Coldwell Banker Real Estate has teamed with CNET, an online source of consumer technology news, to come up with a joint definition of the term “smart home”. The definition is designed to help sales associates, as well as home buyers and sellers, accurately identify smart homes.

“The definition will provide a clear and unified designation designed to keep up with rapidly evolving technology in the home,” says the company in a news release. Property listings that meet the definition of a smart home will be identified with an icon on the company’s Canadian and U.S. websites, so consumers can search for smart homes.

“The new smart home definition will allow our network of independent sales associates to educate their home buyers and sellers regarding what defines a smart home and how the technology is making our lives more comfortable and convenient,” says Sean Blankenship, chief marketing officer of Coldwell Banker Real Estate. “We worked with CNET and tapped into the findings of their smart home testing facility in order to create a definition that is easy to understand and representative of the best smart home technology.”

The company also launched a smart home curriculum available exclusively to its affiliated franchised brokers and agents. The curriculum was created in partnership with CEDIA, the global trade association for the home technology market, and is available to all members of the Coldwell Banker network. It will be offered by a CEDIA instructor through Coldwell Banker University.

Budge Huskey, president and chief executive officer of Coldwell Banker Real Estate, says, “We believe it is our responsibility to ensure that our affiliated agents are the foremost experts in every aspect of the home. As ambassadors to the home, it is imperative for our affiliated agents to learn about smart home products and provide exceptional advice for homebuyers interested in smart home integration.”

Developed by CEDIA, the curriculum will provide an extensive look into the evolution of home technology and recent rise of the smart home with a focus on how smart home products are changing the way we live in and interact with our homes. The program will equip attendees with the skills needed to advise buyers looking to invest in a smart home and sellers looking to stage and showcase their smart homes.

According to Coldwell Banker:

Smart home: A home that is equipped with network-connected products (aka ‘smart products,’ connected via Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or similar protocols) for controlling, automating and optimizing functions such as temperature, lighting, security, safety or entertainment, either remotely by a phone, tablet, computer or a separate system within the home itself.

In order to be categorized as a smart home, the property must have a smart security feature that either controls access or monitors the property or a smart temperature feature, in addition to a reliable Internet connection. It must also include at least two additional features from this list:

  • Lighting (smart light bulbs and lighting systems)
  • Safety (smart fire / carbon monoxide detectors and nightlights)
  • Entertainment (smart TVs and TV streaming services)
  • Appliances (smart refrigerators and smart washer / dryers)
  • Heating / Cooling (smart HVAC system, smart fans or vents)
  • Outdoors (smart plant sensors and watering systems)
  • Security (smart locks, smart alarm systems or cameras)
  • Temperature (smart thermostats)


  1. I think that I will stick with my old dumb-ass home, my old dumb-ass flip phone and my dumb-ass standard transmission car that needs me to pay attention to the road (without prone-to-failure auto-pilot stuff) whereby I still get to assume complete non-lazy responsibility for all operations inherent with said items. I still prefer to use my own brain. The old saying “Use it or lose it” remains a truism, even today when technology threatens to overtake our ability to quickly and accurately think for ourselves on a continuing basis, especially during times when the power goes out, the satellites brown out and our electronic gadgets fry their own brains. It seems that no one can figure anything out any more unless there are buttons to push to achieve instant answers. Instant gratification has become the norm. There is no depth of underlying knowledge any more, it seems. There is just a slavish belief in what others have programmed us to believe regarding just about everything. Funny, but I do not freak out and thence feel naked if I forget my phone.


    Has anyone among REM readers sold a “smart home” or do you know anyone who has bought one? Even from a builder? Makes me think of the new commercial where the buyers didn’t use an agent and the alarm system needed a pass code and when they couldn’t produce one, the house went into lockdown.

    This interesting article is an eye-opener, and perhaps supports that Orwell was way far ahead of his time …

    This should be of interest to the real estate community. A step up from baby monitors and apps that can let you watch what goes on at home, no matter where you are.

    But who else can see what you can see when you aren’t there? And the “blue” toothbrush? Really? What room in any house is likely the location where you’d be using that toothbrush? Maybe best to keep it under lock and key in a covered container when you aren’t specifically brushing your teeth?

    WOW! Who’da thunk? Of course you all know to tilt your laptop camera spindle away from you when using your machine, don’t you? Or follow the tech’s advice and tape a piece of cardboard over it?

    More than big brother is watching you. Best to keep your clothes on, maybe, when sending those emails about new listings to your clients. They might see things from a different view.

    And keep your smart phone face down when it’s parked on the counter or the dashboard in your car when you aren’t using the smart phone (cause it really is smarter than you might think), because for sure it’s watching you, too, from your bedside table. Use your own imagination. You don’t know where that information might appear. Paranoia, anyone? Apparently not. The Samsung TV example is just that; an example.

    Carolyne L 🍁

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