Real Estate Sales: What does a basic smart house need to be attractive to buyers?

This one is interesting, not because it’s HomeKit, but because of the use cases that they have included.

This is a national residential builder, and they have decided that for their townhouses, they are going to offer a HomeKit automation package as standard.

There are a couple of other builders offering HomeKit packages, but those are all upgrade options that the buyer pays extra for.

They’ve decided that The standard features will include:

Ubiquiti WiFi
Schlage lock (1)
Honeywell Thermostat (1)
Lutron Caseta switches in “select areas.”

And…that’s it. No sensors. No smart bulbs. No window coverings. No outlets. Big brand names with conventional-looking devices.

By my definition, this is definitely a “limited feature” set up. Very simple scheduling. No stacked conditionals. Devices that everybody knows and understands that are a little bit smarter.

By the way, one of the really interesting things about the decision to make the standard is it addresses the typical townhouse/condo issue with smart locks, which is that now every door looks the same again.

Also, the switches work like regular switches, the thermostat works like a regular thermostat. The lock works as a combination lock. All whether you set it up with HomeKit or not.

The thermostat and light could also work with echo, although they don’t mention that.

No security features, which is also interesting. I haven’t looked to see if the development has other security options built-in, they may because of the common space issue.

Of course if the individual customer wants to add more devices, they can – – there’s no installer code required and no monthly fees.

I just think it’s interesting in terms of what they included. It’s the first time I’ve seen a national offering real estate automation package which didn’t have cameras and security sensors. So in a sense this is a new phase for home automation in this niche.


I’m curious to see how long it lasts. Lennar did something similar with Nexia. Here’s a YouTube video circa 2012 with what they included:

By the time we moved into our new Lennar home in 2015, they still included a Schlage z-wave door lock and Trane z-wave thermostat, but no more wall wart, camera, Nexia hub and free year of service. I got lucky and asked the sales agent about it and he happened to have a used Nexia hub laying around his office. That’s what got me hooked on home automation. I quickly outgrew Nexia and ended up here.

What’s funny is of the ~60 houses in our neighborhood, I think only ~5 of us even know that the lock and thermostat are “smart home” capable. Since they dropped the Nexia hub, they never thought to tell homeowners. The foreman only thought to tell me because he could sense my tech savyness from previous discussions :smirk:

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Four years is a long time in the microprocessor world. That said, I think they would offer only a rudimentary setup because they will be on the hook for support. I certainly would not want to have to minister to an entire development’s worth of battery-powered sensors.

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Thanks For Information Sharing.

I’ve wondered about selling my house with all this gear in it. Someone might want the ST hub and the Lutron Caseta Hub. I’m not sure how I would hand them over. I guess it would be easiest for a new owner to buy there own hubs and then pair all the switches. Pairing is pretty easy with the Lutron stuff. . . . I think I could simply deregister the Ecobee from my account. . . . I’d just take all the wireless sensor tags and my cameras with me. I guess I’d have to make it clear that the Action Tile displays don’t come with the house. Hmmm.

There are a couple of active threads on issues around selling a home with a SmartThings setup.

Use the quick browse list in the community – created wiki, and look in the project report section for the “selling a smart Home” list. :sunglasses: