Bringing Smart Home Technology To Your Property Development

Smart home technology adoption is on the rise. The influence of the ‘internet of things’ (IoT) in our homes is growing, and not just in existing properties either. New builds are increasingly utilising smart home technology in property developments as a USP enacted to drive sales.

A recent research paper by Garner recently stated that there will be 700 million connected homes by 2020, with the bulk of these being in the UK. Critically, a report by Barclays (the Digital Homes Report) stated that people would, on average, spend £3,310 more on home fully equipped with pre-installed connected technology.

“Smart home technology will soon be expected in homes, just like stainless steel and granite are the norm across properties today, In three to seven years, I foresee homes being completely outfitted with smart technology – for improving both functionality and lifestyle in our homes.”

– Travis Gray, a sales associate affiliated with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Smart home technology adoption is projected to continue to grow exponentially over the next few years, as Gray says, and soon become a key feature in homes across the Western hemisphere.

Who Is Buying Property With Smart Home Technology?

Homes at the top end of the residential sector are responding particularly enthusiastically to the release of smart home technology. Property aimed at environmentally-conscious buyers, and early-Millennials (in their late 20s to mid-30s), particularly those that overlap with the aforementioned high-end residential sector, are prime for smart home tech. Older millennial buyers will be a key group for property developers to target, at the point where they are seeking their first family home. The perceived assistance to everyday living offered by smart home technology may well prove appealing to new families.

Interestingly, however, the other end of the age spectrum, the 50+ age group, have also shown interest in smart home tech, for a few reasons. Firstly, new technologies have long been seen as a status symbol for these generations. Secondly, this age group is more likely to have disposable income to spend on smart gadgets and is also likely to be purchasing at the top end of the residential sector. The enthusiasm for smart homes tends to be about balanced between these demographics.

Tech for Tech’s Sake

It’s important to note that smart home technology for the sake of it is not what a property developer should aim for. Entertainment systems and smart appliances, flashy as they may be, are the smart home technology products that are showing poor performance compared with more practical IoT devices.

It is items like connected temperature control and smart security systems that are more likely to increase buyer engagement with a development property. A study in the US, conducted by Coldwell Banker, found smart security products to be the most appealing smart home technology products amongst surveyed consumers, with 58% of respondents considering this technology appealing.

Another interesting stat from this Coldwell Banker study, incidentally, is that 81% of current smart homeowners (in the US) said they would be more inclined to purchase a home with smart home technology already installed.

The Barriers to Mass Adoption of Smart Home Technology

We are at a point in the adoption of smart home technology where new generations of smart home devices are being released all the time. As stated by the Operations Director at Essential Living, Ian Merrick:

“[Smart technology] changes so fast that what you install today has been superseded by next week”.

Like the early days of the smartphone, the profusion of smart home technology devices coming out may actually be hampering progress to adoption. This is because, in a crowded new market like this, consumers make the decision to hold out until such a time as the technology either reaches an optimally desirable level of usability or comes down in price (or both).

It’s worth considering as a developer, therefore, whether creating a property development that is enabled for smart home technology, rather than fully fitted, might be a more sensible option. After all, if the state-of-the-art devices you install in a property are likely to be outdated within weeks or months of coming to market, why bother at all?

The focus for property developers seeking to engage with the smart home technology movement should, therefore, be to facilitate buyers with the hubs and connectivity they desire. Rather than seeking out great luxuries, developers who wish to offer the gadgets themselves should take note that essentials, such as central heating and security, are more likely to entice buyers.


If you would like to learn more about the sectors within the Property industry that will benefit most from these technologies, and the ways in which this will happen, then be sure to download our whitepaper ‘How Virtual and Augmented Reality Will Revolutionise House Building and Property Marketing’.

Download our Whitepaper Revolutionary Tech – How Virtual and Augmented Reality Will Revolutionise House Building and Property Marketing:

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