Smart Homes: Pros, Cons, and Trends
A smart home is a living space filled to the brim with a plethora of smart devices, so learn more about smart homes: pros, cons, and trends. These devices, which can be controlled remotely by voice command or through another smart device such as a tablet, phone, or computer, do much to regulate lighting, temperature, and other settings with the touch of a button. When buying a new home you can get a home inspection which may be able to help you determine what's the latest and what needs to be updated.
Turning on an external light from your phone app so it's easier to get your keys out is just one of the many ways that smart homes and smart devices can enhance our lives. This article will fill you in on various aspects of smart home technology, as well as provide you with a general picture of what this type of technology can do for you.
Benefits Of Smart Home Technology
Whether a single device or an intricate network of systems talking to each other, consumers are just scratching the surface with regard to the many ways that smart homes can improve their lives. Here are just a few of the many benefits that smart homes provide.
1. They allow for interconnectivity
Linking devices such as security systems, lighting, and television can improve a home's productivity. As you connect systems together, you'll be able to remotely manage large portions of your home such as thermostats, security camera footage, and lighting. All of this added efficiency adds up to significant savings on utility bills and other household expenses that come with manual management.
2. They allow for customized preferences
A smart product is able to adjust to match a user's customized preferences and needs. Smart thermostats efficiently control temperature and humidity levels inside your home, making it comfortable for all occupants. You are also able to set parameters involving lights, music, and electronics as you travel to and from your home, allowing you to save money on energy bills when your home sits empty for a period of time. Smart sprinklers allow for customizable activation based on sunlight, type of vegetation, and time of day.
3. They allow for energy and utility management
Managing utilities and energy expenses just got easier with smart technology. Pre-programming your thermostat to adjust to an empty home will ensure that you're able to cut down on energy consumption during the day. The use of smart outlets can manage auto shut-off features for electronic devices that are accidentally left on. With these measures in place, you can significantly lower your energy costs and monitor your usage all at the same time.
4. They allow for safe monitoring of your property
Video analytics technology can be added as an extra measure of security to keep you and your family members safe. This technology can quickly differentiate between images of humans, animals, and vehicles, thereby decreasing false notifications and false alarms. The installation of pre-programmed activity zones will provide alert triggers that will ward off potential intruders.
Drawbacks Of Smart Home Technology
There are some drawbacks to using smart home technology that, frankly, many people don't want to deal with. Some of these involve additional money, safety concerns, and convoluted systems that can be downright confusing. One of the cons of renting vs owning a home is that you may not be able to control or update any smart features on your home without the approval of the landlord. In addition, some potential concerns of smart home technology include:
1. Complex set up and programming
Many smart home devices and products are time-consuming to set up and even more confusing to use. If you haven't immersed yourself in the world of technology, devices, and apps, it may be more beneficial to continue doing things the "old school" way.
2. Different products operate on different networks
Many smart devices aren't universal, meaning that they don't communicate across different systems. It may be necessary to download and control various products using different apps and networks.
3. More expensive upfront cost
The upfront investment or smart home technology installation can be quite pricey. While long-term savings is worth the cost for many products, it pays to do a bit of research on your potential return before making this big investment.
4. They come with safety features AND concerns
It may seem convenient to lock your doors and windows from your smartphone, you are putting yourself at risk for hacking. Ensure that smart home devices can connect to an in-house, wired internet rather than WiFi, and you've taken an extra measure of security to protect yourself.
Smart technology to look for when buying a home
As a potential buyer, the thought of purchasing a home with smart technology is an attractive prospect. Many homebuyers are on the lookout for some of these savvy features:
- Security devices
- Customized lighting features
- Garage door openers
- Locking doors and windows
The list of options seems endless, but if you know little about smart technology as you purchase, it's best to gain some experience with a few features rather than be overwhelmed by a house that seems more intelligent than you.
What about sellers? What should we upgrade?
When looking to sell your home and add value to that price tag, many of the same features that you may look for as you purchase would also be attractive to a potential buyer. It's all about voice control right now, so anything that you can operate via your voice is a preferred technology. Some of the most popular voice-controlled smart technologies include:
- Security systems
Taking the time to install these devices will add value to your home and allow you to get top dollar for your investment.
Hot Trends In Smart Technology
With technology constantly changing, creators of smart home technology are seeking to make its use easier, faster, and more efficient. Current technologies that are trending right now include:
- Standardization of systems so devices can talk to each other
- Integration of machine learning technology into smart homes and devices
- Faster networking and response
- The development of smart furniture
- Eco-friendly options for conscientious consumers
- "Smarter" home cameras
Even for someone who isn't tech savvy, the development of these features should excite you, for this bright future and marriage of family life and technology has positive implications that we haven't dared dream about.
Seniors can enjoy the benefits of smart technology by easily controlling thermostats from a handheld device. Smart technology is being developed to provide reminders for taking medications, and safety features abound that can alert you to danger, shut off dangerous appliances, and lock doors effortlessly. From a safety standpoint, smart home technology offers peace of mind and extra security that you are not alone in the event of an emergency.
Parents and children can rest a little easier with the implementation and use of smart technology in their homes as well. Smart devices offer an extra measure of security as they lock doors, and windows, and provide security alerts if any movement within or around the house seems unusual. Children and those with disabilities have an easier time navigating essential features of the home, and in a parent's absence, parents can monitor the activities of children within the home via security footage, taking steps to protect and prevent issues that may arise.
Added Convenience And Security: Smart Technology Is The Preferred Option
For those willing to invest some time and money learning about smart technology, it is fast becoming the preferred way to make your home easy to operate, efficient, and safe. One unique way you may be able to upgrade a house when buying is to ask for seller concessions, then use these funds to purchase smart home technology. Jump on the bandwagon and start experiencing the many benefits that smart technology can provide.