Smart-Tech: redefining the real estate landscape

Jamie Johnson, CEO at FJP Investment investigates…

Homeowners are constantly looking for new ways to make their lives easier, safer, more affordable and, in recent years, more environmentally friendly. The sharp increase in demand for homes equipped with smart technology should therefore come as no surprise.

Smart tech — which generally refers to devices and devices that can be controlled remotely by voice or via another device such as a tablet or phone over a network connection — has come to the forefront of many homeowners’ considerations over the past two years when working. remote became ‘the new normal’ and people found themselves spending more time in their homes.

Despite the end of distance restrictions, remote working and hybrid working have become indispensable. Recent figures from ONS show that 84% of employees who had to work from home during the pandemic said they planned to do a combination of home and work in the future.

This massive shift in work practices has led to a shift in preferences, especially with regard to smart tech, as many seek greater comfort in not only their home, but now their workplace as well.

Consumer benefits

In a world where technological advancements are constantly increasing productivity, efficiency is key no matter where a person’s workplace is located.

As such, more homeowners are opting for smart tech that has the potential to add more convenience to their lives. Once considered a niche, or perhaps even a bit of a gimmick, smart tech like voice-activated lighting, TVs, and music speakers have become commonplace. This is likely to only increase in households where people who work from a home office want to make everyday tasks easier.

For example, the rising popularity of smart kitchen appliances seems to emphasize this. Recent figures show that Google searches for smart dishwashers have increased by 62% and the number of smart surpluses has increased by 61%, in addition to increases in other appliances such as smart fridges and washing machines.

Certainly, buyer expectations have shifted towards digitized amenities that provide a comfortable environment that facilitates the balance between family, social and professional lives. For example, a centralized system that can provide stock updates via a smart fridge, while also controlling the underfloor heating, will give people more control over their home – as their home becomes more relevant to their lives.

This has become even more relevant in the current economic climate as rising inflation and utility bills mean individuals are making sure their property is as cost efficient as possible. Full control over energy-consuming appliances, from stoves to heating systems, is more important than ever for households under pressure. Indeed, recent research by FJP has found that 42% of UK homeowners have a smart meter installed – likely due to their effectiveness at keeping up with rising energy bills.

Developers need to keep up

Real estate developers must take these changing preferences into account if they want to remain competitive.

In a study by Whathouse? more than 80% of real estate agents indicated that smart tech had helped them sell homes, meanwhile more than 50% of real estate with smart tech had sold for a price higher than comparable homes and in most cases more than 5% above ask the standard prices.

As such, incorporating smart-tech readiness into building plans will not only help deliver more eco-friendly homes that meet changing buyer demand, but will also increase their value – something to be taken into account given that experts predict. a market slowdown.

In the past two years, consumers have assessed what really matters to them in a home as work patterns become more and more hybrid. This gives the industry an opportunity to evaluate its current standard operating practices in construction to keep up with evolving trends. Embracing smart technologies will become increasingly important in delivering value to meet buyers’ current and future needs while maintaining their competitiveness in today’s rapidly evolving market.

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