Fixing location-based HomeKit automations

Having devices turn on or off when leaving or arriving home is one the most satisfying smart home automations you can set up.

Unfortunately, in Apple Home (HomeKit), these automations are prone to issues. This is especially frustrating due to Apple’s approach to Apple Home, which prefers to hide or obscure detailed configuration settings in favor of a more streamlined user experience. This makes it difficult to debug or diagnose the root cause and resolve it.

As such, folks in the HomeKit community have, over time, identified a number of steps users can take to try to resolve the issue. Because of the opacity of the Apple Home internals, it’s hard to know if any of these are a silver bullet. Indeed, some may be placebos with no actual impact on HomeKit.

Still, I thought it would be helpful to compile as many of these steps in one place so any users facing issues with their location-based automations can get things back in action on their own. I’ve personally used these steps with success, after my own automations broke after upgrading to iOS 17.

(Note: I posted these on Reddit before posting them here. I’ll try to keep them updated in both places if any new information surfaces!)

Good luck!


  1. Make sure your home address is set on your personal contact card in the Phone/Contacts app, for everyone in your home
  2. Confirm that the pinned location is correct in Apple Maps
    • Maps → Favorites → Home
    • If not, you can adjust by going to Maps → Favorites → “More” text on right side → (i) button next to Home → Refine Location on the Map
    • If it needs to be refined, make sure you do this for every person in your home
  3. Confirm that Location Services are enabled
    • Settings → Privacy & Security → Location Services
  4. Confirm Location Services are enabled for the Home app and HomeKit
    • Settings → Privacy & Security → Location Services → Home
      • Give as many permissions as you can, unless you really know what you’re doing
      • You may have two entries for the Home app; make sure permissions are enabled for both
    • Settings → Privacy & Security → Location Services → System Services (all the way at the bottom, not alphabetical) → HomeKit
  5. Clear significant locations for yourself and all users who are part of your home
    • Settings → Privacy & Security → Location Services → System Services (all the way at the bottom, not alphabetical) → Significant Locations → Clear History
  6. Confirm location is enabled for HomeKit on your home hubs (this is a thing for Apple TV, but may not be for HomePods; I don’t own a HomePod to confirm)
  7. Reboot all home hubs, phones, and any other HomeKit-connected iOS and macOS devices (iPads, Watches, Macs, etc.)
  8. Wait 24–48 hours
    • Waiting is critical. It seems to take some time to propagate location configuration through to all of Apple’s services
  9. Confirm the Home app is now correctly identifying your home
    • Home app → Add Automation → People Arrive → Location
  10. Consider deleting and re-creating your automations (I’m not sure you need to, but it doesn’t hurt)
  11. Consider removing and re-adding any people with access to your home (this may also not be necessary, but at a certain point the location automations were working for me but not my wife, and this solved that)