Must-Have Home Technology Upgrades for Remodels

Exterior view of master bath lit up at dusk. Architecture by KGA.

With so many homeowners choosing to update or remodel their homes, now is a great time to revisit the top smart home technology upgrades for remodels. Remodeling is a wonderful way to turn a home you don’t love into your dream home, and in these post-pandemic times, home is more important than ever.

Whether you’re planning to add a media room or do a whole house remodel, advances in the field of home technology are bringing exciting options to market at a wide variety of price points. A remodel is the perfect time to consider upgrading your home technology. Here are a few of our top items to think about to prepare your home for 2021 and beyond.

Planning to Entertain Again

Now that things are inching their way back to some normalcy, it’s time to start thinking about entertaining again in our homes! Whether you prefer a dinner party with friends and family, or having the neighborhood over for the big game, incorporating the latest audio-visual solutions is a must.

Televisions have quickly evolved from high-definition (HD) flat panels to ultra-high-definition (UHD) displays. Today, TVs can offer 4K and 8K resolution while boasting options for OLED and/or QLED, which elevate the overall light imaging. The reality of having a theater-quality experience from a TV at an affordable price has certainly been achieved.

Audio Visual considerations, such as televisions, are a great home technology upgrade for remodels
Self-proclaimed TV enthusiasts, these homeowners requested a television in nearly every room, including dual TVs in the living room.

The house audio system, whether connected to the video output of the TV or simply used for music throughout the home, has become a significant part of entertaining.  Providing an audio system in the home is more user-friendly than ever, thanks to multiple streaming services that provide on-demand access to almost any song, a personal playlist or custom radio stations.  This can be done with little to no wiring, depending on aesthetic and sound quality preferences.

This TV that lowers out of the ceiling is a creative way to incorporate home technology upgrades into your custom home or remodel
A television that lowers down from the ceiling provides the ultimate TV watching in bed experience.

The Dramatic Effect of Lighting and Shade Control

Lighting can have a surprisingly dramatic effect in your home, creating an inviting environment throughout. Whether it’s natural light via window treatments or updating the fixtures and layout of a lighting system, the available automations should be part of the conversation.

Wall switches can easily be converted to a “smart” dimmer by swapping out the device currently at each switch location. This provides dimmability while also putting each light on a controllable system without needing to rewire everything. From this point, you can integrate your lighting into multiple scene controls. For example, a “movie time” button where the lights dim down, or perhaps an “entertain” scene that sets all of the accent lighting to that perfect ambiance as your guests arrive. An “all-off” function is extremely useful for when you are lying in bed and realize that some of the lights throughout the house may have been left on.

Lighting control doesn’t stop with your fixtures.  Automated shades provide a clean, cordless look, while also giving full control of raising and lowering shades at the touch of a button.  You can also program different scenes for throughout the day. For example, you might program the shades to open an hour before you wake up each morning. This type of control can also be helpful as a security consideration in order to simulate occupancy when you aren’t at home.  An additional benefit of automated shade control is the opportunity to lower overall energy costs by programming your shades to help control the heat from the sun throughout the day. This is a great way to help with heating or cooling your space!

Simplifying Technology: One Home – One App

These upgrades in audio-visual and lighting control solutions are just the start to all of the home technology upgrades you can make during a remodel. Other popular options include cameras, thermostats, security systems, irrigation controllers, and pool features, just to name a few. As these automations add up, the need for one control hub to unify everything and create a user-friendly experience becomes critical.

Much like the dreaded multi-remote situation that can both confuse and frustrate a homeowner and their guests, the need to “app-hop” among multiple systems ultimately complicates technology, when these automations should be making life easier!

A central home automation system resolves this issue. These highly-intelligent hubs can be custom-programmed to communicate with all of your home’s subsystems. This means that you can access all of your home’s technology through a unified, easy-to-use app. You can create custom scenes that, for example, turn on the media room, lower the shades, dim the lights, and start your favorite show from the push of a button. Prices for these sophisticated automation systems have become accessible for any number of budgets these days.

A central home automation system lets you avoid the dreaded multi-remote situation, making it easy for everyone to enjoy the home theater experience.

Now is the Time

After spending so much time at home, it’s not surprising that so many homeowners are committing to remodel projects. The odds are good that if your home is due for a remodel, then so is your home’s technology. A remodel presents the perfect time to explore your options. Modern audio-visual systems for entertaining, lighting and shade control solutions for enhancing your home’s comfort and ambiance, and smart home controllers are great places to start. But there is so much more to explore. Be sure to consult with a home technology professional early in the process to ensure that you know your options. This will help you make the best choices on home technology upgrades to complement your remodel.

Chris Armenta with Harrison Home Systems

About the Author

Chris Armenta is a project manager and sales rep at Harrison Home Systems. Founded in 2002, the team at HHS has demonstrated a level of technical expertise and customer service that has made them the preferred technology partner for many of the building industry’s most demanding projects. Call Chris at (720) 527-8651 to set up a free consultation, and see how they can help craft a customized technology package for your home.

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