They say you’re only as smart as the company you keep – or the home you equip with smart technology, for that matter. Indeed, homeowners who do their homework today are enhancing their abode’s IQ by adding an increasing array of smart systems and devices designed to save money and provide greater convenience and peace of mind via automation and wireless capabilities. Consider that 46 percent of consumers recently polled by ERA Real Estate and HGTV revealed that it was important for their current or next residence to have smart home technology. What’s more, 51 percent indicated they would consider implementing such equipment in their home to appeal to future buyers. “More consumers are looking to smart home technology because it has the potential to increase savings, safety and resale value in their homes, giving them an edge in today’s competitive market,” says Charlie Young, president/CEO of ERA Real Estate, a global real estate franchiser headquartered in Madison, New Jersey. “We learned in our survey that most people who have smart home technology are focused on saving money through automated climate control, energy management, remote home monitoring, and lighting control systems.”
According to results of a study by IControl Networks, the top five smart home capabilities that home owners desire today are, in order:
2. Protecting personal property (smart security camera, alarm systems and connected locks).
3. Improved energy management (smart thermostats and lighting systems).
4. Remote monitoring of pets.
5. Convenience (being able to control devices via smartphones and tablets).
Traditionally, smart home systems were very expensive and installed during home construction to provide full integration with the house. But the smartphone really opened up the door for a large amount of products that would eventually start bringing the cost of smart home technology down and allow it to be implemented in existing older homes. Many homebuyers and sellers place a high value on smart home entertainment features. Wireless capabilities are popular, including systems like Sonos that allow you to stream sound from a receiver to wireless speakers around your home.
Consider these five smart home innovations, each of which can each be built into a new construction property or retrofitted into an existing residence (Note: All cost estimates do not include professional installation):
Richard Soloway, CEO of NAPCO Security Technologies, a smart home app manufacturer headquartered in Amityville, New York, says it’s a good idea to choose interoperable devices that can “talk” to each other and that are backward-compatible with previously installed equipment. “Homeowners who choose to invest in these systems should not have to rip out existing devices to integrate smart home technologies,” Soloway says.