Check out my building blog to learn more about construction for your home or office in Austin! David L. Traut, President, CAPS Certified (512)444-0097

Aging In Place Services for Seniors in Austin, Texas

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Fri, Oct 21, 2022 @ 11:10 AM

When families are suddenly thrust into caring for an ill or injured family member, knowing how to make their homes accessible, barrier-free and safe can be challenging.  Here is where a professional CAPS-certified remodeler is needed.  It's not for everyone, but as increasingly older Americans choose to Age in Place and remain in their homes, issues related to maintaining mobility, promoting home safety, and creating an environment to meet care needs are becoming increasingly crucial to caregivers and care recipients. Even savvy and experienced families may have trouble figuring out whom to call for a roll-in shower or door widening. According to the AARP, nearly 90% of older adults want to Age in Place and maintain independence however, 85% have done nothing about it. Many retirees want to stay in their own houses for as long as possible. But being able to do so will depend on how easy it is to maneuver your home as you age.  Research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that Aging in Place home modifications may prevent up to 50% of home accidents among seniors in older homes, including falls.

Certified Aging In Place Specialist

The National Association of Home Builders, in partnership with the AARP and Home Innovation Research Labs, created the CAPS program, which includes training and education on the technical, business management, and customer service skills essential to compete in the fastest-growing segment of the residential remodeling industry--home modifications for Aging in Place.  David L. Traut, CAPS owner of T-Square Company in SW Austin, Texas as a handicap remodeling contractor, is one of the select group of professionals nationwide to earn the Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist (CAPS) designation, identifying him as a home remodeler and builder with the skills, training, and knowledge necessary to design and remodel or modify a home to meet the unique needs of the older population, disabled owners, or their visitors. T-Square Company offers a complete line of Aging in Place services using their design/build approach.

Download Our Free Aging In Place Remodeling Considerations Checklist

ADA-Compliant Kitchens

ADA-Compliant  Kitchen in Austin, Texas

People interested in Aging in Place services and Aging in Place home improvements are now looking for a level entry into their home along with the maneuverability that a more open floor plan with more extraordinary clear unobstructed floor space presents.  They desire flat floors without transitions requiring steps or stairs to move around.  Ramps having a correct 1:12 slope or less can be used to get them up to the level floor space at the exterior entries or the garage access.  ADA-compliant kitchen cabinets and ADA bathroom cabinets will more than likely come into play to complete any accessible home remodeling project. Aging in Place services and home modifications should include adding non-slip flooring, widening hallways or installing stair lifts, and widening doors.  You might consider lowering light switches and thermostats and installing easier-to-use lever door hardware.  To provide safety and independence, many considerations for an Aging in Place design should be considered.  You should try to provide a clear barrier-free path or accessible route to the most visited areas of your home, as the ADA recommends.  The three areas needing improvement for a person wanting to age in place include the bathroom, the kitchen, and the family area in order of importance.

All disability home remodeling or disability bath remodels in Austin must be done considering all the data provided by the client, his or her family, and any caretakers involved. Aging in Place design must be carried out by an Aging in Place specialist who is also a reputable residential remodeling professional. The goal of an accessible design in Austin is to make the areas in the home a safe space for everyone who uses the facilities. T-Square Company's Aging in Place services use Universal Design to accommodate wheelchair users and can make the home environment more comfortable for all generations with or without specific needs.

Aging In Place Home Modifications

Let's compare the alternative costs associated with aging in place versus when you already own your home.  The more institutional alternative of assisted living accompanied by more medical expertise and staff training plus the access to emergency medical facilities is available as opposed to renting an apartment.  These are two of the main alternative choices for seniors who decide not to remain in their own homes.   According to a national study done in 2019, the average cost for assisted living ranged from $8,000 to $9,500 per month.  However, if you decide to Age in Place in a high-quality one-bedroom apartment, the rent will run around $1,700 per month.  Living in your own home or with loved ones represents a preference by most seniors and property taxes must be taken in account.

For additional information about the CAPS program, visit  For more information about T-Square Company, visit or call 512-444-0097 to schedule a home assessment by a CAPS professional.


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Aging In Place Services In Austin, Texas/T-Square Company

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Fri, Oct 14, 2022 @ 14:10 PM

Once you have decided to Age in Place in your existing home, the first thing you can do to make your home more age-friendly is to do a self-assessment. Go through your house, identifying known problem areas like potential tripping or slipping hazards and areas that are hard to access and maintain. Who would be better at pointing out problem areas than the person needing the home modifications according to their physical wellbeing? To help with this, several organizations have Aging in Place checklists pointing out potential problems in some regions of the home and suggesting modifications and solutions. Once you have completed your initial Aging in Place checklist, it is time to seek the advice of trained Aging in Place specialist.

Next, contact a builder or remodeler listed as a Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS). CAPS are home remodelers and design-build professionals certified and knowledgeable about Aging in Place home modifications. The CAPS professional can suggest ways to modify or remodel your home to fit your needs and budget. CAPS professionals are generally paid by the hour or receive a flat fee per visit or project.

There are three categories of Aging in Place customers. Those who are simply and wisely planning for their futures to remain in their present homes.  The second category concerns those who know they have a chronic medical disorder and need to prepare for accessibility issues resulting from their disease. People with diseases constantly causing increased physical or mental changes to their being are a good representative of this second group.  The third group involves those who either have had a chronic problem that has progressed severely altering their mobility or those who have sustained a life-altering tragedy such as being involved in an accident.  All of these groups will drive the future metamorphosis of existing inaccessible dwellings.

During a professional home assessment for increasing accessibility, the structural needs of the client will be noted and documented through sketches, photos, and conversation by a registered CAPS professional. All the surroundings will be considered, from the flooring to the layout of a specific room or location as it pertains to the inhabitant's ease of usability. The physical and emotional needs of the occupant will also come into play because of mobility, sensory, or cognitive concerns. Each individual with similar impairments describes his or her limitations differently when undergoing elder construction. The blind don't experience their world the same as a person with deafness. The ultimate goal is to modify the home in a custom manner to provide for the occupant's maximum health, independence, and safety. Often the input from any caretakers, like a physical or occupational therapist, during the assessment phase can prove invaluable. The three main rooms involved in aging in place home modifications are the bathroom, the kitchen, and the family room. These areas make up the most occupied spaces of any home and will be connected by a designated accessible route. The basic needs involve access through wider doorways, nonslip floor surfaces, and adequate cabinet and plumbing fixture accessibility. More importantly, we must observe safety for everyone as the baby boomers choose to age in place within their homes. For more information about T-Square Company or Aging in Place services, visit or call 512-444-0097. We are certified Aging in Place contractors.

Knowledgeable construction and design professionals are utilizing their CAPS training across the nation. CAPS stands for Certified Aging In Place Specialist. This designation is taught through the National Association of Home Builders in collaboration with AARP. CAPS connects responsible professionals with homeowners who need these services ever-increasingly. The CAPS designation program is a nationwide initiative, and all active CAPS members can be found at


Certified Aging In Place Specialist In Austin


Download Our Free Aging In Place Remodeling Considerations Checklist


In designing for specific physical conditions, we realize that aging doesn't always bring on disease while the body declines to make certain physical limitations inevitable. Arthritis is the most common chronic condition as it restricts ordinary daily activities. The lack of hand strength and stiff knees are indicative of this illness. This most reported arthritic condition affecting people over 65 is followed by heart disease and vision loss in that order. Innovative aging design and concepts can compensate for frailty, lack of mobility, and blindness in Aging in Place families. We are constantly coming up with new methods for home modifications and household products to increase the comfort of our residential environments.

David L. Traut, CAPS, the owner of T-Square Company in Austin, Texas, is one of the select group of professionals nationwide to earn the Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist (CAPS) designation, identifying him as a home remodeler and builder with the skills and knowledge necessary to remodel or modify a home to meet the unique needs of the older population, disabled owners, or their visitors.  We offer a complete line of aging in place services using our design/build techniques and the principles of Universal Design. Everything we do is done on a turnkey basis.

Certified Aging In Place Specialist

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My New Upcoming Book/Age in Place at Home

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Mon, Oct 10, 2022 @ 18:10 PM


After a Year of writing to fulfill my customers' requests, my new book, "Age in Place At Home," is available for pre-order from Amazon.  Go to the link below to preorder my book, which will be released on October 19, 2022.


Age in Place at Home Book

T-Square Company, in Austin, Texas, practices Universal Design accessibility to segue into Aging in Place seamlessly. We offer all types of Austin Universal Design home modifications better to prepare you for your unforeseeable home accessibility future. The principles of Universal Design offer greater home accessibility for every one of your home members, from your father to your son. This is why the process is known as inclusive design. 

David L. Traut, CAPS, has been involved with accessibility for nearly thirty years for the VA and private residences.  Contact me at 512-444-0097 for a professional home assessment to guide your future accessibility needs or at Simply fill out your information on the contact us page.



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Universal Design and Accessibility/T-Square Company in Austin

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Fri, Oct 07, 2022 @ 10:10 AM

Human problems must be solved using correct designs. The principles of Universal Design solve accessibility issues for the most significant number of people. Special needs children, people who have become seriously injured, people living with a debilitating disease, people with sensory limitations or intellectual limitations, and last but not least, the people who are planning to stay in their homes for as long as possible while Aging in Place all need accessible homes. The need to deal with disabilities during elder construction or modifications for special needs children empowers us to create environments wherein people can function effectively.  As our society evolves away from institutionalized care, making a home more comfortable for children, older adults, and their visitors can immediately benefit the comfort and lifestyle of the entire family. How are you planning for your future when it concerns your home?

Let's start by defining what is meant by an accessible home.  Accessible homes of Austin or anywhere else provide homeowners with a means to stay healthy, independent, and safe. They, in turn, experience a better quality of life. In these accessible homes, as a Universal Design contractor, any architectural barriers have either been removed during remodeling or were never a part of the design for increasing accessibility. The accessible home stands as the defined course for the Universal Designed home. People with disabilities can live comfortably and safely as well as fully functional individuals.

Certified Aging In Place Specialist 

  Tweet and understand this fact of life!  Accessible homes will be needed by everyone at some uncertain time, whether for ourselves, our family members, or our guests.  This defines the Aging in Place concept and its associated CAPS accreditation, a nationally registered credential offered through the NAHB.  Its function is to keep people in their homes longer and provide safety and independence to all homeowners. What is more, Universal Design segues seamlessly into Aging in Place.

Discover the Principles Of Universal Design

As in the kitchen in the above photograph, the accessible kitchen is comfortably sized for a clear five-foot turning radius to avoid backing up for an approach. Clear 30x48-inch approach areas for all work areas and appliances are a significant part of the more-open design. The final kitchen design must be tailored to the homeowner's abilities, needs, and interests.  Pull-out shelves expand workspaces at activity centers, while roll-under access is given underneath the stove, prep, and sink work areas. A higher and deeper base cabinet kick space area of 6x9 inches provides better forward wheel clearance for the wheelchair, enabling the user to get closer to the cabinet workspace.  A raised dishwasher offers more accessible access to dishes, and lowered microwaves and other appliances like ovens solve other reach distance problems making it easier to live with a disability. Open storage areas without doors to interfere with access is a better solution. Having multiple countertop heights allows everyone access to a work surface. A successfully designed kitchen isn't about cabinet style or the composition of the countertop. It is more about the ways the design can support the user's personal needs and functionality.
ADA Kitchen Cabinetry

Because everyone ages differently and has different needs and wants, a universal solution acting as a design for all is needed. The factors that constitute the Aging in Place market for all individuals are based on their genetic makeup and lifestyle, including their choices while living and their environment.  These factors have brought about the need for Universal Design. This is the design of products, services, and environments usable by as many people as possible regardless of age, ability, or situation without needing adaptation or specialized alterations. It provides the most significant safety and access for home guests or occupants and is undetectable when done well.  Since so few homes share the accessibility offered by Universal Design, to satisfy the needs of a particular household member brought about by an accident, an illness, or simply the aging process, there will always be a need for customized accessibility features.  A CAPS-accredited remodeling professional will accomplish this by producing a truly functional design. This same competent design/build home remodeling company that understands and practices Aging in Place home modifications in Austin should accomplish the work to fit the Universal Design and ensure your safety and accessibility.  Certified Aging in Place specialists is listed in Washington on the NAHB CAPS listing.

Home Accessibility Help

The concept of the accessible home has evolved beyond the basic grab bars and ramps to one in which accessibility is built into the basic design.  Universal Design makes living in a home easier for people of all ages and abilities.  Accessible design can be beautiful and functional and never needs to have any institutional appearance.  As our aging baby boomer population ages, the need for accessibility in the home is becoming ever more critical.  Our new way of viewing the basic home in our society and our antiquated architecture is giving way to a revolution in home design.  Ordinary homeowners with extraordinary challenges can partner up with CAPS design professionals, architects, and their own families to create homes to restore capabilities, independence, and grace to daily living.

Aging in Place home modifications incorporating Universal Design principles is available through T-Square Company in the Austin area. We have an A plus rating with the local BBB and have over 30 years of remodeling experience. We are additionally an accredited Aging in Place specialist offering complete aging in place services.  Each design/build situation will be customized to fit your personal needs increasing your accessibility through Universal Design. Call 512-444-0097 today to begin the accessible second chapter of your life while remaining safe and secure in your existing home. 
David L. Traut, CAPS (#1636580)
Accessible Homes Of Austin



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