In last week’s post we talked about smart home technology, also known as home automation or domotics (from Latin “domus”, which means house, and “tica” in Greek, which means automatic). As some of you have asked us to talk more about it, we decided to turn it into the topic of the week.
Home automation is a way to not only upgrade the safety and comfort of the house, but to make it much more sustainable, as it becomes more energy efficient. Generally, the systems that are responsible for converting the house into a smart home work together, sharing data to fit the user’s preferences.
What is a smart home?
A smart home is one that uses the latest communication and computerization technologies to automate different processes in the house, such as opening doors and shutters, the air conditioning, or turning on and off the light.
We can trace its origin to 1966, with the invention of ECHO IV. The ECHO (Electronic Computing Home Operator) could control the temperature of the home, turn appliances on and off, and even store the shopping list or recipes. However, it was never marketed.
Although some slight advances in this technology began to be made over the next decades, with the term “Smart Home” coined in 1984, it is not until the early 2000s that these smart homes actually began to be sold. Today it is still a relatively new technology that has not yet settled in the real estate market, but many new construction homes nowadays have an integrated home automation system.
How does it work?
Home automation works with a series of devices connected to the Internet, either by wiring or thanks to wireless technologies. Nowadays more and more things are built with a way to connect to the Internet, thanks to the so-called Internet of Things, and therefore every day there’s new home elements that fit this characteristic.
The home automation system gathers the information of those devices, and after processing it issues orders to automate the orders that the user has established. That means that if the user establishes that they want the air conditioner to turn on five minutes before they get home, the home automation system will collect information about arrivals and departures to activate the air conditioner accordingly.
Of course, the home automation system can also be remotely controlled, so that the user can decide on the functions of their smart home wherever they are.
Why do I want it in my house?
One of the main reasons to install a home automation system is the security and peace of mind they provide. Thanks to sensors and communication technologies, smart homes can be monitored regardless of where the user is.
In addition, home automation helps keep energy expenditure controlled, which not only helps the planet, but means saving money for the user.
Finally, a smart home simplifies many tasks through automation, and if properly programmed, it will adapt to the user’s preferences to make the house always as comfortable as possible.
Is it going to cost me a lot?
Nowadays, accessing a smart home is much easier than one may think. Although they may come with a small learning curve, the systems for home automation are becoming increasingly more intuitive , and the devices they use are much cheaper than it seems.
Of course, it all depends on what the user wants to install, and how. A complex wiring system can be a huge renovation in the house, while the purchase of several wireless devices that can communicate with each other does not imply any reform, and it is cheaper.
Like everything else, the price will depend on the complexity desired in the systems. In Inmokea, as always, we recommend going to a professional before making any purchases.
Or as an alternative, you can always take a look at our selection of new construction, since many of the houses built in the last year already have a home automation system.