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Kitchens Designed for Multi-Generational Families

During the past two years we learned that during a crisis like a Pandemic, Universal Kitchen Designerkeeping family close is more important. Grandparents are moving in with their children and grandchildren more today than in years past. College students are commuting to campus more and younger students are attending virtual classrooms. The pressure on mom and dad to make ends meet while maintaining a happy household is at an all time high. Can your kitchen handle a multigenerational family with different needs?

Universal Kitchen Design

This topic goes way beyond designing wheelchair accessible kitchens which we described in this post. The 7 Principles of Universal Design has more to do with designing a space that allows for diversity, flexibility of use, simplicity while being highly functional for ALL family members. 
Virtual Kitchen Designer

Today’s busy households are using their kitchens as:
  • A Place to Connect with Friends and Family
  • The Home Café for a Quick Bite
  • A Place to Prepare Meals and Dine
  • A Digital Classroom
  • A Home Office
  • A Hobby Zone for You and the Kids
One of the first things we as designers can do is to understand who is in the home and how the kitchen is currently being used. Certainly, if the seniors in our lives are limited by mobility and require accommodations for aging in place, we need to look at that.

Aging in Place Remodeling

Virtual Kitchen Designer in NJ

Lisa is our aging in place specialist and has designed many kitchens that consider countertop, cabinet and appliance heights. If there is a wheelchair or walker in use at the home, we account for proper floor coverings with zero thresholds, roll under accessibility, grab bars and entryway widths. There is so much we can do today with smart kitchen technology that makes life much easier in your home, for everyone. For multigenerational kitchens, we need to consider everyone else as well and should not be hyper focused on the senior. So let’s look at the use of technology to help you and the students too.

Smart Kitchen Design

We wrote this article about “Connected Kitchen Design” long before March 2020. Post pandemic, the needs for smart kitchen technology have changed dramatically. If you have school age children, we have found it very useful for kids to have a small smart TV with internet connectivity for the kitchen useful for them, the parents, everyone frankly. Location and desktop furniture suitable for learning is called for and perhaps a set of headphones so others are not interrupted. 

Smart Kitchen Appliances & a Connected Kitchen

Smart Kitchen Appliances

We would need to know if there is a Home Assistant service in play or planned for the future. The smart kitchen appliance market continues to grow and not all appliances play well together. Alexa is compatible with over 7,400 brands and counting. By contrast, Google’s Assistant is compatible with roughly 1,000 brands for the home and Siri's works with 50-ish (as of Sept 2021 in ZXDnet). Google Assistant is catching up fast though. Grocery shopping tops the list of tasks that our homeowners use followed by smart appliance controls.

Smart Kitchen Faucets  & Touchless Sensors

Best Smart Faucets List
Delta, Moen, Koehler and Dalmo all came out with touchless kitchen faucets in an effort to be more hygienic and efficient in the kitchen. Motion technology in the kitchen also extends to cabinetry, drawers and lighting too. We see this trend helping the kids with handwashing, parents with cleaning up after the kids and the older adults with navigating at night.

Virtual Kitchen Designer

We started out blogging about Kitchen Design for Multigenerational Homes and concluded with how technology has enhanced the kitchen experiences for all those in the home. We too have had to pivot to using the internet for virtual meetings with customers. We can use video conferencing tools like Zoom and Microsoft Teams to connect virtually. We also connect with our customers using Facetime and Google Meet to do virtual walkthroughs. If you are looking for a new kitchen for two or more generations or just leveraging smart kitchen technology for one generation of empty nesters, please call us to schedule an appointment…virtually…or in person. 
CALL:609.466.1445

Principle # 2 of Universal Design is Flexibility. 



Posted by Tom Gilmour in Kitchen Design Trends | with 0 comments
Filed under: design, kitchen, smart, tjg, universal, virtual

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48 West Broad Street • Hopewell, NJ 08525 • Phone: (609) 466-1445 • Fax: (609) 466-1499 • email: info@tobiasdesignllc.com

Specializing in custom kitchen cabinetry designs in Princeton, Somerset, Central Jersey, Monmouth County, Hunterdon County, Morris County and Bucks County, PA.

Some photos depict kitchens designed by Lisa Tobias for DeMadera Design.


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