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Aging-in-Place Remodeling on the Rise

NAHB Now • May 17


AARP surveys consistently demonstrate that older Americans overwhelmingly prefer to stay in their own homes as they get older.

That’s a major driver in the continued growth of the NAHB Certified Aging in Place (CAPS) educational designation, the benchmark for remodelers, occupational therapists and other specialists who want to help their clients live safely in their current homes. Moreover, the CAPS education was recently revised to reflect the availability of new products and methods.

Now, a survey of NAHB Remodelers finds that preference among home owners to age in place is resulting in a significant boost to home improvement projects.

When asked about the frequency of customers calling to request aging-in-place home modifications, more than half (52%) of remodelers said those calls occur “often” or “very often.” And that portion has grown significantly in recent years — up from 32% in 2012, and with a particularly abrupt 10-point jump between 2017 and 2018.

While “desire for better/newer amenities” and “need to repair/replace old components” still lead the list of reasons, the jump in the aging-in-place answer is notable, said NAHB economist Paul Emrath. However, “the uptick in aging in place is not entirely surprising, given the ongoing growth in the nation’s older population,” he writes in a recent Eye on Housing blog post.

However, he writes, all the reasons cited “could, in part, be a response to higher construction costs for new homes and a low inventory of existing homes available on the market.”

See all results in the first quarter 2018 survey report.

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