NAHB’s Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS) designation is one of the most popular professional designations among our remodeler members, and with good reason. CAPS remodeling targets the specific needs of a home owner, including modifications that are required for that owner to be able to fully access and use every part of the home even as specific physical limitations arise, often due to age. Looking at today’s demographics, it stands to reason that there is plenty of demand for such modifications and for the professional remodelers who know how to put them in place. Both Sean Sullivan and Laura Sullivan with ID.ology Interior Design are Certified Agin in Place Specialists.

But did you ever wonder about the difference between Aging in Place and “Universal Design?” An excellent new resource on www.nahb.org spells it out for you very clearly, explaining that, for example, while aging-in-place modifications are most commonly installed as part of a remodeling project and are targeted to aging home owners, universal design is most common in custom (and some production) home building. Likewise, while aging-in-place modifications tend to be noticeable amendments to a home’s existing interior, universal design is meant to be virtually transparent and is targeted to all home owners, regardless of age or ability. Realizing the benefits of both, many NAHB members are combining the aging-in-place/CAPS and universal design approaches within a single home.

For example, to accommodate a client’s past injury, the CAPS remodeler may install grab bars in the bathroom, while universal design is used in the rest of the home to widen hallways for strollers or relatives who might use a wheelchair. Get more information about these two design concepts in this informative piece citing Bill Owens, CAPS, CGR, and find out how to obtain your CAPS professional designation or how to access NAHB’s Universal Design/Build course on www.nahb.org. Contact: Nissa Hiatt (800-368-5242 x8451).