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Smart Home Technology and Real Estate: A Short Guide

By Ben Shepardson | December 4, 2018

Smart home technology is becoming more and more commonplace in houses across the world. The trend isn't going anywhere; in fact, it's projected that 127 million units of smart home devices will be sold in 2018 in the United States alone. Not only that, but it's estimated that this figure will rise to 165 million by 2020.

Because of the convenience and ease of use these devices bring, it won't be long until real estate professionals begin to encounter smart device-equipped homes in much greater numbers. That means you'll need to know how these devices work and the kind of features they bring to the table -- features that can easily become selling points! Here's a quick guide to smart home technology and the role it's poised to play in real estate.

Smart Devices Make Life Easier for Home Owners

Smart home technology is all about making the lives of homeowners easier. These connected digital devices include thermostats that can adjust a home's temperature over the internet, doorbells that allow you to video chat with visitors without having to be home, remote-controlled light switches, door and window locks, or even automated garage doors. Other devices act as hubs, allowing you to control a number of aspects of a home from a centralized location or device.

As technology continues to develop, these devices are becoming more accessible. Their functionality also increases, providing an increasing number of features that improve the quality of life for anyone living in a smart connected home. This means a house that's been fully equipped with smart home technology has a  major advantage of a comparable house that doesn't. If you're showing such a home to potential buyers, you need to ensure you understand how all these technologies work so you can demonstrate them to prospective buyers and explain how these features are major selling points.

Make Sure Buyers and Sellers are on the Same Page with Smart Home Technology

Smart home technology can be a major draw for buyers looking for automation or convenience in their new home. However, smart home tech does pose a problem when it comes to whether it's going to be included in the purchase of the new home. Because of the nature of most of these technologies, many of these aren't integrated into a house but are instead added afterward, making it easy for a house seller to take these devices with them as they leave after a sale.

If a home buyer is interested in purchasing a property partly because it's already been fitted with smart home technology devices, this is something that needs to be made known to both the real estate agents of the buyers and the sellers. Language can then be added to a contract to include the specific devices the buyer wants. Like any other perk, retaining smart tech in a house that's up for sale and agreeing to convey that tech to a new owner can often be the tipping point when it comes to the decision of a motivated buyer to purchase the property.

The Final Word on Smart Homes

As smart tech continues to become more advanced, and these technologies continue to become more affordable, you're going to see smart homes become increasingly common. While many house sellers may not want to leave their devices behind when they move, many others may realize that conveying them with the house might help close a sale quicker and at a higher price -- and as a real estate professional it's your job to make sure they know that. Educate yourself so you can educate your clients -- that way everyone can benefit from smart technologies.

Ben Shepardson is a Realty Biz News Contributing Writer and has a long track record of success in online marketing and web development. While pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems, he worked doing enterprise-level SEO and started an online business offering web development services to small business customers.
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