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Tips for Future Proofing Your Home

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The 21st century: the age of technology. That statement is the truest of our generation. Smart homes are the current wave across the globe. Where you can be at the office in Beijing, China while turning on the lights for your grandmama in Purchase, New York.

According to a 2016 New Home Source Insights panel discussion, about 91 percent of home shoppers are interested in including smart home technology in their new homes, and that 30 million households are projected to add smart home tech through 2016 and 2017.

Two questions are usually followed

1. Where are we headed next?

2. And how do I future-proof my new home, so it will work well with technologies that haven’t even been invented yet?

Answer 1

The infinity and beyond.

The future of smart home technology is creeping in. Maybe you have a Ring Doorbell, or perhaps your thermostat knows just when to kick itself into gear for that when you get home things are just right, or maybe you had to connect to Hulu on your smart tv but used a laptop to set it all up. The interconnectivity of devices is the future of homes.

Jay McKenzie of New Home Source has this to say

“Designed to help reduce power bills, Nest “learns” how and when you use energy — when you make breakfast, take showers, head out the door for work or school and when you go to bed. As Nest learns these patterns, it makes automatic adjustments to maximize energy efficiency. It will even send you an e-mail reminder to change your furnace and air conditioning filters. Your home can be monitored and adjustments made remotely from a number of platforms — including, of course, iPad and iPhone.”

That is just one example. There is going to be numerous amounts of connections in the home almost as many, if not more, wifi spots you’re connected to.

Answer 2

It depends and no one can give a definitive answer…yet.

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I am a huge advocate for wireless anything, I don’t like seeing wires. Wires = clutter, clutter = dust, dust = dust. Still, it is vitally important that if you get the best out of your devices, especially your Television. Wires are the best way to go.

Denior director of learning and emerging technology for CEDIA, the Consumer Electronics Design and Installation Association David Pedigo makes a point that We’re starting to get to point where builders, architects, and interior designers understand that it does take proper planning and consideration. If you’re going to incorporate a digital experience, do it at the front.”

An example, I like my television to be in the wall. Not on it but in it. Of course, being “in” the wall means I must plan way ahead. Size, places to run wires, location are all integral to the tv-watching experience. It can go either really really well or horribly tragically wrong.

Custom Home Builder Troy Michigan who agrees with Pedigo, Michigan states, “wireless works great for some applications, such as printers, but it “just really doesn’t work very well with high-definition and ultra-high-definition video and speakers,” Pedigo says. “Video bandwidth is accelerating at a much faster pace than wireless capabilities. And speakers will always need wires. There are wireless speakers, but they still require a power source.”

Planning ahead if key!

Homebuyers and smart-home enthusiasts are seeking a lot of home automation applications, particularly in the area of lighting and audio controls. Features such as climate control as mentioned before is a huge must-have on the shopping experience.

Also, that $1000 iPhone is really going to come in handy going forward- don’t drop your expensive controller err phone or you’d be sorry.

This is not a definitive step by step rather common areas to consider.

1. Make your home “smarter”

Through smart technology, homeowners can control such things as lighting, heating and AC, locks, home surveillance systems, and even appliances remotely via a smartphone or tablet computer.

Experts generally agree that you should install a CAT7 cable to every sensor point in your home. That includes thermostat temperature sensors, presence detectors, smart switches, water detectors

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2. Make energy-efficient improvements

Replace old toilets- this should be a given- with models that feature low-flow. Save on your water bill.

Water heaters are going the way of tank-less styles.

Double-paned windows are the staple window styles in homes and if it is not, get them.

Don’t compromise on insulation. It’s important to keep the hidden workings of your home as updated as technology.

3. Make your home more eco-friendly

Not only is this safe for the environment but it is for your household as well. When was the last time lemon juice hurt someone?

When updating your kitchen formaldehyde-free, 100% acrylic, low VOC paints, orderless is the way to go.

The ever-popular solar energy system, this in an investment, is also one of the best eco-friendly steps you can take to future proof your home.

4. Make room for an aging population

When remodeling or doing a room addition, it’s important to consider not just how the extra space will be utilized now, but how it might be used a decade or two down the road.

A baby’s room can be transformed into an office space. A playroom can be turned to an extension of another existing room.

Plan ahead no idea is a bad idea.

5. Make wiring changes for the future

When upgrading wiring, think of where you want to have access to the Internet, Ethernet, cable or other wiring in your home and how that may change in the future. This is very very important. Optimizing the signals throughout your home is so so so key in the planning phase. During the wiring process, it’s a smart idea to run an extra conduit to accommodate future wiring needs as technology evolves-making your home even more future-proof than ever-we don’t know what the next wave of technology is.

Be prepared.

If you’re doing a new install, you should put in power lines, two CAT6 Ethernet cables (opting for CAT7 yield greater return on your investment), HDMI, coax cables, and phone jacks to every “entertainment point” as a minimum. And make sure you still leave some empty conduits for retrofits in the future.

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6. Leave Space

For example, it wasn’t so long ago that 30-inch television screens were considered huge. Today, 70 inches is the norm. In another five years, we might see 100-inch displays become commonplace.

You’re going to need physical space for these devices. If you’re in the market for a new sideboard or TV stand, plan ahead.

7. Electric Car Chargers

I see my fair share of Tesla around New York.

Global sales of electric vehicles grew by 65 percent in 2016, which mean the future car its electric.

So far, manufacturers have sold around 550,000 electric cars in the United States, and experts predict the number will snowball over the coming decade. By 2022, electric cars will be cheaper to own than gas-powered vehicles.

The long-term predictions also make for astonishing reading. By 2040, it’s thought there will be at least 41 million electric cars on America’s roads and 35 percent of all vehicles globally will have a plug.

8. Protect Yourself Against Internet Downtime

Last but certainly not least. If the internet goes off- wifi drops, game systems lag, streaming services buffering- that is annoying If the internet suffers an outage in your home in 10 years, it could be catastrophic. You might not be able to turn on the lights, arm your alarm, or operate the washing machine, imagine not being able to FaceTime your deployed significant person.

Here is a summation of tips you can use while exploring the smart home era.

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By Dexter Phillip-Khane

Dexter Phillip-Khane is the Deputy Editor at Bazaar Daily News. Covering interesting topics; food, and more — Phillip-Khane is a Trinidadian-American writer and photographer residing in New York City. To request secure communications access, e-mail dexkhane@bazaardaily.co.uh and ask for Signal.

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