If you live in NY (and even if you don’t!), you’ve probably read about the difficulties with heating apartment buildings in the winter. (Reference this The Real Deal article.)

Although the city mandates that landlords keep thermostats at a minimum of 68 degrees, renters are still having to use space heaters (or worse, their ovens) to stay warm. This exact circumstance led to a terrible fire in a Bronx apartment building about a year ago, with 17 residents losing their lives.

To better monitor the temps inside apartment units, NYC is considering a bill that would mandate landlords to install heat sensors in their units. But think about that for a moment. A heat sensor measures the temperature in the room where it’s installed; what about in the other rooms?

Also, heat sensors don’t measure the humidity inside a residence. “Humidity,” you say? “What does that have to do with anything?”

Turns out, quite a bit. Humidity levels make the actual temperature feel colder (or warmer). Think about when a local weather forecaster talks about the heat index or the wind chill. AccuWeather has coined the term RealFeel® temperature, which takes elements like humidity and wind into account in how we perceive the temperature outside.

(Side note: Dwellwell measures multiple environmental aspects inside a home – including temperature and humidity – to determine what we call “the comfort index.”)

This situation perfectly encapsulates the problem with most sensing technology that is available today. Heat sensors, water leak detectors, and other types of Proptech/smart home technology are limited in what they can do.

Sure, a water leak detector can tell you if there’s water puddling under the sink, but what about a leaky toilet flapper? (By the way, the EPA notes that household leaks account for millions – yes, MILLIONS – of gallons of water wasted each year.)

Are there better solutions for apartment building/multifamily owner-operators? You bet there are. That’s what Dwellwell has developed. And guess what? Our customers are seeing incredible results; for example:

  • alerted to a water supply line leak in an unoccupied unit (avoided a massive flood)
  • identified faulty outlet wiring across multiple units (averted an electrical fire and held a contractor accountable)
  • notified of elevated CO in two instances (even the installed CO detectors didn’t go off)
  • detected dangerously cold temperatures over the winter (avoided a burst water pipe)

And on and on. Interested? Give us a shout – we’d love to tell you more.

(Image credit: https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/flat-design-winter-landscape_6193347.htm)