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Smart Home Staging and How It Affects Both Sellers and Buyers

By Allison Halliday | December 14, 2016

Staging a home to sell it is certainly nothing new and sellers are often advised by their real estate agent to carry out some simple upgrades, perhaps repainting a room or two, or renting some nice looking furniture. However these days  home staging is changing and according to an article in the Boston Globe, sellers hoping to achieve the best possible price for their home may need to consider smart upgrades.

One of the nation’s best-known real estate firms, Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC has set up its own training course in order to teach agents how to prepare smart homes for sale and which features could help boost a home’s appeal to buyers. At the moment more than 2000 agents in the United States have completed the course. A survey carried out by the company last year found that 71% of homebuyers are looking for a property that is ready to move in and which doesn’t need any further upgrades. Out of the 71%, 44% expect such a property to contain smart features.

An increasing number of buyers are looking for homes that will connect them to the Internet of things and as a result, sellers are often choosing to upgrade their properties with newer smart home technology that includes thermostats and lighting systems, as well as door locks connected to the Internet and security cameras. Smart home technology gives sellers the opportunity to make their property stand out from the crowd. However, people selling their smart home are beginning to realize that they need to reset certain gadgets that include sensitive personal information and passwords. People buying these smart homes are increasingly finding they need professional help to set up this technology to their specifications.

When it comes to selling a property with smart features, sellers need to carry out an inventory of each device in order to make sure it is as secure as possible. At the same time, buyers need to ensure they get the warranties and manuals for each device and that they are able to obtain the passwords so they can easily change them. They want to make sure the previous owner cannot gain access to the house through a smart lock or that they are able to remotely change lighting or heating settings. Even so, most people have never had to consider such things and at the moment home inspectors do not usually include smart features in their reports. This may change in the future as home technology trade association CEDIA is planning to introduce a certification program for home inspectors, enabling buyers to know if a smart home has been properly prepared for the sale.

Allison Halliday is a Realty Biz News contributing writer. She handles International Real Estate and is a seasoned blogger.
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