Aging in place means that people do not need to move from their homes in order to accommodate their changing needs.
The generation known as the Baby Boomers represents over 25% of the entire US population. One in four people in the US are over the age of 50. National statistics tell us that those that own their homes will remodel on the average of every seven to ten years. That statistic seems to make sense because there are life changing events which occur in everyone’s life that happen roughly on that schedule. College graduation, marriage, children, more children, business and other entertaining, empty nest, and slow down or retirement are only a few of the events that change the way we live.
As a very large segment of the population nears retirement age, the remodeling needs of these people will be changing. Awareness is the key. Obviously, a family contemplating a home remodeling project at 30 years of age because of another addition to the family will have substantially different needs than the couple with the desire to stay in their home safely and comfortably as they age.
The National Association of Home Builders has developed a certification program through the NAHB University of Housing which recognizes this fact and prepares professionals to competently offer products and services specifically geared toward those who wish to age in place. This certification is called the CAPS Designation or Certified Aging In Place Specialist.
Construction in this community presents some interesting challenges for the CAPS designee. Neighborhood associations must be consulted prior to some exterior modifications that would improve accessibility, Condo associations usually need to approve changes that will affect sound transmission or door widths, and roll in, curbless shower renovations are interesting especially over post tension slab construction. These tub / shower conversions or shower to curbless accessible shower renovations must be waterproof and not raise the floor significantly at the entry door. Grab Bars do not need to be those plain old brushed aluminum commercial looking bars of the past. There are some very stylish grab bars on the market today. What ever the selection, placement and installation specifications are vitally important.
Simple things like counter and cabinet heights, linear cabinet pulls instead of round knobs, cooktops and ranges with the controls in the front, lever operated faucets, proper flooring selections, general room lighting and task lighting, counter height, depth and appliance placement, lifts, or the installation of the proper backing for potential installation of future lifts among many other things should be considered. It is all common sense once you are aware of the availability of such products.
One of the goals of the CAPS designee is to make sure that everything that can be done, within the budget, to see that the client can remain comfortably and safely in their home, is done, or at least discussed. Sometimes, these remodeling considerations are not to solve an immediate need, but are done just in case they are needed in the future. In some cases, once the proper disclosures are filled out, the client’s health care provider is involved in these discussions. Every project is different and every project deserves individual attention to all of the details.
I have recently completed the requirements to earn the CAPS designation and have added it to my Certified Green Building Professional designation. I feel very strongly that all customers deserve the benefits that can only come from the education that precedes the award of these certified designations. People considering a remodeling project, from the installation of a grab bar in the shower to a whole house remodel owe it to themselves to discuss the project with a CAPS professional. They are the pros that have gone the extra mile to make sure the project is successful and all of the needs are filled.
Did you Know that the nation's number one cause (after car accidents) of deaths is slip / fall accidents?
There are over 550,000 reported slip / fall accidents every year. That’s over 15% of all disabling injuries in the workforce. The National Floor Safety Institutes states that over three million food service employees and over one million guests are injured annually as a result of restaurant slip and fall accidents. The average cost of a slip and fall injury is reported to be $28,000.00 including medical bills, physical therapy, and lost wages.
A death from an on – the – job slip and fall is estimated to cost an average of $940,000.00 on top of the victim’s family’s loss and trauma. 40% of all Worker’s Compensation claims are due to slip and fall accidents.
There is now a water based chemical solution that increases traction on most hard surfaces by raising the coefficient of friction to exceed both OSHA and ADA guidelines for “safe” surfaces. This product is unique. Until now, anti-slip products have only been available for commercial use due to their level of acidity and chemical composition. There is no other and there has never been a product like it available on the retail market before.
It is not a coating, it is a safe and effective process that is colorless and odorless. This process does not alter the color of texture of the surface and it is safe enough to use in an infant’s bathtub.
All parents of young children deserve to be nervous around the bathtub. Between a tub full of toys and soapy playful children. The bathtub is a hazardous place. According to a study by The Columbus Children’s Research Institute, slips and falls account for more than 80% of childhood bathtub injuries. In 85% of bathtub related injuries among children under 5 yrs, adult supervision was present at the time of the incident.
According to a study by Home Safety Council, Adults older than 65 are at the highest risk for home-related falls and fall-related injuries of fatalities. 70% of home accidents occur in the bathroom.
Here is another real problem. The pool deck! Parents are constantly yelling at their children, signs are posted at public pools, BUT…children often disobey causing slip and fall accidents. This, all too often, results in serious injuries. SIX PEOPLE DROWN IN POOLS IN THE UNITED STATES EVERY DAY! 30% of those who drown are children.
The pool deck surface, the source of the Slip and Fall accident, is not addressed in any of the currently used pool safety tools.
InvisaTread is completely versatile and will effectively treat the following surfaces inside and around your workplace or home.
• Pool Areas
• Ceramic Tile
• Vinyl (VCT)
• Stamped Concrete
• Glazed brick
• Latex painted surfaces
This is a no-brainer!
Everyone has an application for InvisaTread and should protect themselves and their families.
Take Action…Gain Traction!
Mold has been gaining increasing recognition over the past few years as the source of respiratory and serious health problems. In most cases, the problem is just out of sight and growing behind our walls. Statistics show that 80% of the showers that are constructed today, with the old method of rubber shower pans and backer board, FAIL within the first year.
Approximately 27 gallons of water are used per single shower use. The average shower gets the equivalent in rainfall as 11 tropical rain forests, 30 times the rain fall of Seattle, for a total of 1,100 inches per year. Over time, the morter pack which is poured on the floor of the shower becomes a cesspool of human waste and organisms. Moisture, steam and vapor pass through the walls and condenses on the back side of the walls at the bottom of the studs. Mold spores start to form at the base of the shower behind the walls. Hold on....there is a solution!