Modern parenting is no small feat, with parents often balancing full-time work with caring for their children, and sometimes even elderly parents or relatives with health conditions. Work schedules don’t always line up with other family schedules such as school, appointments etc., meaning loved ones can be left unsupervised for a portion of the day.
Fortunately, there are ways that tech upgrades in average home features like thermostats, locks and lights can help reduce anxiety and provide parents and caregivers with peace of mind that their loved ones are safe when not under their supervision.
What is a connected home?
The term connected home refers to devices and products that connect to the internet and allow you to control and monitor them anywhere in the world. Things like lights, front door locks, thermostats, TVs, fridges and shades are examples of common household items that can be upgraded to have “smart” features.
Below are three of the biggest concerns working parents have and how smart devices can help.
“Is my child home and is the front door locked?”
Every parent worries about their children getting home safely and knowing that the front door is locked behind them – and not opened again to any strangers. To solve this worry, parents can install a smart door/window sensor on the front door and a doorbell camera in the entryway, and see a live feed of anyone who walks in or out of the house. Mobile notifications can be setup to alert you when the front door is opened, closed, locked or unlocked.
“How do I know if an emergency situation occurs when I’m not home?”
It doesn’t matter how old a child is, if a parent isn’t home, it’s easy to worry about an emergency scenario that may occur. The same concern applies for those taking care of elderly or impaired loved ones. What if there is an intruder? What if something happens and they can’t get up? Newer devices like the Button from Fibaro provide a quick way for someone to send a notification to someone the second that help is needed.
“How do I know if there is a risk of flood or fire?”
Installing smart smoke and flood sensors provides users with instant alerts on their mobile device when smoke is detected or water is sensed. Simply install sensors where there is risk of fire or flood – examples are like the kitchen, under sinks, toilets or near a water heater. Good smart sensors provide data such as temperature readings, and changes in air quality or moisture levels and will send an alert as soon as water or smoke is detected – not once a fire or flood has already occurred. And when installed with a smart shut-off valve, some flood sensors can even activate a water or electrical shut-off valve in order to prevent further damage.
The concept of a “smart” device might seem strange, but adding a little connectivity to everyday items in our home can make life more convenient and make the home just a little safer. A smart home makes for a smart parent; when it comes to the safety of loved ones, every precaution that can be made is a worthy investment.
*Contributed by Rich Bira, Managing Director of Fibaro USA
Rich Bira is the Managing Director of Fibaro USA, a premier designer, developer and manufacturer of innovative smart home systems and intelligent devices coming out of Europe. Available in 100 countries, FIBARO wireless Z-Wave smart home system or HomeKit devices can be controlled from anywhere in the world via smart phone, laptop and tablet.