Whether designing your home from scratch or making enhancements, the installation of bespoke tech to enrich your life and help it run more smoothly is the latest must-have.
A cinema room with surround sound is no longer enough, those living want the highest security, intelligent shutters, coloured and mood lighting and energy control from their smartphone, tablet or dedicated remote, whether home or away.
Home automation companies such as London-based JSJ Smart Homes aim to provide every comfort with a single touch. Stefan Knight, Founder and Managing Director of JSJ, recommends thinking about your tech needs at the very beginning of a project. “A typical house is going to have an alarm, heating and a security system - that’s three different apps straight away. People often have one system for air-conditioning and another for underfloor heating. So, in theory, you could have both on at the same time which is clearly not energy efficient, and, in addition, you are unlikely to achieve your exact preferred temperature.”
Aside from what you should consider at the beginning of a project, Stefan understands that quality comes not from what hasn’t been done before, but what is already being done - and being one of the best at it.
“We don’t reinvent the wheel, we use the best manufacturers - the best access control system, security alarm, heating, air-conditioning, home cinema and audio, and integrate everything into one centralised server which is usually positioned in the utility area, basement or plant room. The resident can then control all aspects of their environment through any IT enabled device.”
Richard Colman runs Luxe Smart Homes and is highly experienced in the planning and installation of multi-room audio systems, home cinemas, lighting and heating control and smart home security that are all connected over a secure and fast-flowing home network. With smart homes becoming the new norm, Richard has worked with musicians, sportspeople, city financiers and investors. He recalls one of his favourite installations: “The client had the appetite at the outset to ensure the property had all the latest smart home technologies that would simplify their lives at home and let the system do repetitive tasks that could be automated.
An example of this was the automated shades opening and closing based on the astronomical clock on a daily basis. We set the system so the blinds would open 10 minutes before sunrise and 10 minutes after sunset all year round.”
Mews properties remained underappreciated into the middle of the twentieth century. Some were used by squatters, others as garages, and even mews homes in the chicest areas could be picked up for a pittance. This eventually attracted budding artists and other creative types who ensured the fortunes of the capital’s mews turned again.
With today’s ever-evolving smart technology, your home really can run itself.