The Smart Homes of the Future Can Make Aging-in-Place Easier Today
You’ve heard the buzzwords: Smart Technology. The Internet of Things. Home Automation.
You’ve seen the beautiful and futuristic concept homes and wish they could be yours. But did you know that you can already start making your home smart?
Today’s seniors are all about staying in their homes as they age. Aging in place is easier than ever now that our homes can do the hard work for us. You will love living your retirement in a smart home straight out of the Jetsons.
Control from your phone
Your smartphone never leaves your side, and you use it for almost everything. It is the perfect way to keep your life organized. By the end of 2015, it may also be the key to your house.
Here’s how it works: the smart devices in your home, from your security system to your dishwasher, connect to an app that acts as a central hub. You can see what your house is up to at a glance. And even better, you can control it no matter where you are.
Having your home connected to your phone means getting notifications whenever something of interest occurs, from an intruder to a finished load of laundry. It’s up to you – you set when you want to be notified. Your phone can tell you when your children are home, when the dishwasher’s done, or if there is unexpected movement in your home.
A single app means you always know what is going on. Smart things are perfect for those of us who tend to be forgetful. There will be no more wondering if the garage door was left open. No more getting home to discover the lights were left on all day. Your home will remind you if your memory fails you.
Everything is automated
In your golden years you just want to sit back and relax. The best part of having smart things is having everything automated. You’ve worked hard all your life; now, make your home work for you.
Today’s smart technology is capable of learning your schedule. Your security system will lock up your house when you go out, and the lights will turn on by themselves when you get back home. Your thermostat will learn your ideal temperatures, and it will turn down the heat when you’re away.
Your home will be greener when things turn on only when you need them. Your life will be easier when you no longer need to micromanage your house. You will no longer have to fuss with cords, knobs, or dials that can be tricky with aging eyes and wrists. In a smart home, everything is customized just how you like it.
Smart tech you can own today
It’s easy to start on your path towards an automated home. These smart items will make aging in place better than ever.
- Smart HVAC. Today’s thermostats learn what temperature you like best and automatically adjust throughout the day. To save you money and make your house greener, it will turn down the heat when you’re not at home. Once it learns your preferences, you won’t need to touch the temperature dial again.
- Automatic blinds. You don’t want the sun in your eyes, but messing with the blinds can be a pain. Automatic blinds mean no more cords to pull. They will adjust their height depending on how bright it is in the room. And if you decide you want it darker or brighter, just pull out your smartphone to change it. These blinds are perfect for hard to reach windows.
- Smart lights. With smart lights, you will never have to fumble for the light switch again. They use motion sensors to sense when you’re entering the room, or they can be set to a specific schedule. It reduces your risk of dangerous falls. No more stubbing your toe in the dark!
- Keyless locks. If you don’t have keys you can’t lose them! There are several types of keyless locks. Some need you to type in a password, others just need your fingerprint. Or you can have them respond to your smartphone or a key fob, so all you need to do is walk up to them. This is perfect for seniors who use wheelchairs or walkers – no hands are required with smart doors.
- Security systems. Smart technology makes for great security systems. Instead of using a third-party monitoring service, you can get the notifications yourself. You will know right away if anything is wrong with your house. Cameras mean you can see who is at your front door, and you can even let your family in remotely. It’s like having an invisible butler!
- Customizable toilets and showers. Smart bathrooms are the ultimate in luxury. In the shower you choose the perfect water temperature and type of spray. The toilet seat will lift its lid and warm its seat as you approach. You can jam out to your favorite playlist whenever you enter the bathroom. Getting ready in the mornings has never been easier or more fun.
If you want to stay in your home as you age, smart technology is one way to do it. You don’t need to wait to have a smart home—you can start today. You deserve to enjoy your golden years in the house of your dreams. You will be the master of your domain, with all the power in the palm of your hand.
Shayne Fitz-Coy is the Co-CEO and President of Alert-1, an aging-in-place technology company that specializes in emergency buttons and bracelets. Shayne graduated from Harvard College and has a Masters in Business Administration from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.