Technological Gadgets That Drive up Your Home Price

by Tommy SibigaAugust 10, 2015

“It felt dated.” It’s one of the most common criticisms that I will hear buyers share after walking through a home. Most buyers desire a home with recent updates. They may love all of the charm of a home built in the early 1900’s, but they still want some of today’s modern amenities. Those conveniences evolve continually, as new products are introduced into our industry. Here are few new things that will bring your home up to 2015 AND potentially increase its value.
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Not too long ago, I installed a USB electrical outlet in my kitchen. The kitchen counter was and continues to be our common landing pad for cell phones. Thirty-five dollars or so spent on a USB outlet made part of our kitchen feel “updated.” That’s a very modest update, but in the real estate world, a buyer will pick up on those details. Switching out older style electrical outlets, light switches, and dimmer switches will make your home feel less “dated.” Switching out older lighting fixtures will allow you to better market your home. These updates may not bring a dollar for dollar return on your investment, but it will make your home “feel” that much nicer and more modernized than others.

A recently built model home, in my market, priced in the $400ks features a $12,000 technology package. It comes wired with the ability to control lighting, temperature, music, tv, and more. Smart homes like this gain more popularity each year. Some buyers are willing to pay more on new construction for these amenities, but any of these products could be added to your existing home pretty easily. Some of the gadgets that you could add are; WiFi or Bluetooth controlled thermostats, lights, cameras, deadbolts, and/or other electronics. Brands like WeMo, Nest, Insteon, Philips, Wink, EcoBee, and others are increasing current production or starting up new product lines for homes with advanced technological features. A moderate addition of some of these features will certainly separate your home from the rest of the pack and may yield a higher purchase price.

Some buyers may find the “gadget” aspect of new smart home technology appealing, but most buyers can’t deny the basic benefits of energy saved and life simplified. Today’s market demands energy efficiency. Companies are stepping up and delivering new technology to accomplish those goals. It may not be as jaw dropping as something with an LED screen, but it is noteworthy. Spend the money on energy efficient products. It will save you money while you currently live in the house, and down the road, it will make for a great selling feature.

The most prevalent upgrades in existing homes are typically tankless water heaters and energy-efficient windows. A recent survey that showed that eighty-five percent of respondents believed that solar panels increase the value of a property. Solar panels could be one of those investments that definitely increase the value of your home. Insulation, such as spray foam, is also becoming more popular. Not only will some of these upgrades allow you to sell your home for more, some upgrades are eligible for tax credits.

Traditionally, an “updated,” home will sell for more than one that’s not. Adding even just a few simple tech gadgets will make your home more modern and marketable. Larger ticket upgrades that save both energy and money will carry even greater appeal. It’s an evolving market, so take the time to do a little active research on what technological features you think will add the most value to your home and appeal to the most universal buyer.

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Tommy Sibiga

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