Virtual Home Environment (VHE) encompasses the deployment and management of adaptable services that retain any personalized service aspects, irrespective of terminal, network'' and geographic location. We assert that the dynamic nature of the VHE requires management capabilities that can be suitably provided through the use of mobile agent technology. We examine four different engineering solutions for the realization of a VHE performance management component that allows service adaptation in relation to the available network Quality-of-Service (QoS). The mobile agent approach is compared with competing technologies in order to identify the benefits of this novel application of mobile agents, discuss its drawbacks'' and finally focus on the lessons learned from our prototype system. Although mobile agents are typically associated with increased performance costs, it is through agent migration that we were able to address the VHE requirements of universality, dynamic programmability, and network technology independence.