Q+A: Updating Home to Help My Parents

I've lived in my 1928 DC Row/Federal Style home for over 30 years.  I would like to add a 2 or 3 story addition to the rear, as well as install Central AC, remodel the Kitchen, create a Master Bedroom, and a few other smaller projects.  I am a caregiver for both my mother and father.  Both require wheelchair access and I need additional space for my DJ business.  My width is limited to 18 feet, but the rear yard is deep (80 feet or so), and I can go up.

I need a few good recommendations, sources to check, persons to speak to, etc.  I have been on line and I do have a lot of material, but the lists are just too great.  I would love to be able to select from 5-10 good Contractors.  People who understand what I am trying to do and don't charge crazy prices.  With so many choices and no other ways of eliminating them, even the ones which come recommended by the Better Business Bureau or those who belong to specific building organizations, don't narrow themselves down enough for me.  I need somebody I can work with!
Cherryle Hooks, Washington, D.C.

We'll as the husband of one of our current Presidential candidates once said:  "I feel your pain!"

You are not alone.  According to a recent AARP study, nearly ninety percent of adults 50 and older want to stay in their current home and community as they age.  Another recent report shows that two-thirds of the 50+ population intend to remodel or make home improvements to their home within the next 12 months

I have a suggested solution.  The AARP began a program in partnership with the National Association of Home Builders called CAPS which stands for Certified Aging in Place Specialists.  CAPS pros are specially trained to deal with the exact issues you are facing.  They can help you find ways to improve or add to you existing home that will make life grand for both you and your parents!

For more information visit www.aarp.org/homedesign.

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