If you love entertaining guests in your home, the next upgrade you make to step it up a notch could be home automation. With this technology, your home can be more than just the setting of your next hosted event; it can be the centerpiece. Here are five ways you can use the features of home automation to help you make your next party the best one yet.

1. Let the guests in without running to the door.

If you’re on your way home from the store and your first guests have arrived, wow them by unlocking the door right from your smartphone. As the party unfolds, keep the doors locked so you don’t get anyone unwelcome in your home, but use your automation app to let any late arrivers in. Plus, you can use the video cameras at your doorway to make sure you can see who is ringing the doorbell without leaving your conversations.

2. Control the lights from anywhere.

Mood lighting is essential for entertaining. Set the lights to dim automatically at certain points of the evening, or manually trigger them right from the palm of your hand. Or, if someone left the light on in a room no one is in, use the automation app to turn them off, which helps you prevent an outrageous electricity bill. If the party starts at a restaurant and then heads back to your house, turn the lights on from your mobile device before you arrive back at your place so no one pulls up to a dark house.

3. Adjust the thermostat so everyone is comfortable.

If the temperature outside is warming or cooling the temperature of your home, automatically set your thermostat to ensure comfort. To change the temperature manually during the party, use your smartphone to adjust it remotely.

4. Control the music, TV, or other entertainment source.

While you’re preparing food in the kitchen or on the barbeque, turn on the game or a movie for your guests to enjoy. If they’re socializing, turn the stereo on for background noise. You can even leave a tablet on the table so your guests can control the entertainment sources themselves when your hands are full.

5. Shut down everything after the party automatically or with the click of a button.

Once the party is over, you’re probably exhausted so you head straight to bed. But once you’re comfy, you realize there are some things that got left on, but you don’t want to get up. To make the end of the night easier for you, set your thermostat and lights to adjust automatically, or use your app to turn the lights off and make sure the doors are locked.

With home automation, you can control a number of aspects of your next party using your smartphone or tablet from any room in your home, outside, or wherever you have an Internet connection for your mobile device. If you’re a born entertainer and party host, consider home automation to take your entertainment to the next level.

Written by Carolyn Heneghan

Carolyn is a nutrition and environmental crusader who loves using and exploring technology almost as much as she enjoys writing about it. Learn more

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