Budget-Friendly Smart Home Tech for Seniors & Individuals

Written by: Bipasha Basu

The invention of the home automation system has been a blessing for all of us. The system provides a vast range of brilliant features that helps in making our lives comfortable and also provides us with security.

The use of home automation systems has played an essential part in taking care of the disabled and the elder community who face everyday problems even accessing their own home. When we talk about installing the accessibility of technology at home, most people believe that it includes stairlifts or easily accessible showers or changing the position of the switches in their home. But because of modern technology and brilliant inventions, there are many more options available to us.

For example, you can control and monitor your entire house by using just your smartphone, and you don’t even need to be present inside the place to do that.

In this blog, we will discuss some of the home automation devices, which are very helpful for disabled and/or elderly people.

1. Lighting Controls and Modifications

The most essential component needed for your home automation system is the lighting. Setting up lighting control is the first stop for any smart home. Many options are available nowadays for you to choose from to update the lighting system of your home while staying in the budget.

The fact that we can control the setting of the lights of the entire house just with the help of our smartphones makes it easier to be used by someone unable to reach the witches, or you have problems with mobility.

Plus nowadays there are so many remote-controlled light products available that too at a low price. These light bulbs save a lot of energy and are just needed to be replaced in place of the regular light bulbs. Moreover, if you connect these lights with your home Wi-Fi and integrate it into your smart home system, then you will be able to manage these lights via an app on your smartphone. With these, you will be able to control all the lights of the house from a single spot.

For people who have an impaired vision, a simple feature which will be highly beneficial for them is installing light sensors and low energy bulbs to the switches. Next, change the settings so that the lights get on as soon as it starts getting dark outside. Envision how helpful it will be for them. Light sensors are also beneficial in many other ways. Like you don’t have to look for switches when you enter a dark room or leave a room in a hurry. These devices sense if a person is present in the room or not and will automatically turn on or off the switch.

2. Retrofit Automatic Door Opening Systems

It becomes quite problematic for elderly people, people in wheelchairs or people who have any other kinds of mobility issues to open the doors for themselves. Not that it is impossible to open the doors in such conditions, but this seems rather unnecessary when you can easily install an automatic door opening system in any door of your home.

The automatic door systems in homes are different from the ones which we encounter in public places like malls, offices etc. Those doors have a sensor which makes them open it as soon as someone is in front of the door. But that is not what we need for the entries in our home because of security reasons. The smart doors of the house are controlled by switches mounted on the wall or are incorporated with your smart home system, which will permit you to open and close the door through an app on your smartphone.

3. Automatic Curtains and Blinds

Even though it might seem like spending excess money for buying automatic blinds, but the benefits of these are worth spending money over. There are options where you can program a single button to control multiple functions. Like when you close the curtains or the blinds, the lights in the room are also turned on with the same button. Or with a single button, you can open the curtains and switch on the TV in the morning!

Electric blinds are usually a less expensive option, but you can also attach an electric wrapper track to your regular drapes and control it with a wall-mounted switch or app.

4. Wireless Socket Control

If we think about it, it is seen that we spent a lot of extra energy throughout the day. Homes. And to top it all, leaving the appliances on the sockets adds more money onto your electric bill. So it is suggested to remove the devices from the socket. But it is not always possible when the sockets are mounted in peculiar places. So wireless sockets are an excellent alternative for that.

You can switch off the sockets in your home wirelessly by buying the ones which are remotely controlled orbiting such systems which will let you control them via a smartphone app.

5. Entry Control

Getting to the door when someone is knocking and opening the door is quite challenging to the persons having a disability in hearing or have mobility challenges. Those people might not be able to listen to doorbells or get to the door to open them.

Installing a door entry system with wireless locks provides you with an excellent solution for this problem. The smart home system can be integrated with the video intercom and the smart locks. So that if anyone comes to your house, you will receive an alert on your phone and talk with them by using the app present on your phone. People with hearing disability can change the settings of their phone to a vibration mode so that they will get notified. Plus you can even open the doors just by tapping on the screen and not requiring to move an inch.

The best function of the device is the security that it provides to your home. You can check on the video footage to see if anyone came to your home while you were out and you can even talk to them via the intercom even if you are not at home.

6. Powered Cupboards

It gets quite tricky for people in wheelchairs to get to the items that are kept on higher levels, for example, kitchen cupboards or higher shelves in the wardrobes. It is not possible to move all the items down and may cause some new difficulties. Powered cupboards are a great answer to that problem. These will help them in getting the items from the shelves which are kept too high to reach.

You just need to install an electric track on your wall and fit any cupboard that you want over the track. The track will help in moving the cabinet up and down. So in this way you can just lower the cupboard to the desired height, take the thing you want and then raise it back to its original position.

7. Monitoring and Alerts

Installing electronic monitoring and alert systems are very much required if you have an elderly person or anybody who has a significant risk of falling living in your home. These devices often can be life-saving. These electronic systems will help in monitoring the well being of a person in the family and will send an alert immediately to its relatives or emergency contacts if any problematic situation arises.

These devices prove to be a great help for people with disabilities and frail elderly people. It will be like your house is taking care of you and will take necessary actions in case anything happens.

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