New Orleans Home And Garden Show: Home Automation, Geofencing, Voice Control Expanding In Local Market
NEW ORLEANS – Jamie Gannon spends most days, nights and even some weekends working with clients who have had the latest in home automation installed on their property. Gannon, who established Dynamic Audio Video in 2001, said his business has recently expanded to consulting with realtors and architects in addition to homeowners. This is happening, Gannon said, because realtors and architects value his expertise on home automation so they can incorporate that knowledge when working with clients.
Gannon will be showing the latest in home automation at the upcoming New Orleans Home & Garden Show, March 10 – 12, in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
Robyn Schnadelbach Bruno is just one broker/realtor turning to Gannon for help. Bruno said she’s been in the business for 10 years and has seen the high-tech home trend develop before her eyes. “Home automation is relatively new to the New Orleans market,” Bruno said. “We are a few years behind other regions; however, what is here is changing fast. There are so many different systems out there being used, so I must know how they work. During open houses or private visits, it’s up to me to explain everything to the potential homeowner.”
And that’s where Gannon’s expertise is invaluable, she said. Gannon is a respected expert on home automation, even long before the trend of high-tech homes hit this market, she said. Gannon said about a year ago, he saw a higher influx of customers wanting to know more about home automation, and once he starts explaining, customers realize what all they could do with the technology. That arms them with the knowledge to determine how much or how little they want to spend on that technology, he said.
“The basic brains of home automation costs about $1,500,” Gannon said. “From there, you can add simple automated tasks like turning on lights and unlocking your front door using your smart phone. You can go with full featured systems that can run up to $30,000, which include the latest in home automation for everything your home.”
Gannon says “geofencing” is really taking off. “This technology is an invisible boundary that identifies the owner by recognizing the owner’s smart phone and, using GPS, the system can tell when a resident arrives home,” he said. “That arrival triggers specific automation the owner has programed to happen. Lights can be turned on, the alarm can be disarmed, door can be unlocked, and shades can lift or be lowered; any number of things can happen. Another upcoming trend is voice control via Amazon Alexa allowing you to control anything in your home verbally! It’s truly the ultimate in convenience.”
The convenience of having home automation already installed is a huge attraction for anyone buying a home or building a new residence, Gannon said. This aspect led him to consult with local architect Charles Neyrey, of M2 Studio, who designed a modern, 3-story, 5-bedroom, 6-bath lakefront home for the Dorsey family. Real estate developer Paul Dorsey met with Gannon to outline specific automation he wanted for the home and Gannon shared that information with Neyrey. Among the automation in the Dorsey home: a custom theatre system, hidden speakers in each room for music, landscape speakers for the pool, lighting systems without traditional light switches, motorized shading, HD camera surveillance and thermostat control.
“Wiring a home is not like it was 20 years ago when you threw a cable jack and phone jack in the wall,” Gannon said, and points to Dorsey’s house as a prime example. Neyrey’s design features a 2-story great room with one entire wall made of steel and glass as well as a fireplace, which all made installing surround-sound a challenge. “Because there was no front wall space available, we had to custom-fabricate cavities to install surround speakers into the beams between the glass walls,” Gannon said.
“There are definitely many more options available now than there were years ago, especially when looking at everything from energy efficiency to integrated lighting controls to voice-activated home controls,” Neyrey said.
When it comes to selling a property, automated features are what realtors must highlight to potential buyers and, according to Bruno, realtors have to know what technology matters to today’s home buyers and be able to explain, with some sophistication, what various homes offer their buyers on the technology front. That’s because realtors can’t list smart technology in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). “When finalizing computer-based information on a home, there is no dropdown menu that allows you to list the different technology available in the home,” Bruno said. “There are places to note ‘green’ products, but not automation. Therefore, you must describe the technology in your public remarks, so it’s vital you are well versed in home automation. If you have two similar homes competing against one another, the one with the technology will definitely have the upper hand.”
Dynamic Audio Video’s Gannon will be showing the latest in home automation at the upcoming New Orleans Home & Garden Show, Booth #429, including:
▪ A full home automation experience
▪ A mirror television with invisible in-wall speakers
▪ Motorized artwork that when activated, displays a television
▪ State of the art theater system with a new HD laser video projection system that allows you to place the projector as little as 6-inches away from the screen on furniture. The picture it displays is 120 inches.
The New Orleans Home & Garden Show has been brought to the public for 62 years by the Home Builders Association of Greater New Orleans. The New Orleans Home & Garden Show, presented by ClearWater Outdoor Creations, is the largest consumer home show in the southeastern United States. Show dates and times include:
Friday, March 10 – 12:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 11 – 10 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 12 – 10:00 a.m. –-6:00 p.m.
Admission price is $15 for adults, $10 for military with I.D. and children under 12 get in for free.