Smart Home M&A has Level Home unlocking multifamily channel

Smart home product companies are hot as of late. Smart thermostat maker Ecobee was acquired by home generator leader, Generac. On the heels of that move, Level Home has announced the acquisition of smart apartment specialist Dwelo, which will result in a smart lock maker and a multifamily housing smart home integrator combination. Level Home is a lesser-known smart home player credited with creating a smart lock that can be inserted into an existing deadbolt on the door to make it smart without looking any different than it did before installation. Level Home’s product is compatible with Apple’s HomeKit, making the lock controllable from a native Apple app.

Level Home’s solution was so novel when announced that the company received early backing by Lennar Homes and a partnership with Walmart – the retail giant also just contributed to a Series C funding round for Level Home led by Cox Communications worth over $100 million.

Despite its partnership with the world’s second largest retailer (Walmart was recently eclipsed by Amazon), Level Home is anxious to break into new channels. By purchasing Dwelo, Level Home gains a SaaS platform for property owners and managers that ties multiple smart devices across hundreds of units in dozens of buildings to a central control hub and provides renters with a single app for control and maintenance of smart apartments. Thanks to Dwelo, Level Home now has access to the 31% of the US population that rents their home, 37% of which live in multifamily units, according to the National Multifamily Housing Council.

According to Interpret’s Smart Home Matrix™ Consumer, 14% of renters are intenders of video doorbells, 13% are intenders of smart lightbulbs, and 5% of renters are planning to buy smart thermostats. Smart home technologies were formerly of interest mostly to homeowners, but the rise in rental amenities and the increasing ease of installation, portability, and affordability of smart home products has resulted in rising interest in those products among renters.

“Between production homebuilders, home security integrators, fans of DIY products, and more sophisticated apartments, a large portion of the US population is now living with some type of smart product. The category is gaining momentum, and, in a few years, smart products will be standard in homes rented or owned,” said Stuart Sikes, Senior Vice President at Interpret.