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

David Traut, CAPS Published Book On Amazon/Age in Place at Home

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Fri, Oct 27, 2023 @ 09:10 AM

 

I feel the information contained within my book, "Age In Place At Home"  is so important for families searching to find answers concerning their traditional home once any family member has experienced health changes interrupting the family's daily cadence. These changes might include a broken limb, the affects of a constantly degenerative disease like MS, or a stroke, just to name a few. Once the afflicted person can no longer enter their bedroom or have adequate use of at least one bathroom's facilities, the family is aware their home has an architectural problem. The interrupted family becomes aware they need some sort of home modifications to help cope with the personal changes of the affected family member, but do not know where to turn for help. This is where the book comes into play. The news of my book's availability warranted reposting because it is an invaluable reference tool for any family unit going forward in reference to their home's possible modifications to increase accessibility. After over a year of writing to fulfill my customers' requests, my new book, "Age in Place At Home," is available for purchase from Amazon. Go to the link below to order my paperback book, which was released in late November, 2022. It provides a great guideline for using the principles of Universal Design in new home construction and/or remodeling for every room in your home to accentuate universal accessibility for those needing it the most. Get your copy today.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/r.html?C=2Z24ENUUAEWUK&K=13Y7YU7PKKYAC&M=urn:rtn:msg:20221010201802eb9acb7b24004a4785cd2ec1d4f0p0na&R=3R6MK9WDXJPH7&T=C&U=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2Fdp%2FB0BHTV28RV%3Fref_%3Dpe_3052080_276849420&H=7FWEPMGCH0TT8LN6SKPMUOCVJNYA&ref_=pe_3052080_276849420

A home's adaptability is one of the most desired qualities within a person's home during some point in their life as their or their family's physical needs change. The need for specific modifications to enhance accessibility can be short term while recovering from an accident or illness at any age, or  these home alterations may become permanent. The special individual needs within a family may concern an adult or a child. Universal design principles don't discriminate between any family members regardless of age, size, or ability because they are inclusive. Hence, every family member is accounted for. Learn how to adapt your home environment to satisfy your family's needs in David Traut's new book, "Age in Place at Home".

Age in Place at Home Book

 

T-Square Company, in Austin, Texas, practices Universal Design/Build ideas for accessibility to seamlessly segue into what is generally needed for Aging in Place. The essence of my book is to advise people so they understand why our traditional homes are obsolete to us, the homeowners, the minute they are completed and we take possession. The book offers advice to overcome these overwhelmingly problematic areas of the home. This understated and overlooked fact is represented by the methodology used to create the traditional home. These homes are built to satisfy our immediate lifestyle and physical needs on the day we close on the house, with no regard for the future. The new home lacks adaptability to satisfy our needs once our bodies physically change beyond the purchase date. If we had incorporated the Universal Design principles into these new homes, those same homes would adapt to our changing family needs including every inhabitant regardless of age, size, or ability. The lack of home adaptability is not the consumers fault, they have always been unaware of how to reference the problem and accepted what the housing market produced. They were unaware of what to ask for. Hence, the status-quo of homebuilding has been perpetuated  for over a hundred years.

T-Square Company offers all types of Universal Design home modifications to better prepare you and your family for your unforeseeable future home accessibility needs on a design/build basis. It is a fact, existing, traditional homes must be modified to increase their accessibility using correct designs. Become aware and embrace the knowledge that 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, HUD,  and private residences. He is nationally certified in Universal Design in the United States and Australia. Contact him at 512-444-0097 for a professional home assessment to guide your future accessibility needs or at www.tsquareco.com. Simply fill out your information on the contact us page.

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Tags: aging in place home modifications, aging in place home improvements in Austin, wheelchair accessible remodeling, CAPS certified remodeling in Austin, aging in place construction, CAPS professional in Austin, aging in place services, accessibility designs Austin Texas, austin custom walk in shower, universal design ideas, Austin Accessibility Design, aging in place design in Austin, why is aging in place important, what does it mean to age in place, universal designbuilding for the future, wheelchair accessible home remodeling in Austin, universal design remodeling contractor, why is universal design important, 7 principles of universal design, universal principles of design, universal design/build contractor, universal design vs. aging in place, universal design contractor, wheelchair accessible housing, accessible homes in austin, Austin home remodeling for disabled, universal home design in Austin, aging in place versus universal design, universal design home builder, universal design home additions, barrier free design, Austin home accessibility solutions, Austin home modification services, Age in Place at Home, universal design forever homes

David Traut, CAPS Recently Published Book/Age in Place at Home

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Tue, Sep 19, 2023 @ 09:09 AM

 

After over a year of writing to fulfill my customers' requests, my new book, "Age in Place At Home," is finally available for purchase from Amazon.  Go to the link below to order my paperback book, which was released in late November, 2022. It provides a great guideline for using the principles of Universal Design in new home construction and/or remodeling for every room in your home. Get your copy today.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/r.html?C=2Z24ENUUAEWUK&K=13Y7YU7PKKYAC&M=urn:rtn:msg:20221010201802eb9acb7b24004a4785cd2ec1d4f0p0na&R=3R6MK9WDXJPH7&T=C&U=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2Fdp%2FB0BHTV28RV%3Fref_%3Dpe_3052080_276849420&H=7FWEPMGCH0TT8LN6SKPMUOCVJNYA&ref_=pe_3052080_276849420

A home's adaptability is one of the most desired qualities within a person's home during some point in their life as their or their family's personal needs change. Specific needs to enhance a home's accessibility can be short term while recovering from an accident or illness at any age, or  these home alterations may become permanent. The special needs may concern an adult or a child. Universal design principles don't discriminate between any family members regardless of age, size, or ability. Every family member is included. Learn how to adapt your home environment to satisfy your family's needs in David Traut's new book, Age in Place at Home.

Age in Place at Home Book

 

T-Square Company, in Austin, Texas, practices Universal Design accessibility to segue into Aging in Place seamlessly. The essence of my book is to advise people so they understand why our homes are obsolete to us, the homeowners, the minute they are completed.  This fact is represented by the methodology used to create the traditional home. They are built to satisfy our immediate lifestyle and physical needs on the day we close on the house, with no regard for the future. The new home lacks adaptability to satisfy our needs once our bodies change beyond the purchase date. If we had incorporated the Universal Design principles into these new homes, those same homes would adapt to our changing family needs including every inhabitant regardless of age, size, or ability. The lack of home adaptability is not the consumers fault, they have always been unaware of how to reference the problem and accepted what the housing market gave them. They were unaware of what to ask for. Hence, the status-quo of building has been perpetuated  for over a hundred years.

T-Square Company offers all types of Austin Universal Design home modifications to better prepare you and your family for your unforeseeable home accessibility future on a design/build basis. Existing, traditional homes must be modified to increase their accessibility using correct designs. Become aware and embrace the knowledge that 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 which is a part of our universal design/build ideas. Furthermore, T-Square Company specializes in Austin elder living solutions and Austin senior home modifications. 

Home Accessibility Help

David L. Traut, CAPS, has been involved with accessibility for nearly thirty years for the VA, HUD,  and private residences.  T-Square Company offers a complete assortment of Aging in Place services in Austin. Contact him at 512-444-0097 for a professional home assessment to guide your future accessibility needs or at www.tsquareco.com. Simply fill out your contact information on the "contact us" page.

Certified Aging In Place Specialist

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David Traut's Recently Published Book/Age in Place at Home (revisited)

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Mon, Jun 26, 2023 @ 11:06 AM

 

After over a year of writing to fulfill my customers' requests, my new book, "Age in Place At Home," is finally available for purchase from Amazon.  Go to the link below to order my paperback book, which was released in late November, 2022. It provides a great guideline for using the principles of Universal Design in new home construction and/or remodeling for every room in your home. Get your copy today.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/r.html?C=2Z24ENUUAEWUK&K=13Y7YU7PKKYAC&M=urn:rtn:msg:20221010201802eb9acb7b24004a4785cd2ec1d4f0p0na&R=3R6MK9WDXJPH7&T=C&U=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2Fdp%2FB0BHTV28RV%3Fref_%3Dpe_3052080_276849420&H=7FWEPMGCH0TT8LN6SKPMUOCVJNYA&ref_=pe_3052080_276849420

A home's adaptability is one of the most desired qualities within a person's home during some point in their life as their or their family's needs change. These specific needs to enhance accessibility can be short term while recovering from an accident or illness at any age, or  these home alterations may become permanent.  The special needs may concern an adult or a child. Universal design principles don't discriminate between any family members regardless of age, size, or ability. Every family member is included. Learn how to adapt your home environment to satisfy your family's needs in David Traut's new book, Age in Place at Home.

Age in Place at Home Book

 

T-Square Company, in Austin, Texas, practices Universal Design accessibility to segue into Aging in Place seamlessly. The essence of my book is to advise people so they understand why our homes are obsolete to us, the homeowners, the minute they are completed.  This fact is represented by the methodology used to create the traditional home. They are built to satisfy our immediate lifestyle and physical needs on the day we close on the house, with no regard for the future. The new home lacks adaptability to satisfy our needs once our bodies change beyond the purchase date. If we had incorporated the Universal Design principles into these new homes, those same homes would adapt to our changing family needs including every inhabitant regardless of age, size, or ability. The lack of home adaptability is not the consumers fault, they have always been unaware of how to reference the problem and accepted what the housing market gave them. They were unaware of what to ask for. Hence, the status-quo of building has been perpetuated  for over a hundred years.

 

T-Square Company offers all types of Austin Universal Design home modifications to better prepare you and your family for your unforeseeable home accessibility future on a design/build basis. Existing, traditional homes must be modified to increase their accessibility using correct designs. Become aware and embrace the knowledge that 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, HUD,  and private residences.  Contact me at 512-444-0097 for a professional home assessment to guide your future accessibility needs or at www.tsquareco.com. Simply fill out your information on the contact us page.

.

 

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What is Universal Design and the Seven Principles Involved?

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Tue, May 16, 2023 @ 08:05 AM

Perhaps you haven't personally experienced a problematic living situation concerning your home yet, but you might know someone who has. It could concern a family member, a friend, or just a person in your neighborhood. These unfortunate scenarios are too common in our society, as everyone is living longer due to modern medicine; but this situation is not age-related. Health problems can appear unexpectedly at any age. Our traditional homes commonly lack accessibility for any residents or their visitors who are even slightly challenged. The truth is, all of our houses are built for unchallenged, healthy people of a "normal" size. The moment any diversity to what each of us knows as near perfect health expresses itself, the realization we need a better and more adaptable "mousetrap" comes to mind in regards to our home. The doors in the house aren't wide enough, the rooms are too small, the hallway is too narrow, the floors aren't level or are slippery, the stairs aren't negotiable, the bathroom facilities aren't useable, and the kitchen is not user- friendly. The list goes on-and-on when you are living in a status-quo home. But now people can become educated and know what to ask for before a life-changing problem arises. Rest assured, you have the ability to proactively prepare your traditional home for future life changes before they happen. Hence, there is no need for you or your family to suddenly become trapped inside it's walls! Let's come to understand a design solution exists which has been stigmatized because of it's decades-long association with disability. Learn to ask for it by name.

Universal Design, also known as barrier-free design and design for all, refers to broad-spectrum ideas meant to produce buildings, products and environments that are inherently accessible to non-challenged people, older people, people of any age who are mentally or physically challenged, and people overcoming an illness or physically-altering accident. In general, it represents a universal need in future housing and pertains to adding safety and accessibility in an existing home for all people regardless of their size or physical well being at any time. The purpose of the design is to provide equal access to anyone into and throughout the home. Universal Design adaptations have a broad market appeal to everyone for achieving ease-of-use and convenience accommodating a certain reality. The reality is that all people exist along a continuum of human performance as per their personal traits and characteristics regardless of their age. A universal approach to design takes into account that everyone has varying degrees of ability and disability; rather than someone is either fully-functional or disabled. Universal Design is neither a design style or trend but is an approach to designing home access for as wide a range of diverse people as possible.

As a solution to our inaccessible housing predicament, applying Universal Design is important because current design standards for housing do not address the design needs of more than one-third of our population. Too often, the designers of homes allow the built environment to define the capabilities of the resident, rather than the opposite being true. That has always been the problem evidenced by the current inaccessible housing inventory. People typically purchase a house according to their needs of the day, never considering their future needs. This way of thinking has perpetuated the problem of inaccessibility within traditional homes. Incorporating Universal Design principles into today's houses allows for our antiquated architecture to be redefined by both our changing human needs and abilities. It has the ability to span all generations of inhabitants. The sooner the principles exist in a home, the longer it can be enjoyed by everyone; because no one is excluded. Home accessibility should be a concern no matter what your age. If your concerns are not for you, barring any life changing accident, they could concern the accessibility and safety for another generation's independence. As we become more life-experienced, our society is beginning to realize our homes should be flexible to accommodate future life changes. This benefit alone will afford adapted housing the ability to conform to our needs. Hence, society will understand the significance of a forever home. The physical life changes involved can be long-term or of short duration while recovering from an accident or disease. Regardless, the home is prepared for what comes next through the use of Universal Design.

The recent Aging in Place phenomena deals with reactive home modifications to existing homes due to health changes of one or more residents. The adaptations allow the inhabitants to remain within their home safely as they age. A planned Universal Design home quietly and proactively addresses abrupt issues without calling attention to anyone. The design simply anticipates the homeowner's changing needs. The modifications can be performed room by room overtime or all at once. Furthermore, Universal Design segues seamlessly into what is required for Aging in Place. However, we cannot conceive or solve all future situations for everyone because we all age differently with our own list of specific needs. In extreme cases, a specialized accessibility design comes into play customized around a single person's needs.

But what about the costs involved in a home using Universal Design? Utilizing Universal Design in a new build home isn't necessarily more expensive than a status-quo traditional inaccessible home. It generally approaches a three-to-four-percent overall increase. The same building techniques are involved in both; but the Universal Design home is designed with more forethought and expertise to improve safety, accessibility, and comfort. Consequently, if you are remodeling an existing home, incorporating the principles of Universal Design, it is more costly on the order of fifteen-to-twenty-percent because you not only have the updated building costs to consider but the demolition costs as well. The same remodeling costs for the preparation of a revised layout are involved with any type renovation prior to the modifications beginning, whether the final appearance is traditional or universal in nature. 

Universal Design/Builds in Austin by T-Square Company

Basically, Universal Design principles involve the design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design. Using Universal Design, there are seven design criteria which must be met to be considered a Universal Design no matter which area of the home you are referring to. Any design must be (1) equally useful to everyone, (2) have flexibility in it's usefulness, (3) be simple and intuitive, (4) be perceived by everyone, (5) have a tolerance for error, (6) require little physical effort, and (7) it must maintain an adequate area for approach and use. Any complexity or discriminating attribute to a design will doom it in terms of  being considered universal in nature. However, what better way can you improve on a home's total visitability?  The term visitability pertains to anyone entering freely into a home, having unrestricted maneuverability throughout the home, and having the ability to enter and utilize a bathroom's facilities without assistance. 

Discover the Principles Of Universal Design

Whether you refer to this needed housing revolution today as accessible design, inclusive design, or Universal Design, it is all about making a home safe, attractive, and easy to use for all residents. It has nothing to do with the age, agility, or status of life for anyone living within the home. The main intent of this way of thinking is to be sure the inhabitants and their visitors are equally able to enjoy their home throughout their entire lifetime. This way Aging in Place can be accomplished without the expense and hassle of having to make periodic or interfering abrupt changes to the home to meet a person's ever-changing physical needs. With Universal Design, you have the ability to proactively plan for all stages of your life cycle using forethought which, once discovered, you ultimately find is just common sense. Even if you are in perfect health, you can be disrupted by a minor mishap. A more serious injury changes things forever once you no longer have all your abilities.  Universal design ideas do not strictly deal with accessibility or Aging in Place design and does not implement precise ADA standards; but it does offer flexibility to add accessories now and later to those planning ahead or to the end-user. It also provides for a wide range of human performance characteristics for the way people use spaces within their homes including well integrated usability features. Hence, a Universal Design/build project is appealing to all users.  

Can you envision building a house as a young adult that you can live in safely and comfortably while you age no matter what your basic physical needs require? In this home, visitors are never problematic if they exhibit limited mobility or other issues. This flexible Universal Design home contains wider doorways of 36-inches or more and adequately lit hallway widths of 42-48-inches to accommodate a stroller, wheelchair or walker. There is a wide-open feeling of comfort throughout the house's main living areas in the bathroom, kitchen, and living area that do not restrict moving about. A five-foot turning radius is observed throughout the home. Wood blocking is installed behind the finished walls in all wet areas to accommodate secure grab bar installations at the proper time. The towel racks in the kitchen are installed so they can double as grab bars once you become unsteady from lack of balance. All the no-step entryways from the front door to the shower entrance are smooth to prevent tripping from high thresholds and all flooring transitions are level. Non-slip flooring is installed, especially in wet areas, using cork or smaller floor tiles which in turn increase friction from the grout lines. All doors and faucets are controlled by lever hardware. Sinks inside the bathroom and kitchen have roll-under capability. Within the sink base cabinets, doors or roll-out shelving are installed until the roll-under design is needed. Full-extension drawers and pull-out shelves are installed in lieu of doors. The cabinet tops and work areas throughout the house are placed at varying heights to promote adaptability. This universal designed home is barrier-free without looking modified and is accessible to everyone no matter their age, size, or capability of movement. Furthermore, this home is usable by everyone from your father to your son.

David L. Traut, CAPS the owner of T-Square Company in Austin, Texas is one of the select group of professionals 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. Consequently, David is certified in Universal Design in the US and Australia. T-Square Company is a Universal Design contractor offering a full compliment of Aging in Place services including bathroom modifications for elderly clients with special needs. Each design/build project contains the principles of Universal Design. The modifications will be customized to fit your personal needs while increasing your accessibility. Call 512-444-0097 today to begin the accessible second chapter of your life while remaining safe and secure in your existing home. CAPS #1636580

As an answer to his clients requests over the years, David has recently published a book entitled "Age in Place at Home: Adapting the Home Environment for All Generations". The book reflects on thirty years of accessibility improvements and identifies why our traditional homes specifically lack this very basic need. It is available on Amazon and stands as a reference book for increasing home accessibility using the principles of Universal Design in every room of the home. The book dwells on this inclusive design concept as a solution to our current housing dilemma.

     Certified Aging In Place Specialist

 

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David Traut's Book "Age in Place at Home", /Aging in Place Specialist

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Fri, Mar 17, 2023 @ 13:03 PM

 

I am reposting this invaluable announcement of my book's availability in an effort to help many struggling families who have discovered their home no longer fits their personal physical needs. Sudden or mounting changes among any family members affects how livable and accommodating their present home truly is. Once a major change occurs, modification of your residence must be undertaken or you will face moving to a more accessible home. A home's newly-discovered architectural barriers are represented by problems entering the home, difficulty in using the bathroom or its facilities, or merely maneuvering throughout a familiar residence. My book acts as a guidepost for perplexed homeowners and caretakers trying to determine their family's next immediate direction and imminent future. The first half of the book explains why homes have always been inaccessible, except on the day they were purchased. The second half takes you room by room through the home as I explain how applying the principles of Universal Design for Aging in Place makes the home comfortable and accessible for the largest number of people. 

After over a year of writing to fulfill my customers' requests, my new book, "Age in Place At Home: Adapting the Home Environment for All Generations" , is available for purchase from Amazon.  Go to the link below to order my paperback book, which was released in late November, 2022. It provides a great guideline for using the principles of Universal Design in new home construction and/or remodeling for every room in your home. Get your copy today.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/r.html?C=2Z24ENUUAEWUK&K=13Y7YU7PKKYAC&M=urn:rtn:msg:20221010201802eb9acb7b24004a4785cd2ec1d4f0p0na&R=3R6MK9WDXJPH7&T=C&U=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2Fdp%2FB0BHTV28RV%3Fref_%3Dpe_3052080_276849420&H=7FWEPMGCH0TT8LN6SKPMUOCVJNYA&ref_=pe_3052080_276849420

A home's adaptability is one of the most desired qualities within a person's home during some point in their life as their or their family's needs change. These specific needs to enhance accessibility can be short term while recovering from an accident or illness at any age, or  these home alterations may become permanent. The special needs may concern an adult or a child. Universal design principles don't discriminate between any family members regardless of age, size, or ability. Every family member is included. Learn how to adapt your home environment to satisfy your family's needs in David Traut's new book, Age in Place at Home.

Age in Place at Home Book

 

T-Square Company, in Austin, Texas, practices incorporating Universal Design for accessibility to help their clients segue into Aging in Place seamlessly. The essence of my book is to advise people so they understand why our homes are obsolete to us, the homeowners, the minute they are completed.  This fact is represented by the methodology used to create the traditional home. They are built to satisfy our immediate lifestyle and physical needs on the day we close on the house, with no regard for the future. The new home lacks adaptability to satisfy our needs once our bodies change beyond the purchase date. If we had incorporated the Universal Design principles into these new homes, those same homes would adapt to our changing family needs including every inhabitant regardless of age, size, or ability. The lack of home adaptability is not the consumers fault, they have always been unaware of how to reference the problem and accepted what the housing market gave them. Buyers were unaware of what to ask for. Hence, the status-quo of building has been perpetuated  for centuries.

T-Square Company offers all types of Austin Universal Design home modifications for Aging in Place and Aging in Place design to better prepare you and your family for your unforeseeable home accessibility future on a design/build basis. Existing, traditional homes must be modified at some unknown point in time to increase their accessibility using correct designs. This collaborative effort is undertaken in order to help the residents who need better accessibility the most. Become aware and embrace the knowledge that 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, is an Aging in Place specialist and has been involved with accessibility for over thirty years for the VA, HUD, various counties, and private residences.  Contact David at 512-444-0097 for a professional home assessment to guide your future accessibility needs or at www.tsquareco.com. Simply fill out your information on the contact us page.

.

 

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Barrier-Free Remodels by T-Square Company/Increase Home Accessibility

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Wed, Mar 15, 2023 @ 12:03 PM

Disability is a complex phenomenon representing an interaction between one's physical impairments, the activities one needs to perform, and the architectural barriers within the space in which this situation occurs. Each individual demonstrates the complexity with similar impairments describing his or her limitations differently. The blind don't experience their world the same as a person with deafness. Some of our societal statistics that weigh into Aging in Place situations include reports stating that 19% of the population between the ages of 16 and 64 and 42% of those of us 65 and over have a physical disability affecting the activities of their daily lives.

The situation holds true for adults, and for children with special needs. The building world must work in unison to be sure the entire living environment meets basic needs in addition to affordability and structural integrity for the consumer and homeowner.  This includes the home and the components within the home being accessible to all inhabitants needing it most once architectural barriers become a recognized problem for any particular family member regardless of age or ability.  Privacy, a sense of belonging, a sense of control, and the sense of safety and security make up the quality of life for any home and should be considered for any barrier-free design.

barrier-free wheelchair accessible bathroom in Austin, Texas 

Traditional homes are commonly full of barriers restricting maneuverability for anyone with a disability. This situation is accentuated once any mobility device is required. Houses typically exhibit home entrances involving steps, narrow doorways, tight hallways with abrupt turns, cramped bathrooms inhibiting comfortable fixture use, inaccessible outside amenities, congested and unfriendly kitchens, and door locking hardware requiring hand strength and coordination. 

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.  Everyone ages differently and has different needs and wants. 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. The principles of Universal Design enable living in a home with more comfort and adaptability for people of all ages and abilities.

Home Accessibility Help

Fortunately for people needing increased accessibility beyond what their existing home offers, there is home accessibility help available in Austin, Texas, offered by T-Square Company. T-Square Company specializes in handicap accessible homes and barrier-free remodels having over 30 years of accessibility experience.  They provide customized disability home modifications for any age resident with special needs. T-Square Company offers a complete assortment of disability services to help cushion and adapt to any disability including barrier-free home design/build projects. Wider entries and hallways, accessible bathrooms and showers, accessible kitchens, ramped entrances, vertical platform lifts, stair lifts, elevators, and accessible rooms of any type are just a few of the services  offered. Every design is based on the specific needs and abilities of the client. 

David L. Traut, CAPS the owner and president 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. Additionally, he is certified in Universal Design in the United States and Australia. David has recently published a book called "Age in Place at Home: Adapting the Home Environment For All Generations". The book explains the importance of Universal Design in building taking you through every room of the home in order to increase home accessibility. It is available on Amazon.

AIPSTUD cover4-1

Never fear. You can adapt almost any existing home environment to overcome difficulties and enable you and everyone else in the family to comfortably live at home and move around safely with correct planning and know-how.

Your quality of life will improve if you follow the book's advice. The positive result is every family member has equal accessibility throughout your home's interior. IT JUST MAKES GOOD SENSE.

Certified Aging In Place Specialist

 

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Senior Aging In Place Services Offered in Austin, Texas

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Thu, Mar 09, 2023 @ 10:03 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, especially when it involves an aging parent.  A professional CAPS-certified remodeler is needed to offer guidance and solutions to the discovered family problems. Aging in Place is 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, along with the building community. 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. T-Square Company is a certified disability access contractor in Austin, Texas, doing accessibility jobs for the VA, HUD, and the private sector for nearly thirty years. T-Square Company offers a complete line of Aging in Place services using their design/build approach. T-Square Company's Aging in Place services incorporate the principles of Universal Design to better accommodate wheelchair users or people with varying disabilities, making the home environment more comfortable for all generations with or without specific needs.

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, the 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. David is certified in Universal Design in the United States and Australia. He has recently published a book entitled "Age In Place At Home: Adapting the Home Environment For All Generations". It is available through Amazon. It acts as a guidepost for accomplishing better accessibility throughout the home. He takes you room by room showing you how you can make your home inclusive to everyone living there and for all visitors.

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 generally  looking for a level entry into their home along with the clear 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 entrance. 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.  Provide a clear barrier-free path or accessible route to the most visited areas of the 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. 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, regardless of age, size, or ability. 

Aging In Place Home Modifications

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

 

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David Traut's Recently Published Book/Age in Place at Home

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Wed, Dec 14, 2022 @ 13:12 PM

 

After over a year of writing to fulfill my customers' requests, my new book, "Age in Place At Home," is finally available for purchase from Amazon.  Go to the link below to order my paperback book, which was released in late November, 2022. It provides a great guideline for using the principles of Universal Design in new home construction and/or remodeling for every room in your home. Get your copy today.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/r.html?C=2Z24ENUUAEWUK&K=13Y7YU7PKKYAC&M=urn:rtn:msg:20221010201802eb9acb7b24004a4785cd2ec1d4f0p0na&R=3R6MK9WDXJPH7&T=C&U=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2Fdp%2FB0BHTV28RV%3Fref_%3Dpe_3052080_276849420&H=7FWEPMGCH0TT8LN6SKPMUOCVJNYA&ref_=pe_3052080_276849420

A home's adaptability is one of the most desired qualities within a person's home during some point in their life as their or their family's needs change. These specific needs to enhance accessibility can be short term while recovering from an accident or illness at any age, or  these home alterations may become permanent.  The special needs may concern an adult or a child. Universal design principles don't discriminate between any family members regardless of age, size, or ability. Every family member is included. Learn how to adapt your home environment to satisfy your family's needs in David Traut's new book, Age in Place at Home.

Age in Place at Home Book

 

T-Square Company, in Austin, Texas, practices Universal Design accessibility to segue into Aging in Place seamlessly. The essence of my book is to advise people so they understand why our homes are obsolete to us, the homeowners, the minute they are completed.  This fact is represented by the methodology used to create the traditional home. They are built to satisfy our immediate lifestyle and physical needs on the day we close on the house, with no regard for the future. The new home lacks adaptability to satisfy our needs once our bodies change beyond the purchase date. If we had incorporated the Universal Design principles into these new homes, those same homes would adapt to our changing family needs including every inhabitant regardless of age, size, or ability. The lack of home adaptability is not the consumers fault, they have always been unaware of how to reference the problem and accepted what the housing market gave them. They were unaware of what to ask for. Hence, the status-quo of building has been perpetuated  for over a hundred years.

 

T-Square Company offers all types of Austin Universal Design home modifications to better prepare you and your family for your unforeseeable home accessibility future on a design/build basis. Existing, traditional homes must be modified to increase their accessibility using correct designs. Become aware and embrace the knowledge that 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, HUD,  and private residences.  Contact me at 512-444-0097 for a professional home assessment to guide your future accessibility needs or at www.tsquareco.com. Simply fill out your information on the contact us page.

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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.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/r.html?C=2Z24ENUUAEWUK&K=13Y7YU7PKKYAC&M=urn:rtn:msg:20221010201802eb9acb7b24004a4785cd2ec1d4f0p0na&R=3R6MK9WDXJPH7&T=C&U=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2Fdp%2FB0BHTV28RV%3Fref_%3Dpe_3052080_276849420&H=7FWEPMGCH0TT8LN6SKPMUOCVJNYA&ref_=pe_3052080_276849420

 

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 www.tsquareco.com. Simply fill out your information on the contact us page.

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Home Modifications for Aging in Place/How Do I Age in Place?

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Thu, Jun 23, 2022 @ 14:06 PM

While it may not be possible for every older adult to live independently in their existing home forever, there are many modifications that can be made to the home to increase safety and make it more functional for the homeowners to remain in their own homes longer. By gradually implementing home alterations that support aging in place, today’s seniors maintain their independence, and in the long run, may save a substantial amount of money on senior living.

universal design kitchen for aging in place in Austin

More seniors are opting to age in place than ever before. This trend is driven in part by the rising costs of long-term care, coupled with the rapidly growing senior population as the Baby Boomer generation ages. This particular generation is enjoying a more active, vibrant lifestyle than all other previous generations.  Increasing technology and the wider availability of personal services, such as home meal delivery, are making it easier for seniors to remain in their own homes independently. However, aging in place is not for everyone, especially when major disabilities are involved.

Certified Aging In Place Specialist

As with any successful endeavor, You must establish a reasonable plan of action to age in place. This action will involve the input of all parties associated with the homeowner(s). The participants include caregivers, occupational therapists, physical therapists, extended family members, and any other professional medical personnel. Steps taken to move in a positive direction include: 

  1. Take note of your personal abilities and any difficulties you have moving around your home within specific areas.

  2. Seek out a professional assessment of your home provided by a CAPS (Certified Aging in Place Specialist)member. This way you know that you are in good hands because sometimes the renovations required to accommodate a senior or any disabled person, regardless of age, are no easy task and instead take a lot of time, knowledge, and effort.
  3. If you live in a multi-story home, combine the main rooms for activity on the first floor. If this isn't possible, entertain the idea of installing a stair-lift, or better yet, an elevator in your home.

  4. Widen all doorways to 36-inches, and include pocket doors in certain areas to limit architectural barriers caused by swinging doors. Make sure there is at least one no-step entry into the house. Install lever-style door hardware when possible throughout the home.
     
  5. Install a slip-resistant floor throughout your home using wood flooring, cork, rubber, or porcelain tile. Be mindful of the chosen flooring's hardness in case of falls. Carpet offers too much resistance when using any mobility device causing tripping, falls, and instability. Ensure all transitions when changing floor materials are as smooth as possible and below 1/2 inches in height.

  6. Take note of any lighting issues producing dark areas in any room. Add layered lighting throughout the home to increase safety.

  7. Reduce the clutter in all rooms and provide a clear five-foot turning radius in every room.

  8. Reduce the number of doors on cabinets opting for full-extension pull-out shelves or drawers.

  9. As for the bathroom, provide a walk-in or roll-in shower with grab bars on all sides versus a garden tub. A hand-held and fixed shower head provides options for the user or caretaker. A roll under vanity is great for wheelchair use or applying makeup from a seated position. A comfort height toilet associated with grab bars reduces the discomfort of deep knee bends. 

  10. For the kitchen, make it as adaptable as possible to suit the needs of child helpers or granny in her wheelchair. Offer varying cabinet heights and work surfaces. Plan for the shortest work triangle formed by your main sink, refrigerator, and stove locations. Raise your dishwasher 9-12 inches above the floor making it easier to load and unload for everyone.

  11.  Last, but not least, comes the laundry. Install side-swinging doors of opposite swings for the washer and dryer enabling you to simultaneously access both machines from the middle. Don't forget to set the machines on a pedestal to raise them above the floor, in case you ever find yourself using a wheelchair.

Get Educated 

 

T-Square Company, located in Austin, Texas offers complete design/build Aging in Place Services to its clientele. David L Traut, the President, and owner of T-Square Company is national CAPS certified and has been doing successful accessibility remodels, additions, and construction for over 30 years. Some of our clients include HUD, the VA, and many private homeowners. Contact us today to see how T-Square Company can help you solve issues to streamline your home accessibility to Safely and Comfortably Age in Place in your existing home. 

 

 

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