• Amazon has launched personal smart home consulting services in select West Coast markets.
  • The service does not handle physical installations or repairs but will help test products that overlap with a person's smart home goals, such as energy savings or connecting in-home entertainment.
  • For now, the consultations are free.

Have suggestions for products that you’d like to see reviewed by our real estate technology expert? Email Craig Rowe.

Real estate agents in major West Coast markets now have a new assistant they can call upon to help customers with questions about smart home connectivity. And for now, the service is free.

Amazon has made public its eight-month-old smart home consulting services that help homeowners analyze network strength, understand how devices work with one another, and demonstrate their features and benefits.

Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles, Orange County and San Jose are the first markets in which the service is available.

The service does not handle physical installations or repairs but will help test products that overlap with a person’s smart home goals, such as energy savings or connecting in-home entertainment. Appointments average 45 minutes, according to Amazon.

Application for real estate agents

Real estate agents concerned about keeping pace with the flow of smart home technology could benefit by informing interested clients about Amazon’s new personal in-home services. (Be the source of the source.)

Agents wanting to go a step beyond recommendations should seek to become specialists in this niche. It wouldn’t hurt to give Amazon’s new services a test run, as well.

Moreover, smart home technology continues to weave its way into the mainstream. In 2016, Coldwell Banker created the industry’s first smart home certification program, and its 2017 Smart Home Marketplace Survey reported that 72 percent of respondents are seeking smart home networks with voice control.

One real estate agent has already developed an Alexa-voiced home search app.

Geekwire reported in December of 2016 that sales of Amazon Echo were up ninefold compared to 2015, soundly beating the company’s goals.

The online giant did not release specifics but said millions of its voice-activated appliance, the Echo, were sold last year.

Amazon’s infiltration in this space

Amazon’s deeper market penetration means that more consumers will find a reason to buy an Echo and use it to power more systems throughout the house.

The company will no doubt use the information it gathers from customers to make marketing and sales decisions, meaning smart home devices are going to become the next microwave oven.

(An aside: I do find it ironic that one of the world’s largest Internet companies is using actual people to expand its footprint in the smart home market.)

Will we see homes branded ‘Amazon Smart Home Ready?’

I can envision a hard entry by Amazon into the real estate market in the not-too-distant future, which is approaching quickly, by the way.

Will we see homes branded “Amazon Smart Home Ready” or brokerages with on-call Amazon specialists?

Maybe we should ask Alexa.

Have a technology product you would like to discuss? Email Craig Rowe.

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