smart home tech, your home computers/phones, and any guest networks for friends and family to use.
Finally, for managed users we can support your smart home remotely using our remote access, which can save you time and money if you need help with your sma
This is the most common smart home step is smart lighting and it is one of the easiest ways to transform a dull and boring room, into a vibrant and exciting experience for you and your guests.
RGB (Colour) lighting is definitely the way to go as it allows you to set the mood depending on time of day, what you're doing, or when hosting friends and family. Choose from 1 of 16 million colour combinations.
We recommend starting with the most common rooms such as living, movie/tv room, kitchen and garage. This will give you a good start as to whether installing throughout the whole house is worthwhile.
Personally, we find bedrooms and bathrooms most clients prefer a good old fashioned light. Kids bedrooms and playrooms, gaming rooms, let your imagination run wild.
LED strip lighting, playbars and anything you can think of. Our team can custom build lighting solutions to suit every room or occasion.
You have two options, replacing existing bulbs with smart bulbs or installing completely new lights (our electrician contractor can help).
An easy to implement but very effective smart technology is smart plugs, allowing you to turn your dumb devices into smart ones. For example, take a heater in your workshop or gym. With one press of a button you can turn it on or off. Always start work at 8am? Turn the heater on automatically at 7.30am.
We can go one step further and actually install a device into your plug sockets. The size of an Oreo biscuit, it allows us to control the plug socket from anywhere in the world regardless of button being on/off.
This then allows you to turn on/off appliances by a push of a button, the possibilities really are endless. Some of the most common ones are garage door openers, turning a spa on/off to conserve power, turning on heaters etc.
Imagine being able to turn your heating on/off from anywhere in the world, cool huh. Well imagine being able to setup automations based on the temperature in your house or a specific room.
This really is a game changer for most and it doesn't matter what type of heat pump you've bought. If you're in the market to buy a new one, we would recommend choosing one that comes with a wireless controller - it may be a little more expensive, but makes it so much easier to integrate into your smart home.
You will be able to control your heating from your controller - or commonly requested, an iPad on the wall in your living area.
Turn your home into the ultimate party with smart speakers that play music throughout your home and garden. Choose from one zone or multi-zone to listen to different songs in different rooms at the same time.
With the help of Sonos and Polk, our preferred audio suppliers, we can install speakers in any room, including garden and pool areas, running cable back to a central hub and controllable from anywhere in the world using your controller and dashboard.
We can build custom solutions such as speakers in bushes, low-key pool speakers, or in hard to reach areas using wireless connectivity such as workshops, sheds.
You'll be able to play music from Spotify, Youtube music and your own collection. Further we can connect older equipment to your smart home such as amplifiers, surround sound systems and record players.
Believe it or not, this is one of our most requested smart home solutions and while we can't custom make blinds for you, we do have a partnership with a leading blind manufacturer that can supply blinds to fit any window up to 300cm wide with a built in motor.
You'll then need a blind controller which is around $400 and integrates with your dashboard allowing you to control all the blinds together or individually. Further you can control the sunshade or the blockout if you buy a blind with both screens attached.
We tend to stay away from turning non motorised blinds into smart blinds as there is few reliable suppliers of motors in NZ for such blinds and most are imported from Aliexpress which don't meet NZ electrical standards.
Imagine being able to open and close your garage or shed door or even gate remotely, before you arrive home or when you leave for the day. Go one step further and open your door as and when your GPS detects you arriving home.
We have used a range of smart garage door openers to suit nearly every brand imaginable, plus there's the option of using a button pusher for older doors too.
Plus with your smart controller you'll know if the door is open or closed, and even close the door automatically after a period of inactivity or a specific time.
We recommend combining with a garage door security camera so you can monitor the status of your door remotely, perfect for letting the delivery guy drop something off when you're not at home.
The possibilities are endless here, and this solution can extend to any door with a motor such as tilt, roller doors and sliding doors. Further it can be used to open gates at your property, farm gates and so much more!
When building the ultimate smart home we always recommend installing security cameras. Not only does it protect your property from would-be thieves, if you are ever burgled, it can make filing a police report and subsequent insurance claim a piece of cake. Insurance providers will have no doubts about your claim/s as the evidence is there in colour or black/white.
We recommend you shy away from cheap security cameras and choose a reputable brand. We prefer working with POE powered devices such as Ubiquiti, but for smaller homes or where roof space is limited, wireless options such as Eufy and Reolink at two great options.
Security cameras can then be used as motion detectors in your smart home system such as turning lights on inside the house if motion is detected outside, sending any crims running a mile. We've even implemented the ability to play barking music when motion is detected by a shed camera for added effect.
We recommend covering every angle of your home, usually 3-4 cameras is sufficient, but larger homes will need more. We can install a storage drive into your home networking rack, or upload to the cloud. Further we can install a UPS to ensure cameras continue to record in the event of a power outage, or crafty criminals disabling your power before breaking in!
We've got a full page on security cameras which we'd recommend checking out if this is something you're interested in.
If you're in the market for a new television, then it's time to consider choosing a smart TV. While all new TVs claim to offer some form of smart integration, we find specific brands are much easier to integrate into a smart home solution. These include Sony (preferred), Samsung and LG.
Why buy a smart tv you ask?
You can turn on/off from your controller. Left the TV on upstairs, you can turn it off from downstairs. Want to have that specific movie queued up, loaded and the lights dimmed while you're making popcorn, turn on movie mode from the controller.
Want to get a photograph of the person approaching your front door on your TV in the middle of a blockbuster movie (you'd probably miss the doorbell), then having a smart TV is the way to go.
Additionally, we can change the channel/source using the controller. For example, some TVs require you to manually change from PS5 to SKY using the remote. Imagine being able to do this from your phone or based on time automations such as 8pm is game time!
Plus, with integrations with your smart lighting and a SYNC box, we can even control the colour of your lights based on the TV screen colour. When the screen goes green, all the lights in your room can go green, then white, blue, green for every scene. Incredible, and surreal if you love your movies.
Finally, integration with your NAS via Plex allows you to download and watch all your movies!
From whiteware to battery chargers for your electric car, having complete visibility over battery level, start/stop and duration remaining is something we're all keen to keep an eye on. Forget going out to the garage or utility room, check it all from your controller in real time.
Brands such as LG are coming up with new appliances such as washing machines, fridges, vacuums and dryers that come with smart technology which can be integrated into a controller for managing from one central location, as well as on the go.
Talk to us about integrating these devices, equally if you're in the market for a new appliance, make sure it has some form of smart tech integrated. They are a little more expensive, but will be better in the longrun for your ultimate smart home system.
For a limited time, we are offering a 100% free consultation in your own home or business to discuss your smart home project.
Whether you want a few lights or the wholly grail, a smart home can and will add dramatic value to your property should you ever come to sell or rent it out. Plus, it will completely change your lives for the better.
If you've dreamed it, we can implement it. We'll start by a walk-through of your property, followed up with any personal preferences before drafting up a no obligation quote.
Available in Wellington & Horowhenua Regions
This client has an iPad controller on their kitchen wall and one by the front door for controlling devices in the living areas, setting scenes, viewing their cameras and changing to a Spotify media center when friends come round using the iPad dual screen mode.
They have over 100 smart lights, mostly in the living area and garden that come on at specific times daily, there's over 50 different scenes for every mood or party style. They have 10 CCTV cameras which they can view on the iPad or on their phones. Further they have their smart garage door, back door, front door and gate controllable via the iPad.
The client is using Homekit for usability, and a backbone of HomeAssistant to integrate everything together. They are using a robust home mesh wireless network which we installed for them when doing the smart home install.
This setup cost approx $25,000 vs $100,000 which they were quoted from another major smart home outfit in Kapiti.
We work with all clients, no job too big or small, although a minimum of $500 is expected!
How does a smart home install work?
First step is the initial consultation in your own home or business. We'll grab information on your dream setup, what you'd like to achieve, do etc. Our guys can make recommendations on what we think you could do too - but please don't feel pressured, the beauty of our smart home solutions is the ability to add and add for years to come. Once you see how powerful this is and how you can transform your home, you will be hooked.
We'll discuss controller options, whether you'd like an iPad in the kitchen and living room, or prefer to use your phones, voice etc. If power is likely required we will let you know. We'll go through all the rooms.
We'll prepare a quote for you, a rough price can be determined on the day but may be more or less depending on actual costings, i.e. a $200 light vs a $100 light. We'll get a feel for your budget, add our estimated labour costs and give you a quote within a few working days. Quotes are non-obligation.
If you're reading to accept, we'll get onto your job as soon as we can. If a sparky is required, he'll come and do his thing, so we can get the controller and interface up and running. Any networking gear is swapped out and upgraded next, followed by swapping all your lights and other tech. Then we code (yes coding exists in smart home solutions) to create your control panel. We'll work with you to customise this how you like, literally anything is possible. Finally we will test, setup automations, show you how to use your home, how to manage and deal with any minor troubleshooting and how to manage your smart home from anywhere in the world!
Finally we have you enrol on our monthly maintenance package if you want peace of mind. We can remotely update, monitor and manage your smart home to ensure it's always working. This includes 1 hour of tinkering per month for making any changes. If you'd rather manage it yourself, then that's fine too, you can get us back and as and when (if) you need us -callout fee applies.
Finally Finally, you can let us know when you want to add more tech, remove tech, change tech, or literally anything and we'll come back and help -and given how versatile your smart home is, this could be us, you and your kids, or another IT company, no restrictions!
How much does a smart home cost?
The sky really is the limit, you can spend as much or little as you like. There's two approaches, a custom fitout in an existing house which is usually our main client base, or having your builder integrate smart home technology during the build of your new house. The latter is more expensive and often involves a specific controller and architecture which can have it's pros and cons such as lack of support, compatible products etc. We recommend using a freely available controller with the ability to chop and change depending on what's required.
Please get in touch for a free on site consultation and we'll go through the options. There's budget, mid-range and luxury solutions to suit every household. Size of your property, number of rooms, what you're looking to achieve through automations or a dashboard to control the home, all have an impact on price.
Can I control my smart home when I'm away from the house?
Yes, this is one of the main reasons for being a smart home, you can control anywhere in the world. You will need wireless in your house, and the router/access points need to be on at all times.
Can I setup smart alarms, security cameras and triggers?
Yes absolutely, there's many different options available from cheap cameras to 4K offerings, we can help you install them, configure them with your smart home and integrate them to any other smart home tech. For example we regularly get clients who want the camera to take a photo of someone at the door and display it on the TV so when they are watching a film, they can see who's approaching before the door bell even rings!
This is just an example, anything is possible!
Why is the minimum budget $500?
We feel this is about as cheap as you can get started with one room in your home. If you're only buying a few lights we recommend booking an IT callout (from $95) and we'll get you setup within an hour. Larger projects often require a few hours of labour + materials and this can be over $500 so we like to provide a rough estimate as to our lowest price incase you're only looking for a small smart home job. Most of our mid to large projects are around $10,000 with larger homes being up to $50,000, but again every project is different 🙂
What smart home solutions do you use?
We can use literally anything to achieve your dream project however we highly recommend a few brands and vendors. We regularly use Philips Hue, LIFX and Meross for our lighting, all 3 integrate nicely using Home Assistant, Apple Homekit and Hoobs - the 3 main controllers we use for managing everything from automations to dashboards for you to control your smart home. We highly recommend upgrading your home networking by installing Ubiquiti networking gear, even just a router, switch and a few commercial grade access points to ensure your network is running mint. Finally we can add just about any smart tech to complete your smart home, from EUFY to Tuya devices (which is popular in brands such as Holman deck lights) to those cheap lights from places like Mightyape, we can get it all integrated.
What smart home solutions do you avoid?
We try and avoid other builders or electricians proprietary solutions. For example if you're building a house and you are offered a $25-50k smart home upgrade, this might be great initially but what happens when your builder goes into administration or disappears and something stops working? Further most of their solutions aren't customisable and you have to buy their lights and their tech, their networking gear etc. We can definitely try and help integrate or assist with such solutions but it can be time consuming for us, and expensive for you! Our smart home solutions are open-source, as in you can change the controller, change the lights and still integrate everything together if something changes, and any IT guy worth his salt can probably help you in the future without having to come back to Kapiti.IT -however we would love it if you did.
Further we avoid brands that are known to be problematic, we aren't going to diss these brands here, but we will let you know during your consultation what brands we will avoid, especially if you're thinking of buying your own lights or smart technology for our guys to install!
Your IT services provider here on the Kāpiti Coast, offering fast response on site IT support and projects for residential and small businesses. No job is too big or small. We come to you, book in real time and secure your spot.