According to McKinsey and Company, the Internet of Things (IoT) is predicted to reach $11.1 trillion in terms of overall impact by 2025. Meaning that IoT going to surpass other key areas of technology investment such as cloud and mobile internet.

What is IoT?

The broadest definition of IoT is that it encompasses everything connected to the internet. However, it is more specifically related to devices that can ‘talk’ to one another via the internet. Wearable technology for example like your Apple Watch, which connects to your iPhone is IoT.

We’re increasingly beginning to utilise IoT in our everyday lives, as explained above for wearable technology, to activate home utilities like heating from our smartphone or even to unlock our cars without the key. Like with many digital trends that occur in our personal lives, they soon find a way into businesses too. But IoT isn’t just for new, funky technology focused start-ups; there’s plenty well established organisations can leverage IoT for too!

This article will explain why and how housing organisations specifically can (and should) consider utilising IoT to provide a better service, improve their stock management, enhance value and reduce costs.

Tangible Benefits

IoT has many benefits to bring to businesses, specifically housing organisations in terms of how it will evolve the way they can protect their assets, improve supply chains, and ultimately provide the best possible experience for everyone. Here are the 5 key reasons why you should be looking to leverage IoT within your housing organisation.

Leveraging Data to the Maximum

Data is so important for all businesses. IoT can help housing organisations to tap into new datasets and glean more insight by breaking down barriers between the tenant and the organisation. With the data provided by connected devices housing organisations can make more intelligent business decisions, drive new innovations and ultimately deliver a better service.

Greatly Improve Efficiency

In some ways, IoT can be like taking out the middleman. Your tenants wouldn’t need to tell you there’s a problem with damp or that something required maintenance because you’d already know. In addition, IoT adds another layer of automation capability, enabling housing organisations to optimise their supply chains.

Visibility Across Siloed Functions

There is also the fact that IoT can bridge the gap between functions within housing organisations. Once siloed areas can be brought together to derive new analytics and business value.

Added-Value to Tenants

IoT will add value to your tenants by capturing household data around aspects like electricity and water consumption. Working to enable the household to operate more cost effectively and drive expenses like utility bills down. Everything from machines to humidity can be monitored to stay one step ahead of maintenance issues that could arise. In addition, IoT sensors will become invaluable for more vulnerable tenants, alerting the housing provider to situations where they might need support.

Predict the Future

Someone once said that the best way to predict your future is to create it. IoT in a sense gives your housing organisation a crystal ball. Using new datasets around maintenance for example you can predict when something might need a routine maintenance check. This way, you can manage and utilise your stock in the most effective way possible.

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Utilising IoT within your Housing Organisation

There is a multitude of ways that IoT could be utilised within your housing organisation and with the technology always evolving these uses are only going to get more advanced. To help you see the vision we’ve outlined some key uses for IoT within housing.

Appliance Maintenance

Repairs and maintenance for household appliances is one of the key services that housing organisations offer to their tenants. Using IoT sensors, it is possible to predict when maintenance is likely to needed.

Using another solution (like our INBOX), you can set your own standards and thresholds to automate the booking of a maintenance visit for whenever suits the tenant. This cuts out the process of the tenant needing to book the visit in themselves or calling to arrange the maintenance visit with the tenant. This type of predictive analysis is useful for both tenants, housing organisations and any third parties that need to be involved with the maintenance booking. Having this data available can also indicate whether there are certain brands or types of appliance that cost less the maintain, leading to better buying decisions by the housing organisation in the future.

Vulnerable Tenants

Any tenants that require special care can particularly benefit from IoT. Using sensors within the home could mean that you detect whether vulnerable or elderly tenants have slipped or had an accident.

An automated sequence could then alert their carer to come to the property or prompt a voice assistant (such as an Amazon’s Alexa) to ask whether an ambulance should be called. IoT is likely to play a large part in safeguarding more vulnerable tenants in the future.

Optimised Utilities

Having the data from key utilities like water and electricity means that properties can be optimised. If data shows for example that on average your tenant has a ten minute shower most days at 08:00, you can optimise the boiler performance to heat in advance of these times and save on electricity later on in the day.

IoT like this not only helps to optimise the experience for the tenant, but to also save them on the cost of bills. In addition, it makes your properties highly efficient and more eco-friendly places to live and maintain.

IoT Usage will Only Grow

Though IoT is still a fairly new technology, the market for it is only going to grow. It has already shown some key efficiency savings and benefits of utilisation for housing organisations within properties.