Are Homeowners Upgrading During The Pandemic?

What Are Homeowners Doing To Lessen The Strains Of Sheltering At Home?

2020 will go down as one of modern history’s most unprecedented years, especially for homeowners. Every day homes are modified to accommodate learning and working from home. However, homeowners invest more in their properties to make sheltering convenient for them and their families. They’re adding home theaters, pools, and spas, and some are remodeling their kitchens to be more inclusive of the whole family. Home technology is the beating heart behind all of these upgrades because home automation, especially during the pandemic, is trendier than ever. 

What Are The Trends?

According to an article on, “Survey: Home Improvement Trends in the Time of Covid,” published July 2020, 44% of homeowners introduced technology to their home upgrades. 34% made their homes more environmentally friendly, which is almost totally absorbed with technology nowadays

The reason, as stated in the article, is that 55% of American homeowners found more time to make these changes while sheltering in place. Less travel time and more efficient work productivity from home have allowed more time to make the upgrades to save money and live more comfortably. 

Many families have found that home upgrades have brought families closer together as their homes functioned as a school, work, and home life, all in one atmosphere, without the need for travel from one place or another. One might think that a drawback is isolating from the community, friends, and extended family. Home technology has solved that issue with whole-home WiFi and applications like Zoom, Google Meet, Face Time, etc. School friends can hang out on personal devices; Grandma and Grandpa can safely visit the family, and so on. 33% of these homes spent more on better internet networks than home gyms or outdoor amenities such as pool and spa. 

Wifi by Ubiquiti
Wifi by Ubiquiti

How The Economy Has Affected Technology Upgrades In The Home.

The economy’s downturn has had some effect on home upgrades, but it hasn’t been significant enough to deter homeowners from completing improvements they’ve intended to make. 31% of American homeowners thought it necessary to make needed upgrades to accommodate school and home offices. However, it is a good investment because the culture of how we work and learn is forever changed, and new homeowners will be looking for these options when buying a home. Such upgrades will increase the profitability of selling houses in the future. 

The pandemic has everyone tightening their budgets, and people are learning to conserve. The economy, at best, is unpredictable, and specific areas of home technology have taken priority. 

  1. Solar panels and home automation to control energy consumption has generated new appeal with homeowners during the pandemic. According to, by 2024, 2.5% of all U.S homes will have solar as an energy source.
  2. Low voltage lighting is still in its infancy with much room to grow. Homeowners are making lighting upgrades to include new low-cost, energy-efficient lights to curb power consumption.
  3. Smart appliances are seeing record sales, even before the pandemic, because of the technology they possess with efficiently controlling the energy they use.

The energy that homes use from people being at home more often, working, learning, and living, increases energy consumption. The demand for energy-saving home upgrades is more significant than it has ever been. These upgrades have alleviated the stresses of high energy bills from the increase in the home’s activities. 

How Home Technology Aleviates The Stress Of Sheltering In Place.

Homeowners that have upgraded the technology of their homes have found it easier to shelter in place. They’ve invented ways to keep them and their families connected and entertained. If anything, home technology has helped to bring families closer together during the Coronavirus. They’re cooking together, which in the past seemed to be a chore reliant on one person. Some families have board game nights via video conferencing with others. “Okay, Grandpa, your token landed on Park Place, and you owe me $200.” 

Other families entertain each other and connect socially with family karaoke night, or kids log on to Roblox to play and have conversations with their friends. 

Robloxlogo (1).png

Let’s not forget family movie times, which in most cases, is several nights per week. Many homeowners are making additions or upgrading unused rooms to replicate the movie theater experience, incorporating the look and feel of a real movie theater. Large screens, excellent surround sound, comfy lounge seating, and even concession stands complete with candy, drink, and popcorn machines are included in the designs to recreate the ultimate movie experience. The driving force behind is powered by a quality projector or a flat-screen TV and your favorite streaming device or player. 

The pandemic has created a trend for upgrading homes, and that trend is going to be driven by technology. Millennials are driving the direction being that new technologies have driven their generation. Their residences more than likely feature two or more facets of smart home tech than baby-boomers, which in many cases have one. The key to driving technology for home living lies with innovations, thought of, and designed by the installation companies that solve homeowners’ tech issues every day. 

Planning Is Key.

Planning is key. Industry leaders like Smarter Homes of Austin work with homeowners from the beginning of the design process to a complete technological advanced home. The owner, Peter Sandford, is quoted to say, “A failure to plan is a plan for failure,” and that couldn’t be more true, especially in regards to the current crisis caused by the Coronavirus. Smarter Homes of Austin and businesses like it eliminate error and guesswork to ensure that installations work without issues, alleviating the stress of sheltering in place. 


D. B. Harrison

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*The calculated home technology budget range you will receive will includes parts, labor & accessories (Tax not included)
(a round number is OK)
Numerous structures on the property: Dock, Casita, Guest House, Barn, Gate etc. Check all that apply.
Prewire installation calculations assume you would like your home fully wired for ALL home automation technologies shown throughout the budget calculator, including 'future-ready' wiring. Prewire pricing can vary substantially based on what features you would like in your home. The wiring budget is for low-voltage wiring, not for electrical.
Prewire pricing will vary based on exactly what features you would like in your home. Read this article about the importance of wiring/cabling in today's "wireless" world. Your local Smarter Homes integrator is the best resource for exact prewire pricing. Wiring budget is for low-voltage wiring only, not electrical.
Keep in mind that our modern lifestyle and our home's automation technology systems are extremely reliant on a quality network and Wi-Fi system. Most homes are moving towards enterprise-grade hardware and away from the types of network products you could buy in an office supply store or a consumer computer store. We recommend that all homeowners consider the network and Wi-Fi system to be the most important system and installation within the home.
Higher-quality sound or higher-grade architectural finished speakers can range from $5,000.00 to $10,000.00 PER ROOM
Basic background music system pricing ranges from $1,500.00 to $5,000.00 per room including all equipment, labor, and programming.
Range includes video sources such as AppleTV, a Blu-ray player, satellite receiver, and remotely-locating them for best aesthetics. A basic soundbar is included for better audio.
This is called “video distribution” and reduces the amount of audio/video equipment located at each TV location/room.
A surround sound system creates an immersive sound experience, much like a dedicated home theater room, though in a dual-purpose room such as a Family Room, Master Bedroom, etc. If you would like more than one surround system location, click on the "Add Another Surround System" button below
Typically, homeowners want to see the following areas: front of house, front door, driveway / gate, sides of house, and pool. If you are more concerned about security, you may want to add cameras for the perimeter of your property. Good-quality cameras see about 75 feet of distance on average. The high range of the budget estimate includes higher resolution cameras, better night vision, and longer surveillance recording time.
The installation of a lighting control system reduces wall clutter, allows preset lighting scenes at the push of a button, increases security through programming automation, and adds convenience.
Motorized shades add beauty, convenience, address privacy concerns, and can be used to save energy. If desired, provide your best guess on how many windows/shades you want to motorize. The higher-end of the budget range includes higher-end fabrics, large windows, and dual-roller shades (both sheer and privacy shades on one window).
For example, a house music app, an app to operate your TV, an app for lighting automation, an app for locks, an app for cameras, an app to open close garage doors & gates, etc. Or do you want to control the entire house through a single unified app that controls all the automation systems within the home?
Make your home feel larger by balancing the light between indoor and outdoor areas.
Smarter Homes Austin
Austin’s Certified Luxury Home Automation, Home Theater, Audio Video & Wi-Fi Experts

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