Switching on to the benefits of technology and co-living will make retirement easier for an aging population.
The internet of things is changing the way older people interact with their homes by simplifying everyday tasks like switching lights on, controlling temperature and shopping online.
Integrating technology can make independent living a possibility that stretches later in life, especially as new developments promise new ways to monitor health and fitness.
The potential of the internet of things is unleashed in a blog by international property consultants Knight Frank.
The article highlights the latest developments in sensory technology to aid senior living.
Co-living is ideal in retirement
Living in groups is highlighted as one major step forward.
“Co-living typology provides an ideal model for the urban later-living product. Private, individual space is reduced to an elegant and efficiently designed minimum, reducing the concern and expense of maintaining a large house,” says the blog.
“Imagine a luxury hotel suite, expertly equipped with everything needed in the ideal location. The service-based model provides worry-free living.
“Housekeeping, routine maintenance and utilities can be included in the product cost. Services may extend to include anything from laundry service, meal and grocery deliveries, to healthcare.
“Social engagement is crucial to later living, as continued activity improves both long term mental acuity and helps combat the risk of isolation and loneliness.
“Communal and shared spaces promote neighbourly interaction and provide space for informal gatherings and planned events and activities.”
Buildings that watch and listen
Designing with seniors in mind is also vital.
This means lots of light – both from daylight and lamps – both bright colours to stimulate and calm colours for relaxation.
Buildings can be hard-wired to give privacy but still monitor life signs.
“Tech can passively monitor vital signs and provide a conditioned response linked to the building concierge and a nominated, affiliated healthcare provider,” says the blog.
“Phones, watches and fitness straps are equipped with the hardware required to monitor vital signs. In a built environment designed with later-life in mind, this can be integrated into a sophisticated and seamless support system for an ageing demographic.
“But buildings must not be too reliant on a single technology that will obsolesce but allow for reprogramming and adaptation.”