Technology is everywhere. We can’t live without it, but do we actually want to live with it? Smart homes have been all the rage for years now. Whether it’s a trusty virtual assistant, a programmable vacuum robot, or a talking kitchen appliance, smart home devices were designed to follow our every command and to make life easier. It’s easy to imagine a fantasy world where you don’t have to lift a finger and your collection of lovable machines take care of all of your household chores. But, if we come down from the clouds, our current relationship with smart home devices is a little more complicated.


There are undoubtedly elements of smart homes that homeowners find appealing. However, we are now seeing a rising number of homeowners electing to live in anti-smart houses, affectionately dubbed “dumb” homes. People who view their home as a respite from their busy lives and a chance to retreat from the technology that dominates life otherwise. Dumb houses are not about going back in time or living in an old-fashioned space. The movement is more about creating technology boundaries as part of the larger wellness trend. Think of it as a digital detox of sorts.


Advocates say that the lack of technology allows for more simple pleasures — taking a bath, enjoying a meal with loved ones, spending time outside — and can improve mental health. Unplugging as a way to recharge.


Dumb houses also don’t have to be technology-free. In fact, most are not. While they likely aren’t filled with the latest gadgets or cutting-edge tech, they have modern creature comforts like doorbell cameras and streaming services. A hybrid approach to homes exists because convenience is still paramount for all of us. The key difference is that every space in a dumb home is human-focused and intentionally not designed around devices. For example, a primary suite with great bedside lighting to promote late-night reading instead of TV watching or having a designated charging station right when you enter your home so you are less tempted to carry your phone throughout the house. The goal is to craft a space that promotes good habits and digital wellbeing.


What do you think? Does a dumb home sound like a smart idea? We’d love to hear your point of view in the comments below.