AI Gadgets

Smart Blinds on a Budget? Start With This Room

Ikea smart curtains installed in a home
Josh Hendrickson / How-To Geek

Maybe one day smart blinds will cost around the same price as regular window treatments, but that day certainly isn’t today. In the meantime, here’s the room we think smart blinds are worth splurging for.

Why Focus on a Single Room?

When it comes to outfitting your home with smart gear, outfitting an entire home can become rather costly rather quickly. It’s why we all make cost/value assessments on where we put smart gear like “Does the guest room really need a smart speaker?” or “I’ll put the more expensive color-changing bulbs in the game room where I Twitch stream and the regular white ones in the living room.”

If you have the money to spend and love living your best smart home life, maybe you do put a smart speaker in every room and smart bulbs in every fixture. But most people are going to be a bit more conservative in their smart home expenditures.

Smart blinds are a pricey upgrade. You can expect to pay a minimum of around $125 per window if you’re purchasing the smaller budget IKEA options, and once you get into custom sizing, and professional installation, the cost skyrockets. How the smart blinds are powered can also add to the cost, especially if you want to retrofit an existing home for hardwired connections. (However, we do love smart blinds!)

You could easily spend $15,000 or more on a professional installation that covers every room in your house. But even if you DIY with budget options, it’s still easy to spend thousands on the project.

So, like you would pick and choose which rooms to put your other expensive smart home gear in, it just makes sense to prioritize your smart blinds for the room you’ll get the most utility out of every dollar you invest in the project.

RELATED: 8 Smart Blind Benefits Worth the Splurge

Our Pick? The Bedroom

Your bedroom is a great place to start with many smart home endeavors. Smart bulbs might be novel in your living room, but in your bedroom, you can leverage them to create a relaxing mood at night when you’re winding down and gently wake you up in the morning.

Because of that, if someone told me they only had enough room in their budget for a few smart bulbs, I would strongly argue in favor of them trying them out in their bedroom first. The same goes for smart blinds.

If money is no object, putting smart blinds in every single room of your house is really cool and makes a wide variety of neat tricks available to you. You can open and close blinds on a schedule for security purposes, to let the sun in during the winter and keep it out during summer, and even ensure the windows are thrown open for your house plants or pets. But working on a budget, just like with smart bulbs, you should focus on your bedroom and maximizing the benefit of smart blinds on a smaller budget.

Why the bedroom? While smart blinds in your living room are great, no doubt about it, your living room doesn’t have the same privacy and light-control needs as your bedroom. Automating the blinds in your bedroom allows you to have them automatically close in the evening for maximum privacy and automatically open in the morning to let the light in and jump-start your circadian rhythm.

And by scaling back to just the bedroom, you can turn a project that would have cost thousands (even with DIY elbow grease involved) into a project that may only cost hundreds. For example, to outfit a bedroom with five traditional double-hung windows using budget-friendly IKEA smart blackout shades would only cost around $6-700. And if your bedroom only has one or two windows, the cost could be as low as $150-250.

We don’t know about you, but while spending enough to buy a used car on retrofitting an entire house gives us pause, it’s much more reasonable to spend a few hundred dollars to get automated blinds in a room where privacy and light control is crucial.

And if you combine smart blinds with smart bulbs, you’ll have total control over the lighting in your bedroom. So no matter what time of year, you can relax with warm, soothing light at night and wake up with the sun shining on your face (or an LED approximation thereof).