There are more and more elements of the home being automated and coordinated using wireless internet these days, and as a group, these components are being called Smart Home Automation Technology.

Before choosing to replace a home system like the thermostat, speaker system, or wall outlets, it is wise to consider if smart home automation could help your home. Home inspectors notice these features and have a good idea of how they impact the home’s value and efficiency.

What is a “Smart Home” device?

A smart home device tends to take something like a thermostat, which is traditionally controlled manually, and connects it to the internet to increase efficiency and ease of use. For instance, the smart home thermostat Nest both controls your current temperature and allows you to program a thermostat schedule, like traditional programmable thermostats.

However, in addition to those options, it allows you to control the temperature of your house remotely using an application on a mobile phone, and it contains a motion sensor, which allows it to automatically reduce or increase the temperature when no one is home.

These motion sensors and wireless controls allow people to more carefully calibrate their home’s temperature and make sure they don’t waste money on expensive heating and cooling bills.

Other Examples of Smart Home Technology

One area where smart home technology has become quite popular are wireless and voice-activated speakers, including Sonos, Amazon’s Echo, and the Google Home. Sonos provides speakers that can be controlled using a mobile phone application to play music in different rooms of a house; this can either be an in-wall system or a mobile canister-style speaker.

The Echo and the Home also can be controlled this way, but the more popular feature is to use their voice-activation software to ask the speaker to play music. These devices have other functions, such as the ability to sync with thermostats like Nest for a voice-activated change in temperature.

Some Smart Home devices that are growing in popularity include smart outlets or smart plug adapters. One major use of these items is the ability to remotely activate or deactivate an appliance using a mobile phone, such as turning on a sound machine in a baby’s room without opening the creaky door to do so. Others can be useful for security, such as smart video surveillance for one’s front door or a smart lock that you can remotely lock if you forget to do so on your way out of the house.

Does JAKE Home Inspections recommend Smart Home Technology?

While some smart home technology is mostly for the enjoyment of the current owner of the home, home inspectors see some innovations in home technology that can lead to positives for future occupants and which make the home more valuable overall.

Hue light bulbs, for instance, offer multiple programmable options for how bright or what color they are. Because they are LEDs, a particularly new and inexpensive to operate light bulb technology, they both save money and tend to last for a very long time. No one likes to have to replace a large amount of items in a house right after purchase, so Hue bulbs are a sign of longevity.

Items like the Curb energy monitor are also interesting for potential savings. The Curb gathers information about your electricity usage in real time, which allows you to collect real-time energy usage information from your home and notice what has a major impact on your usage. Many homeowners begin to change habits, like leaving computer chargers plugged in constantly or leaving lights on, when they can look at their phones and see exactly the impact that decision makes.

It can be difficult to know what elements will help you sell a home or what elements make a home a great value. When you need a trusted provider of home inspection services, contact us.