The Most Wired Homes in America

  • The Home of the Future

    The housing market is still in a lull, but at least one sector seems to have a bright future: smart homes. In the next few years, homeowners in the United States and abroad are expected to latch on to new technologies that make their houses more energy efficient.  According to one estimate, the market for these houses, also known as smart homes, is expected to grow by more than 15% between now and 2014 into a $13 billion industry. Already, some Americans are beginning to make their homes more wired and green. The Wall Street Journal reports some homeowners are greening up their residences with solar panels, energy efficient appliances and more in an effort to up the value of their houses. Others are making these improvements because they can cut down their energy costs by as much as 50%. We decided to take a look at a few of the most high tech homes in this country that indicate what green homes may look like in the not too distant future. Photo Credit: edgygrrrl
    The Smart Home Museum
  • The Smart Home Museum

    The Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago is currently showing a fully functional three-story smart home intended for two people to live in. At the Smart Home: Green + Wired exhibit, visitors find everything from energy efficient appliances to all-in-one touch screen control panels that regulate built-in entertainment and security systems. The home is largely powered by solar panels on the roof and a wind turbine on the property. Each of the rooms were designed with motorized skylights and remote controlled window shades intended to make light bulbs all but obsolete. The bathrooms let you pre-determine how much what you’ll use before showering and alert you when you’ve gone over the limit. There is also a touch screen thermostat that controls heating throughout the house, and a nursery specially designed with organic fabrics and sustainable bamboo furniture. The nursery is equipped with a wireless camera, enabling parents to monitor their kids from anywhere in the house. Now, let’s get to the cool stuff. Photo Credit: msismsarthome.org
    Gadgets Everywhere
  • Gadgets Everywhere

    The Smart Home is green, and also boasts incredible tech tools. The kitchen area is a prime example. Sure, there are energy efficient kitchen appliances like an ultra quiet, energy-saving dishwasher and speed convection oven that’s built into the wall. But it’s really the kitchen countertop that takes the cake. This area can boil a pot of water sans heat and automatically charges your cell phones, music players and more. Simply set the electronics on the counter and they’ll power up. If you hate wires, this may be your dream home. Photo Credit: msismsarthome.org
    A Cool Garage
  • A Cool Garage

    You know a home is cool when even the garage is a work of art. This is where you’ll find a motorcycle made entirely of recyclable materials and a solar powered lawn mower that automatically takes care of your yard. Best of all, a special glass garage door allows air to vent through so you can turn the space into your office without suffocating. Photo Credit: msismarthome.org
    Wired LivingHome
  • Wired LivingHome

    In 2007, Wired Magazine partnered with Living Homes, a company that constructs modern homes, to build the ultimate high-tech residence. The Wired LivingHome is located in Los Angeles and is worth a reported $4 million. This house boasts innovative features including a specially designed indoor heating system that reduces energy use and a high-powered solar panel which generates up to 50% more energy than other panels on the market. Photo Credit: livinghomes
    The Ultimate Living Room and Media Center
  • The Ultimate Living Room and Media Center

    The living room and media center is undoubtedly one of the highlights of the Wired LivingHome, whether you want to be green or just entertained. These rooms come equipped with the ability to dock your portable music devices into the wall connecting them with the overall entertainment system. There is also a state-of-the-art touch screen command center allowing you to easily control the entertainment, temperature and security systems all in one place. It serves as an intercom throughout the rest of the house. Photo Credit: livinghomes
    More Options
  • More Options

    For those who are looking for a high-tech home, but can’t afford to spend millions on a fully equipped multi-story house, there are other options. Clayton Homes, a Tennessee-based mobile home manufacturer is currently working on building energy efficient smart homes that are mostly in the range of $100,000 to $200,000. Alternatively, companies like Insteon help homeowners wire up their existing homes with tons of energy saving technology. In the Hollywood house pictured here, the company installed everything, from software that automatically shuts off lights (based on a pre-established schedule) to tabletop keypads that sit beside each of the beds, making it possible to adjust the lighting. These gadgets vary in price, but a starter kit to let you control some of your lights starts at just $140. Photo Credit: Smarthome.com
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