There are now thousands of products on the market that can make your home “smarter”, and almost a quarter of Brits already own more than one smart home device.
Being able to control all aspects of your home, from door locks to heating and lighting to alarm systems, at the touch of a button and without even having to be there is no longer seen as a futuristic luxury but a convenient, everyday reality for a growing number of households in the UK.
Such gadgets are no longer as prohibitively expensive as they once were, as increasing competition on the market has brought prices down, while the increased ability to manage the energy efficiency of your home can ultimately save you money – as well as make a property more saleable or rentable in the future.
Most popular gadgets
Many of these devices are operated from a smartphone, which most people in the UK now own. While a recent survey from YouGov found that 23% of British people had more than one smart home device, the most popular technology was smart speakers, of which 11% of people had at least one. Many of these speakers connect to your smartphone, and can carry out tasks such as controlling other smart home gadgets, connecting to other hubs, checking the weather and making online purchases, as well as acting as a speaker – all through smartphone or voice control.
Smart thermostats and lighting were the next most popular items to be installed in people’s homes, owned by 8% and 5% of Brits respectively, and these are gadgets that can be used to save some serious money. The likes of Hive and Nest have been offering this technology for a while, but take-up has increased particularly since the recent drive to get smart meters installed in more homes across the UK. Being able to adjust your heating, as well as your lighting, remotely can cut energy bills as you can turn things off if you’re not going to be there much more easily than using a manual timer.
Such technology can also be a real selling point in privately rented properties, particularly as the new Generation Rent is now often willing to pay more in order to get more, which is being proven by the massive escalation in the popularity of build-to-rent across the country.
Increasing the value of your home
Security gadgets are also a hugely popular tool, including cameras so you can see from your smartphone who is at your front door when you’re not there, and remote locking systems so you can lock and unlock doors with your phone – for example to let someone in remotely, or to ensure you’ve locked the door behind you after you’ve left.
Commenting on the “phenomenal” growth of smart home technology, Robby Du Toit of sellhousefast.uk says that in spite of the initial scepticism of many Brits about using such gadgets, a higher level of understand as well as affordability has changed the market.
“Brits are beginning to have a firm grasp of the smart technology they desire and would be willing to actively use in their home. Looking into the future, with the integration of smart home devices expected to become a real incentive for prospective buyers/renters, the technology could play a fundamental role in increasing the overall value of properties.”