You’ve found the perfect plot of land, designed the home you’ve always wanted, and that dream kitchen is yours. What about home technology? Everyday technology is becoming more ingrained into our lives, and the home is no different. Now more than ever, planning for these technologies is key. Here’s what you need to know:
Choose the Integrator, not the Product
Most companies carry the same top tier brands, but every project is different. Select the firm that best listens to your needs and has the expertise to integrate products from various suppliers into a system that gives you what you want and works the way you want it to. Backend support is important, too. Sophisticated smart home systems require serious engineering skills to properly design, and professional project management to install, especially as part of large custom build.
Get the Integrator Involved Early
You may assume that as long as you get a home technology integrator involved before the drywall goes up, you’re in the clear. That may be true for running wires, but with today’s high level of integration there’s more to consider. What if you want dual shades in your bedroom so you can take full advantage of a lazy day in? That takes planning on the construction side to get them installed properly. Many times, a simple suggestion from the right integrator early on can save you thousands in the later stages, and enable them to deliver a more complete system. So, just how early on are we talking? When possible, we recommend involving your home technology pro while you’re still in the process of designing your home. This will make it easier (and less expensive) for your architect to seamlessly integrate technology into your home’s design.
Choose the Right Technology for your Life
A smart home can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. Prioritizing the performance and features that matter most to you is a smart way to maximize your investment. Is music an important part of your life? Upgrade your audio and emphasize music listening in your system design. Are you a Type A personality who needs everything in the home monitored and controlled? Steer your budget there. Cinephile? Forego a couple rooms in home and get that dream private cinema.
Wire is Still King
Wireless technologies are a given in today’s environment, but you shouldn’t depend solely on the air waves. Wiring every item that can be wired will result in a more reliable system and less traffic on your wireless networks, which in turn will strengthen wireless reliability.
Factor in your Décor
Integration doesn’t only refer to the different technologies. You’ve spent time and money on gorgeous interior design, make sure the tech doesn’t ruin it. With early planning the right integrator can blend a television into the décor, make speakers in the formal dining room disappear from sight, and even turn unsightly outlets into pieces of art.
Take Full Advantage of your Live-in Period
Any proper integrator will offer a live-in period. During this time, you’re able to request tweaks in programming to accommodate your real-world use. Maybe you decide you want an additional lighting scene in the kitchen, or those additional channel favorites are needed in the living room.
Take the time to use the system in every room as much as you can, and report back to your integrator to get your system to a perfect state. It may take a little extra work in the beginning, but you’ll be happier in the long run!
In Short, Plan Early, Plan Often
If you take anything away from this, it’s that the earlier you think about home technology, the better the outcome!
About the Author:
Mac Saad is the Marketing and Biz dev guru for Residential Systems Inc., where he combines his passion for A/V and business. With over a decade of experience, Mac has worked in the industry over multiple continents, several companies, and almost every competency. As a system designer Mac believes in overall pragmatic designs while having fun with the technologies his clients value.