Electricians are likely to be among the many new entrants into the smart home space. I should know… although most of my professional life has been spent in sales, marketing and business development, I was also a licensed power limited technician through our state Board of Electricity. I have wired countless home for technology over my 20-year career as an integrator. I started in the CE industry right out of high school in 1985. It is very hard to believe that it has now been over 30 years!
Now, deep in the next phase of my career, having worked for home automation manufacturers and now an international sales rep, I see the industry from a new perspective. Some may argue that technology wiring is disappearing and being replaced by wireless solutions – I completely disagree.
Consumer interest in smart home technology has never been higher.
Much of the reason for this heightened interest can be attributed to front door cameras, smart thermostats, LED lighting, and similar products. Although the consumer can purchase some of these interesting items at a retail store, very often “professional grade” solutions offer increased benefits: better performance, more flexibility, professional guidance with the product selection, set-up and most importantly an easier and more intuitive user experience, especially when integrating different brands of products into one user interface.
So how does this benefit electricians?
Simple: Electricians are needed to run the appropriate wires throughout a home to help these smart products run properly. This also eases some of the strain integrators feel when running low-voltage wires since they can tag-team with an electrician and have all of their wiring done by a pro so they can focus on tech installations.
It’s also a great revenue opportunity, which can add value to your core business. By offering technology wiring and related hardware solutions, you can diversify your company and increase your average project value.
Adding Value to Homes With Technology, Audio Distribution Wiring
Technology wiring also adds value to the home for the consumer.
For example: if two homes exist on the same street with similar construction, size and amenities, but one is wired for smart home technology and the other is not, which home will offer better value and marketability? In the several decades that I spent working directly with consumers, the addition of technology wiring always added value to homes and helped homeowners sell their homes.
I suggest starting with audio distribution wiring because it is very profit rich, easy to install, and a fun product category to offer to customers. Audio distribution systems can be centralized and “home run” to one location, like an equipment closet or they can be decentralized and localized in many rooms in the home, or a combination of both.
I would suggest trying to focus on the centralized solution as much as possible to also add the value of technology wiring in the home.
Once you have added audio distribution wiring you could expand into a simple control wiring that would offer further integration of third-party devices, like lighting control, door entry, climate control, and more.