When realtors advise their sellers on what upgrades to do to increase their home value, they say things like give the front door a new coat of paint, trim the grass and shrubs in the front yard and add a few light fixtures. However, nowadays homebuyers expect much more. According to a study conducted by Coldwell Banker in January 2018, “smart home technology continues to grow in popularity and could change the way consumers buy and sell homes.” Following are the smart products that potential homebuyers most prefer to have already installed:
- Smart thermostat (77 percent)
- Smart fire detector (75 percent)
- Smart carbon monoxide detector (70 percent)
- Smart camera (66 percent)
- Smart lock (63 percent)
- Smart lighting system (63 percent)
The good news is that that many of these upgrades can be done quickly and easily by the sellers themselves. So if you are in the market to sell your home, it will pay off to take the relatively little amount of time and money needed to raise the asking price. For around $1,000, you can boost your home’s appeal to buyers. Below are 6 smart home upgrades that you can do yourself over a weekend without breaking the bank:
- Install a Smart Thermostat – Many homeowners start to smarten up their home to sell by installing a smart thermostat. A smart thermostat can communicate with your smartphone, turn itself down when no one is home, balance temperatures around your home and ultimately, save you money. The Nest Learning Thermostat automatically adjusts as your life and the seasons change. After a few weeks or months of recording your habits and preferences, it can automatically turn up or turn down your thermostat for you. The Nest thermostat can be self-installed, but if you’ve never installed a thermostat before, you may want to call an HVAC specialist.
- Smarten Up Your Smoke Detectors – You can give your future homeowners peace of mind by installing a smart smoke/CO detector. The Onelink Safe & Sound smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector will send alerts to your phone. It can tell you the type and location of the danger, keeping your entire home connected and safe during an emergency. It can also tell you when the batteries are running low, which saves you from those annoying chirps in the middle of the night.
- Increase Security With a Video Doorbell – Adding a video doorbell will increase the sense of security for future homeowners. A video doorbell always lets you know who is at your front/back door. When motion is detected or someone rings the door, the video doorbell sends an alert to your smartphone and saves a video clip of the activity to the cloud. The Ring Video Doorbell 3 allows you to talk to visitors through compatible Echo devices by saying “Alexa, talk to the front/back door”. It works on any home, with or without existing doorbell wires. In addition, the Ring Video Doorbell monitors your home in HD video with infrared night vision.
- Secure Your Doors With Smart Locks – Another way to add security to your home’s front/back door and add value to your home is to install a smart lock. We recommend installing the August Smart Lock which saves on installation time because it replaces only the interior part of your existing deadbolt. It offers many smart features that future homeowners will appreciate. With the August Smart Lock, you can lock and unlock your door remotely, control keyless access and keep track of everybody that comes and goes, all from your phone. It can even be set to unlock as you arrive so that you never have to fumble with keys, shopping bags or kids when unlocking the door.
- Brighten Up Your Rooms With Smart Light Bulbs – Homebuyers will also appreciate smart lighting products already installed in their future home. An easy way to offer smart lighting is to purchase a starter kit, which includes multiple bulbs along with a hub, which connects the bulbs to the internet. The Philips Hue Smart Light Bulb Starter Kit is a popular choice. You can purchase the kit with white bulbs in a 2-pack or 4-pack. If you want to add the option for colored lighting, you can also purchase either a 2-pack, 3-pack or a 4-pack. Please note: A Philips Hue lighting system is able to work without an internet connection. However, for the Hue Hub to work, it will have to be connected to a wireless router via Ethernet cable. So if you don’t have a wireless router, you will need to purchase one as the Hue Hub won’t be able to interlink with other bulbs without the router.
- Tie Everything Together With a Smart Speaker – You can connect all of the above devices to a smart speaker and control them from one place. We recommend the Amazon Echo Show 5 or the newer version, Echo Show 8. The future homebuyers will love the added touch. With the Echo Show 5/8, you will be able to see a live feed from the video doorbell just by asking Alexa. You can also ask Alexa to check the smoke alarm batteries, adjust the thermostat, lock the back door and dim the lights. In order to connect all these devices, you will have to find and set up their corresponding Alexa skills in the Skills Store of the Amazon Alexa App. To install each skill, you will need to sign into the corresponding devices account and have Alexa discover the device. The process may be a little tedious, but in the end it’s worth it. Voice control is becoming more and more popular and will certainly impress potential homebuyers!
Experts say that investing in smart home tech can boost your home’s resale value up to 5%. That’s $15,000 on a $300,000 home! So, consider taking some time to install the 6 smart home upgrades above. And when it comes time to sell your home, you will be glad you did!