This post is in partnership with Schlage.
A question we answer often is: How would you define your design style? It’s taken us years to cultivate, but now we can confidently say: Classic, but with quirk. There’s a balance, and we strive to find that sweet spot in every nook, room and house that we renovate. Think: Polished chrome + blush pink, marble + brass, warm wood + black walls, vintage restoration + smart home technology.
Let’s noodle on the latter. Can vintage homes coexist with smart home technology? Can you keep the charm while adding modern convenience? Yes, one thousand percent, yes! And not only can you merge the old with the new, but it’s an impactful way to honor (and still enjoy!) your home’s history while taking advantage of all that new technology has to offer.
All this to say, the most recent improvement we made during our Two Flat renovation was the addition of smart deadbolts! Every exterior door on the home received a Schlage Encode™ Smart WiFi Deadbolt, some of which were paired with the original handle (more on that in a second), while others received these Century handles in a pretty matte black finish.
Prepping Our Doors for Schlage Encode™
A long, long time ago (okay, just this past spring), our front door was looking worse for wear. Over the course of its life, the raw wood had been baked in the sun and was cracked, brittle and dry. While our initial hope was to salvage and refinish the wood, upon closer inspection, we knew that the better decision for the longevity of the home was to repair it with patch and paint.
The handleset on our vintage door no longer functioned properly; in fact, this front door was ‘locked’ from the inside using a scrap piece of 2×4 that was nailed across the back! To prepare the door for its smart lock and new handleset, we first had to patch the existing holes, fill cracks and give it a thorough sanding. We started with a coarse 80-grit sandpaper and worked our way down to 220-grit for a smooth finish.
Why Schlage Encode™?
The eventual goal of our Two Flat is to rent both units, with Unit 2 being locked into a traditional yearly lease, and Unit 1 will act as a short term rental that we will fully furnish. As previously mentioned, we installed Encode™ deadbolts on every exterior door, including the common entry, both front doors and both back doors. Our Encode deadbolts have built-in WiFi (no additional hubs or accessories needed) and will allow us to manage the locks directly through the Schlage Home app on our smartphones! We can specify who has access and when, with the ability to set up to 100 permanent or temporary codes. Think of the Encode™ as a virtual key that we’ll share with our future renters!
We painted this door a true bright red (Sherwin-William’s Heartthrob SW 6866), which looks so handsome with the matte black Encode™ and Century handle! Every space – yes, even a small front porch – can always, always use a contrasting black detail. Better yet, it’s the smartest detail of all; our Encode™ locks can be controlled through the Schlage Home app, with our voice (through Amazon Alexa), a personal door code, or, if you can imagine, even a key.
Mix and Match
Let’s revisit that juxtaposition of old + new again. While the main door handle was replaced with a Century handle, the front door to Unit 1 already had the most gorgeous handle and backplate. It was my personal mission to salvage as many original details as possible, and Unit 1’s ornate backplate may be one of my favorites in the whole house.
Because the Encode™ is a deadbolt only, we were free to mix and match our original hardware, which makes my heart sing! Encode™ comes in several styles and finishes, so you can have fun choosing the design that best fits your aesthetic, whether you’re pairing it with a handle you already love or need to replace it with something new (like this one!).
On the back of the house, we opted to have our Encode™ and Century handles blend into black doors, which feels so sleek, and quite honestly, just looks cool (right?).
Because our smart locks can be accessed through the Schlage Home app, we can quickly and easily check in to make sure the doors are locked (no more second guessing if you’ve locked the door on your way out!), and we’ve even granted our contractors codes to come and go as they continue to help us with our renovation.
Another perk of controlling the access codes from the app? You can always provide permanent or temporary codes to your dog walker, sitter, family and friends, and you can set alerts on your phone so you know if a code has been used. It’s peace of mind. It’s the safety of your loved ones and your home.
Making the switch to smart technology on our vintage 130-year-old home was the easiest decision we made throughout the course of this entire renovation! There, I said it. Safety is always top of mind for our home and family, and it’s no different when it comes to the security of our future tenants.
Have you made the move to a smart deadbolt? If so, what’s been your favorite perk?
Thank you to supporting the sponsors that support us! Our Two Flat is outfitted with the Schlage Encode™ Smart WiFi Deadbolt + Century handles. For more smart home content, we also talk about smart locks in our own home, and here’s a quick start guide to building a smart home (from the inside!).