The IoT, or The Internet of Things, refers to the encompassing list of devices that are connected to, and communicate with, the internet, such as smart thermostats and even smart kettles.
The IoT is revolutionising a number of industries, but block and property management stand to benefit hugely from the technology.
This is because the new rise in smart objects such as smart locks and smart sensors can help block managers to improve their service delivery, cut costs and more effectively manage their blocks by learning more about the workings of their buildings and the requirements of their tenants.
At Scanlans, we pride ourselves on our innovative approach to residential block management. We’ve compiled the top list of ways the IoT will benefit the block management industry in examples that block managers can start implementing over the next few years.
1) Saving money with Smart Thermostats
Smart thermostats are increasingly popular technologies for smart homes. They can also be used throughout a block to regulate temperatures in communal areas. For block managers, controlling and setting automated heating or cooling times dependent on tenant activity through smart thermostats could greatly reduce energy consumption.
Reducing energy consumption reduces energy bills, potentially saving large amounts of money for block managers who oversee buildings with multiple, or expansive common spaces that require regular heating or cooling. These savings are great news for Landlords and tenants alike.
2) Boosting Tenant Satisfaction with Automated Lighting
Automated smart lighting systems can benefit block managers by boosting tenant safety and satisfaction.
Automated light systems that work through sensors can give tenants a sense of safety and security by ensuring that the lights turn on as they move through the communal areas of the building, something especially important in the darker, winter months or if tenants work late hours.
Being able to schedule lighting to turn on and off at certain times will reduce energy consumption from lights being left on unnecessarily, helping to reduce utility bills for both block managers and tenants alike.
3) Automating strenuous grounds care
Maintaining the upkeep of grounds and gardens is both costly, and time consuming.
However grounds maintenance is essential for the appearance of the property – no tenants will want to rent from a building that looks unkempt and untidy.
That’s why employing a managing agent to ensure the grounds and gardens are kept in impeccable condition is crucial. The benefit of employing a managing agent is that they will often be able to utilise innovations. For example, new automated lawn care systems use a combination of sprinkler sensors and even automated mowers to aid with upkeep of communal gardens.
Sprinklers utilise sensor technology to detect how dry or wet the ground is, preventing unnecessary watering in the event of rain the day before. In addition, automated mowers can be programmed to tidy lawns after a set day period, keeping all greenspace areas looking tidy.
4) Reducing Laundry Maintenance
One of the most common maintenance repair requests for block managers whose buildings have shared laundry facilities comes from laundry machines.
Smart laundry systems will improve response times, as tenants are able to submit repair requests directly through an online portal or smartphone app.
Tenants can also pay for the usage of the machine via their apps on their smartphones, monitor their laundry in live time, preventing clothes sitting uncollected in the machine and monitor machine availability.
As most new laundry units are specifically designed to be economically friendly on both water and power usage, block managers can also enjoy reductions in both electricity and water consumption bills.
5) Heightening security with smart locks
Within the block and property management industry, security is a key issue for both tenants and block managers alike.
New IoT technology looks to refine this through the usage of smart locks. Smart locks are electromechanical locks which lock and unlock doors once an authorised device, like a smartphone, provides a cryptographic key to initiate authorisation.
Not only do these locks make the use of easily losable, or theftable, items like key cards redundant, it also negates tenants needing to contact either block or property managers in the event of being locked out.
These smart locks provide security reassurances to both tenants and landlords who are safe in the knowledge that only those permitted to access the building are doing so.
For block managers, they are another way of increasing the blocks value as modern and convenient security systems will be highly valued by younger tenants – especially those who may be living alone for the first time.
6) Adapting blocks to better suit tenant requirements
Devices using the Internet of Things can provide data analysis that when fed back to landlords and block managers, will help to identify performance trends and tenant habits, enabling blocks to better suit the lifestyles of the people that habit them.
Data-driven performance insights from wireless sensors can monitor air conditioning, lighting, electrical systems and even elevator use. These insights can help block managers and landlords better understand their tenants routines.
For example, if landlords or block managers are able to identify that the most popular commuting hours are 7am and 6pm, they can make changes to the lighting and heating systems in communal areas and hallways that lessen the strain on utility bills. Whereas in the evening lighting would’ve previously switched on at 4pm, lighting could now be set back to start at 5pm, saving an hour of wastage.
Small changes like these personalize tenant experiences, adapt to their lifestyles and keep them happy and satisfied with the convenience and safety of the environment around them.
The IoT will benefit block managers through making the process of block management and maintenance both more efficient and effective. This will in turn benefit Landlords and tenants alike.
With more and more people adapting to digital technologies, and getting used to having digital processes at their fingertips, block value will only also increase with the implementation of smart meters, sensors and heating and lighting technologies.
Additionally, it is a way for block managers to differentiate from other competitors by staying abreast of changing technologies and promoting themselves as digital adopters – an appealing aspect to younger, modern tenants.
See what Scanlan’s can recommend for your block maintenance with our years of expertise helping to assist block and property managers. Contact us today.