(Article by Oregon Remodelers Association) Remodeling & Technology Integration Imagine a simple touch screen interface that allows you to control whole-house entertainment, climate, communications, security, lighting, the internet and more. Now imagine mobile wireless units that give you complete control anywhere in your home or on your grounds. Those capabilities are available today through quality remodeling contractors working with selected audio/visual subcontractors. A remodeling project is often driven by the need for more “room to move.” It also represents an opportunity to add long-awaited features and amenities that directly impact your quality of life. For some homeowners, a thoughtful remodeling project can positively impact the safety, security and efficiency of their home. Whether your remodeling project means adding a master suite or enhancement of your entire home, automation can simplify your life and greatly enhance the functionality of every system in your home. Tailored to Your Lifestyle Should you choose to employ a system that gives you control over the technology embedded in your home, it will be important to work with a contractor and A/V expert who understand the true potential of home automation AND who invest in learning about your personal tastes and interests. These are a few examples of home automation at work: Something For Everyone When the house is full and Dad wants to cook, he can touch the “Dad’s Kitchen” function and lights automatically adjust to his desired setting and the kitchen TV brings up the ballgame. Meanwhile, after feeding the baby, Mom can take the wireless controller to the spa, work on the internet and keep an eye on the baby using the wireless video feed from the nursery. In the home theatre, the teens are ready to watch a movie. With a single touch, the lights dim, the movie screen drops, the stereo in the theatre tunes off — all while your movie projector adjusts levels for optimum viewing of feature films — and you never again do the “which remote shuffle.” Efficiency & Safety Home automation integrates heating and cooling systems, surveillance, even pool and spa temperatures. The most advanced systems are infinitely expandable to accommodate new or replaced systems. The Contractor’s Perspective The most important relationship from the contractor’s perspective is having a single source for all aspects of audio, visual and technology integration. For example, the A/V subcontractor must speak the electrician’s language and be proactive in scheduling with the electrician. When light switches are installed, the automation contractor must be there to explain how live and low voltage leads are connected, and how to wire low voltage wire back to the control panel (where all systems are controlled in a fully automated home). The A/V expert and the electrician will determine load demands based on A/V components to be powered as well as existing mechanical systems. With the right A/V subcontractor, the remodeler can offer nearly limitless system integration while staying on budget and on schedule. Entertainment System Capabilities Most systems are designed to be very user friendly. You simply put your disc in the tray, select rip and the system does the rest. It automatically connects to the internet and pulls all cover art, artist information and track names. It then automatically sorts tracks by genre (or the home owner can customize play lists for Party, His, Hers, etc.). If you wanted to take your party play list to a friend’s house, you can put a blank disc in the tray and burn a copy.