Landlords lettings Residential smart tech tech

The rise of the techno renter

Q2 2018

People of all generations now expect the homes they rent to be equipped with a fast internet connection and up-to-date technology. With a few smart additions, you can bring your property up to date and make it more appealing to tech-savvy renters.

Georgina Cartwright

Senior Associate Director, Head of Kensington Lettings

+44 20 7313 8405

Tenant expectations are growing. Many now expect the homes they rent to be equipped with a fast internet connection and up-to-date technology. But if you want to attract professionals working in the finance and tech industries, you’ll need to go one step further. Here’s how you can upgrade any home to boost its appeal to a techno renter.

Wired vs wireless systems

Before you get carried away with buying smart gadgets, you need to make sure you’ve got the infrastructure in place to support them.Wireless systems are getting a lot more reliable, but if you live in a building with thick concrete or glass walls then you may struggle to create an effective wireless network.

If you’re approaching this from a long-term perspective,then your best option is to invest in either a wired system or a hybrid system that uses both wired and wireless infrastructure. Depending on the structure of your property, this could mean a major renovation project. If feeding wires under floorboards or behind the existing walls isn’t an option, then adding a stud wall is an easy way of transporting wires across a room and concealing your speakers out of sight.

A mesh wireless system should be top of the list for any home with Wi-Fi blackspots. It’s relatively inexpensive and easy to set up. USB charging points are another quick win. Techno renters have lots of gadgets, all of which need charging. Replace some of your existing plug sockets in reception rooms and bedrooms with a combined plug and USB charging socket. Slow charging will frustrate your techno renter, so look for sockets with a minimum of 2.1A per USB socket.

Quick and easy upgrades

If you’re worried that your property is stuck in the dark ages but don’t want to go through a complete refurbishment, then there are some quick and easy upgrades you can make. These solutions don’t require intrusive wiring and allow the technology to blend in with your home décor, ideal for period properties. You may not want to invest in a full home automation system,but a smart thermostat is a simple upgrade to your heating system. The Nest 3.0 smart thermostat is stylish and discreet, but if you don’t want a device on the wall, wireless solutions are available. An inbuilt audio-visual system that runs throughout a property will attract young professionals and families,particularly if you have a dedicated media room. If you don’t have a built-in system, then a set of high-quality wireless speakers can be connected together to create a similar effect.

To get all these smart gadgets talking to each other, you’ll need a digital assistant. Amazon still leads the way in this area with their range of Echo devices (Google Home and Apple Home Pod are alternatives). Want to turn the heating on, play your favourite song or order an Uber? Just ask Alexa.