Frequently Asked Questions Real Estate

Smart Phones and Homes

There is something you may not have considered with your next home purchase. What if your next home includes some of the new so called, “smart devices?” What if the Seller has set up their home with door locks, surveillance, heating controls, and other controls on the house? If the proper measures are not taken, the Seller will still have access to your new home and control over features you don’t want anyone to control.

Buying a home with smart features requires another layer of preparation and for lack of a better term, set up. No one wants a former owner with access to video cameras, heating units, stove, refrigerator, nor the front door. So how do you protect yourself against the possibility of invasions when the house is transferred from one owner to another?

Smart Home Options

It seems there are a lot of options when it comes to purchasing smart home equipment. Most easily link to a smart phone app that offers a variety of options. When you read up on some of those options, it becomes apparent that some companies didn’t plan for the sale of the home and those features. What are the options? Depending upon the actual product, there may be no option other than to remove the equipment. At whose expense? Other smart home products offer a seamless transfer from one user to the next. Some products may offer agreements that can be included in the Offer to Purchase and final closing documents. That type of information is important. A good Listing Agent can and should investigate those types of scenarios and plan ahead. Those types of features need to be disclosed during the sale process.

Changing Smart Home Users

Smart devises normally operate through an application on a smart phone. They all require a password that is saved to your phone. The easiest way to transfer ownership of smart devices for the home is to:

  • Install the smart devise app on your phone.
  • You will need the password from the previous owner to access the devises.
  • The previous owner can change their password to a temporary password to transfer ownership and control.
  • The new owner enters the current password, accesses the account, then changes the password so only they have access to the smart devises.
  • Other set up may be required.

It’s a good thing we have the Internet and companies who market smart devises for homes have websites. Those websites have instructions and manuals that can be downloaded and reviewed. Most also have online support. Check with the Seller before the transaction is complete to get details on support. Is the support free? Is support limited, or lifetime? Are there fees involved in a transfer? Are there monthly fees involved? There are a number of questions that could come up. All of these details have to be addressed before the final closing and transfer when the home will be occupied by the Buyer.

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