Local expert: Managing your vacation, second home | Home & Garden
Scott Fuelling is the president of Phoenix Unequaled Home Entertainment, a home engineering solutions company based out of Cordova. He shares his insight about keeping up your vacation or second home in the article below.
Many of you own a second or vacation home that you try to visit as much as possible each year. In today’s hectic way of life, this is a comfortable way to get away from it all and enjoy your family and friends.
Phoenix manages many of our client’s second and even third homes.
Throughout the years, this has allowed our customers to have many of the similar capabilities found in their main home while enjoying time away.
We have had a great deal of experience developing solutions that not only meet the different needs of these types of homes, but give our clients peace of mind, knowing everything is fine when they are away. So what are some of the solutions we employ?
Managing these homes can sometimes become frustrating. Do you hire someone to handle the home in your vacancy? Do you have concerns over what is actually happening at the home when you are not there?The list goes on and on. What was supposed to be a relaxing retreat, has now become a time vampire as you try to juggle everything you need and want to accomplish.
Today there are solid, affordable solutions available to help you not only have peace of mind, knowing your “other” home is safe and secure, but also giving you the ability to monitor the home from your smartphone or pretty much any device that can connect to the Internet.
First and foremost is safety and security. Suppose someone who has access to your second home decides to throw a party or use the space in an unauthorized manner. If someone gets hurt or an “incident” arises, you, as the homeowner, could be held liable. Suppose a fire broke out, the electricity failed or even someone breaks into the home.
With the advances in home security monitoring systems, it is relatively easy to monitor the status of the burglary (doors, windows, motions and glass break detectors) and life safety (heat, smoke & carbon monoxide detection) devices remotely. Check the status of the entire home by simply pulling up an app.
Security cameras have continued to drop in price, while providing vastly greater capabilities. These include day / night operation, recording and off site viewing. By strategically placing the devices throughout your space, you can easily obtain a 360 degree view around your home as well as other areas such as sheds, docks and garages. Again, viewing is as simple as pulling up an app to see what is happening.
With the cost of utilities these days, it makes sense to properly manage the energy your second home uses while you are away. Obviously, the home needs to remain properly climate controlled. Security lighting makes sense as well. Through the use of controllable thermostats and lighting control devices, you can automatically set back the temperature and reduce the lighting by simply pressing a single button or even arming your alarm system in an “away” mode.
Not only does this offer convenience and peace of mind, you will also most likely have the ability to monitor the status of these and other devices through the Internet so you can make sure you “armed the alarm” as you left or that additional lighting and devices do not remain on after someone services the home.
While we all would like to think we can get away from everything, today’s economy and fast-paced lifestyle most likely requires you to remain in communication with the outside world at some level.
Many secondary homes may not be located where you can obtain an Internet connection or even a proper cellular signal. There are plenty of new solutions to assist with this as well. Amplified cellular repeating solutions with outside antennas can dramatically improve reception and of course there are satellite providers for not only television viewing, but also internet service. While these may not be as fast as you are used to, they will most likely get the job done and thereby allow you to focus on the most important thing, time with family and friends.