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How Home Automation Is Transforming the Rental Industry
Interior view of a modern home.

Today’s homebuyers have vastly different requests than they had a few decades ago, especially when it comes to automated products. Having virtual assistants or using verbal commands to perform tasks such as turning the lights on and off was previously limited to the homes of the rich and famous.  

However, as automated product solutions become more innovative and affordable to install, smart homes are increasing in popularity. 

To be clear, a smart home is a home that has automated technology in virtually every room. But this technology extends far beyond virtual assistants such as Google and Alexa. It integrates with networking systems, which allow devices to communicate with each other and an end user. 

Smart homes have features that give you control of the home from anywhere in the world. This means that you can receive notifications and updates about your living space and make decisions such as locking your doors, turning off lighting, adjusting internal temperatures and much more through your mobile device, a desktop computer, or tablet.  

Benefits of Automation in the Rental Home Industry

Property managers and rental homeowners benefit tremendously from smart home systems because automated technology is specifically designed to make life at home as convenient as possible. Smart home systems reduce logistical overhead, improve security, and offer valuable amenities for renters and those managing shared living spaces. 

Increases Rental Value

Domotics and the internet of things (IoT) have gained traction in recent years due to their wide range of advantages. A growing number of property owners and rental homeowners are now installing automated features in their residential buildings.

What’s more, real estate listings are typically ranked by the amenities offered in their rental homes. The more amenities a rental property has, the higher its value is. This plays a major role in determining how much the rental will fetch on the market. 

According to Chad Curry, MD of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), a smart home earns 5% more than traditional homes in the same neighborhood. Renters are interested in modern, sleek, and exciting amenities that grant seamless control of their living spaces.

Investing in cost-effective AV and home automation systems, as well as smart gadgets, will improve the attractiveness of your property listings, and thus boost their value. 

Provides Real-Time Data and Analytics

Integrating smart devices into rental units provides property owners with a powerful tool — data. 

Managing a multi-unit rental property is often challenging and complicated. However, modern smart home systems provide analytical insight for your team to make better decisions when it comes to finances.  

Real-time data provides intel on where you can cut costs, increase revenue, and improve the satisfaction of your tenants. For example, you can monitor alarms and security cameras in your buildings to improve safety measures for your tenants. Or you can also learn where to cut down on electricity costs in, for example, low-activity communal areas. 

Improved Security Measures

Smart home automation helps operations run smoothly for those that manage numerous residential rental properties. 

Smart residential AV technology has greatly improved security access control and monitoring. One of the initial upgrades to invest in when pursuing improvements for your property is an upgrade from traditional locks and keys. Smart locks are easier to manage (and keep track of) than conventional keys, and are more convenient for tenants.

Home and property owners also benefit from investing in security cameras, alarm systems, smoke detectors, and sensors to better protect their assets. Sensors will alert you of unauthorized access or attempted break-ins, as well as other issues that may constitute a security concern. 

Offers Convenience for Tenants

The most significant benefit of smart home technology is convenience. Most people are willing to pay top dollar for upgrades that make their lives easier. Smart technology allows residents to control their basic amenities such as washing machines, air conditioners, and entertainment systems from anywhere. 

Similarly, advanced features in smart devices help manage the costs associated with air conditioning and heating by setting limits on HVAC systems to prevent abuse or neglect by guests and renters. Additionally, routine maintenance will also streamline automatic notifications and alerts for your smart system

What’s more, newer system platforms will allow users to connect all devices to their smartphones, eliminating the need for multiple switches and remotes. Installing smart products is a great way to attract families and tenants that prioritize convenience, comfort, and security.

Appeals to Millennials

The millennial market is a leading driver when it comes to technology in the real estate industry. They’re enthusiastic about environmentally conscious technology, and as such, are attracted to spaces that save energy while also providing convenience. 

According to a 2017 survey, 86% of millennials said they would pay more for a home or rental property that had smart technology. But more specifically, they’re willing to pay up to 20% more per month to ensure their home has smart technology.  

Millennials also prefer having devices that are interconnected, as well as integrated into the natural progression of their home’s construction and building process. Therefore, adding smart gadgets, such as Lutron automated shades, will make your rental property more attractive to a younger, tech-savvy crowd.

[Related: Why You Should Work With a Contractor and Architect Early on in Your AV Project]

Reduces Downtime Between Rentals   

The real estate landscape is highly competitive these days, so it’s important to find innovative ways to differentiate your listings. 

One way to achieve this is by upgrading your smart technology

Based on a 2015 Coldwell Banker Real Estate survey, 40% of real estate agents in the U.S. housing market believe that homes with smart technology sell faster than those without. This same preference applies to rentals as well. Smart devices such as thermostats, security cameras, lighting, and more will give your property an edge and help it rent faster once it hits the market.  

How to Get Started

There are thousands of ways to automate your space, but here are the top three factors:

  1. Monitoring: The ability to observe the state of an environment while it’s interconnected with smart devices (e.g., smart thermostats that measure room temperature) 
  2. Control: The ability to change the status of an environment (e.g., smart lighting that automatically switches off light bulbs)
  3. Automation: The ability to change the state of a system in response to an event (e.g., automated shading that will open and close based on the weather)  

A great smart home system typically uses a hub to carry out the three functions stated above, while also connecting your devices to each other. This ensures that your automated home products are all working in sync. 

Here are five must-have smart gadgets that are typically used together to achieve an optimal system:

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How Do I Pick Which Smart Features to Implement?

The first step in implementing smart features into your home is identifying areas of concern, as well as specifying your home goals. If your goal is to simply increase the rental value of your property, installing a specified smart home system package is an ideal route, which includes services such as high-performance audio, climate, and lighting control

However, if you want to bolster specific areas such as security and surveillance, the best place to start is a consultation with our custom design team

Are Home Theater Systems Crucial to a Rental Property?

Home theater systems enrich the entertainment experience of any space by providing an immersive environment that appeals to a wide range of consumers. 

A home theater system can also upgrade a property to luxury status, significantly increasing its rental value. So, when deciding to install a home theater or not, weigh the installation costs against increased rent from tenants (and thus more profit). 

[Related: Home Movie Theater Ideas: Your Ultimate Guide

Can I Upgrade Parts of My Existing System?

Yes, you can! 

Home automation upgrades can be completed in batches to suit your unique conditions and timeline. You can also integrate stand-alone gadgets and accessories into your smart home system over longer periods of time.

How Long Does It Take to Install a Smart AV System?

Installing an AV system takes a variable amount of time, depending on the size and scope of your project. On average, simple media systems take up to six hours to install, while custom projects require up to three days. 

Contact AV Smart Solutions to Automate Your Home

If you’re ready to get started on your smart home system with the assistance of professional AV technicians, contact AV Smart Solutions today. We’ll go over your existing options and streamline a package that suits your residential needs and budget. 

Call us at +1 (425) 655-5052 or complete our inquiry form and one of our team members will be in touch!