A smart thermostat offers plenty of benefits for a vacation home. It can lower your energy bills year-round and help you maintain the property in the off-season. You’ll also have more control if you’re renting it out. And, of course, it makes you more comfortable when you’re there.

Owning a summer home or a winter lodge is a great way to make sure you have a great place to get away from it all. And, it can also be an income-generator if you can rent it out.

But, if you’re not smart about things, a second home can quickly become a drain on your finances.

One way to help manage your second home is through better control of your HVAC system. You can have peace of mind, a more comfortable home, and lower energy bills when you install a smart thermostat.

We’ve installed plenty all over the Fox River Valley and heard from people who also have them in their second homes in places like Lake Geneva. These devices offer plenty of solutions to common problems.

For starters, we hook them up to your wi-fi connection. Now, it’s accessible from just about anywhere. You just download an app on your tablet or phone and make adjustments no matter where you are.

The device measures and adjusts for other factors such as humidity. It also takes better readings than older models.

Over time the thermostat learns the times when people are in the house and when they’re not. Then, it uses this data and makes adjustments on its own to keep energy use down while maintaining a comfortable home.

Now, let’s look at the difference these can make for you.

Maintain your vacation home in the off-season with a smart thermostat

One tremendous benefit from a smart thermostat is being able to keep tabs on your vacation home when you’re not there.

Upkeep is essential for a second home. After all, extensive repairs can quickly erase any financial gains you made from collecting rent. Or, your vacation gets ruined before it starts when you show up to a big problem.

With these devices, you can:

  • Maintain the right humidity levels
  • Avoid frozen or burst pipes
  • Adjust for extreme temperature changes
  • Know right away if there’s a problem in the house
  • Avoid cooling/heating a house no one is using
As long as you have an internet connection, you’re connected to it. And, these models do a great job keeping track of the temperature and any sudden changes. You can make adjustments when you need them from wherever you are.

With the smartphone and tablet app, you can adjust the heat or cooling in the house even when you’re miles away.

Let’s take a summer house, for instance. You wouldn’t turn on the heat when you close it up in August. But, you need a little extra warmth in there once January rolls around.

Now, you don’t have to drive out there just to raise the temperature a little.

Meanwhile, frozen pipes are a big risk. That’s a possibility anytime it’s less than 20 degrees outside. With a smart thermostat, you can make adjustments for that too.

Low cooling and low heating alerts immediately let you know if something’s wrong.

Let’s say there’s a broken window letting heat out. Or, the furnace breaks down and won’t warm the place. You’ll get an alert that the temperature is too low. Then, you can fix the problem before it gets worse.

Make your second home more comfortable when you arrive

Here’s another great benefit of a smart thermostat: It can help get your house ready for your vacation even before you get there.

You can use yours to:

  • Measure and manage humidity
  • Accurately treat the entire house
  • Turn on the heat before you arrive

Let’s talk humidity for a moment. You probably know that too much or too little can be a problem. You can end up with:

  • Mold, mildew, and bugs in the house
  • Damaged wood furniture
  • Peeling wallpaper
  • Excessive static electricity

Of course, humidifiers and dehumidifiers can take care of these problems. But, how do you address them when you’re not at the house?

You can prevent humidity damage in a second home by controlling your heating and cooling system remotely.

You can do this by using your new thermostat’s built-in humidistat. This measures the moisture in the air.

Set up alerts to tell you if it’s outside of the range you want. Then, use it to activate a humidifier or dehumidifier that’s connected to the home’s central heating and cooling system.

Now, you’ve got control from dozens or even hundreds of miles away.

It’s worth noting here, too, that these units do a much better job of measuring the comfort levels in the house than older temperature gauges. They use more sensitive and more accurate tools than the old mercury-in-a-tube setup.

You can get a snapshot of the temperature and humidity in the whole house, not just the room where you installed the sensor.

Finally, you can really set the scene for yourself for the moment you arrive. Imagine showing up to a winter lodge that’s already toasty warm. Or, a summer home that’s nice and cool as soon as you walk in.

You can get that with just a few taps on your tablet or smartphone. That way, no matter what the climate is outside, it’ll be perfect when you get there.

Save money with better control of your HVAC system

Let’s talk about something that can make or break owning a second home: the expenses.

Whether your second home is just for you and your family, or if you’re renting it out, you need to control how much it costs to keep up.

Otherwise, you’re losing money on an investment property. Or, you’re never quite enjoying the time you spend there, knowing how much it’s costing you.

Fortunately, this HVAC solution does a lot of the work for you. They can:

  • Learn your behaviors and adjust themselves
  • Help you manage your energy consumption
  • Help you monitor and control energy usage in a rental

It sounds like sci-fi, but it’s true! The same appliance that tells your furnace or AC to turn on and off now also knows when you’re home and when you’re not.

This is possible due to its wi-fi connection and geo-tracking with your phones. What’s great about it is that it can do the work itself.

Once the unit recognizes no one is home for a certain amount of time, it adjusts the temperature on its own.

Then, when you’re getting close again, it brings the climate back to where you wanted it.

This cuts down on the amount of energy you use treating your home. And, that translates into lower energy bills each month.

And, you can get a quick snapshot of those savings any time That app you use to control the temperature also tracks energy usage. You can see at a glance how you’re doing and if you need to make any changes.

It’s especially useful for a rental property. This way, you can keep track of what’s happening when you’re not there.

You’ll know if a renter is cranking the heat or AC way too much. And, you can fix it without heading over or even contacting them.

Depending on how you manage it, a second home can either be a fantastic investment or a losing proposition. The right HVAC equipment can help make it a winner.

Would you like more control over the heating and cooling in your vacation home? Contact Compass Heating & Air for the latest and greatest HVAC solutions for a second property.