Adding value: A Smart Home designed to meet a family’s individual needs
Back in 2002, a new family home was constructed in Eckental, Bavaria; a collection of fruit trees planted over a hundred years before formed the basis for the property’s initial layout. A few years further down the line, the property was purchased by new owners with a clear vision for comfort, security and energy efficiency in their home. To meet these needs and increase the value of the property, they decided to embark on a comprehensive modernisation project once their purchase was complete. The result is a tailored, future-proof Smart Home networked with intelligent building technology.
Adding value to contemporary architecture with smart technology
The elegant façade of this detached family home features floor-to-ceiling windows and a spacious overhanging concrete deck.
Inside, exposed concrete, natural stone and wood create a minimalist and natural open-plan living space, with a semi-circular staircase in the centre to contrast with the straight lines of the architectural design. However, for the property’s new owners, the technical specifications of their future home were the primary focus. In order to incorporate high-end Smart Home functionality, they opted to install a KNX system with new control cables as part of the renovation project.
KNX system covers every need
At the heart of the installation is the Gira HomeServer, which records data from the connected components, translates this data into commands and then forwards these commands to the executing devices and actuators around the home. If, for example, the weather station on the roof reports rain, the Gira HomeServer instructs the electronic windows to close. The “Leave” command enables the home’s owners to deactivate all lights, the Sonos multi-room music system and specific plug sockets at the touch of a single button when they exit the house, helping to minimise power consumption while they are out. The Gira HomeServer app can be used to control the home’s systems on a smartphone or tablet while they are away. If the forecast rain does not come, the app can be used to start up the garden irrigation system and the robotic lawnmower.
Self-sufficient and energy-efficient
The property’s solar power system and gas boiler are also connected to the KNX system. Using the Gira HomeServer app and the fixed Gira Control 9 Client touch PC, the residents can keep track of how much energy their solar panels are generating and how much electricity their devices and appliances are consuming. The self-generated heat energy is used not only to warm up the underfloor heating system and pool, but also to heat the gutters and footpaths in the garden, which keeps the paths clear in the winter. In the summer months, the pool, natural stone walls and fruit trees are illuminated with smart lighting.
Modern technology for enhanced security and greater control
The intelligent technology works in harmony with the Gira HomeServer app to enhance security in many everyday situations. The alarm system sends a notification to the owner’s smartphone if one of the window contacts reports a break-in attempt or if the smoke alarms are activated. The live images from the networked cameras can also be accessed from the app so that the residents can keep an eye on their property from afar. Timers are used to automate the lighting and blinds, simulating the residents’ presence even if they have gone away on holiday.
Concrete benefits: Timeless elegance and intelligence
At home, intelligent wall switches and the Gira Control 9 Client mean that the system’s functions are easy to access and operate at the touch of a button. The Gira pushbutton sensors have been programmed with individual functions that enable the residents to activate specific light scenes or control the blinds. Complex functions, such as “movie night”, can also be activated with a single press: Just one button dims the lights, lowers the canvas screen and starts up the projector. The minimalist look of the Gira E2 Anthracite design line was the perfect complement to the exposed concrete walls.
The modern technology installed in the home enabled the owners to integrate their own lifestyle needs and requirements. If the current owners one day decide to sell their property, the future occupants will be able to adjust the Smart Home solutions to their needs –
all they will need to do is have an electrical installer reprogram the KNX system and add any additional components they require. For the current owners, the modernisation is already paying off as an excellent investment – both now and in the future.
Would you embark on a modernisation project to transform your house into a Smart Home? Let us know in the comments!