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Helpful home adaptations for the colder months

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As the months become darker and colder, it becomes essential for everyone to ensure that their home is as prepared as possible to provide enough warmth and comfort, especially when we are spending more time than ever at home.

2020 has been dominated by the Covid-19 outbreak and this pandemic has by no means gone away. With a second lockdown under our belt, and the potential for further lockdowns at the beginning of 2021, it is likely that we will all be forced to spend more time indoors than in years gone by. It is, therefore, more vital than ever to prioritise comfort and the installation of home adaptations can help to make life that bit easier when you’re at home.

In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the key adaptations that you could consider, what benefits they offer, and how much they tend to cost.

Smart thermostats

Nearly everything, from phones to watches, weighing scales to fridges, can be preceded by the word ‘smart’ nowadays. Thermostats are the latest item to be given the ‘smart’ treatment, but they are far more than simply a gimmick – they have the capacity to be genuinely beneficial to people’s lives.

The basic idea of the smart thermostat is that they connect directly to your internet, allowing you to alter your heating via your smartphone, laptop or tablet, no matter where you are. This means that if you are on your way back from work or from the shop, you can get your heating system up and running so that when you walk through the front door, you’ll be warm immediately.

This also means that, if you are ill or bedbound for any reason, you can begin the process of heating your house without having to get up. For many people, this simple adaptation will be able to dramatically enhance their lives.

Typical cost: Between £100 and £300

Smart meters

Smart meters are something that nearly all households can benefit from throughout the year, and though they are by no means only useful in winter, they’re definitely worth a mention here.

Smart meters are designed specifically to monitor a household’s gas and electricity usage and ensure that energy use is analysed effectively. All data is sent directly to the supplier when required, meaning that it is not necessary to manually write down figures.

One of the primary benefits of smart meters is that they give homeowners and tenants alike a much easier way to budget. Because spend can be assessed accurately, digitally and in real-time, the period of time the heating is on can be minimised if required or can be left on for longer if spend is lower than anticipated.

Typical cost: Most providers are currently offering them for free to their customers (though it is worth checking with your supplier directly)

Bed hoists

Though bed (or mobility) hoists can be beneficial at any time of the year, they really come into their own during the winter months. They allow individuals to manoeuvre easily from one place to another – a wheelchair to a bed, for example – affording a degree of flexibility and comfort that would not be possible otherwise. This means that individuals will be far more able to live independently, and can be a vital aid during cold times when joints and limbs might be a little more difficult to operate.

Typical cost: Between £1500 and £4000

Intelligent heated mattress topper

When we mention mattress toppers, you might be thinking of an old school electric blanket. However, while heated blankets and mattress toppers have been around for a long time, in recent years they have gone through a major overhaul. Nowadays, they are undoubtedly better – and safer – than ever. With most of these mattress toppers having numerous temperature options, and given that they have been designed to be incredibly comfortable despite containing electronics, they are far superior to the devices that were so popular in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s.

Typical cost: Between £60 and £150

Bath lifts

In a similar manner to bed hoists, bath lifts can make a huge difference to how people live their day to day lives and are especially useful during periods of cold weather. In the depths of winter, there is nothing more pleasant than being able to enjoy a hot bath, and with a bath lift in place, the process of getting in and out of baths can be made far simpler than it would otherwise have been.

Typical cost: Between £150 and £500

With the UK now firmly in the grip of a second lockdown, it is certainly worth pointing out that a number of the items mentioned in this article can be ordered via the internet, minimising the amount of time that has to be spent outdoors. Also, if particular items – hoists, for example – need to be installed by experts, it is important to try and book an installation expert as soon as possible because as the cold sets in, the waiting times are only liable to get longer.

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