Technology is seeing rapid advancements on a day-to-day basis, and there’s no reason why your house shouldn’t keep up with the changes. So whether you’re building or renovating your home, you should also consider its longevity, so that it is not only eco-friendly and enjoyable to live in, but it also increases in value over the years. Future-proofing may seem costly and daunting at first, but with these tips, you can rest assured that you and your home will stay on top of modern-day trends.
Consider home automation
With the current technological changes, it’s not just appliances that are becoming smart, but also our homes. And the best part is that you have the control you need right at your fingertips, through your smartphone or tablet. You can now use a wide range of apps to program your washing machine while still at work, control the light or AC system in your room, and even home security and surveillance features. Buying smart appliances, as well as rewiring and installation, isn’t as expensive as you think, and it is open for constant customization and upgrades, as new features become available on the market.
Make your home energy efficient
Increasing the energy efficiency of your home is not only good for the environment, but it will also see a drop in your monthly electricity bills. Some changes are very easy to implement, such as switching to home appliances with a high Energy Star rating or switching from CFL to LED light bulbs. Insulating your home also adds to its energy efficiency, from switching to double pane windows, to using foam spray insulation, and even implementing a passive cooling design in your home. And if you wish to go the extra mile, you can even look into installing solar panels on your roof.
Take an eco-friendly approach
Reducing the carbon footprint should be a goal for all future homes. Apart from being more energy-efficient, there are several other home improvements worth considering. One of them is reducing your water consumption, by installing low-flow systems in your bathroom, or, if you have a garden, using plants that require very little water for your landscaping, such as deer grass or dusty miller. Also, when redecorating your home, try to use as many recycled materials as possible, as well as materials that are eco-friendly and non-toxic, such as formaldehyde-free plywood, and low VOC paint.
Think about cable management
It goes without saying that your future home could rely heavily on electrical appliances, so cable management will become a crucial part of interior design. Having all your appliances connected to an extension lead is not only unsightly but also a tripping hazard. So when planning the placement and layout of your home cinema system or kitchen amenities, try to move the cables out of the way by tucking them behind skirting boards, or by looking into free-form wiring topology. With the increasing number of electrical appliances in your home, you might also have to think about hardwiring them, as well as installing spare cable conduits in the walls, and even home automation cables.
Prepare for the internet downtime
Having the internet drop on you is annoying at the best of times, but it can become a downright frustration if you can’t turn on your Wi-Fi connected light bulbs, for example. Both your life and your home will become more reliant on the internet as the future becomes the present, so it’s best to have a backup plan for any potential outage. Luckily, you don’t need to rely just on your wireless router to keep your smart home running. You can use your smartphones to create a mobile hotspot, or use services like Speedify to combine Wi-Fi, Ethernet, 3G and 4G to provide a backup internet connection.
Leave room for upgrades
At the rate at which we’re seeing technological advances, there’s no telling what the future holds. Certain modern appliances are becoming slimmer, but some others are becoming much larger, and if a 30-inch TV was considered large a couple of decades ago, 100-inch screens might become the norm further down the line. Kitchen appliances are also increasing in size and number of features they come with, so when designing the furniture for your built-in appliances, make sure to give them space to grow into. Electric cars are also on the rise, so if you’re thinking of switching from gasoline in several years’ time, make sure that your garage is fit for the job and has the infrastructure needed for a charging port. Even if you’re not considering it for the time being, home automation will have tremendous benefits in your old age, not just through electric stairlifts, but also lights, blinds and appliances that can be controlled remotely.