A Look Ahead to the Top Home Tech Trends of 2015

A Look Ahead to the Top Home Tech Trends of 2015

Another year is in the books. And as you start crafting those New Year’s Resolutions, let’s take a pulse check on the technologies that will shake 2015.

We’re not talking about the newest and coolest gadgets. We’re talking profit-rich tech as identified by builders for builders—worth incorporating into new homes to meet buyer demand.

According to a Market Pulse Survey issued homebuilders by TecHome Builder, the percentage of home sale prices attributable to technology will more than double by 2018, to 12 percent.

Ninety-two percent of builders agree that innovative technology options and amenities can provide their new homes a competitive edge versus existing homes.

So, what technologies have the biggest potential in 2015 and beyond?

Our survey reveals that the biggest growth category will be electronic locks. In 2014, 29 percent of homes included them, while that number is expected to jump to 49 percent in 2016—a 20 percent growth rate.

Electronic locks come as standard in 28 percent of homes and are estimated to be standard in 83 percent of homes within two years.

EnerG Home Awareness System
Home energy management systems, like EnerG’s Home Awareness System can operate anything from the thermostat temperature to your webcam.

Not far behind are energy monitoring and management systems and video surveillance systems, which are expected to have a 19 percent growth rate. In 2014, 24 percent of homes included energy management systems while 29 percent had surveillance systems. In 2016, those numbers will grow to 43 percent and 48 percent, respectively.

Elliot Fabri Jr., vice president and co-founder of EcoCraft Homes in Pennsylvania, predicts that LEDs will become more of a standard in new homes as the prices continue to come down. And he’s putting his money where his mouth is.

“We’re looking to make them standard in 2015 as they are more affordable and marketable,” Fabri says.

Quick Hit: See Ya Later CFLs; LED is New Standard

LED pendants
Homebuilders such as Elliot Fabri Jr. of EcoCraft Homes believe more builders will include LEDs as standard in new homes in the near future.

EcoCraft Homes is not alone. By 2016, 80 percent of homes built by survey participants will include LEDs, an increase of 16 percent from 2014.

Consumer sales of LEDS are increasing at a rapid rate. LEDs occupied 12 percent of the lighting market in 2012, but that’s grown to 25 percent in 2014, and is projected to be 80 percent of the market by 2020. California requires hardwired LEDs in new home construction under Title 24.

Fabri also says home automation and controls will become more and more popular. Although it hasn’t taken hold in the Pennsylvania market yet, he believes it will as awareness levels continue to rise.

Home automation systems were our sixth top growth category. They are in 36 percent of homes built by our survey takers, who estimated they’ll include an automation system in 52 percent of homes in 2016, a 17 percent growth.

Clare Controls
Pepper Viner includes Clare Controls home automation systems as standard in new homes.

Homes by Pepper Viner come with a basic Clare Controls home automation package as standard, and Chad Williams, chief operating officer, thinks this will become more of a trend among builders.

“It seems the integrated home will become more of an included feature on some level with upgrades from there,” he says.

Presently, 27 percent of homebuilders include home automation packages as standard, while an overwhelmingly 86 percent intend to make them standard in two years.

He also thinks that larger integrators that have mastered the sales and technologies aspect in other markets will start moving into smaller markets.

“This will be a mutually beneficial move for the integrators, builders, and then on to consumers,” Williams says. “It seems the change for next year will be in the overall growth of integrated homes rather than new gadgets and/or technologies.”

Also of note, smart and connected kitchen appliances also ranked high on our survey. Ovens and cooktops are expected to have a growth rate of 17 percent, while smart and connected refrigerators should reach a 15 percent growth rate.

Among technologies builders are most looking forward to pursue in 2015 include 4K video, home automation, energy monitoring, management, production and storage and geothermal.

About The Author

Kelly Mello is a TecHome Builder Staff Writer, creating timely, investigative articles for its eMagazine and Special Reports. She graduated from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in English: Communications & Rhetoric. She began her writing career in 2007 as editorial assistant for GateHouse Media. From 2010 to 2013, she was local editor for various Patch sites, including Norton.Patch.com.

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