Best Smart Tech For Your Rental Home 2019

As sexy as the idea is, many of us are reluctant to invest in smart tech when we are renting.  However, there are many affordable and non-permanent ways you can adopt energy saving, lifestyle enhancing tech for your space that isn’t contingent upon ownership.  Here are some of our favourite ways to embrace smart tech for our homes:

Personal Assistant – Say the Word, Make it Happen with Smart Tech

First, consider adopting a virtual assistant sooner rather than later with the help of smart tech. If you thought a cleaning service changed your life, wait til Alexa or lil Google come into your home. There’ll be zero excuse for dressing inappropriately, missing a dentist appointment or not calling your mom. Now there is no need to fumble with text, a keyboard or a mouse, simply speak a command and have your questions answered by smart tech.

We love the google home mini in ‘au courant’ coral but for the classic modernist, go for the black or white.

Integrating smart technology into your rental home

Smart Tech Speakers – Anywhere and Everywhere

The smart tech speaker market has exploded in recent years. The beauty of many of these is that they are compatible with your personal assistant so when you say “Play Get Your Freak on”, you can be assured Missy is heard in surround sound.

Also, there are many water/weather proof portable speakers out there suitable for your outdoor space – rooftops, front porches etc. The Megablast Portable Speaker by Ultimate ears offers incredible all-around sound and is Amazon Alexa compatible.

The Sonos speaker system is integrated in Google Home and Alexa. In fact, their smart tech speakers have voice control built in.  As an added bonus, this smart tech speaker is beautifully designed and offer a variety of shapes, sizes and configurations.

Light – Best Light, Best Mood

It all begins with the bulb.

The Philips Hue system is one of our favorites for turning an ordinary room into one that can really fit any mood. The hub just needs to connect to Wi-Fi and then all the bulbs can be programmed to your heart’s content via iPhone. We recommend the Phillips Hue Starter Kit ideal for setting an ambiance to match your mood. The hub needs wifi to connect and then it is programmable using your smart phone. It also works with other smart tech devices such as, Alexa and Google home.

Using Phillips Hue Light system - compatible with Alexa and Google Home
Photo: Engadget.com

Safety – Let Smart Tech Detect It First

In Vancouver it is a legal requirement to equip rental properties with fire and carbon monoxide detectors so chances are, your place will already be outfitted with these. However, there is no reason you can’t recommend a new smart tech carbon monoxide device to your landlord for when a replacement is needed. New varieties will actually alert your smart phone when higher levels have been detected potentially saving lives and money.

Nest Protect Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm - Google NestWe like the Nest Protect Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Alarm which serves both functions. It speaks up and tells you what and where the problem is and sends alerts to your phone. It can also be hushed right from your phone or tablet and keeps you safe and sound for up to 10 years.

Water, too, can headache on a property. A smart tech solution exists for this too. The D-Link wi-fi sensor will let you know when it senses a leak, burst pipe or flood, triggering an alarm, sending an LED signal for sound and sight warnings and notifying your smart phone. This helps avert serious water disasters and will potentially save you significant costs associated with water damage. This is particularly suitable for those of us living in northern climes and who like to vacation.

Keeping it Clean

This is one smart tech innovation that everyone will want to embrace – cleaning made easier with a smart trash can and a robot vacuum.

The Bruno Smart Can renders dustpans obsolete by sucking in crumbs and spills that are brushed near the vent at the base of the can.  In addition it has sensors that open the top so you don’t need to touch the can to throw away garbage.  The associated app will tell you when you run out of garbage bags and remind you to put your trash out on garbage days.

Cleaning made easier with Bruno Smart Can
Photo: Architectural Digest

For the rest of your home, consider a robotic vacuum. No longer do you have pay thousands for an effective one. The affordable, voice-activated Ecovacs Deebot can be had for approximately $300 and has a 110 minute run time and a powerful suction for hardwood and carpets.  It is also controllable via the app so you can always come home to a clean space!


For tips on keeping tech in check, read our post, Less is More: Tech Clutter Clearance.

Kristina Ikavalko

Kristina Ikavalko

Creative Content Creator for Liv, based in Vancouver. Fan of field hockey, food, fashion & politics.

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