Considerations For Prospective Homeowners And Their Professional Realtors/Brokers
Too many prospective home buyers & realtors overlook the Digital Lifestyle aspects of the homes they're considering for purchase or selling. What does this mean? Simply, we are going to be much more connected in coming years with Flat Panel TVs in 3 or more rooms, multiple PCs and Macs increasingly connected to our entertainment systems, and devices we have yet to discover. Some simple planning can help you avoid problems which can increase your costs and stress level in the future. I provide the following guidelines below, but you may want to have an inexpensive "Digital Audit" done before making your final buying decision.
Some homes are not digital friendly, and necessary cablng will be costly. A classic example is a slab floor combined with a second story. No crawl space underneath; no attic to work in. Ceiling speakers? No way. Don't assume wireless will solve your problems. Wireless still only solves a handful of our connectivity problems, expecially for High Definition TV and Audio. Wireless printing / gaming works, but it's much slower than a cabled approach.
Some rooms are not designed for TV-Home Entertainment usage. Where would you put a TV in a given room once you've thought out your planned seating arrangements? Is the fireplace suitable for TV mounting above the mantle? A 50" TV will require about 30-35" inches above the mantle. Too many fireplaces were built with no consideration of future TV use, and the mantles are too high.Also, there can be cabling issues which can only be addressed with a fireplace remodel.
Not sure where to put the components? Bay Area Gadgets specializes in solutions which allow TVs to be connected 150 feet from the Cable Boxes, and DVD players. Affordable Universal Remote Controls let you operate you components over that distance. Finally, consider every room for its future digital use. Today's infant will be tomorrow's digially connected youth. If you don't have all the necessary wiring, consider having it done before you pile in all the furniture or paint.
When it comes to PCs, printers, and related items, there are a different set of consideration. If you're changing different Internet Service Provider, who'll provide the necessary wiring and setup of your new network. Do you have hardwired connections to every device which needs it. Do you have a larger home which may render that 3 year old router worthless over that distance. Will your wireless signal pass through all the walls for a consistent connection? Will you need longer Ethernet / Coaxial cables than you did at your previous house. There are solutions for each of these challenges, but the time to consider them is before you make your move.
We need more wiring today than we did in the past, and the time to plan and have it done is before your move in. There are newer, affordable cabling options that put all the cables in a single sheath (PC, TV, Computer). This reduces costs and provides more protection against obsolescence. Contact Bay Area Gadgets or another low voltage cabling specialist before you purchase your house, and then have the work done before you move and put furniture in from of potential outlets.
Remember that most Home Inspection Services, Handymen, and Electricians are not knowlegeable about "Digital Lifestyle" issues. The good news is that low-voltage pre-wiring and their practitioners are less expensive than traditional electricians and electrical contractors for this type of work. You can save money and have our specialized expertise. This is a Bay Area Gadgets Specialty.
Consider a Digital Audit before making your final home selection. At $150, it's affordable, and it can save your thousands of dollars while eliminating uncertainty. We meet at the house at a convenient time and do a 90 minute walkthough. We ask lots of questions about how you'll use your home now and in the future. We provide you unbiased advice on your options for everything from Home Office, to Home Entertainment, to Music In Your Back Yard. Our recommendations are forward thinking yet based on common sense and respect for your budget.
Bay Area Gadgets Is Proud To Be An Affiliate Of The Silicon Valley Association Of Realtors, Santa Clara County Association Of Realtors, National Association Of The Remodeling Industy, & The American Society Of Interior Designers