Getting started in New Zealand

First post, thanks for letting me join the forum :sunglasses:

I’ve just purchased my first home automation products and the learning curve is steep!!

Here is where I’m at at this moment in time

In about 4 weeks I move into a 3 bedroom rental house here in New Zealand and I’m interested in experimenting a bit with home automation. I’m furnishing the house pretty much from scratch.

I’ve purchased a few items to play with in the meantime

1 x Alexa Echo (kitchen)
1 x Alexa Echo Dot (bedroom)
4 x Tapo wifi plugs
4 x Tapo wifi bulbs
1 x Kasa wifi power strip

So far I’ve got the Christmas tree lights set up on a timer and voice activated. I’m my bedroom the lights, heater and fan are controlled by Alexa

I’ve ordered a Home Assistant Yellow due in March

New Zealand doesn’t seem to have much availability of Zigbee devices available so it looks like I’ll need to use AliExpress for getting hold of them.

I was hoping to use an Eero router with the Echos but I don’t seem to be able to find any available here yet :roll_eyes:

I’m looking to have the following home assistant projects set up in my new house

Open plan living/kitchen/dinning area lighting controlled by HA

Living room tv/music controlled in some way even if it’s just on/off to reduce residual power draw

Living area heat pump/aircon controlled by HA (via infa red controller?)

Garage/workshop (seperate to house) controlled by HA

Robot vacuum and robot lawn mower (MoeBot) may or may not be scheduled or activated by HA

I currently have a 10 year old LG hom-bot 2.0 that is reaching its end of life and so looking at options here for the new place.

Info that may or may not be of use to folks when providing any advice.

  • NZ uses 230V AC an has the same plug as Australia
  • I’m an iPhone user
  • I have a Samsung TV
  • I have a chromecast
  • I have done some programming but I’m not a coder

Because it’s a rental property I can’t change anything structural like electrical switches. Everything has to easily return to ‘normal’

So my questions are:

  • What can I do now to learn prior to moving in and my HA yellow arriving?

  • What HA compatible devices are worth buying now (from AliExpress) that will work with Alexa Echo’s (my understanding is they have Zigbee chips)

Thanks in advance for any advice


Hey Ian, I’d say for a rental you probably want lots of plug and play stuff…
I do a few DIY things with Tasmota and ESP Home but it looks like you can buy some off the shelf stuff now that comes with Tasmota or ESP Home already installed.
Good luck and be sure to watch some of the videos on Youtube and search this forum to help get you started.