Let’s face it, nobody wants to make an investment that they’ll regret in the future. When investing in your home it’s important to make informed decisions.
No matter how much information you gather on a topic it’s difficult to decide without being knowledgeable in it.
Deciding on a home automation system is no different. A good home automation company will evaluate your needs and give you a detailed proposal that outlines equipment and installation costs.
As you compare proposals be careful in choosing a company based on price alone.
Here are four questions that you must ask your home automation company before considering starting a project with them.
1. Are you certified by CEDIA and the Home Technology Association?
CEDIA is the Custom Electronic Design and Installation Association, which is the professional association for the industry. It’s an essential credential for any home automation company, and it requires that members have proper insurance coverage and licensing where it’s needed.
Members also pledge to a code of ethics and take continuing education and training courses to stay current on technology and best practices. Ask any company you are interviewing if they are a CEDIA member.
The Home Technology Association Certification system is the first and only industry standard of excellence for home technology installation companies. In an industry that has no barriers to entry, the HTA has created a rigorous set of standards for home technology companies to adhere to. The firms that meet the 60+ points of evaluation criteria are granted certification status. Once HTA Certified, these firms must commit to maintaining the high standards of HTA Certification or risk losing certification.
Besides hiring a CEDIA and HTA certified company, make sure that every technician entering your home is an individually certified CEDIA technician.
2. Do you have client references?
Like any contractor, you want someone with the skills and experience for the scope of your project.
You want to choose a home automation company that has experience in designing and installing systems that match the size and complexity of your project.
If you are building a 7000 square foot home in Coral Gables you may not choose a home builder that builds beautiful 900 square foot summer cottages in upstate NY.
Ask for references. Walk their projects.
At ioty, we’ve designed and installed extremely large and complex home automation systems. We’ve worked on new construction as well as retrofit projects.
Yes, we’d be more than happy to schedule a walk-through of a previous project.
3. What vendors do you work with?
You can get a better sense of a home automation company by the technologies and products they are associated with.
Does the company work with top brands in each category?
Are they an authorized dealer for those companies?
Some manufacturers have different tiers for their dealers as well. For example, ioty is a Savant Ambassador, as well as a certified Platinum Lutron dealer, and a Wisdom dealer – representing the highest tiers and the top names in the audiovisual industry.
4. What type of support do you offer after the sale?
The integrator should be willing to show you the ins and outs of using your system, as well as provide additional services like remote monitoring and diagnostics to ensure your system is running correctly and securely.
A great home automation company will be there for you many years after the sale.
In time, you may want to add new capabilities or technologies to your system, and that work should be something the company will be happy to do.
Do they stand behind their work and offer a long-term support package?