Holiday decorating – whether you have a small set up or a full blown light show in your front yard – is part of getting in the holiday spirit. But it doesn't have to be hard – some quick smart home gear can be you started!

Holiday decorating – whether you have a small set up or a full blown light show in your front yard – is part of getting in the holiday spirit. But it doesn't have to be hard – some quick smart home gear can be you started! In fact, holiday decorations and smart home tech go together like cookies and Santa Claus. With just a little bit of hardware and a little bit of programming, you can make even the most modest decorations more convenient, safer, and more interactive.

Consider the difference a single smart plug could make when paired with a good Z-Wave hub. Plug your holiday lights in, and suddenly you have the power to set schedules that keep things lit when you're there to enjoy them and conserve energy when you're not. It makes lighting up the house simple and hassle free.

And it doesn't just have to be holiday lights that get in on the automated magic, either. If you have a gas fireplace, you could also add a Z-Wave control module to it and make it part of your holiday decorations. Imagine coming home and lighting your lights, starting a fire, and even cueing up your favorite holiday playlist all with the touch of a button. Or the sound of your voice, if you have Amazon Echo or Google Home.

Better yet, some smart home hubs, like SmartThings, allow you to trigger automated events via geo-fencing, so as soon as you walk in the front door the celebration begins, and as soon as the last person leaves home, the holiday lights turn off along with the rest of your lighting.

You could also spruce things up by whipping up a quick automated event that ties your Z-Wave doorbelland wireless sound system so that visitors aren't met with the same old boring ding-dong, but a happy "Ho Ho Ho!" or holiday jingle instead.

There's really no limit to the things you can do with smart home technology to make your holidays merrier and brighter. If you need some additional inspiration, check out the Resource Center here on Z-Wave.com.