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Take It From The Experts - Constructions & Smart Homes

Real Estate Advice From Industry Pros! TAKE IT FROM THE EXPERTS feature explores different transactional related topics of interest to our readers by going straight to the Real Estate Experts source: our local professionals. From advice for buyers and sellers entering today’s market given by Gloria Nilson’s own Realtors to firsthand information about mortgages, title services, home staging, smart home products and legal issues, we consulted some of the area’s best and brightest to share their thoughts with you.

How can I find the right contractor?
Ask friends and family for recommendations and talk to designers like us. We can refer contractors that we have worked with. Always interview the contractors, make sure they are a good fit and review their proposal carefully so you know they are doing exactly what you are asking for.

How do I budget for a renovation?
Research! Talk to friends and family about what projects cost them, talk to designers about projects they have worked on that are similar to yours for a quote.

My home needs work, how do I know where to start?
Gather images of your inspirational spaces, take measurements, work out a budget that works for you then prioritize and talk to professionals about the best way to proceed. 

What can I do to make living in a construction zone easier?
Talk to the contractor and make sure he has a way to work that you are comfortable with. Ask questions: how long will it take, what will be the
process, will they plastic off areas, clean up every day, what hours they will be working. Make sure you know what to expect. 

What’s the best advice you can give to someone about to begin a major renovation?
Take your time and do your research. Have a clear picture of what you want each space to look like and how much you are comfortable spending. Then organize your projects by areas; you can stay more focused when you break the project down. 

I want to make my home a smart home,where do I begin?
Wireless… do I really need to say any more? In today’s day and age, and looking forward into the future, almost every smart product will be
wireless. This will require a very robust and fast wireless network covering your entire home. My suggestion is to use wireless access points that are hardwired with CAT6 back to your router. One in the basement, one on the main floor, one in the attic, and one outside.

What are some of the most popular smart home features?
Generally speaking, the most popular smart products today are the video doorbell, the smart thermostat, the smart lock, smart appliances and
wireless speakers.

Is it expensive to create a smart home? Can I do it one room at a time?
It is actually very cost effective and easy to make your home smart in 2019. For example, with products like the Nest thermostat which retails for $249, is easy to install, setup, program and track usage (which helps to save money on energy). Clients will make areas of their homes smart like the kitchen, family room, front door and/or master bedroom, and then add on from there.

Should a smart home have a backup power source in case the electric or internet goes out?
Yes and no. What I mean by that is, if you can afford a whole-house generator, that is great. If you cannot, I suggest putting a battery backup on your cable modem and IT equipment like switches, wireless access points, etc. As I noted earlier, most smart products are wireless now, so that means they work on batteries. Translation: have lots
of batteries and make sure they are the correct batteries.

Published July 29, 2019 in Home Improvement, Home Care