Energy Monitoring for Rental Property

I’ve recently received an inquiry about energy monitoring devices. Most of the time when people contact me about the Z-Wave devices, they are mostly asking for switches, neutral wires and if certain appliance can be controlled remotely. However, this person was so interested in understanding energy monitoring plugs and switches that he almost didn’t mention about controlling lights or AV devices etc.

It turned out that he will be renting few of his rooms out and to ensure fairness, would like to determine the electrical usage and probably adjust his rental accordingly. True enough, some tenants do turn on the air-conditioning while others leave their PC on the whole day. It suddenly struck me that home automation could bring another level of sophistication in managing rental properties in the following ways:

1. Proactive monitoring of electrical usage

Landlords can proactively monitor the usage even without being physically there. If they want to take it further, they could rent out their property based on a rental + utility based pricing model.

2. Access Management

Suppose you have a rental property that has a programmable Z-wave lock. You can issue a access code to the tenant that is valid only for the contract period. No keys involved! No need to worry that the previous tenant can access the place with a duplicate key.

3. Network Camera

This is a bit sensitive and of course I do not recommend installing it in tenant’s room. What I meant is that it can be installed at the main door to remotely monitor what/who gets in and what/who gets out to make the remote management complete. Nothing more than that 🙂

Conclusion? The ease and convenience of home automation brings rental property management to an entirely new level. Do consider if you have some spare properties and cash!


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