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Solar: the Perfect Technology for the Contemporary Dwelling
Solar panels

There's one thing that's pretty consistent across all of the examples featured on this site — they're all as contemporary as it gets. There are no awkward features, everything is smooth, seamless and damn right modern.

Over the years the construction industry has seen technologies come and go, arguably at a faster rate than in other fields. It would be fair to say that one technology which has grabbed building experts by the scruff of the neck is solar. It's something which is being applied in practically every imaginable use and when it comes to contemporary homes it's no surprise why.

Solar is something that removes any aesthetic fears from architects. Once upon a time those famous panels may have been classed as intrusive, but nowadays they can be blended into any modern building. Similarly, smaller solar products (which we'll get into later), just don't hinder a home's appearance in the slightest and this is the reason it's here to say.

Of course, a lot of these products also happen to save a considerable amount of money - something which is surely required when you see some of the extravagant featured properties! Nevertheless, the point we're trying to make is that solar energy is here to stay and this is something that a lot of rival technologies haven't been able to say over the past few years. Here, we highlight how solar is growing, how you can use it on your home - and why it suits the contemporary, dream homes down to a tee.

The old favourite: solar panels

We may as well start with the thing that everyone associates solar technology with; those panels which seem to be affixed to a growing proportion of UK estates. Initially, they were targeted at local authority housing, but private homeowners have now caught on and they are especially popular with modern properties.

The nature of solar panels means that they are never going to be suited to a rustic dwelling. Shiny panels just don’t work on a converted barn, but when they are integrated to a potential Dwell award candidate, things start to change. They can actually look like a positive addition to such properties, while it’s now possible to purchase the panels in varying styles which make them highly compatible with different types of roofs.

Security lighting: no longer a tangle of wires

This is one use of the technology which doesn’t necessarily have to be implemented in a luxury home. The reason it’s been included in this article is because of the simplicity and it doesn’t matter where you live, gone are the days when you have to source an electrician to fit a complicated set of security lights.

Naturally, these lights arrive in various solar contemporary styles, but the big selling point is that they’re plug and play. Some security lights which are solar powered can be installed in a matter of minutes and this means that they’re certainly here to stay, and possibly overtake the standard security fittings that we have come so accustomed to over the last few years.

Water features: same as above

Take a look at the latest featured house on this blog and it will almost certainly be exquisitely landscaped, with a water feature to boot. The introduction of solar technology to these features has transformed the way in which gardens can be put together and again there’s no need to source a qualified electrician – a lot of these features are powered entirely by the sun.

Considering the fact that it’s also possible to obtain solar fairy lights to compliment the landscape, it goes without saying that water features are evolving and have become even more exuberant because of solar.

And finally… for the ultimate solar/contemporary enthusiast

We should probably have added another component to the title of this subheading, “for the ultimate property owner”. We’ll again refer to the houses that are featured across Art Architect and the vast majority have a pool in their back garden.

For a lot of years, the main problem with swimming pools hasn’t been the upfront cost (although these will still set you back tens of thousands of pounds, or more depending on your requirements), but the running costs. Again, solar has come to the rescue and through the use of solar thermal technology, it’s now possible to heat the water through the sun’s rays. Additionally, excess energy can be used for outside towel rails or even the water for showers – again elements that will accompany the contemporary plot down to a tee.

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