Following is some very interesting research data from both the NAHB (National Association of Homebuilders) and NARI (National Association of the Remodeling Industry) reported by both Seeking Alpha then picked up by Dar + Company as research information for their energy investments. This is a serious market to watch!

“The National Association of Homebuilders has created a Certified Aging-In-Place specialist category of home remodeling professional. It trains remodelers to design and implement aging-in-place modifications for homes. These modifications to existing homes are designed to create a physical environment compatible with the needs of the vital-old and the functional-old and extend the period the fragile-old can stay at home before moving to an assisted living or continual care facility. Aging-in-place remodeling is already the largest segment Lightning bolts and electric power linesof the home remodeling industry and is expected to become, by far, the largest segment in a few years. Several home builders and remodelers now advertise their skills and experience remodeling for Successful Aging.

“Companies that design and sell fittings, fixtures and appliances for homes are also expanding their offerings in the Successful Aging market. These companies have adopted a concept known as universal design, which allows anyone (young or old, well, frail or handicapped) to  use appliances, fittings and fixtures. Universal design has already proved popular and now subsumes the design categories of accessible design, adaptable design and lifespan design which were created to provide independent living for handicapped, disabled or just physically weak people. There are now, literally, dozens of such products on the market with new ones being introduced regularly that, in combination, significantly increase ease of use, in-premise mobility and safety, and access without sacrificing aesthetics or resale value (indeed, proponents claim that resale values are enhanced). The rapid growth of Successful Aging remodeling and refitting is compelling evidence that aging-in-place is already a large business opportunity and consumers over 65 have the motive and means to spend substantial sums for goods and services that manifestly meet their needs and aspirations for quality aging.

“In addition to the “passive” modifications to the physical environment, companies are now designing, developing and marketing “active” modifications that allow the physical environment to sense, monitor and respond to the presence and actions (i.e., behavior) of the occupants of the home. While the market for passive modifications is almost entirely a one-time capital expenditure, the market for active modifications is both a capital and an operating expenditure by consumers. The repeat, regular, service fees that can be generated render this an attractive business for many kinds of companies.

“It is clear that both passive and active modifications to the physical living environment of its customer intersects with a retail energy utility’s business in several ways. These modifications have obvious implications for and depend upon the on-premise energy infrastructure, systems and services of the residence. Thus, there are multiple points of entry and profit in facilitating and piggybacking on these passive and active modifications.

We so look forward to seeing the results of this investment in you and discovering how they  prove beneficial to all our lives!

The winter holidays are a time for celebration, and that means more cooking, home decorating, entertaining, and an increased risk of fire and accidents. While you may be familiar with some of these tips, we recommend that you check these guidelines to help make your holiday season safer and more enjoyable.

  • Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home fires in the U.S.  When cooking for holiday visitors, remember to keep an eye on the range.
  • Take care with candles. Be careful when burning candles, and be sure to keep them away from decorations or other combustible materials. Don’t leave children unattended in a room with lit candles, and always keep candles, matches, and lighters out of their reach. Never use lit candles as tree decorations.
  • Before lighting any fire: Remove all greens, boughs, papers and other decorations from fireplace area. Check to see that the flue is open.
  • Use care with “fire salts” , which produce colored flames when thrown on wood fires. They contain heavy metals that can cause intense gastrointestinal irritation and vomiting if eaten.
  • Do not burn wrapping papers in the fireplace. A flash fire may result as wrappings ignite suddenly and burn intensely.
  • Watch children and pets around space heaters or the fireplace. Do not leave a child or pet unattended
  • When purchasing an artificial tree, look for the label “fire-resistant.”
  • Indoor and outdoor lights should be on an automatic timer for energy savings.

Just to make sure Santa doesn’t have any problems getting up and down your Chimney, a few more Chimney Care fire prevention tips:

  • Use wood that has been dried for at least a year
  • Best to get a chimney sweep to check it if you haven’t used it for a long time. Cracks in brick chimneys can start attic fires!
  • If you habitually use soft woods for your fires, it really pays to have the chimney swept for creosote build up so a fire doesn’t accidentally start in the chimney itself on the holiday!

ENJOY every minute of the holiday season, stay safe, warm, dry and treasure the memories, new and old. We’ll be here to help you in 2010 to make your New Year even better with a new Kitchen, Bath or Deck for Santa’s Sleigh.  Look forward to some exciting specials in January!

The HB Building + Design Team

The HB Building + Design Team’s 2009 Holiday Party Row 1:   Tony-tile, Jane-CEO, Design, Bob-President, Building, Steve-CFO, Brian-Tech,   Jessica-Deisgn   Row 2: Fernando-Tech, Juan-Tech, Monique-Marketing (missing Mary, our bookkeeper!)

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