More music themed blog titles from Customised. We've gone back to the 80's with this one.

Home building and renovating in the UK luxury home market is showing no signs of slowing down. We get dozens of requests for quotes and consultations every month and the same postcodes regularly crop up in parts of Surrey, West London and Norfolk. Since the start of the year we have seen a definite spike in home technology installation requests, it's a great sign of consumer awareness and confidence increasing with technology in homes. Up until twelve months ago we had example average project costings to pass on to interested parties. It was a value that usually drifted between £30,000 and £50,000 for a whole house project covering design, wiring, audio/visual, network, lighting, heating and security systems, with a single, common control platform and an aftercare package. Sounds comprehensive but it often did not include motorised curtains or blinds, home cinema room system or access control of gates and doors. These options can easily push the price into £50,000+ territory, a massive buy in price to own and live in a Smart Home. Too much!

For 2017 and beyond, Customised have our sights on a new target, sensibly priced home technology options for any home, luxury or otherwise. Do you know what happens when we float £50,000 price tags around the table when discussing a new customers home technology options? Barriers go up, arms get folded, heads get shaken and eyebrows get raised (No Can Do). We have always aimed for attainable pricing and strive to introduce value throughout our projects but there were always elements of the legacy Smart Home setup that sent pricing skywards. Here are the main culprits:

  • Programming Labour - this is the time it takes to make System A to talk to System B or how long it takes to program a simple button that may turn off multiple lights etc. Some systems are ridiculously long winded to perform these procedures. We've ditched the systems that rely on intensive laptop time to get things setup for customers. We now use systems that are programmed using apps or ones that simply pair devices by scanning a barcode, saving you £1000's.
  • Whole House Lighting Systems - the ultimate luxury for a new home. One centralised system where any of the lights can either be dimmed, switched off/on, grouped in a scene or controlled by any keypad or app. When seen in action these systems are awesome, so powerful, but the price they command are a huge portion of the total budget. We now encourage clients to choose key rooms for lighting control, like open plan living spaces, and leave other areas in the home wired traditionally. BUT, prepare this traditional wiring for adding retrofit lighting controls later. We use systems that are able to blend wired and wireless lighting controls and which are easy to program and install, saving you £1000's.
  • Margin Heavy Systems - this will get me in trouble with my peers and suppliers but homeowners need to be aware that the majority of the professional Smart Home products come loaded with margin and in some cases it could be as high as 60%. There is a strong argument to say that the margin is to protect the installer when supporting the product with updates or service/fault visits. In reality though it's now most often used by installers to be able to negotiate with homeowners and give them headroom to drop their prices when hitting budget targets. We are weaning ourselves off this margin comfort blanket and are passing the savings on to our clients. To ensure the highest quality we have made well researched choices on all our product offerings based on reliability, are remotely accessible and are upgradeable. Saving you £1000's.

Customised now have the widest spectrum of home technology systems available that we've ever been able to offer. We've introduced new 1 hour install services for simple devices like thermostats, indoor cameras and wireless speakers, 2-3 day installations for retrofit home lighting systems into existing properties and still provide the full home automation and audio visual systems for the luxury homes market but at a more achievable price point and complete them in less time.

Customised are your local, CEDIA certified, home technology experts. We're here to guide you through all the home technology options available to you and your home.

Kris Gamble - Technical Director, Customised Ltd