Smart homes more sustainable.

A smart home may contribute to improve the so called triple bottom line of your property – being financial, social and environmental. These aspects can be linked to various smart features of the home such as security, energy, efficiency, low operating costs, compliance with government requirements and comfort.

There is no doubt that in Australia and globally the smart home industry is gaining momentum. Some sources suggest that the smart home market may be worth 121.73 billion USD by 2022. The Australian Property Institute revealed in its member newsletter that the Global IT expenditure in the smart home market is set to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.13% during the period 2016-2020.

Here are some features that a smart home system may incorporate:

  • Lighting control features.
  • Smart meters for energy and water consumption.
  • Security monitoring and lock systems.
  • Entertainment and comfort features like automatic blinds.
  • Off grid facilities such as solar panels and rain water storage.
  • Entertainment integration and automation.
  • Integrating cooling and heating systems.
  • Personal monitoring systems such as health sensors.

Traditionally smart homes were seen as more entertainment focused home upgrades for luxury or architecturally designed dwellings. However, with the increasing affordability of technology, more user friendly software and the public’s increased awareness of this industry smart homes can potentially serve the role of increasing efficiency and comfort levels of the home or office. They can also ensure compliance with stringent planning legislation such as BASIX and upcoming government initiatives such as residential apartment NABERS testing. Smart homes can reduce expenses associated with ever increasing energy and water rates and ensure that that energy is spent as efficiently as needed.

As well as being driven by financial, compliance and comfort issues many smart home users understand that a smart home may play a key role in the conservation of the earths limited resources and many people are seeing the opportunity to combine their smart homes with their wish to give back to the earth and ensure that they live a minimum footprint.

Smart home systems come in many shapes and sizes. From simple addition to monitoring your energy and water usage via an app on your phone to fully integrated, automated homes offering all elements described above.

How would one decide whether to invest in a smart home technology in their homes? From a comfort and security perspective this may be personal investment and in a brand new higher end architecturally designed home a market standard integration however, many smart additions to the home can be a wise investment financially. To determine if the decision is a wise one consider the price of the system, its life span and the costs savings it may bring over its life span. Remember that items such as electricity and water costs can vary over the life span of the system so it is prudent to consider rises and falls in the market rates of these services.