Smart Home

Marc Fontolliet heads up the Modernisation unit at Implenia. When it comes to the digitalization of private residential space, the needs of the tenants are of key importance to him.

Marc Fontolliet, how confident are you when looking to the future?

Very confident. After over a decade of appreciation and high construction volumes, the challenges seen on the Swiss real estate market have become greater. Building owners have recognised that there is often a great deal of hidden potential in existing properties. Exploiting this potential is an attractive prospect and – depending on the location – a real alternative to competing for land to build new properties. Our services in the field of modernisation are aimed exactly at customers who want to take advantage of this potential.

Can the potential offered by existing properties be categorised?

I see three major areas with potential for growth:

1. Density and optimisation:
Good redevelopment of existing buildings means finding the right balance between quality (product) and quantity (area, costs, price) within the constraints posed in terms of planning permission. Digital models help here in working out different options and making effective decisions.

2. Energy-efficiency improvements:
45 per cent of Swiss energy consumption is caused by buildings, and Switzerland’s real estate portfolio is showing its age . The potential for saving energy is thus massive.

3. Attractive offers for digital natives:
For younger target groups, fast, reliable data links are an essential part of any apartment, as is the desire for new floor plans in order to individualise the available space.

How important are energy efficiency, security and comfort when it comes to the appeal of a piece of real estate?

Very important. Building automation brings with it many advantages. Thanks to networked technology, any real estate can be transformed into an attractive Smart Home. However, more important than what is technically feasible is the viewpoint of the user.

Was sind die Erfolgsfaktoren für ein Smart Home?

I see two clear trends here:

1. Care and health:
Digitalization of the home will become ever more critical as a result of demographic developments, the increasing importance of in-home care and the security needs of older people.

2. Home networks and cloud solutions:
Mobile networking is now an integral part of life and the flow of information is constantly increasing in all areas. Products and systems are thus needed that ensure uncompromising functionality, operability and usefulness. All in all, I see digital natives as the driving force. They have grown up with these technologies, meaning they are already an integral part of their lives. This in turn shapes their demands when it comes to equipping the apartment.

Marc Fontolliet (48) heads up the Modernisation unit at Implenia. He studied architecture and civil engineering at ETH Lausanne.

A slightly altered version of this interview appeared in the March edition of Feller Aktuell from Feller AG.