When buying a new house, you can negotiate certain items, and today many buyers are looking for totally smart homes. If you are renting an apartment, however, unless you are buying state-of-the-art new construction, you could be faced with a living space that is lacking in smart apps and systems. 

Don’t worry, though, whether you’re renting a small one-bedroom in a cheap city like Columbus, Ohio or a huge penthouse in New York City, here are seven great ways to add smart technology to your apartment.

Smart Outlet

Sure, a smart-wired home can be loaded with smart outlets but you can go to the Home Depot and buy individual smart outlets that are controllable from your mobile device.

The one pictured above is available on Amazon, and it will work with Alexa and similar systems. Gone will be the days when you worried—as you were boarding a plane–about leaving the iron plugged in and turned on. With a smart outlet, all you’ll have to do is turn it off with your phone.


In an apartment setting, you may have to get permission from your landlord first, but a smart lock system is a great way to enhance your apartment’s security.

This item will lock your door automatically upon leaving, will of course work with Alexa and similar systems, and you can keep your existing keys because it interfaces with a deadbolt. We really like this smart system for apartment use. 

With it, you can also grant apartment access to someone for just a few minutes or even a month or whatever you decide. It’s great for letting in trusted repair techs, and it will allow you to let a delivery person securely leave a package at your home.


Your utility bill may be included in your rent, and if it is, that’s good news for you. If you do pay a separate electric bill, however, you should consider a smart lighting system.

The first thing to do is to get rid of any incandescent and fluorescent lights. Traditional replacement bulbs are still available, so your landlord may have chosen not to do any lighting upgrades. You should take the initiative, however, to replace the old bulbs with LEDs

LEDs last many times longer than traditional bulbs, they are quickly becoming cheaper, and they work great with smart lighting apps. Wouldn’t it be nice to change lighting hues and intensity from your mobile device? 

You’ll be happy to know that you can do that today if you make the effort to make the switch. If you’re not paying the electric bill it means your landlord is, and he or she may even pay for you to modernize your apartment’s lighting system.

Air Purifiers

Even if your apartment has a good A/C system, you may want to supplement it with a nice and smart air purification system.

This one is Alexa-enabled, and it moves 1000 sq. feet of air per hour. And of course, it can be controlled anywhere with your mobile device.


Your apartment probably won’t be set up with a sophisticated security system, but you can fix that easily by purchasing one of these:

Like all of the other products we have mentioned above, this security system is fully automated and set up to work with Alexa and similar devices. You can watch what is going on in your home at all times from anywhere, and you can avoid paying a costly house-sitter while you are on vacation. You shouldn’t need any landlord approval to set up this portable system.


Don’t be a slave to your cable or satellite company. You know you can stream a vast array of content to your phone, and with Chromecast, you can send it to your TV. Many people are using Chromecast as a basis for cutting the cable, and again, your landlord doesn’t have to be notified about this system.


Finally, realize that the days of those giant stereo speakers your family had can be over. There are many styles available as the one below that blazed the trail:

Again, you may not have as much flexibility with your apartment as you would when looking to buy a house that you can make huge renovations within, but you can still do a lot to make it smarter. Use our seven tips above as a starting point and you’ll have a smarter and more energy-efficient living space.


Diandra is a creative writer for RENTCafé.com. With an academic background in English literature and linguistics, Diandra has a strong passion for real estate. She covers a variety of topics, from marketing trends to entertaining articles about urban development. When she’s not catching up on the latest real estate deals, she’s usually busy traveling, reading, or learning new languages. You can get in touch with Diandra via email.

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