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What’s Feeding Our Appetite for a Smarter Home?

As homeowners renovate their homes, nearly half are using the project as an opportunity to integrate “smart” technology, as revealed in our recent 2016 Houzz Smart Home Trends Survey. The driving factors behind the installation of smart tech – systems or devices that can be monitored or controlled via smartphone, tablet or computer – vary depending on the type of technology. Let’s take a closer look at the primary motivations behind smart security/safety, climate control, lighting and entertainment upgrades.


Homeowners are particularly keen on adding smart security and safety features to their renovated homes (25 percent). Interestingly, protection against intruders – the top motivation for security upgrades across the board – is a stronger motivation for those installing smart security/safety features than those installing non-smart options (67% vs. 51%, respectively).

Given that smart security/safety features provide homeowners with the unique ability to monitor or control the protection of their home remotely, it makes sense that these factors are also major motivators behind smart home product integration. This includes having the ability to monitor or control the security/safety of the home from outside of the home (52%) and from anywhere within the home (30%).


When it comes to entertainment upgrades, homeowners are largely drawn to smart technology options to create the best, most comfortable, and most technologically advanced experience possible. Improving the entertainment experience is the top motivator (80%, ahead of non-smart upgrades at 75%), followed by improving the comfort (55%, ahead of non-smart upgrades at 47%). The desire to have the latest technology or the ability to easily change the mood or vibe of the home come next (27% each).


Reducing energy consumption and improving the comfort are the top motivations behind both smart climate control and smart lighting upgrades. Comfort is king when it comes to installing smart climate control devices (71%), followed closely by reducing energy consumption (68%). Optimizing energy consumption is a slightly higher motivator among smart device installers than non-smart device upgraders (68% vs. 62%, respectively). The ability to monitor or control the climate of the home from outside the home comes third (41%).


Reducing energy consumption is an even stronger motivator for smart lighting installers than non-smart lighting upgraders (59% vs. 47%). Improving the comfort of the homeowner/homeowner’s family is the next highest motivator for smart lighting upgraders (54%), followed by the ability to easily change the mood or vibe of the home (34%).

A common thread between all four of the smart home categories covered in this survey – security/safety, climate control, lighting and entertainment – is that improving resale value through the installation of smart technology is a low priority. This was a motivating factor for only 16% of lighting, 14% of climate control, 11% of security/safety and 8% of entertainment upgraders installing smart products. Instead, homeowners report being more interested in improving the overall comfort, enjoyment, and efficiency of their homes, for themselves and their families.

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