17 August, 2021

Incorporating Smart Technology Throughout the Life Cycle of Your Buildings

This guest blog from our Launch Pad partner, Invisible Systems, explores how their remote monitoring solutions for housing associations can improve living standards for tenants while reducing business costs.

The Internet of Things or IoT, is a system of interconnected computers and devices, machines, objects, or people – transferring data over a network without the need for human interaction. Now, it’s benefits are being realised by wider sectors – most notably the housing industry.

Using smart sensors and the real-time data they deliver, Housing Associations can build pre-emptive business models, improving organisational efficiency.

The technology can be used throughout the lifecycle of your building and offers numerous benefits, from reducing carbon emissions by up to 80% during the build to significantly increasing the well-being of your tenants.

The Build

Poorly designed and constructed buildings use significantly more energy than those that are built to with the environment in mind. The environmental impact of UK construction is notable, driving up the demand on energy production and continually contributing to global warming.

Housing associations across England are adopting modern methods of construction in their approach to building new homes. A solution that may not yet have been considered is Eco Lync.

Developed by Invisible Systems with the support of construction giant Balfour Beatty, Eco Lync is an energy management system that automatically turns appliances and equipment off when not in use, including over weekends and when sites are not occupied.

This helps to regulate consumption when demand is at its highest, reducing demand on grid connections or diesel generators used to power sites.

By using Eco Lync, Balfour Beatty were able to reduce their carbon consumption by between 30% and 80% across their construction sites.

This huge reduction is significant when taking into consideration the number of properties built by Housing Associations each year.

Supporting Your Tenants 

Fuel Poverty 

It’s estimated that over 13% of households in the UK are considered fuel poor. Fuel poverty can have a domino effect on those living within it, potentially leading to social isolation, depression and hunger.

The introduction of Internet of Things technology has made data, never previously available, easily accessible to social landlords and their tenants.

Smart sensors are enabling better control over domestic heating and enabling social landlords to build profiles of individual residences without being intrusive.

With readily available data displayed on easy-to-use dashboards, landlords have the capability to provide alerts when domestic temperatures drop below a safe level. Steps can then be taken to protect residents and prevent fuel poverty.

Mould Prevention 

Approximately 30% of housing stock is considered to be at high risk of damp, mould and condensation.

On average, a cost of a disrepair claim for mould is £10,000. For a housing provider or landlord with 10,000 properties, this totals £30 million of potential exposure to disrepair claims for this problem alone.

For tenants, mould, damp and condensation issues can have significant impact on health. It can lead to allergic reactions and even asthma attacks.

Technology-led solutions can prevent the growth of mould within residential property. By monitoring the temperature and humidity within a property, preventative action can be taken.

Protect Your Assets 

IoT monitoring is not just suitable for use in the home. Assets within communal areas such as lifts and large boilers can be monitored to ensure they operate within their standard threshold.

Whenever an abnormality occurs, you and your team will be sent a real-time alert via email, text or call – helping to prevent downtime or even failure.

Similarly, in instances where properties may be unoccupied, IoT led motion sensors can alert you to any unexpected movement within your properties or opening of door. With this system in place, those responsible for site security have a comprehensive view of your site remotely.

Invisible Systems are working with Housing Associations across the UK to improve sustainability, reduce costs and better the well-being of their tenants. 

To find out more about Invisible Systems, including HACT’s view on their technology, visit Launch Pad.

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