By Brentnie Daggett
It's no surprise that one of the most common predictions for the real estate industry in 2019 is the continued importance of technology. As smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices continue to increase in popularity and capability, smart home technology continues to grow at pace. New technology built specifically to simplify the lives of homeowners is introduced all the time, and it can be challenging to understand which applications might be worth a try.
Smart home tech, or home automation systems, gives users the convenience of easily monitoring and controlling their home systems remotely. Homeowners can turn on their AC, control their lights, unlock their front door for visitors, and more—all from the office or across the country.
Home automation systems can be wired into the structure of the house with a central control panel, or installed through external devices like electronic plug adapters or standalone sensors. The systems are connected over wireless networks and linked directly to your smartphone or tablet, giving you control through an app. Smart home tech is designed to give homeowners added security, comfort, energy management and peace of mind.
If you're uncomfortable with technology or new to home automation systems, your options can seem overwhelming. Here are some easy ways to integrate new technology into your home, and how they can help make your life easier:
Smart Thermostats: While programmable thermostats are not a new concept, smart thermostats can consider weather patterns and user behavior to adjust the temperature of your home to fit your needs. You'll be able to turn on your AC or heat remotely if your schedule changes to ensure you arrive to a comfortable home. The increased control can also help you boost your energy efficiency.
Smart Plugs: Smart plugs won't require any extra hardwiring and allow you to manage different devices plugged into outlets from anywhere. You can turn on a lamp to make it look like someone is home when you're out, turn on a slow cooker to start preparing dinner before you get home, or turn off the coffee pot that you always seem to leave on. Smart plugs can also help you limit your energy use by powering down smart plug outlets when they're not in use.
Smart Lighting: Integrating smart lighting into your home is as easy as installing a special LED light bulb. (No rewiring necessary!) Homeowners can control different lighting conditions from their mobile device, setting the mood for a party or romantic dinner with color and brightness features. You can also program smart bulbs to different settings, like slowly brightening in the morning to help your eyes adjust or dimming at night to help prepare for sleep.
Smart Irrigation Systems: Smart irrigation systems can help you find the balance between maintaining beautiful landscaping and actively managing your water usage. These systems go beyond a programmed timer for watering lawns and flower beds by monitoring weather patterns, soil moisture content and temperatures to adjust water usage accordingly.
Smart Water Sensors: Truly relax on your next vacation knowing that your home is protected by a moisture sensor. These systems will send a notification to your smartphone or tablet if excess moisture is detected in your home, helping you to prevent water leakage like plumbing issues, burst pipes or flooding before it causes a major problem.
We're quick to adopt new technology in other areas of our lives, so why not when it comes to our homes? Trying out a smart system or two doesn't have to be a huge investment and can help you do everything from bolstering your sustainability practices to giving you peace of mind while away. There's a system out there that is "smart" enough to meet almost any need you could have as a homeowner.
Brentnie Daggett is a writer and infographic master for the rental and property management industry. She loves to share tips and tricks to assist landlords and renters alike. To learn more about Daggett, and to discover more great tips for renters, visit www.rentecdirect.com.