It’s no secret the smart home market is big business for tech and retail companies. Increasingly, savvy residential home builders and developers are getting in on the action as well, weaving smart devices directly into new builds.
In residential new construction, this is a win-win. Not only are smart devices and appliances much-appreciated value-adds for prospective homebuyers (many of whom need help to navigate the different smart ecosystems to set up a smart home), they’re also a great way for builders to offer tiered upgrade packages, which can greatly contribute to their profit margins.
However, tossing a few smart speakers in with a residential pre-purchase isn’t enough for builders to stand out anymore (or grow their bottom line). These days, forward-thinking builders need to offer homebuyers more smart home bang for their hard-earned bucks.
For example, installing structured wiring with attractive wall-plates and high-quality keystones in the construction phase saves costs later on and an alternative to using wireless technology exclusively.
Here’s a quick look at some smart home tech that residential builders should consider offering in their next projects.
Smart Sensors that Protect the Home and Family
They don’t receive as much buzz as other smart devices, but smart water sensors are a simple way to add peace-of-mind to any home. Sometimes called leak or flood detectors, they can be installed under sinks and toilets, or beside a hot water tank. If a leak is detected, the sensor will instantly alert the homeowner on their smartphone or tablet. Some models will also detect whether temperatures have dropped so low that pipes are at risk of freezing and bursting.
Another often-overlooked smart device that protects the home and family is a smart smoke and CO detector, such as the Nest Protect. These devices not only sound an alarm if smoke or CO is detected, they’ll also send alerts to a smartphone so a homeowner can investigate or react.
Smart Tech that Increases Home Security
More and more homeowners are installing smart security systems, smart locks, and video doorbells. Builders who include some or all of these devices in their packages—bundled into the price of the home—are addressing a widespread demand and saving prospective buyers the headache of setting -up systems themselves.
Smart security systems that include IP-connected cameras placed around the home—inside and out—allow homeowners to view and monitor their home no matter where they are in the world. When combined with video doorbells and smart locks, homeowners can enjoy total control over access to their home, even while they’re at work or away on vacation.
Smart Tech that Lowers Utility Bills
Smart thermostats are one of the most popular smart home devices around but that doesn’t mean builders should overlook them. Studies have shown that a smart thermostat can save homeowners 10-12% on their heating bills—that’s something that will catch the eye of any prospective home buyer.
For new homes with large gardens or lawns, builders may want to consider including a smart sprinkler or water irrigation system. Not only do these systems include scheduling and remote access via smartphone, they can also sync with local weather reports and automatically adjust the amount of watering they do to reduce water waste and lower water utility costs.
Tying it All Together
Of course, adding smart devices isn’t enough to make a home truly smart. For builders considering offering smart home packages to their clients, it’s equally important to ensure the home has the right infrastructure in place to support smart devices now and well into the future.
Ideally, that means including structured LAN wiring throughout the home, or at least to key areas in the home. If smart security cameras are in your plans, consider running Ethernet cable to each one and bringing it all back to a centralized hub inside a dedicated media panel, which can also house routers, modems, and switches.