Tag Archives: Certified Aging In Place (CAPS)

Certified-Aging-in-Place Specialist program

Get certified – The CHBA’s Canadian Certified-Aging-in-Place Specialist program is launching soon

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Get certified – The CHBA’s Canadian Certified-Aging-in-Place Specialist program is launching soon

Numbers don’t lie, and the story that the figures from Statistics Canada tell us is that we have a rapidly aging population. Of course, individual Canadians aren’t getting older any faster. But, as the huge cohort of Baby Boomers ages, the number of us considered to be seniors is growing at an unprecedented rate. In fact, there are now more Canadians aged 65 and older than there are who are 14 or younger (see chart).

There are many healthcare and social issues related to an aging population, and one of the biggest is how to safely shelter elderly people who may have mobility, vision, and cognitive impairments. Yet, when surveyed, most older Canadians want to stay in their current homes in familiar surroundings for as long as possible.

That’s why the Canadian Home Builders’ Association (CHBA) has been busy getting a Canadian version of the Certified-Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) program off the ground. Originally developed by the U.S. National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), CHBA has modified the U.S. program to meet Canadian requirements, calling it C-CAPS.

To qualify as a C-CAPS expert, participating renovators and homebuilders will start with a self-guided online course that takes about six hours to complete. At the end, there’s a test. That’s to be followed by a two-day in-class program, that also includes a test.

A large part of the program is understanding the various stakeholders involved in properly modifying a home to meet the owner’s current and potential needs. Key among those are the occupational therapists (OTs) that work directly with homeowners to understand their current and future needs. Others may include architects, designers, and municipal building and healthcare officials. To be done properly, aging-in-place modifications require collaboration among all parties, and contractors will have to be able to manage the various needs and requests, while providing homeowners with viable and cost-effective options.

The program will include information on the various grants and loan programs offered by product manufacturers and the various levels of government that can help make these renovations affordable for people on fixed incomes.

Once completed, C-CAPS certification can be used as a marketing tool to set renovators apart from their jack-of-all-trades competitors. To support that, CHBA will launch both a training and marketing site for renovators, and a separate site for consumers so they understand the value of hiring a certified C-CAPS specialist.

The “Canadianization” of the programs content has primarily included replacing U.S. housing and demographic stats and government contacts with Canadian ones. The home modifications needed for specific health conditions are the based on the client and the home, which means the same modifications would be done in both countries. CHBA is running three pilot sessions to test and modify the course material as needed. The association expects to have the program fully operational by spring 2020.

Freelance writer ALLAN BRITNELL is the managing editor of Renovation Contractor, and the editor of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association’s members’ magazine, Building Excellence, both produced by the Homes Publishing Group.


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This general contractor can help you age in place

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This general contractor can help you age in place

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Climbing up a flight of steps or getting into a bathtub may become increasingly difficult with age. Royal Home Improvements, a residential renovation general contractor, and recommended partner with the Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CARP), understands the increasing need to provide home modifications that allow homeowners to live comfortably and safely in their homes. Eieihome.com spoke to Paul Napolitano, owner of Royal Home Improvements, about why homeowners should start thinking about the future now.

It’s never too early

“It may not be a practical consideration for the homeowner now, but in the future, physical limitations and accessibility may be important determinants of where you live.”  Mobility and the risks associated with slips and falls that come from aging are common thoughts among aging homeowners, says Napolitano.

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Plan for the future now to avoid difficulty living in your home in the long run.

This general contractor specializes in aging in place renovations

Working with a contractor that has knowledge of appropriate renovations to age in place is beneficial for homeowners, says Napolitano. That’s why he and his son John completed the Certified Aging-in-Place (CAPS) designation program, which is designed to provide contractors with practical information about remodeling homes for aging in place.

“Homeowners can be confident dealing with a qualified expert,” says Napolitano, adding he and John are able to consult and advise homeowners on the modifications they should consider upon visiting their home.

To obtain certification, an individual must have 5 years minimum experience in the renovation industry. Royal Home Improvements has 40+ years experience.

Planning to age in place? Here’s what you need to know:

Modifications are designed to make life easier

A person with limited mobility may have difficulty maneuvering through a bathroom. It’s a typical place in the home that will receive this kind of treatment. “People are replacing bathtubs with walk-in tubs or showers with limited to no threshold, which is a tripping hazard,” he says.

Another consideration to make when aging in place is the use of a wheelchair to move around the home.

“Getting through your home in a wheelchair requires spacing that isn’t necessarily [an issue] if someone gets around on foot,” he says. “Making that space can be a more acute problem in some homes than others.”

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This renovated kitchen allows this couple to age in place safely and comfortably.

You don’t have to sacrifice style for function

The things that make a house a home, like your personal style, don’t have to be sacrificed in order to make aging in place modifications.  With bathrooms for example, the right combination of design, new fixtures and accessories will result in a beautiful space retrofitted for the benefit of your health and safety, says Napolitano.

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The right home modifications will keep your home looking stylish and functional at the same time.

Modified homes suit all generations

A modified home designed for aging in place is also considered a “grand design” if it promotes multi-generational living. “It’s suitable for a range of occupants, from grandchildren to grandparents,” says Napolitano.

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If staying in your home is on your mind, contact the aging in place specialists at Royal Home Improvements. They have the knowledge and training to transform your home so you can live safely without sacrificing comfort. Besides, isn’t moving too much work?

*Article courtesy of EiEiHome

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