LIGHT YOUR WAY TO ENERGY SAVINGS

energy

No one looks forward to receiving their electricity bill, and actually opening it can be an anxiety-inducing monthly ritual. But energy bills don’t have to be your enemies; there are ways to get them under control, plus manage your home’s energy efficiency and even help out the Earth with just a few tweaks to your lighting habits.

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5 WAYS TO UP YOUR HOME’S VALUE WITH SMART HOME TECHNOLOGY

home

Have you ever wanted to install a smart automation system in your home so you can effortlessly power up your home theater system or control lighting scenes in your dining area, kitchen or backyard? If so, it may be good to know that automation systems can not only increase your enjoyment today, but also enhance the value of your home tomorrow. In this short guide, we give you our top tips for increasing the value of your home with home technology systems, while creating a more convenient, more entertaining and more secure environment for your family.

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PERSONAL FITNESS & TECHNOLOGY

These days, personal fitness and technology go hand in hand. Technology is helping people not only lose weight and stay healthy, but is increasingly moving in the direction of sports and athletics for both professionals and amateurs. And while wearable fitness trackers are currently the rage, in 2017 there will be a shift from focusing on just fitness to overall healthcare. Look for technology like wearable smart phone-controlled hearing assistance and smart bands that double as blood pressure monitors. Also look for less obtrusive ‘invisible’ wearables that are better integrated into everyday items like a keychain or an item of clothing.

SPRING HAS SPRUNG! 18 TIPS TO GET YOUR BACKYARD READY!

Best practices for outdoor A/V remains largely unchanged with the exception of a few fun trends. Here are 18 tips and tricks for getting your space ready, not to mention creating an out-of-this-house A/V experience:

outdoor video

1. Wireless audio is your new BFF. While we always prefer a hardwired connection for audio quality, wireless home audio systems are great for getting music outside, without a lot of planning or structural wiring.

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INTEGRATED ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROLS

We’re in the dog days of summer, and the temperature isn’t the only thing rising. Blasting the AC may keep your home cool, but it can take a toll on your energy bill. What if you could take total control of your utility usage and eliminate energy-wasting habits from your lifestyle? It turns out you can. With the help of environmental controls and smart thermostats, you can maximize your home’s energy efficiency, and do your wallet-and the earth- a favor.

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THE RIGHT LIGHTING CAN AFFECT YOUR SLEEP AND HEALTH FOR THE BETTER

The Right Lighting Can Affect Your Sleep and Health for the Better

Ten hours. On average, that’s how long we spend looking at screens every day. This means for 10 hours a day we expose our eyes to blue light. Not only are you getting artificial blue light from your screens, but you also get blue light from energy-efficient fluorescent bulbs and LED lights in your home or building that are used in lamps and light fixtures. Studies have shown that lighting in your home can affect your mood, energy, metabolism and your sleep.

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TOYS FOR TOTS AND SANTA CLAUSE!

The holidays are upon us and we would love to spread some cheer! We are a dedicated Toys for Tots drop off spot this year and need YOUR help! We will be collecting new, unwrapped toys through Friday, December 18th from 8AM-4PM. Please take some time to stop by and drop off a toy…it has the power to change a child’s holiday experience!

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5 WAYS TO ADD NEW TECHNOLOGY TO YOUR HOME

The New Year has arrived and you’ve had some time to settle in and review that list of goals and get your plan in action. With that said, there is no better time to refresh and update your home. With this New Year comes a desire for change, a fresh start, and maybe even reinventing yourself OR your home. We have put together a list of the top 5 ways you can update your house and add new technology for 2014.

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VALENTINES GIFTS FOR THE WOMAN WHO HAS EVERYTHING

Well gentleman, it’s that time of year again. The time to break out of that rut, spruce up a bit, and turn on the romance! If you’ve been with your girlfriend or wife long enough, it’s probably safe to say you are fresh out of ideas for a valentines gift. Of course chocolate, flowers, perfume, and jewelry are the traditional go to items that will always make her smile, but what if you surprised her with something that will drastically improve her lifestyle? We’ve put together a list of gifts to make any woman happy this Valentines Day.

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VALENTINES GIFTS FOR THE MAN THAT HAS IT ALL

Ladies, you didn’t think we were going to forget about you did you? We helped the men out with our most recent blog “Valentines Gifts For The Woman Who Has Everything”, but now it’s time to give you some pointers about the special man in your life. Valentines is just a few days away, and maybe you’re looking to step up your game with a gift that will “WOW” him. We’ve put together a list of 5 fresh manly gifts that will make his day!
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SMART HOMES: A THING OF THE PRESENT

“Smart home, home automation, whole home control system,” these are all phrases that are becoming more and more popular. Many of you may think these things are of the future and something we are striving for, but the smart home is actually very common and very real today. We recently held a open house here in Reno to showcase the latest, and VERY possible home technology. There seemed to be a large interest in remote home monitoring and control as well as a genuine desire to understand this new techie world. We’ve put together a few facts to show you home control is possible and actually quite easy!

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COLOR THE NIGHT WITH LANDSCAPE LIGHT

outdoor

As Americans are increasingly spending more time outdoors, backyards are transforming from simple landscaped yards into primary entertaining spots. In fact, a study conducted late last year by the popular home improvement app, Houzz, showed that out of 4,500 users, a whopping 56 percent planned to improve their outdoor spaces for entertaining. What better way to do so than with a little light and color to set the mood? Here are some tips and tricks for turning your backyard into a glowing escape or party space.

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ATTENTION CATT MEMBERS: FREE CONTINUING EDUCATION CREDIT

September 19th • 8-9:30am – Practical Guide to Incorporating Technology into your next Project
October 24th • 8-9:30am – New Construction Planning forLow-Voltage Systems in the Home
November 28th • 8-9:30am – Making Home Technology Profitable in the Remodel Market

Hosted by
Contractors Association of Truckee Tahoe – Larkspur Hotel – Sierra Integrated systems

All classes are AIA,ASID,IIDA, IDC approved.
Classes are held at the Larkspur Hotel • 11331 Brockway Road, TruckeeRSVP REQUIRED – Call or email Sonja at the CATT office to register530-550-9999 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

ATTENTION AIA MEMBERS: FREE CONTINUING EDUCATION CREDIT

September 20th • 11:30am – 1pm – Planning for Electronic Systems in the Home
October 25th • 11:30am – 1pm – Making Home Technology Profitable in the Remodel Market

Hosted by
Sierra Integrated Systems • 8060 Double R Blvd. Reno, NV 89511

RSVP 15 days prior to event: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 775-853-4800 • The class is free and lunch is provided!

THE GREAT AMERICAN PASTIME GETS AN UPGRADE

The time has finally come for the connected TV. The concept known as “Interactive TV” spawned some products and services as early as the late 90s, however, nothing ever caught fire and the concept practically disappeared without anyone noticing it was ever there. Until now…

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UNIVERSAL REMOTE CONTROLS: YOUR BEST FRIEND

Have you ever had a system where you needed to use one remote for your TV, another for the A/V receiver, and yet another for the cable box or satellite receiver? Or even worse, there was only one person in your home who could actually make the system work on a consistent basis? A universal remote can rescue you from this situation and make it easy for everyone to enjoy movies, music and more.

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BREAKING NEWS: YOUTUBE IS A MAJOR NEWS SOURCE

Sure, we all know YouTube to be a source of entertainment—whether it’s looking for a clip of an old favorite TV show or your neighbor’s home video of her singing dog—but YouTube as a major news source? You bet; and a global one at that. A recent Pew study found that while TV news still reigns, more and more viewers are turning to YouTube in search of eyewitness videos to major news events. During its 15-month study (January 2011-March 2012) of the most popular news videos on YouTube, Pew found the Japanese earthquake and tsunami to be the most viewed video news story with the Russian elections, the grounding of an Italian cruise ship and the collapse of a stage at an Indiana fair, also topping the list. With 88% of Americans alone owning a phone or smartphone with a camera, it makes sense. People can shoot video on their phones and immediately upload it, offering viewers on-demand access to events, making ‘citizen journalism’ and, it seems, YouTube a news source to be reckoned with.

PARC FORET AT MONTREUX

Reno, NV January 3, 2013, – Sierra Integrated Systems  recently announced reaching agreement with Ladera Montreux LLC, and HomeCrafters, LTD to provide residential automation and technology to 105 home sites within Montreux Golf and Country Club known as Parc Foret.  Montreux is a private golf course community located between Reno and Lake Tahoe. This gated community of luxury custom homes surrounds the Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course, and is home to the Reno Tahoe Open.

THE FEATURES AND BENEFITS OF AUTOMATED WINDOW COVERINGS

You’re in the kitchen; you hear a gentle swoosh. It must be around sunset, you think, that time of day where the evening sun bursts through your living room windows, hitting the light sensors and prompting your blinds to close so you and your family can easily watch TV without the glare of the sun.

Often part of a total home automation system, automated drapes and blinds offer numerous features and benefits. For example, open draperies and blinds let bright sunlight in which can fade furniture, artwork and carpeting. Automatically closing window coverings during the times of the day when the sunlight is streaming in can save the expensive furnishings in your home. The movement of your window coverings can be programmed to be triggered by time of day or by light sensors, making this one less chore you have to worry about.

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FATHER KNOWS BEST? PERCEPTION VS. REALITY

Over the years, many of us have turned to dear old dad time and time again for his knowledge and wisdom; which may be why it’s no surprise Dad thinks he’s king of the I.T. castle. However, a recent study conducted on behalf of TeamViewer reveals that while 93 percent of Dads think they are their household’s Chief Technology Officer, only 23 percent of his family members say the same. Forty-two percent of family members say it’s the son or grandson while 11 percent report it’s the daughter or granddaughter. On the contrary, a tracking study conducted by Motorola reports that “high percentages of Americans—across multiple generations—are using media and mobile technology.” In short, the generation gap as it relates to technology use is shrinking. Grandma, grandpa, mom and dad are often just as savvy, if not more so, than their children. Why the disparity in research data then? Perception versus reality. What’s the perception and reality in your home?

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