Smart Homes: Updates to Consider for Your Remodel

Home automation is on track to be a $21 billion market, but which smart home update belongs in your upcoming remodeling project?

Take a walk through a brand-new house, and you’ll be greeted by smart home technology in every room – as well as things hidden away that are working behind the scenes. These aren’t luxuries. Homebuyers expect this technology because it makes owning a home less expensive while increasing safety and saving energy costs.

Nearly 60 percent of Americans believe the smart home technology installed in their houses save them at least half an hour a day, which means they’re gaining nearly a week and a half of their time annually. The value of smart home technology has been proven, which is why you should integrate this technology into your next remodeling project.

It’s a smart investment

A recent survey shows that 28 percent of those planning to renovate their existing homes will make smart home technology installation a priority. They’re doing it for themselves, but also because it’s a wise move that increases the future salability of a home.

This is even more important if your home is in a midrange or upscale neighborhood because prospective buyers have come to expect these technology upgrades. About a third of real estate agents agree that your home will sell faster when equipped with smart home technology. Here’s a list of the best smart upgrades.

Smart thermostats

A planned remodel is the optimal time to install smart thermostats. While it’s possible that you may just be able to swap out your existing thermostat for a new smart model, the likelihood of rewiring increases with the overall age of your home. It may be necessary to replace portions of your HVAC system as well.

Don’t let the possibility of the extra cost of rewiring during the remodel push you away from this smart home upgrade. It’s one of the top ways to increase your comfort, dramatically save on energy bills, and add to the value of your home. The U.S. Department of Energy can also help out. It may offer rebates on certain smart thermostats. This program suggests that annual energy savings would top $740 billion if everyone in the country used an ENERGY STAR certified smart thermostat.

Smart lighting

This smart home remodel allows you to control your lights and set schedules remotely. For example, you can program certain lights to turn on at sunset or when you arrive home. Meanwhile, motion sensors can turn off lights in a room when no one is in it.

There are two main types of smart lighting systems.

  1. Smart switches are installed in the wall. They can turn lights on and off. Smart dimmer switches may require extra wiring, so it’s a good idea to consider installing these during a remodel.
  2. Some smart light systems are as easy to install as changing a light bulb, or by plugging them into an existing outlet.

If you have recessed lighting throughout your home, consider replacing it with LED. It may be necessary to replace the fixtures for this type of smart, energy-efficient lighting. It’s worth the investment. These lights can last up to 25X longer than standard incandescent light bulbs.

Smart security

You’ll like this smart home upgrade because you may already be working toward it by installing smart thermostats and smart lights or electrical outlets. Many of these smart home devices use motion sensor technology, so completing the system with a smart security hub may be easy to accomplish.

The true value of these systems is that they are proactive instead of reactive. Older security or fire alarm systems are activated when something is occurring. Smart home systems can scan and send you a message that you left the back door unlocked, and you can use your smartphone to take care of it. Smart security systems offer a growing range of automation possibilities. Sensors can detect your vehicle approaching and open the garage door, while also turning on specific room lights and alerting your smart thermostats to heat or cool.

Smart entertainment

“Alexa, play my favorite eighties songs.” That’s just the tip of the entertainment iceberg. Tastes have changed, and these days, we don’t want to see those big, bulky speakers out in the open. The only thing we really want to see is the TV screen, which is now flat and thin, or it doesn’t exist at all thanks to affordable high-definition projection systems.

A scheduled remodeling project is the perfect time to consider installing speaker systems that mount directly into ceilings and walls or hide behind cabinetry. A smart entertainment system – which also might be hidden away – controls the speakers in each room.

The “connection” for smart home upgrades

One thing most of these smart home suggestions have in common is that they may require specific wiring, even if they are wireless devices. Contact us to talk about what you want to accomplish. We’ll help you decide how to integrate smart home devices into your upcoming remodeling plans.

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