Sellers, take note – yes, buyers like homes that are ‘smart’ or at least tech-friendly
More and more, our homes are becoming connected to the digital world. Whether it’s a thermostat control or a voice system to remind you about upcoming events, the appeal of a smart home is growing. Especially if it’s already in place when a buyer walks through the door. If you have invested into smart home features, appliances or just basic devices – talk to a realtor. Get their input on how your particular smart home does, or does not, increase the appeal (and selling value) of your home.
As a realtor, I run into this even on homes that are priced for first-time homebuyers. Today’s buyer wants a smart home. And sellers need to realize that if their house has technology features such as a smart thermostat or lighting – it gets the buyer’s attention. No, it doesn’t mean that the house is going to be sold for thousands of dollars more. But it does separate the seller’s house from other houses on the market.
What is a Smart Home?
Some people, including other realtors I know, think that a smart home has all of the bells and whistles. Not necessarily. For example, to have a home that uses internet devices or ‘smart technology’ means that primary functions are covered. A simple approach is having lights that are remotely manageable. Whether this is through a security system or just from an app doesn’t matter. Remote access to utilities is a simple way to present, and sell, a smart home.
Need some good ideas and a starting point? Read this article.
Is it all necessary?
Nope. Smart homes have a draw to them, but they don’t necessarily sell faster or better than ones without smart devices. But, what does make a difference are the updates that have been done. For example, if you are selling a home that has a new digital panel thermostat versus the old mercury dial thermostat versus – it immediately looks “newer”. Buyers take note of these things.
As investors, the homes that we renovate don’t get outfitted with smart home features. We do update the mechanicals and will swap out controls (e.g. thermostat) but that is all. We know that buyers have a preference towards certain technologies so we don’t opt to install them, but we do put more thought into any re-wiring so that it’s designed to support today’s technology-savvy buyer. Our investment strategy focuses on making the house ready for a buyer by giving them confidence in the home’s infrastructure, then it’s functional use and lastly the features and design. No different than building a house from the start…you make sure the foundation is solid, then the walls and go from there.
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