In an era of rapid technological advancement, few areas have evolved faster than the technology we put in our homes. Once only a futuristic concept, the smart home is now as ubiquitous as professional-grade appliances, saltwater pools, and boldly wallpapered half-bathrooms. In other words, smart homes are no fad but a lifestyle choice suitable for modern living.
As people increasingly embrace the wonders of technology, particularly in places such as the ultra-luxe Southport real estate market, smart homes have emerged as a crucial factor in influencing property buying decisions. Below, we explore today's current smart home design trends, including the affordable and not-so-affordable methods for connecting a home and making it more efficient.
The basics of today's smart home trends
Tools like Amazon's Alexa or Google's Assistant have made voice commands a reality. Voice assistant technology is rapidly maturing and is often the most crucial component in the smart home network by providing the owner with hands-free control. Turn off lights, play music, or check the weather — all by simply talking to a device.
Beyond basic tasks, these assistants integrate with practically any smart home device. With rapidly improving next-gen systems such as ChatGPT AI soon to be integrated into voice assistance, expect their capabilities to expand exponentially.
Top voice assistants: Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple Siri
Intelligent bulbs offer features like mood setting, daylight simulation, and even integration with entertainment systems where the lights can dance in sync with music or change colors based on the movie you're watching. The flexibility makes these inexpensive add-ons an integral part of the smart home ecosystem.
Top smart light bulbs: Philips Hue, Nanoleaf, TP-Link Kasa
The original smart home device, thermostats learn your habits and adjust the heating or cooling accordingly, ensuring maximum comfort with minimal energy waste. And the need for more efficient climate control has never been greater. By understanding your daily routine, these thermostats ensure your home is always at the perfect temperature. They can detect when no one is home, adjusting settings to save energy. Over time, their adjustments can lead to significant savings on energy bills.
Top smart thermostats: Nest Learning Thermostat, Ecobee SmartThermostat, Honeywell Home
One of the more recent evolutions in smart home design trends is the growing intelligence of everyday appliances. Now equipped with intelligent tech, appliances are a prime example of how low-key automation can make a huge impact. For example, imagine a refrigerator that suggests recipes based on its contents to avoid wasting still-fresh food. Or a washer and dryer that optimizes cycles to conserve water and limit energy use. Smart appliances can also be controlled remotely, receive software updates, and provide insights to help you use them more efficiently.
Top smart appliances: Samsung Family Hub Refrigerator, Samsung Bespoke, LG SmartThinQ appliances, Whirlpool's connected range, GE Profile with built-in Alexa
Smart home security
One of the most critical aspects of the smart home revolution is the newfound ability for homeowners to take property security into their own hands. The beauty of the latest home security tools is a homeowner's ability to build a system to suit their specific needs, opt for self or remote, monitor and mix and match components, and design a security ecosystem tailored to their home.
Smart cameras: Arlo, Nest, Ring
Smart doorbells: Arlo, Eufy, Ring
Smart locks: August, Schlage
Integrated security systems: SimpliSafe, ADT
Innovative steps toward energy efficiency
For homeowners striving to reduce their ecological footprint, boost efficiency, and save money, modern smart systems offer ways to minimize energy and water wastage. These key technologies also represent the next step in broader smart home integration, where every system in the home is connected in a shared ecosystem.
Smart vent systems
The smart vent system is one of the less conspicuous but profoundly impactful advancements in home efficiency. They allow for zonal control of the environment, redirecting airflow only to rooms that require it. When integrated with smart thermostats, intelligent vents learn the occupancy patterns of the home and adjust ventilation dynamically, leading to further energy savings.
Slow, undetectable water leaks can prove a critical concern regarding cost and usage, especially in regions grappling with water scarcity. When a leak is detected, they can send instant notifications to homeowners, allowing quick intervention and preventing wasted water and potential property damage.
Pair leak detection devices with automatic shut-off valves and automatically halt water flow when a significant leak is detected. The potential savings could be massive, especially in seasonal or vacation homes or for homeowners who travel or are regularly away from their homes.
Lighting and window treatments
Lighting and temperature control play pivotal roles in a home's energy consumption. Advanced treatments for both can significantly reduce energy usage.
Modern lighting systems can adjust based on natural light availability, dimming according to the time of day. Motion sensors also ensure lights are activated only when someone occupies a room. Automated window treatments—blinds, shades, curtains, or a combination—are programmable to open or close based on the time of day or the sun's position. On sunny days, closing shades can reduce the need for air conditioning, while on colder days, allowing sunlight can naturally heat spaces.
Gardens and lawns are substantial sources of water usage. Intelligent irrigation systems use science and technology to optimize water use while maintaining your outdoor spaces.
By integrating with local weather forecasts, smart irrigation systems can adjust watering schedules based on predicted rainfall, ensuring plants aren't over-watered. Similarly, soil moisture sensors gauge the moisture content of the soil and ensure water is delivered only when necessary, further reducing waste.
The impact of smart features on home sales
Packed with the latest home automation technologies, a smart home can be a massive draw for homebuyers. Such homes often stand out in the market, particularly in the luxury segment, drawing attention for their efficiency and modernity.
While the concept of a smart home sounds enticing, you must do your due diligence on homes with intelligent technologies. An expert real estate agent like Cindy Raney can consult with you regarding smart home features, ensuring they are compatible and easy to use.
Are you ready to discover more about luxury Southport homes for sale featuring today's latest technologies? Contact Cindy Raney & Team
today for the best combination of experience and expertise. You’ll be navigating the extraordinary Southport real estate market in no time.
*Header photo courtesy of Shutterstock