Geek's house

As you can imagine, my house has some "features" that make it a tad special.

We are looking to move (to Wales of all places). Working from home works very well, and as such it does not matter much where "home" is...

The house we will be selling, probably in January, is a nice 5 bed house in Bracknell. In some ways I am not sure what to do with the "features". To the right buyer they are rather cool and worth it, so I thought I would list on this blog post and get comments.

The plan, sadly, is to "normalise" the house, meaning removing some features. But here goes - what should I try and keep and sell.

  1. Air-con - this stays as it is "normal". Four of the five bedrooms have air-con, and so does the man-cave. All the air-con is modern, already updated and replaced once even, wifi connected. Works really well for heating and cooling, and has proper planning permission. I have some nice sensors for temp and so on that work with it - open source code, but works as is.
  2. Playhouse/swings - these stay as also "normal", but it is a nice feature, and kids love it.
  3. IoT light switches - in one bedroom and man-cave and garden, Tasmota flashed. Most work the corresponding light so can stay, but some are blind (no direct powered light, using WiFi/mqtt to control other lights). I suspect they stay but diminished usefulness. A buyer can have all the IoT details to use them if they want.
  4. Fibre and network switches and WiFi. These could go with me, and fibre terminated. Or they could stay - A&A will be happy to run an internet link from A&A office in Bracknell, at cost (a few hundred a month) even if NAT, but could have a few IPs and some IPv6. If we do nothing, this just gets ceased, which is a shame. I could leave the WiFi APs, or take with me - even an external garden AP.
  5. ESP32 and Galaxy panel and Pi based alarm and door entry system, very cool. Happy to hand over logins, and the code is all open source. But default is we rip it out as not "standard", leaving bare alarm/PIR wiring in place for conventional alarm system install.
  6. Electric locks on the man cave - these would be changed to boring locks with keys. Even the front door has electric release on the lock which would go. Happy to provide the details and some fobs, for the keys (AES using DESFire cards).
  7. Lots of Ubiquiti cameras and recording box. Again, would go with me by default.
  8. Lots of Ethernet wiring - stays.
  9. The man-cave TV will have to stay - a 65" wallpaper LG OLED which is awesome, but hard to transport.
  10. The man cave is awesome, and the benches all fitted, and a bar. That stays.
  11. There are other cool features like nice mains pressure hot-water.
So, if someone is seriously interested, say so, and we can talk. We would sell for a fair price - but would be nice if we did not have to "normalise" some of the stuff and found a geeky buyer that appreciated it. Otherwise, by end of year this all gets "normalised", and sold as "boring".


  1. I know Bracknell isn't great, but Wales???

  2. Hopefully a potential buyer embraces what you’ve done, would be a shame to see it ripped out. Surprised you aren’t taking claim of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kennards_House

    Hope it all goes well :)

  3. ... and on arrival in Wales you find you can either get 2 Mbps ADSL or it's an install cost of £100k for an Ethernet fibre. Well you'd have to laugh.

    1. Actually when we made the jump from London, our speeds went *up* (ok, partly because ADSL2 doesn't exist in our village so we had to go to FTTC).

      Wales is (largely) rural, but that doesn't mean it's 19th century :-)

      Very sensible move though Rev; best thing we ever did!

  4. Having followed your blog for years and seen as you've built things, I'd love to buy it, but I have a feeling given the location etc I'd need a lottery win alongside the sale of my 4 bed house in Suffolk to buy it!

  5. I think the chances of finding someone who wants to buy a 5 bed house in your particular part of Bracknell, and has a clue what all the technology is about, is diminishing the potential market for your property to zero. The bar in particular may put some people off, if it looks like you need a PhD to get through the front door that will too! Remember the wife chooses the house.

    There is a lot to be said for marketing a boring, neutrally-decorated, tidy, family house.

    I sold my house last year and even the fact it was floodwired for cat5 back to a central patch panel was of zero interest to any of the potential buyers. There were also cameras, built in speakers and a smart thermostat - I wrote an "instruction manual" for it all, but I do wonder if any of it will ever get used.

    1. What if the wife is the one with the PhD?

  6. Working from home, and ability to access remote services, is increasingly important. The networking done right is a big plus and the man cave makes a fantastic home office all ready to go. Perhaps you can offer a little consultancy package with the house. A buyer buys it, and you then help them take full advantage of the infrastructure there, helps decide what goes and what stays.

  7. Having followed for some time, wanted to wish you the best of luck with the move. Are you sure you're not moving just to have an empty canvas (house) to work on again? :-)

  8. I would replace the light switches with normal ones, and take the WiFi stuff with you(most would struggle to set it up I fear, and you don’t want tech support on move day)

  9. I would replace the light switches with normal ones, and take the WiFi stuff with you(most would struggle to set it up I fear, and you don’t want tech support on move day)


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