Smart home technology is booming—and it’s more important than ever for builders to develop relationships with a home technology professional
By Vincent Bruno
Whether monitoring the playroom via smart phone or lowering the blinds with an app, smart home technology is growing exponentially year after year as the industry continues to develop new ways to make life at home more personalized, entertaining, comfortable, luxurious and safe.
According to research firm Gartner, the smart home industry will account for more than 1 billion connected things in 2018. This number shows an increasing need for partnerships among builders and home technology professionals as consumers’ needs and desires to integrate multiple technologies and platforms will continue to grow, surfacing complex home automation issues.
Builders face many challenges in this day and age—rising materials costs, access to qualified labor, availability of lots, banking regulations, and now integrating technology into the home. Home technology professionals can help alleviate some of these challenges and be valuable partners for builders by helping them establish familiarity and comfort with home technology in order to understand the value it brings, not only to the project, but to the homeowner.
The demand for home technology is booming, and it is often a new territory for professionals in the residential building space. Despite demand, builders are often hesitant to engage with home technology professionals. The three most commons fears that home technology professionals hear from builders are: 1) Home technology will devour my budget and take profits away from me 2) Home technology breaks easily – what do I do if my client calls me in the middle of the night to come and fix their TV? And lastly, 3) Home technology is out of date as soon as it is installed.
While these fears are understandable, they can all be demystified through a solid relationship with a home technology professional who understands the dynamic, ever-evolving landscape. Giving a home technology professional a seat at the table not only makes them the point person for upgrades and service calls, it helps ensure a collaborative process where client expectations are met, which will ultimately increase value and referrals for the builder.
To have the most successful results on a project, it is best for a builder to consult with a home technology professional as early in the design and building process as possible. Strategic planning, cost management and team cohesion is vital to the success of every project. Continuous collaboration ensures that all opportunities are raised and all issues are resolved from project inception to project completion.
One of the key reasons to bring in home technology professionals from the onset is indicated by the direction the industry is heading. It’s absolutely crucial for builders to work hand-in-hand with home technology professionals to ensure that a home is wired and ready for any amount of technology that the homeowner may want today or wants to plan for in the future.
As smart home technology continues to grow, builders will be most affected by the networking infrastructure required to support the many devices that are being integrated into homes. CEDIA, the leading global authority in the $14 billion home technology industry, released a market intelligence report on the ho me technology professional in 2020 that predicts residential broadband speeds (peak and average) will continue to double roughly every 12 months, with speeds possibly reaching as high as 16 times what they are today.
This increasing demand for network bandwidth and support must be top of mind for builders as they plan remodels and new homes to ensure that the infrastructure is laid appropriately and can withstand scalability. This network infrastructure is quickly becoming the backbone to many homes as they integrate more and more smart home technology.
The relationship between a builder and a home technology professional serves many purposes, including awareness of the latest home technology trends and elevating the overall value of the project. Working together ensures that the two industries move forward with a cohesive front, which ultimately ensures the best experience for homeowner clients.
CEDIA has enjoyed a 10+ year relationship with the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and the two associations have worked together to establish familiarity, comfort and value associated with residential technology for NAHB members.
Vincent Bruno serves as the CEO of CEDIA, the leading global authority in the $14 billion home technology industry. Builders can learn more about working with home technology professionals by visiting www.cedia.org.