• Melanie Evans

6 Smart Home Technology Upgrades That Increase the Value of Your Waterloo Region Home


Smart technology has become increasingly accessible and affordable in recent years. The phrase "internet of things" is now widely used. Smart upgrades will not only make your home more efficient and convenient, but they will also make it more appealing to future buyers.


This is especially true of Millennial and Gen X homebuyers, as many of them struggle to remember life before many of the smart home innovations that are becoming so commonplace, and will often expect to see things like smart thermostats (more on those in a moment) as a matter of course.


Given that these buyers make up a huge percentage of the people in the market for a new home, catering to their desires when selling your home in the future, while also making your own life in it more enjoyable, efficient and even safer while you are still living in it can only be a good thing.


So, which smart home gadgets should you consider with their contribution to home resale value in mind? Here's a rundown of some of the best smart home options to consider adding to your Waterloo Region home.


Smart Thermostats


Programmable thermostats have been around for a long time (at least since the 1950s), but the majority of traditional clock-type thermostats are difficult to understand and use. And as we mentioned earlier, younger buyers probably expect to them, and may be put off by the thought of having to try to learn how to use anything else.


Because they can detect whether you are at home or away and alter your house's temperature controls accordingly, the newer, smart thermostats remove all of the guesswork – and most of the thinking – out of the process. The Nest, from Google, is one of the most popular smart thermostats, with a current price of $129- $249, but with an estimated annual savings of $173, which means they practically pay for themselves in year one.


Smart Smoke Detectors


Another smart technology device, the smart smoke detector, could not only save you money (around 5% on your insurance premiums), but it could also save your life. According to a recent report, 2/3 of all home fire fatalities occur in homes with missing or disabled smoke detectors – something many of us have done at one time or another out of sheer frustration when our typical "dumb" detector insists on howling an alarm each time we try to fry up some bacon.


With a sophisticated smart smoke detector, you won't have to worry about being interrupted while frying. The Nest Protect and One Link Safe and Sound are two such devices that will monitor not only smoke but also carbon dioxide and overall air quality. If something goes wrong, they can even send an alert to your smartphone or tablet. These items are priced at $119 and $99, respectively, and while that's pretty reasonable, it's hard to put a price on the safety of your home and family anyway.


Smart Locks


You'll never have to dig through your pocket for a key again, nor will you have to hide a spare in a fake plastic rock with a smart door lock. Instead, these Wifi and/or Bluetooth-enabled gadgets can automatically detect when you arrive home and unlock the door as soon as you step outside, thanks to your smartphone. You can even program them to just let certain people in, such as family members, friends, and real estate brokers.


A smart locked house will also be seen as a plus by homebuyers as all they would need to do when taking possession of the property is change some codes to feel safe, rather than having to re-key everything at their own cost.


Smart Lighting


The cost of lighting your home, according to Energy Star, accounts for around 12% of your annual energy bill, or $264 per year. While this may not seem like much, it all adds up, and smart technology can assist you in making a "brighter" decision.


Smart lighting dimmer and sensor systems can turn lights on and off with the touch of a button on your smartphone, and they can also be programmed to do things like gradually brighten as you wake up or turn off automatically when you leave the house. Smart outdoor lighting can also help to boost security around your home by acting as a motion detector and making it safer for you to walk around at night in your well-lit yard.


Smart Moisture Sensors


Any suggestion of water damage or mold can kill a potential buyer's interest in your home. When it comes to this type of damage, prevention is significantly superior to cure (and far less expensive). You'll be promptly notified of any leaks, humidity, or temperature changes with a smart moisture sensor system like the Wally (which costs around $299) so that you can keep your home dry and mold free.


Smart Sprinkler Systems


Many home buyers like the idea of a house with a lawn in theory, but the thought of actually having to sink lots of time into maintaining it may put some of them off. A smart sprinkler system can save a lot of time and money for homeowners.


These gadgets, which can be configured using a computer or a smartphone app, regulate your sprinkler system automatically based on the season and weather. The designers of one such system, the Rachio, claim that it saves most customers over 30% on their outdoor water usage, however some users claim to save up to two-thirds.


Although the return on investment for each of these improvements varies, there is no doubt that each of these features is an added advantage that will appeal to home buyers whenever you decide to sell your property. Speaking of smarter choices, when the time does come to sell your Waterloo Region home, working with Team Pinto is a very smart decision too.


Let Team Pinto use our huge experience and expertise to help you. Contact the award-winning Team Pinto here, or book a free Zoom consultation to discuss your unique Waterloo Region real estate needs here.









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