Senior Spotlight: The Pros & Cons Of Utilizing Tech To Age In Place

This is Silicon Valley. We utilize technology for everything. As we all know, when it is working – it can make our lives SO much easier. But when things go awry and the ‘tech gremlins’ strike, it can also be a huge inconvenience. Perhaps nowhere is the recognition of this paradox more apparent than in using technology to age in place. Innovations have allowed increased monitoring, assessment and communication with our loved ones – often enabling them to stay at home independently longer than they could have 5 or 10 years ago. However, it is important to understand the advantages and disadvantages of relying on technology to support an aging loved one in any capacity – and that is the topic of today’s Senior Spotlight.

THE OPTIONS

Do you know which newer technologies are commonly utilized to make home safer for everyone, including our aging loved ones? Here is a sample list:

  • Video doorbells that can be viewed from multiple devices
  • Remote door locking systems
  • Smoke detectors that text alerts
  • Voice instructions & reminders for medications, doctors appointments, etc.
  • Smart watches w/fall detectors
  • Temperature control
  • Comprehensive home security
  • Motion sensors that communicate with offsite family members
  • Inactivity monitors

While at first glance this list of devices can feel ‘intrusive’, most family members are simply seeking a way to achieve peace of mind, and something to trigger if a phone call or immediate visit is warranted to assess a situation. By no means should any of these options interfere with privacy (even proponents of such systems DO NOT recommend 24-hour in-home video monitoring). These are simply adapted smart home systems, wearable devices and sensors that can alert a loved one of a change in behavior, home activity or environmental situation.

THE PROS

When utilized as part of an overall aging in place plan, technology can enhance home security, add endless conveniences, communicate needs to your support system and even call for help when you are unable.

  • Loved ones can unlock doors if you lock yourself out and view security cameras remotely
  • Alarm systems can be programmed to offer multiple cues – such as visual or auditory to meet the needs of those who are sight or hearing impaired
  • Lights and temperature can be pre-programmed and voice activated
  • Emergency response can be triggered in the event of a fall, seizure or other emergency event (depending on products utilized and process selected)

THE CONS

While there is no doubt that technology can increase home convenience and safety, it can also create a false sense of security. If the resident and family members assume that technology is handling everything – they are more likely to reduce oversight and overlook non-tech safety issues (such as non-skid rugs & under cabinet lighting). Other critical considerations include:

  • Securing systems to reduce the ability of hackers to access private information through voice or app-controlled systems
  • Staying on top of system updates and maintenance among smart home systems
  • Updating and prioritizing contact information in related notification systems
  • Assessing subscription fees and third-party monitoring needs
  • Intercommunicability – few systems harmoniously communicate with each other and address all needs, which means families typically choose a la carte products and must maintain them all separately

Last but not least, The Boston Globe recommends a step-by-step process to determine if aging in place with such tools is a viable option. First, assess the home environment to make sure it is physically safe. Second, add technology that improves communication with loved ones. Anything you add on top of that might be fun and convenient – but should NOT be the deal breaker on whether or not one should be living and thriving alone.

Please always consult with a medical and geriatric professional team to address any concerns you have about aging in place. This is a highly complex personal, physical and emotional decision and we hope whatever you choose – it gives you the best quality of life and highest levels of comfort and support. You deserve nothing less.

All my best,

Bobbi

Bobbi Decker
DRE#00607999
Broker Associate
650.346.5352 cell
650.577.3127 efax
www.bobbidecker.com
NAR Instructor….“Designations Create Distinctions”
CIPS, SRS, ABR, CRS, SRES, GRI, CLHMS,
REI, AHWD, RSPS, MSLG

Bobbi Decker & Associates fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. For more information, please visit: http://portal.hud.gov/

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Designations Create Distinctions: See You – Soon!

We are all living in a world filled with days that were much different than those we had planned upon and looked forward to. For myself and many of my students – that means not being in the classroom together.  While the current climate is calling upon agents to provide more support than sales, there will be a day (and sooner than we think!), that our clients will need agents who are dedicated, distinguished and truly knowledgeable in ways that set them apart.

Please keep following this blog and the Bobbi Decker Instructor Facebook page as we work on rescheduling our upcoming courses. By year end, you can expect to see more sessions of the SRES® Designation, the ABR® Designation, the CIPS® Institute and so much more! The NAR® offerings provide not only high-value content and unrivaled expertise, but the opportunity to do what we do best as agents: collaborate, connect and have FUN!

Until then I am fondly looking back at the peers who have joined me in the classroom and united in commitment to be the best that they can be. I thank you Felix for the kind words below… and I can’t wait to see friends old and new in the months ahead!

Stay happy, healthy and full of hope,

Bobbi

Bobbi Decker
DRE#00607999
Broker Associate
650.346.5352 cell
650.577.3127 efax
www.bobbidecker.com
NAR Instructor….“Designations Create Distinctions”
CIPS, SRS, ABR, CRS, SRES, GRI, CLHMS,
REI, AHWD, RSPS, MSLG

Bobbi Decker & Associates fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. For more information, please visit: http://portal.hud.gov/

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Monday Market Update: The Home Office – Redefined

The home office is not a new concept by any means, but is has quickly become the most popular place to work in America. Having a place to fall back on when you need to check email is a far different environment than the one you need to work from full-time, often while wrangling children, pets and an entire household that is now sheltering in place. On that note, we have scoured the web to present to you these 5 resources which will help you create the most productive home office that these times can bring.

#1: 7 Tried-and-True Secrets for a Productive Home Office

The Muse offers some insightful suggestions that help you identify your work style and what your home office needs to accommodate it.

#2: 65 Home Office Ideas That Will Inspire Productivity

Architectural Digest presents space so strategic and stunning – you may find yourself saying – there is no place like work!

#3: 10 Work-From-Home Office Setup Ideas For Peak Productivity

In this read with links, Huff Post asserts that it is the little things that change that desk at home into a true, functional and fabulous remote office. (Some of these finds are just fun for retail therapy too… just saying!)

#4: 9 Tips To Be Productive When Working At Home During COVID-19

Forbes offers a blend of ideas related to increasing productivity and also decreasing feelings of isolation and anxiety.

#5: Working from Home: Tips for Productivity, Mental Health and Staying Healthy

Occupational Health & Safety provides some practical advice that supports balance; after all, this situation is going to feel much more like a marathon than a sprint – so sustainable habits are key.

_ _ _

Cheers to everyone doing what you can, the best that you can! This is not about counting the days, but making the days count. You GOT this!

Bobbi

Bobbi Decker
DRE#00607999
Broker Associate
650.346.5352 cell
650.577.3127 efax
www.bobbidecker.com
NAR Instructor….“Designations Create Distinctions”
CIPS, SRS, ABR, CRS, SRES, GRI, CLHMS,
REI, AHWD, RSPS, MSLG

Bobbi Decker & Associates fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. For more information, please visit: http://portal.hud.gov/

 

 

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Senior Spotlight: Supporting Seniors During Sheltering In Place

Let’s face it – in a time when we all need as much social support as possible, we can barely leave our homes and must stay 6 feet apart from others when seeking essential services such as groceries and gas. The situation becomes even more challenging for seniors, who may lack social media support and suffer from high-risk physical contact status.

On that note… we are providing a list of what we CAN do to support older adults during this trying time. Please note that these ideas are intended to inspire you – but should always be superseded by advice from your own local, public health department and your own personal risk and needs.

#1: Go Old School. Are you friends with your older neighbors on Facebook? Probably not. Social media offers of grocery assistance for seniors are amazing – if seniors can see them. Consider dropping your phone number in the mailbox of a senior in your neighborhood. They may need grocery or medication pick-ups but be unsure of who to ask and how.

#2: Stay Informed On Senior Hours. Many stores are implementing senior hours older adults first thing in the morning – when the stores are cleanest and to keep the crowds lightest. This is also beneficial for those who may be in their 60’s who need to shop for parents in their 80’s. Different stores offer different shopping criteria for different ages, and this can vary by location. This article from ABC News is a good start – but it’s best to call your local stores before you assume that a senior hour is in place – and verify what age groups it serves (some are 60, 65, 70, and others include at-risk groups such as those with chronic health conditions regardless of age). Then share the info with your neighbors via call, text or online or a note under the mat!

#3: Maintain Awareness Of Assisted Living Protections. By now, most assisted living facilities are barring physical visitations, and understandably so. However, concerns of social isolation and depression are very real. If you have a loved one in a senior community that you cannot visit – find out what you CAN do. Call the community administration to inquire about FaceTime, Sykpe or Zoom calls (are support and devices provided?). Ask if you can send snail mail or what the protocol is for care packages.

If you know of an older adult who is having trouble seeking the support and resources they need during the shelter-in-place, please call 2-1-1 with any non-emergency and non-medical inquiries. You can also visit http://www.211.org/services/covid19.

This may not pass as soon as want it to – but this time period will pass. Until then – we can band together in spirit and look forward to brighter days and bigger hugs ahead.

All my best,

Bobbi

Bobbi Decker
DRE#00607999
Broker Associate
650.346.5352 cell
650.577.3127 efax
www.bobbidecker.com
NAR Instructor….“Designations Create Distinctions”
CIPS, SRS, ABR, CRS, SRES, GRI, CLHMS,
REI, AHWD, RSPS, MSLG

Bobbi Decker & Associates fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. For more information, please visit: http://portal.hud.gov/

Posted in Living Longer, Living Better, Senior Spotlight | Leave a comment

Designations Create Distinctions: Gratitude

We may run out of Clorox wipes, and maybe even a few bath products… but do you know there is something that we can never run out of? GRATITUDE. While I had hoped to be in the classroom with many students this month… I am still so grateful that I have gathered with like-minded agents before and I can’t wait to do it again! The snapshots above are just a few fun memories that are helping me remember what and most importantly WHO to be thankful for – and that is YOU!

To the many amazing, integrity-driven agents who commit to using education to become the very best real estate resource to guide our community members – I thank you from the bottom of my heart and I can’t wait to see you soon!

*Just in case you missed our message about the ways in which we plan to continue our blog & media to stay connected during this time, please click here! 

All my best,

Bobbi

Bobbi Decker
DRE#00607999
Broker Associate
650.346.5352 cell
650.577.3127 efax
www.bobbidecker.com
NAR Instructor….“Designations Create Distinctions”
CIPS, SRS, ABR, CRS, SRES, GRI, CLHMS,
REI, AHWD, RSPS, MSLG

Bobbi Decker & Associates fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. For more information, please visit: http://portal.hud.gov/

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Monday Market Update: Adapting To Our New Normal

As a new week dawns upon us, many of us are facing a new reality and change in day-to-day life on account of the national emergency declared on Friday. As we recently stated in a message to our friends (that’s YOU!), we are with you during these challenging times, and committed to serving as a resource and part of your community in spirit even when we cannot physically come together.

As such, we are dedicating this week’s Monday Market Update to some resources that you may find helpful as a way to receive local and national updates, and also cope with the changing times you are experiencing. In the days and weeks ahead, we will be including some real estate updates and spring home décor fun, as well as other news to keep us focused on the future. May we all help each other find ways see those silver linings shine!

All our best,

Bobbi & Team

COVID-19 COMMUNITY RESOURCES

San Mateo County Health Updates & Resources

Santa Clara County Public Health

California Department Of Public Health

Golden Gate SIR Emergency Resource Center 

WORKING & COPING STRATEGIES

12 Ways to Work Remotely During COVID-19

9 Tips To Be Productive When Working At Home During COVID-19

Combatting the Coronavirus Mental Health Pandemic

How to Talk with Kids About COVID-19

 

Bobbi Decker
DRE#00607999
Broker Associate
650.346.5352 cell
650.577.3127 efax
www.bobbidecker.com
NAR Instructor….“Designations Create Distinctions”
CIPS, SRS, ABR, CRS, SRES, GRI, CLHMS,
REI, AHWD, RSPS, MSLG

Bobbi Decker & Associates fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. For more information, please visit: http://portal.hud.gov/

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Friends: We Are With You

Posted in Designations Create Distinctions, Monday Market Updates, Senior Spotlight | Leave a comment

Senior Spotlight: A Planning Primer For Retiring Couples

Retirement is supposed to be one of the best times of your life, right? After all, the opportunities for how to spend your time and where to travel are now open doors no longer surrendered to vacation requests or college tuition payments! But is there such thing as too much of a good thing? If you ask many couples, the answer is YES. As such, we wanted to share some recommended topics of conversation to have with your partner/spouse prior to retirement, or even as an annual check-in.

#1: What does our ideal retirement look like in the big picture? What are our overall lifestyle goals?

#2: What might our daily & weekly retirement scenarios look like, taking in to account our individual and joint activities?

#2: What is a comfortable monthly budget during retirement? *Be sure to talk with a financial professional about when to start claiming Social Security.

#3: How much time will we spend traveling (from both a cost and want perspective)?

#4: Will we stay in our current location or move closer to family members? Which ones?

#5: Who will retire first? (Many retirement experts recommend that partners DO NOT retire at the same time as it can create a very large adjustment period for two people to endure together. Others advise that retiring separately can create a chasm between two individuals at two very different points in life.)

Just as in any transition in life, you are likely to receive very different guidance on how to handle it. The most important factor in retirement planning with your spouse is open communication about what is comfortable for the two of you.

Chances are, the big decisions will NOT be made in one conversation, or even in one year. Living your best retirement life is often the result of agreeing on a path to try, and then re-evaluating your route every few months and at least annually. It’s often a case of practice makes progress… so enjoy every minute of getting really great at living the retirement of your dreams – together.

Resources Used & Recommended Reading: 

Retirement Planning: Conversations to Have With Your Spouse

7 Tips on Planning for the Future as a Retired Couple

An Emotional Playbook for Couples in Retirement

A Couple’s Guide to Retirement Planning

3 Retirement-Planning Conversations for Every Married Couple

All our best,

Bobbi & Buddy

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bobbi Decker
DRE#00607999
Broker Associate
650.346.5352 cell
650.577.3127 efax
www.bobbidecker.com
NAR Instructor….“Designations Create Distinctions”
CIPS, SRS, ABR, CRS, SRES, GRI, CLHMS,
REI, AHWD, RSPS, MSLG

 

Posted in Living Longer, Living Better, Senior Spotlight | Leave a comment

Designations Create Distinctions: 6 Upcoming Courses Just For You

You have sprung that clock forward… and now are you ready to do the same for your career?! Listed below you will find 4 of my most popular and in-demand course offerings amidst 6 opportunities in San Jose, San Mateo and Sacramento!  The CIPS® Institute, SRES® Designation and ABR® Designation are game-changers for your network, while the NEW Marketing Strategy and Lead Generation offering is a true crash course in business and media planning that benefit of every agent of any experience level!

If you cannot decide which courses will benefit you the most – please feel free to reach out! I am happy to chat with you about your goals and which options make the most sense and cents for you!

UPCOMING COURSES 

CANCELED | CIPS® Institute (SCCAOR San Jose)

*Please note that the 5-Day CIPS® Institute planned for March has been canceled due to the fears surrounding public gatherings on account of COVID-19. Please stay tuned for an announcement regarding a forthcoming fall course.

April 22nd & 23rd | SRES® (San Mateo)

https://www.samcar.org/posts/senior-real-estate-specialists-sres-designation-course-1273.htm

May 6th | ABR® (SCCAOR San Jose)

https://www.sccaor.com/calendar/accredited-buyers-representative-2-abr-designation-course/

May 13th | Marketing Strategy & Lead Generation (San Mateo)

https://www.samcar.org/posts/marketing-strategy-lead-generation-1280.htm

May 20th | Marketing Strategy & Lead Generation (SCCAOR San Jose)

https://www.sccaor.com/calendar/mslg/

June 18th & 19th | SRES® (Sacramento)

https://www.samcar.org/posts/sres-r-at-sacramento-association-of-realtors-1242.htm

See you soon!

~ Bobbi

Bobbi Decker
DRE#00607999
Broker Associate
650.346.5352 cell
650.577.3127 efax
www.bobbidecker.com
NAR Instructor….“Designations Create Distinctions”
CIPS, SRS, ABR, CRS, SRES, GRI, CLHMS,
REI, AHWD, RSPS, MSLG

Bobbi Decker & Associates fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. For more information, please visit: http://portal.hud.gov/

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Monday Market Update: Happy International Women’s Day

Did you know that March 8th is International Women’s Day? According to the UN, this is a “a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women, who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities.” The reality is that while advances have been made, NO country has achieved true gender equality.

| Women earn 23% less than men globally.

| 1 in 3 have women have experienced physical or sexual violence.

| It is projected to take 99.5 years to achieve global gender parity at the current rate of progress.

The infographic below from the National Association of Realtors® highlights some interesting facts about women in real estate!

On behalf of every woman who has demonstrated courage, fortitude and perseverance for the opportunities that we have today and tomorrow… and to every man and person who has stood behind them – I THANK you.

Since the theme for International Women’s Day this year is ‘I am Generation Equality: Realizing Women’s Rights’, please find some resources below which help champion this message via the words we speak and through the actions we take. We have work to do.

Equality Through Words

Women’s Lives Might Look Very Different In The Next 3 Decades – If We Tear Down Barriers At Work

Four Easy And Effective Steps To Support The International Women’s Day 2020 “Each For Equal” Theme

All my best,

Bobbi

Bobbi Decker
DRE#00607999
Broker Associate
650.346.5352 cell
650.577.3127 efax
www.bobbidecker.com
NAR Instructor….“Designations Create Distinctions”
CIPS, SRS, ABR, CRS, SRES, GRI, CLHMS,
REI, AHWD, RSPS, MSLG

Bobbi Decker & Associates fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. For more information, please visit: http://portal.hud.gov/

Posted in Monday Market Updates | Leave a comment