How To Move Your Smart Home in 2020

Move your smart home

Moving was hard back in 2010. Moving in 2020 adds a whole other layer of complication and paranoia to the mix. Would you move into a home where the previous owner hard-wired a video security system? Would you be convinced that Ring doorbell was properly deactivated or that a mischievous teen of the previous occupants would not turn your heat up to 90 degrees in the middle of the summer? This article covers your questions on how to move your smart home in 2020, while maintaining your privacy and sanity.

What To Do With Smart Home Devices When You Sell Your Home

As a homeowner, you realize the value integrated smart home features provide to a prospective buyer. Smart lighting, smart thermostats, video cameras and door locks are just a few of the upgrades you may have performed while you owned your home. These upgrades might be used as negotiating tools when trying to get top dollar for your home. A Nest thermostat, for example can cost several hundred dollars to have installed.

Smart Home Devices You Should Leave With The Property When Moving

While it may seem logical to take some of your gadgets with you when you move your smart home in 2020, there are times when leaving them behind makes more sense.

Smart Thermostats – Many newer air conditioning or heating systems can benefit from having a smart thermostat installed. You can schedule them to adjust the temperature automatically when away. Or they can learn your habits and adjust the temperature automatically when not sensing movement. The cost savings can be substantial. It does not make sense to take these devices with you. The cost of replacing and installing an alternative can be too costly for the average homeowner. Instead, give the end-user documentation on how to reset a smart thermostat and claim it as their own.

Wired Video Cameras – Having a wired security system in place can be appealing, but also a bit creepy for a perspective home buyer. The notion that they are always being watched by you might gnaw at the back of their minds forever. This is something that can be discussed with the buyer. Removing cameras from a working security system might prove to be more complicated than just disconnecting them. If you are using a monitoring service, it might be helpful to put the buyer in contact with the company to go over how to reset passwords on the system to set their minds at ease.

Keypad Door Locks – A door lock that can be reprogrammed and reset is good to leave behind if the buyer is comfortable with the instructions and feels comfortable resetting the device.

Wired Smart Switches – Alexa or Google enabled smart switches are really nice to have. If you installed them and have the electrical aptitude to replace them with their analog counterparts, feel free to take them with you. Otherwise, leave them for the new homeowner to enjoy, along with documentation on how to connect to them.

Smart Home Devices You Should Take With You When Moving

Some smart devices are just as easy to take with you, taking the creepy factor out of the equation.

Wireless doorbells – Disconnect the Ring doorbell or similar product and take it with you. You can use the existing wiring to install or reinstall a good-ole-fashioned push-button doorbell. If there is no wiring, a wireless doorbell can be purchased for little cost.

Wireless Security Cameras – A wireless security camera such as the Blink XT2 is nice to have, but also easy enough to just unplug and take with you.

Wireless Door Locks – Door locks that are tied to your account and can be opened with your smart phone should be removed and replaced. You can always ask the buyer if they feel safe if you leave it behind but, in general, you will want to take this with you. An unauthorized entry on the device might leave the buyer to suspect you, and the risk simply isn’t worth it.

Smart Plugs – Smart plugs are convenient and inexpensive. No reason to leave any of these behind.

Alexa or Google Devices – Smart hubs are tied to your account and relatively common. No reason to leave any of these behind.

How To Reset A Nest Thermostat


One of the most popular smart thermostats is the Nest. Below are instructions for quickly resetting the Nest back to factory settings so the new owner can claim and use it going forward.

  1. Press on the Nest Thermostat unit’s face to bring up the main menu.
  2. Spin the dial to find the gear icon for Settings, and then press the face.
  3. Scroll over and press Reset.
  4. Scroll down to select All Settings. Press Reset when the confirmation comes up.
  5. You will be asked to turn the Ring’s dial all the way to the right, and then Press OK within 10 seconds.
  6. The device will be reset to factory condition.

Moving Smart Home Devices

We hope these tips helped if you’re looking to move your Smart Home in 2020. Whether you move or leave your smart home devices, you should inventory all of them and present the options to the buyer. Let them know what you plan to take and what you are considering leaving. If you leave anything, reset the devices back to factory settings and leave any documentation you have for the device with the new user. As a general rule of thumb, most of these devices are easy to swap back out to their analog counterpart. If you can do this, it might be worth it for everyone’s peace of mind to take your smart home with you.

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