At SmartHomeMade, we recommend smart switches. If your home has neutral wires to your switch boxes, these are are a must. A benefit to smart switches over smart bulbs is they can not be “turned off,” they are constinetly communicating with your hub whether they are in the on or off position. Smart bulbs must remain on at all times, and if someone in your house turns the lights off, then you no longer can control the smart bulb with your devices.
The above system is a mesh system. The benefit to mesh systems is speed and coverage. The more mesh devices you place around your home, the more coverage you get and faster your connection is. Trash your old router and WiFi extender system and upgrade to mesh!
The best benefit to having a smart thermostat is adding room sensors. You can add room sensors to every room in your home and the thermostat will take an average of all the rooms in your home and use that as your base temperature. Whereas with “dumb” thermostats, your thermostat only knows the temperature of where it is located. Room sensors also help with hot and cold room issues.
DIY Smart Supplies
I personally use a Fire 8 Tablet with ActionTiles to run a personal control panel with all my smart devices.