A pleasant place to live, now and later on

With the OnbezorgdWonen concept, Heijmans aims make a difference to the growing desire and the political task to live at home for as long as possible. Marloes van der Meulen stood at the cradle of this residential concept: “If your home changes with you, it will be a pleasant place to live now and later on.”

May 18, 2018

When Marloes joined Heijmans a year ago, she knew she wanted to make a difference to the changing demand for suitable homes. Especially for the growing group of seniors over the age of 55. Marloes: “That group of people often buys a new home one more time, for instance when their children move out. They are a full of life, still working, travelling the world and very active.”

“A home with modifications which they might not need until in twenty years’ time does not fit into this picture at all. Still, we do want to live at home for as long as possible, which has also become a necessity due to this government policy. This way, we came up with a residential concept that answers the question: How can you age healthily in your own home? OnbezogdWonen was the result.”

rkp-h-marloes-029.jpg

Marloes was photographed in De Hooge Riet, a former sanatorium in Ermelo, which Heijmans will redevelop into homes. In this project, Heijmans is responsible for the acquisition and sale of homes. The transformation is being set in motion together with architectural firms Fritz, De Zwarte Hond and H+N+S.

Bathroom upstairs or downstairs?

The first homes according to this concept will be built in Uden. At first sight, it is a regular patio home with a garden of a manageable size. “The homes owe their adaptive capacity to both the layout as well as the technology. The connections are made in an instant, so you can choose to have your bed- and bathroom built upstairs, but they can also be fitted on the ground floor.

With the possibility of replacing your bath with a walk-in shower and doors that are wide enough for a wheelchair, should you suddenly break your hip. Furthermore, there is extra room which you can divide up any way you like, for instance into a guest or hobby room”, Marloes explains.

Facial recognition

Furthermore, the home control system, that comes standard, allows for homes that are now mostly luxurious and comfortable, while simple expansions later on will enable residents to remain living at home. Marloes: “Now, it is simply nice if the light turns when you enter the toilet, that while you are lying in your easy chair, a camera will show you who is at the door, and that you can easily monitor your water usage.”

“But if you expand that technology later on, the system will make sure your children receive a notification if you have not used the toilet or any water for a while. And when you are lying sick in bed, facial recognition will ensure that the front door opens automatically for home care staff.

“You are not buying a home, but the service of ‘living’”

Marloes indicates that it important that people are already familiar with the technology of the home control system. “If people already get used to the technology now, it will be easy for them to use at a later age.”

Further development

The launch of the OnbezorgdWonen label is merely the beginning of a greater development, Marloes says. “Heijmans wants to be a frontrunner in the field of care-related real estate. We definitely intend to develop this concept further together with residents and other parties, from municipalities to home care organisations. The concept offers many more opportunities.”

rkp-h-marloes-242.jpg

“For instance, I can imagine that we will be providing advice to residents on saving energy or buying cheaper energy, all based on their energy usage. In that respect, OnbezorgdWonen means we will not be supplying homes anymore, but the service of ‘living’. Thus, something we will remain closely involved in, also after the sale has been completed.