Jeffrey Tucker, president of Tucker Building & Design LLC in Wadsworth, Ohio, recently became the 5,000th graduate of the of the National Association of Home Builders' (NAHB) Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) program. The CAPS program, which launched in 2002, teaches the technical, business management and customer service skills essential for serving the fastest-growing segment of the residential remodeling industry.
Tucker said he is seeing an increased need from his customers for aging-in-place home remodels. "It was important to me to earn my CAPS designation because many of my clients are 55 or older and plan to stay in their homes and maintain their independence for as long possible," Tucker said. "I want to be able to provide the best solutions for my customers so that they can age-in-place comfortably and also show them that these home modifications can be stylish while at the same time making their homes low-maintenance."
NAHB Remodelers, in collaboration with Home Innovation Research Labs, NAHB 50+ Housing Council and AARP, developed the CAPS program to address the increasing number of individuals who require home modifications to accommodate illness or age. While most CAPS professionals are remodelers, many are also builders, general contractors, designers, architects and health care professionals such as occupational and physical therapists.
"The majority of people age 55 and older say they want to remain in their homes for as long as possible, and professionals with a CAPS designation are able to provide the expertise these families need in order to age-in-place comfortably and safely," said Joseph Irons, CAPS, CGP, CGR, GMB, chairman of the CAPS Board of Governors and a remodeler with Irons Brothers Construction Inc. in Shoreline, Wash. "We want to help consumers make their house their home for a lifetime, even when their needs and abilities change."
To earn the designation, candidates must complete three classes: Marketing and Communications Strategies for Aging and Accessibility (CAPS I), which teaches marketing and customer service tools to gain access to the emerging aging-in-place market; Design/Build Solutions for Aging and Accessibility (CAPS II), which provides the technical knowledge to do home modifications to solve the remodeling needs of the aging-in-place population; and Business Management for Building Professionals, which shows remodelers, builders and others how to run a successful business in this market segment.
To find a CAPS in your area, visit nahb.org/capsdirectory.