Upgrade Your Rental Units With Smart Technology.

It’s not always easy to rent an apartment. You need to have the right balance of price and amenities to attract quality residents. Fortunately, new smart technologies could help you up your game. The whole point of smart home products is that they can communicate with your residents remotely, so your resident has ultimate control over their energy consumption, even when they’re not home.

Though you can find all kinds of techy gadgets that offer two-way communications, smart thermostats often bring the biggest bang for your buck. According to ENERGY STAR, programming a thermostat and maintaining the settings can save up to $180 a year. But with an advanced smart meter and diligent monitoring residents could save even more. For landlords, the ability to market a high-tech feature along with lower electric bills could mean increased interest in the property or longer resident retention.

The economical selection

For those looking for a high-tech thermostat at an affordable price, the HomeWerks Radio Wireless Thermostat with Wi-Fi Module is a good option. This thermostat retails for around $140 and is programmable for up to seven days. It also works with a mobile application so renters can control the temperature of their home on the go.  It’s not as fancy as some of the more expensive models on the market and doesn’t offer as many features, but it gets the job done.

The moderately priced choice

The Nest, a simple, easy-to-use smart thermostat, is one of the most popular on the market. In fact, nearly 10 million Nest devices are sold each year. The smart thermostat not only works through a mobile application, it also learns your energy habits.  Within a week of installation, the Nest should be able to create a heating and cooling schedule based on the habits of your residents—turning off while they’re gone and returning to a comfortable temperature before they return. Since its launch in October 2011, the Nest has helped consumers save 225 million kilowatt-hours of energy—about $29 million in energy costs based on average U.S. electricity prices. A second generation Nest costs less than $250 and could more than pay for itself in energy savings overtime.

The pricey option

Eversense, a smart thermostat created by Allure Energy Inc., is a Wi-Fi enabled touchscreen thermostat that uses smart technology to automatically adjust temperatures based on residents’ proximity to their home. The smart thermostat works with mobile apps on iPhone and Android mobile devices, using GPS data to determine how far or near the resident is from home. It will adjust itself accordingly, to conserve energy when the renter is out of the house, but as they get close to home, it will adjust again to ensure the home is the exact temperature they prefer. However, it’s a bit of an investment at just under $400 a thermostat.

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