A guide on fitting your current home with green features

A guide on fitting your current home with green features

To date, very few houses in South Africa use green building techniques. However, this does not mean that you can’t fit your current home with green features which will eventually give you a similar return on investment. To follow is a quick guide on how we can help you retro fit your home with green features.

Choose the right suppliers

Green home development is a growing industry in South Africa at the moment. Because it’s still relatively new, there are a number of companies out there that do not know how to fit these systems competently. Be very aware of who you choose as your supplier and installer of choice.

Consider researching the following green home suppliers:

  • Rainwater harvesting
  • Photo-voltaic panels, batteries and installation
  • Insulation factors for the walls, ceiling, doors, windows and floor
  • Hydronics radiant cooling & heating system
  • Low maintenance green components such as aluminium, bamboo, stainless steel, etc.

Consult with experts and do your research

After consulting with a number of experts, researching online and trial & error, the perfect formula can be found to construct the perfect green home. If you are planning on implementing one or two features to your current home, be sure to talk to the right people first. And if you plan to build your own green home, chat to our developers and allow us to give you some guidance.

Calculate your return on investment

It’s not always worth it to implement green features to an existing home. You already know you’ll be saving in the long run, but consider the initial amount that needs to be laid out. Calculate the amount you will initially invest compared to the following factors:

  • How long do you plan on living in that particular home?
  • Will the new green components act as selling points when you eventually sell?
  • Will you get your money back when you sell?
  • How much will you save monthly on utility costs?

You may find that it’s more worth your while buying a green home in South Africa than converting your current home into one.

Make green home features a buying imperative

Once you go green, stay green! If you’ve fitted a solar geyser into your current home, don’t settle for anything less in your next home. There isn’t currently much of a green trend in South Africa, but that will change over the next few years. If you want to protect your investment, insist on homes that are fitted with green features and grow the demand for such houses.

Going green is not as hard as you may think. Do your research, plan ahead and grab your calculator.

Photovoltaic solar-powered green living: is it for you?

Photovoltaic solar-powered green living: is it for you?

Despite the lack of rolling blackout in recent months, South Africa is still facing a power crisis. Investing in eco-friendly homes with photovoltaic solar panels is one solution to the problem. Though these homes are more expensive than traditional ones. If you’re a first time home buyer, does it make sense to splurge now and to save in the future? Here’s everything you need to know about owning a photovoltaic solar powered home.

The advantages of photovoltaic solar power

Beyond the obvious savings on the monthly electricity bill, photovoltaic solar power makes sense for a number of good reasons. Eco-friendly homes that run on photovoltaic power systems include the following benefits for homeowners:

Never run out of electricity

As long as the sun is shining, we’ll be able to run the home. The sun is a renewable source of energy unlike coal and gas. It’s not subject to price increases, and isn’t likely to run out any time in the next 5 billion years!

Get paid for excess electricity

In the future, we may get paid by the national supplier when generating more electricity than required, by feeding that excess back into the grid. Adopting green living habits could prove to be profitable.

Many Electicity Suppliers are already paying for excess electircity to be fed back into the grid.

Always have electricity when needed

By adding backup batteries to the photovoltaic solar system, excess energy is stored for use during the evenings. And when batteries aren’t installed, by using a hybrid grid-tied system, switching between photovoltaic solar power and the grid is enabled. That way electricity is always available.

Low maintenance costs

While photovoltaic solar panels seem futuristic, they are easy to care for. With few moving parts, there’s little chance that of spending a fortune on repairing or replacing parts. The only thing needed is to keep the panels free of dust and debris. If the panels are dirty they won’t absorb as much energy from the sun. All it takes to keep the panels clean is a hose and a little soapy water. Eco-friendly houses are generally cheaper and easier to maintain.

Property aesthetics

New developments are finding ways to integrate photovoltaic solar power and other green living features into the design of a home. Rainwater harvesting tanks, for instance, are installed underground to ensure they don’t detract from the appearance of eco-friendly houses. The benefits of photovoltaic solar power has resulted in more homeowners retrofitting this green technology to their existing homes.

ROI of a photovoltaic solar power system

After a few years, monthly savings on electricity pays for the photovoltaic solar power system – thus it pays for itself. Depending on the size of the system ROI is within five to eight years. Calculating current electricity costs over say 10 years, adding a modest price increase; keeping in mind the home is fully temperature controlled too, is an easy indication of the ROI period.

After that, savings continue progressively as the price of electricity increases. Keeping in mind when the green smart home is sold on, the cost of the green features is fully recouped. Living green adds value in surprising ways.

The photovoltaic solar power system will last for many years

Photovoltaic solar panels are built to last for many, many years. Improvements in the technology will bring the cost of components down over time. Nevertheless, we’re able to start saving by installing a photovoltaic solar power system.

How does solar power work?

Greener living is the way to go. Photovoltaic solar power is a main green feature. Broadly speaking, here is how it works.

The sun operates like a nuclear reactor, sending out packets of energy known as photons which reach the surface of Earth in eight-and-a-half minutes. Every hour, enough photons bombard our planet to satisfy global energy needs for a whole year!

Such a system is made up of photovoltaic solar panels and an inverter. The panels capture the energy from the sun and transform it into Direct Current. The inverter takes this and converts it into Alternating Current. It is this Alternating Current that is used to power the appliances in the home.

How much do solar panels cost?

There is no standard answer to this question. It all depends on how much power is needed to provide for a family’s needs. When designing eco-friendly houses, developers take the following into consideration:

  • How much sun does the rooftop receive?
  • What is the size of the roof?
  • How much power is required?
  • What is the budget?
  • Whether it’s a hybrid grid-tied system?
  • Whether backup batteries are required?
  • Whether smart technology is required?

These are the questions to consider when investigating the idea of installing a photovoltaic solar power system; to an existing property or when it’s being designed for a ready-built eco-friendly home.

Which solar power system is the best?

There is a choice of three systems. Let’s take a closer look at them:

Stand-alone photovoltaic solar system

This type of photovoltaic system is also known as an ‘off-grid’ system. It operates independently of the national grid and makes use of backup batteries to store the power generated by the photovoltaic solar panels during the day. This means solar energy is used to run the home late into the night and during periods of bad weather.

Hybrid grid-tied system

The system works with the national grid. It reduces the electricity bill and is able to switch over to the national supply when needed.

The system also acts as a backup during load shedding and power disruptions.

Ideal green smart system: hybrid grid-tied, photovoltaic with battery backup

When implementing a photovoltaic solar system, adding backup batteries and tying these to the grid, is the ideal green smart home system.

Such a system works like this:

During the day, the photovoltaic system runs the green home directly from the sun. Excess power is stored in the backup batteries. When the backup batteries are replenished, further self-generated excess power is fed into the grid, accumulating a credit with the grid service provider. On most days, by 11h00 the backup batteries are loaded and excess is going to the grid. From around 18h30 the home is run from the backup batteries. Once the batteries reach their evening threshold, the grid is used; first depleting the previously earned credit. Thereafter the grid usage is paid for. The backup batteries evening threshold allows for battery power to run the home during the morning peak period, after which the sun kicks in again. This cycle is repeated each day.

By designing the system to use the home’s own electricity during the morning and evening peak periods, should tiered electricity tariffs be implemented, the highest tariffs is never paid!

The number of photovoltaic solar panels and backup batteries installed is calculated based on evening usage and how much excess is fed into the grid. This is the ideal green smart electricity system. Becoming independent of the grid on own terms.

How much will I save?

The main reason for investing in any kind of green technology comes down the savings. When determining whether spending a substantial amount of money on a photovoltaic system is worth it, understanding the potential savings is necessary. With photovoltaic solar power there are three areas where savings are achieved:

  • Electricity bill

As mentioned earlier, monthly savings will be determined by how much energy is needed to run the home. The up-front cost of installing a photovoltaic solar system will be offset by the savings. The more that is spent on electricity now, the more the savings are in the future.

Photovoltaic solar systems require little maintenance so apart from the initial installation costs, there is the maintenance costs.

  • Property value

Although it’s not a direct saving, the cost of the photovoltaic system is incorporated in the property value when selling it on. Eco-friendly homes will become more valuable as the trend grows in South Africa, resulting in higher resale values.

  • Avoid future price increases

The cost of electricity will continue increasing. Though South Africans have enjoyed cheaper electricity for years, that’s changing. Opting for photovoltaic solar power arrests any future price increases.

Green living is here to stay. It’s a real solution to the challenges we face of limited resources that will become more expensive in the future. To maintain our standard of living, it’s worth embracing green living philosophies to reduce our dependence on these resources without sacrificing comfort.

Photovoltaic solar energy makes a lot of sense for home buyers and existing home owners. Be prepared for the future!

Radio Live Green Smart Launch Transcript

Radio Live Green Smart Launch Transcript

Radio Live Green Smart Logo

Title: Transcript of the Launch of Radio Live Green Smart
Presented by: Emmanuel van der Meulen
Date: 1 May 2017
Number of Speakers: 1
File Duration: 26:28
Transcriptionist: Jacqui Jonk

Links are at the end of the transcript.

Transcript Breakdown:
00:01 Introduction to Radio Live Green Smart.
02:12 How to promote the radio station using #LiveGreenSmart?
02:56 The birth of Radio Live Green Smart.
05:27 The hype of green living.
09:10 How to start living green.
12:44 Return on Investment of a smart green home.
16:40 The benefits of living in a green smart home.
22:48 Wrap Up

00:01 Beginning of recorded material:

Emmanuel:

It’s 16h00 GMT time or 18h00 SAT time. Welcome, this is our first presentation of Radio Live Green Smart. If you wish to call us you can on +27, that’s South Africa, mobile number 082 651 4273, I’ll repeat that + 27 082 651 4273. Or you can call on skype emmanuel.van.der. meulen (phonetic spelling follows), please call us anytime with questions about green living or to share any of your own contributions.

Radio Live Green Smart is launched today formally and we will have regular presentations, interviews, adverts, regular shows where anybody is welcome to contribute, [during the phone ins] during the interviews phone ins will be available. And it’s a forum about green living, eco-friendly living and then importantly where anybody experiences first hand where the environment is not [expected] respected we would like your contributions about such disrespect to the environment. We will assist to expose such environmental disrespect in various ways, we would also like people in the areas to join us and to assist us with such environment disrespect. In the time being you can send your details via the contact us and that will send an email to our back office and from there will address all such information that we receive. Top

02:12 How to promote the radio station using #LiveGreenSmart?

The radio station will be promoted using the #LiveGreenSmart as a mouthpiece for green smart living, eco living [friendly], eco friendliness, consciousness towards each other and the planet we inhabit.  Anyone is welcome who is interested and curious about living green and it is our contribution to reduce the carbon footprint of each user, each inhabitant of planet earth, as some people are saying we are currently getting close to using the carbon footprint of one earth and by reducing this we’ll extend the life of the planet and also enable our children and their children to live on this planet in the future. Top

02:56 The birth of Radio Live Green Smart.

The birth of the radio station came about as a result of building a green smart home. It is a home with a difference; it was built as a speculation home where as usually people who [live, buy,] who build green, build it for themselves. So, in other words the owner finds a contractor and then builds a home. In our case it’s different, we built a home ready built and this started for us from the recycling of plastic, metal, cardboard, glass and tin and also composting at home and then eventually building a home for the reason to reduce the cost of water, the cost of electricity which is steadily rising and also becoming independent of the grid as far as possible. Our approach was to build a luxury home with green smart features, which I’ll come to a little bit later what the green smart features are, now the interesting thing is we built the home and our approach was that we would do it as a proof of concept to see if there’s a market for green smart homes that are ready built and we found that it didn’t sell. The idea is possibly too new the main [the main] reason that we feel is that buyers do not believe a green smart home is cost effective or that it has a solid return on investment, that’s another topic I’ll also get to later on, and as a result of this home not selling we decided to spread the word and hence this radio station is launched today, Radio Live Green Smart. Top

05:27 The hype of green living.

The next question I’d like to cover is what is the hype of green living? It’s about preserving our natural resources, via our everyday choices. Another part of what the hype is about is saving the planet. One thing is becoming clear we all have a large stake in preserving the planet of the natural resources. A further part is our health, green living contributes to improving our health, and then furthermore the generous savings and investment in the future. So, living green would start at recycling 1 plastic bottle and slowly over time the momentum will increase and we’ll end up [or we could end up and we would end up] living in a green smart home, driving a green smart car, working in a green smart office and eventually living in a green smart city. This might all be farfetched but there are already signs that there’s traction towards this type of living and thereby improving our lives. And at this stage it’s still very [very] expensive and over time the costs will reduce and it will become more affordable and eventually implemented on a larger scale. Some of the numbers, some statistics for instance reported by [tream] team Tree Hugger in June of 2014: 86 million tons, [that’s 78 000kg] of material was recycled instead of ending up in land fill. Further 113 000 [cans, aluminium cans were recycled and by using the recycled cans 95% of the aluminium is saved] aluminium cans were recycled every minute of each day, 95% of the aluminium was saved. So, all these little bits over time will improve, increase and contribute to us conserving the planet [while] whilst having all the benefits of living green. Top

09:10 How to start living green.

How do we start living green? The latest discussions all revolve around recycle, reuse and reduce. And as I mentioned a little earlier on starting with recycling 1 plastic bottle, a tin, a glass bottle, cardboard and paper to eventually living in a green city, and with time collection and drop off points are springing up in different places making it easier to recycle. And it’s not about getting anything or being paid for it, those options also exist, there is even money in making available collection and drop off points as business opportunities, however in the meantime just by doing it from home recycle, reduce and reuse all contributes towards conserving the planet. Another easy way of doing it is replacing taps and shower heads to low flow. Taps and showerheads – those are small and inexpensive ways to reduce water usage. Another easy way and inexpensive way is LED lighting to slowly replace all [globes throughout the house] downlighters, globes with LED lights and another interesting way of reducing resources is by catching rainwater. Rainwater harvesting is getting traction and there are 2 fairly easy ways, the 1 is just tanks, placing a tank or various tanks underneath gutters and downpipes and then with a small pump. Installing a small pump this water can then be distributed through garden via irrigation or in a more formal and expensive way with automated irrigation. Rainwater tanks can be installed underground. Rain water is harvested via the roof and from that harvested rainwater on a much bigger scale automated irrigation is possible. It’s possible to save water when flushing toilets and also for the laundry, this is an expensive option but it is possible and it is of course required ideally when the house is being designed for all the harvesting and piping and plumbing to be installed during the construction of the house. Top

12:44 Return on Investment of a smart green home.

Earlier I mentioned about the return on investment with a green smart home; so, let’s explore that. What I’ve come to realise over the last number of years, is that the market is not ready for green smart homes ready built and that’s not due to it not being a solid investment, my view is that is not well known where and how it becomes a good investment. So, let’s take this example: a traditional house has certain costs, for instance the initial building costs, the loan costs, the registration costs and the monthly water and electricity costs. Now if we take all of that together on a traditional home and we compare that with a green smart home it also has the initial costs and let’s say the traditional home being compared to a green smart home is the same size, so the initial basic cost would be the same, then added to the initial cost would be the green smart costs. Then the higher loan costs and the higher registration costs of those loans or loan and then it’s important to note that the water and electricity costs would be much [much] lower, and another important point is that if you compare the traditional home with the extra costs of the green and you say let’s go and invest the additional spend on the green home as an investment and take the yield of that investment and how does that compare then to a traditional home? So, if we take these in summary over a ten-year period the traditional home has the initial costs, the running costs and a certain increase in value.

And in the same way the green smart home has the initial costs, the lower running costs, the increase in value over the ten years the loss of not investing the difference in the initial costs, and when all of this is taken into account the green smart home out performs the traditional home by quite a margin in the sense that the green smart home covers all its costs, covers the yield of having invested the money rather than using it to build the green smart features into the home. And in a future presentation I will break down those costs with figures so that it’s easy to understand that taking all those different costs into account and taking the savings into account the green smart home out performs the traditional home. Top

16:40 The benefits of living in a green smart home.

Now just at a very [very] high level what are the benefits of the green smart home compared to the traditional? Well first of all the home temperature is managed throughout the home, throughout the year in a cost-effective way due to the low running costs of the green features being built into the construction from the design. The smart technology used enables the monetary and management of each aspect of the consumption of such a home and as a result of the technology being used to monitor and manage the usage. It is possible to have heating and cooling across all the seasons during the year and throughout the home, and having this benefit fully maximised with no need to hold back whereas on a traditional home due to the costs the much higher costs of heating and cooling in conventional ways, the choice is usually made to keep the managed temperature to a minimum and to use it sparingly. So, in the case of the traditional home it’s used to the minimum the managed temperature, and also sparingly whereas due to the cost effectiveness and the low costs due to monitoring and managing the consumption of electricity to heat and cool the home there’s no need to use it sparingly, there’s no need to hold back and therefore the whole home throughout the year is monitored and the temperature is managed at an optimal level throughout the home.

A further aspect of comparing a green smart home to a traditional home is the green smart home allows less sound into the home and that’s simply because of the various insulations that is built into a green smart home, starting off with the ceiling insulation, the floor insulation the external wall insulation and the double glazing throughout the home and the external glazing so this means that the house has an envelope keeping elements in and keeping elements out, and therefore keeping the sound out as well and this insulation also contributes to the temperature of the home that can be maximized due to using very little energy. Then the green smart home is a healthier home, this is achieved due to the heating and cooling being radiant, in other words it radiates out of the floor, the hydronics which is the feature that’s used, its piping inside the floor is radiated out of the floor and does not use any air flow therefore debris [different debris] that might be blown through the air does not happen. Dust does not collect on heaters, germs that might be in the home [is] are not blown through the air and the temperature is stable throughout the home throughout the year.

So those are just some of the benefits, there are more these are the big ones. Another smaller one which is not really small, but it’s a huge [huge] electricity saver and water saver and that is hot water immediately on tap.  What that means is that a linked looped plumbing system is installed and whenever any hot water tap is opened the water is hot within 2-3 seconds. That is winter and summer. So, the linked loop plus water pipe insulation, the hot water pipe insulation, brings hot water to the taps within 2-3 seconds that means it’s less energy, less water wastage and you have the comfort of not having to wait for hot water to first run through all the pipes to the particular tap. Top

22:48 Wrap Up

So, the summary of all the green smart home features just at a very [very] high level is: harvested rain water is used for flushing toilets, for laundry and garden irrigation. In your green smart home, you would have an indigenous garden. Harvested rainwater reduces the use of water by roughly 60% over the year. Optionally photo voltaic solar panels are installed and combined with the comprehensive insulation results in a momentous saving of 50-95% in current energy utility bills. This is a grid tied system which maximises electrical stability and savings and when the house cannot produce its own electricity, because its grid tied it can then draw from the grid and also where the house generates [exce] electricity in excess of what is uses, that excess can be pushed back into the grid for a credit from the service provider. The comprehensive insulation covers the floor insulation, the roof insulation, double glazing, exterior wall insulation, water pipe insulation and that creates the envelope throughout.  The hydronics radiant heating and cooling provides for managed temperature throughout the home throughout the year. The hot water linked looped system provides hot water at each tap in 2-3 seconds, winter and summer and saves significantly on water. Materials used in the home is low maintenance and highly renewable. Products like bamboo, stainless steel and aluminium. In combination, such a home produces momentous savings on water and electricity and then of course while you are saving you are living in comfort due to the various features, and last but not least is the lower carbon footprint that such a house produces. So, effectively the home provides luxury living, covers all its own expenses, provides a profit and as a result also reduces the carbon footprint of the inhabitants of the house. Well that concludes this presentation, be sure to listen in on future presentations by Radio Live Green Smart- and over to some music.

Links:

www.livegreensmart.com

End of Transcript Top

Do green smart homes offer a sound return on investment?

Do green smart homes offer a sound return on investment?

When owning an eco-friendly home we’ll command a premium when the time comes to sell. Investing in a green home will not only save money while living in it, it will increase in value with each years. Future buyers will be better educated about the benefits of greener living and actively seek out homes that already have green features. Even seek out purpose built eco-friendly homes. And with the added benefits of smart home technology, the value increases even further. Buyers will come to expect eco-friendly homes combined with smart home technology.

What is smart home technology?

Smart home technology refers to the use of computers to manage functions and features of a green home such as the electricity consumption, heating, cooling and the water usage. Such homes are referred to green smart homes. The smart technology infrastructure includes that the home’s data is easily accessed from a smartphone app or computer. The smart technology enables the monitoring and managing of a smart home from our smartphone or computer.

This enables that we efficiently manage our green smart home from within the home or from remotely. It makes running our home convenient and adds an extra layer of security to our property. With some systems, it is even possible to set schedules for lighting and the home’s temperature. Or, we’re able to rely on sensors to automate certain features. For example, before leaving the office, we’re able to turn on the lights so we arrive home to a bright house. Or, a sensor could detect the morning sun and automatically open the blinds and curtains, and the converse in the evening.

What is a green smart home?

Smart technology infrastructure is the foundation of a green smart home. Because, along with making it convenient to manage the green features, the smart system enables us to monitor various main features, like the energy and water consumption. Smart home technology continuously collects data of the home. This data is used to maximise the efficiency of all the features of the home. The efficiency translates to increased savings of the monthly running costs. And as the cost of basic services continues to rise, we enjoy greater savings without having to change our lifestyle. In addition, with a green smart home, luxury features are implemented in the most cost effective way. For instance, such a home is constructed taking many things into account. The green smart home being fully temperature controlled throughout the year with the electrical costs even multiple times lower than the traditional home equivalent, while sporting the luxury of being fully temperature controlled.

How do green smart homes increase our return on investment?

Eco-friendly homes are more expensive than traditional ones. That’s because they include features that cost more to implement during the building phase. And, the value of a green home lies in the fact that our monthly utility costs are significantly reduced. The money that we save every month on electricity and water is available to, for instance, put towards paying off our home.

And this is how green smart homes increase our monthly savings:

  • Tracking our power consumption

The smart home system can be connected to a Hydronics Radiant heating and cooling system and heat pump. Both of these features use electricity efficiently. And because we can track our energy consumption over days, weeks, months and years, we have a clearer picture of exactly how much energy our home uses.

If we raise the temperature of our home in winter, within minutes, we are able to see the impact this has on our costs. We then have the option to make an informed decisions about our comfort level versus the costs involved. With a smartphone app, we are able to log in to the system at any time and make adjustments to the Hydronics Radiant heating and cooling system. Though reducing the temperature by half a degree or by one degree would not make much difference to our comfort levels, it would in fact make a significant difference to the cost of running the system.

The same applies to the heat pump. Hot water accounts for a significant portion of our monthly electricity bill. A heat pump uses electricity efficiently, so it already saves us money. When adding a linked-loop system, we have hot water on tap, which saves on water. Instead of running the tap for what feels like minutes while waiting for the hot water to reach the required temperature, the water is instead at the temperature you need within seconds.

With traditional geysers, adjusting the thermostat is cumbersome, which is why most people set it and forget it. We’re able to reduce our electricity usage by adjusting the temperature every season. We don’t need the water to be as hot in summer as in winter. And with a green smart home, it’s easy to adjust the temperature from our smartphone. Plus, we’ll be able to see immediately how dialing the temperature down a few degrees impacts our electricity consumption.

Once again, we’re able to monitor and manage our power consumption while maintaining our comfort. People generally don’t realise that greener living is luxury living. Imagine, living luxuriously, while saving money. Having full access to monitor every element and every feature of our home empowers to make choices and to manage our home efficiently, and to maximise the savings of our monthly running costs.

As we use the smart home technology to track our power consumption, we increase our understanding of how our lifestyle impacts our home’s running costs. Over time, we’re able to identify patterns and budget accordingly. Or, find new ways to reduce our consumption and be able to track the results. Simply being aware of our energy consumption makes a big difference to the way we live. It encourages us to use energy wisely, save money, while incidentally easing the strain on the municipal supply and the planet. It’s all about balance.

Smart home technology adds value

The features discussed above have already been implemented in some green homes. The aforementioned are some of the benefits of smart home technology. Expanding the system is possible and includes other features and benefits of the green smart homes such as:

  • Security: Add an alarm to the system which works with motion sensors. When the alarm is set off, it triggers the blinds to open, switches on lights and play loud music. This takes the intruder by surprise. Having an alarm system will also lower our insurance premiums and again we save money.
  • Setting schedules: By developing the smart home technology system further, to set schedules for the lighting and blinds. For example, turning the lights on shortly before arriving home at night. Although a new technology, we’re able to add many features to the smart home system.
  • Remote control: By adding additional sensors to appliances, we’re able to set the washing machine or dishwasher to run while out of peak period. Smart home technology offers us the ability to interact with our home, even when we aren’t there.

When selling our green smart home, we’ll have more to offer potential buyers than what a traditional home offers. The green features alone already add tremendous value to our home. Future buyers will be more aware of how much they’ll save while living in a green home. From a cost-effective Hydronics Radiant heating and cooling system, to underground rainwater harvesting tanks, buyers will appreciate that a green smart home saves them money from the moment they move in.

Combined with the smart home technology, we’re offering buyers a modern, luxurious lifestyle that contributes to their saving from when they move in. We have already become dependent on our smartphones for access to information, and smart home technology does the same for our green homes. Tech savvy buyers will appreciate this added levels of information that the system offers. And once we’ve experienced it for ourselves, we’ll be able to show them why it’s valuable.

Save now and increase our return on investment

By combining green living and smart home technology, we push the energy-efficiency of our homes. We’ll gain a deeper understanding of our power consumption, and have at our finger tips features that make our lives comfortable. With the knowledge, it’s easy to implement other features to further increase our comfort and savings. That’s money to put towards paying off our home faster, thereby investing for our children’s future and for our retirement.

After experiencing all the benefits of living in a green smart home, we’ll get a good return on our investment when selling our green smart home on. Green homes are not common in South Africa. Studies in the USA have already shown that green home owners command a higher price for their property. And by adding smart home technology to the mix, we increase the value of our homes even more.

With that in mind, it certainly makes sense to consider investing in a green smart home. Property has always been considered a sound investment. We’re able to maximise the value of that investment by looking at green smart homes.

South Africans are already aware of the benefits of greener living. Some new residential developments have added green features. That’s because they know they’ll save on monthly running costs and are less dependent on the utility service providers. The rising costs of electricity and water have contributed to this and it’s likely that costs of these basic services will continue to increase.

Buying any property will be the biggest financial decision we ever make. By choosing wisely, and investing in a green smart home, we’ll save money now and reap the rewards of a good return on our investment in time to come. Green smart homes offer us more financial benefits than traditional properties ever will.