Design Trends

The New Building Product Manufacturers


Smart home technology may be the hottest trend in home building these days, with new companies like Google, Microsoft, and Amazon battling for control of your home. Todd Tomalak from our team gave a great overview of the rapid adoption of smart home technology trends for the Home Improvement Research Institute. Here are a few highlights, and the entire presentation is available below.


  • More than half of new homes are using smart home technology. 53% of the 300+ home builders we surveyed are offering smart home technology, with 42% of buyers reportedly purchasing the technology.(1)
  • Comfort. 60% of home shoppers in our massive Consumer and Product Insights survey(2) said they would pay extra for a smartphone-controlled thermostat, almost equaling the 67% who would pay extra for an oversized kitchen.
  • Security. More than 60% of new home shoppers also said they would pay extra for an exterior security camera and smart locks.
  • Voice. Other popular new items include voice-controlled lighting and shower temperature offered by Amazon, Google, and Microsoft. We dub these companies and their competitors the New Building Product Manufacturers.

We have been able to break down the demand by lifestage, too, and have been using this to help our clients choose new home specifications:

  • Tech for the young. Young singles and couples are the most likely to choose a smart thermostat.
  • Convenience for families. Families are the most likely to choose a smart garage.
  • Security for mature buyers. Mature buyers are the most likely to pay extra for a smart lock.



(1) John Burns Real Estate Consulting survey of 300+ home builders (August 2017). Some features may come standard in the house.

(2) John Burns Real Estate Consulting survey of 23,000+ new home shoppers (fall 2017)