Congratulations 2020 NAHB Designees and Educator of the Year


The 2020 NAHB Designees and Educator of the Year awards honors housing professionals who have displayed notable professionalism as NAHB designation holders and those who have excelled in teaching NAHB education courses. This year two of those awarded are esteemed members of the Age Safe® America Advisory Team, and we are proud to be associated with industry leaders of this caliber. Congratulations to Steve Hoffacker and Chris Moore, along with all those who have earned this industry recognition!!

“We commend these industry professionals who have taken the time and effort toward continuing their education in their respective fields and who have chosen to become approved to instruct others in the industry,” said NAHB Education Committee Chair Curt Kiriu, CAPS, CGR. “These accomplished individuals have proven that they are dedicated to improving their own craft, and also encourage others in the industry to do the same.”


2020 Educator of the Year

Headshot of Steve Hoffacker

Steve Hoffacker, CAPS is the founder of Steve Hoffacker & Associates, LLC in West Palm Beach, Florida. As a widely respected aging-in-place, universal design, and visibility advocate, instructor, author and consultant, he has more than 30 years of industry experience. In 2007, he launched the Remodelers Council at his local HBA and began teaching the CAPS designation courses. Since then, he has enjoyed helping a variety of professionals attain their credentials to work more effectively with their aging-in-place clientele. He has also served as a frequent resource on aging-in-place and universal design topics for journalists writing newspaper and magazine articles and for public presentations to both consumers and professionals. Visit:


Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) Designee of the Year

Headshot of Chris Moore

Chris Moore, CAPS, CGR founded Solid Rock Enterprises, Inc. in 2001, to provide quality building, remodeling, and consulting services in Roanoke Valley, Virginia. He is a believer in life-long learning and is passionate about education and improving his knowledge of the industry. With more than 34 years of industry experience, Moore believes that your house is your castle and when you make a choice to renovate; you should be able to choose a contractor who will have the experience to understand your unique needs and create the home of your dreams. Chris is also a well respected CAPS Instructor, teaching others the principles and techniques for creating lifetime homes. Visit:



Builder Designee of the Year

Headshot of Joseph Irons

Joseph Irons, CAPS, CGP, CGR, GMB, GMR is the President and General Manager of Irons Brothers Construction, Inc. a design-build firm in Shoreline, Washington. A 21-year industry veteran, Irons believes in giving back to the building industry and plays an active role at the Master Builders Association of King & Snohomish Counties. He is also active in the state, local and national building and remodeling councils and committees. Irons is committed to continuing education and enjoys training fellow builders, architects, designers, OT/PTs and other professionals. He is also a published author and accredited educator in the state of Washington.


Remodeler Designee of the Year

Headshot of Leo Lantz

Leo Lantz, CAPS, CGP, CGR, GMB, GMR is the owner of Leo Lantz Construction, Inc. in Glen Allen, Virginia. A 25-year industry veteran with a passion for remodeling and an eye for detail, he takes pride in delivering a home to a completely satisfied customer. Involved in all aspects of the remodeling industry and his community, Lantz believes in giving back by playing an active role at the HBA of Richmond. He has attained multiple industry designations and was named 2018 NAHB National Remodeler of the Year, which recognizes superior business management, exemplary NAHB involvement at all levels and outstanding contributions to the remodeling industry.


Housing Credit Certified Professional (HCCP) Designee of the Year

Headshot of Matthew Rayburn

Matthew Rayburn, HCCP is the Deputy Executive Director and Chief Real Estate Development Officer with Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority (IHDCA) in Indianapolis. As part of the IHDCA’s executive team, he oversees the agency’s Real Estate Development department which handles allocations and compliance for the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit, Housing Choice Vouchers and other programs as well as planning and training for the Indiana Supportive Housing Institute and other supportive housing initiatives. A recognized expert in the industry, Rayburn has years of experience in affordable housing management, auditing and training.





National Caregivers Day

Celebrate National Caregivers Day



The third Friday in February is observed annually as National Caregivers Day. This special day was founded in 2015 by the Providers Association for Home Health & Hospice Agencies (PAHHHA). It honors the men and women who provide vital services to individuals and families around the country. Not only are caregivers an important part of the healthcare system, especially for patients who are in long-term or hospice care, but day in and day out, these dedicated individuals commit their lives to care for someone else’s needs.


Across the nation dedicated health care professionals serve those who require long-term or hospice care. National Caregivers Day honors those men and women dedicated to providing these vital services. Caregivers deliver a variety of services from personal care to medical services with compassion and professionalism. Their days may be long and demanding, but they provide support to those who need it most.


Honoring those individuals who aid your loved ones, especially the elderly who often require long-term care, is something we should celebrate year-round. Caregivers have that special kindness gene that enables them to care for people every day, and there are many ways we can show them how important they are in the lives of your loved ones. National Caregivers Day is just one of many ways to show appreciation for these individuals. This year, take time to thank a caregiver for their dedication and care of your loved ones.


National Caregivers Day is the perfect time to acknowledge the dedicated, compassionate people who work as caregivers, but it shouldn’t end there. Simply showing your appreciation throughout the year, even with just a simple ‘thank you,’ can help boost the spirit of these individuals who work tirelessly to provide high-quality care to the loved ones in your life.




Hiring an In-Home Caregiver



As an elderly loved one gets older, everyday life can become more and more challenging. Walking around can become tiresome. Missing a medication can become disastrous. At times, going to the bathroom and cleaning the dishes can become too much. Thankfully, there is an industry that’s entirely devoted to making lives easy for your elderly loved ones—home care for seniors. Hiring an in-home caregiver gives your elderly loved ones the luxury to remain as independent as possible while getting all the help they need.


However, with so many options available and several factors to take into account, finding the right in-home caregiver can become overwhelming. Get your search for the right in-home caregiver off to a great start by keeping in mind the following:

Caregiving is not a one-size-fits-all service


Determine the exact tasks your elderly loved ones need help with. Seniors have diverse needs. For instance, some only need help with household chores like cleaning, cooking, and doing the laundry. Others, on the other hand, might only need help with getting to appointments or running errands.


Is it also possible that your loved one may need assistance with ADLs (activities of daily living) like bathing, getting dressed, or getting in and out of bed. It is also possible that your loved one only needs someone qualified to provide therapies, care for wounds, or administer medications.

Talk to your loved ones about hiring an in-home caregiver


Understandably, many seniors are not comfortable with the idea of having a stranger in their homes. In line with this, it would be a good idea to talk to your loved ones about it. Talking to them can give them time to warm up to the idea of having a new person at home helping them out.


Another way to put your loved one at ease is by checking with the new caregiver now and then or until such time that the caregiver is accustomed to the role and your loved one is comfortable having someone new around. It would also help if you can educate the in-home caregiver about tasks your loved ones want done in a specific way.

Figure out how to pay for in-home care


The cost of in-home care can depend on the help your loved one needs. If your loved one has a life insurance policy or savings, it might be enough to help cover the cost. Ideally, your elderly loved one should have some kind of long-term care insurance. If not, check if Medicare, Medicaid, or other health insurance policies will cover the cost of in-home care.


It would also be a good idea to figure out ahead of time if you can contribute a specific amount to pay for their in-home care. You can also check with other family members if they can and would be willing to pitch in.

Determine the caregiving schedule your loved one will require


Before starting your actual search, it is recommended that you identify the kind of caregiving schedule your loved one needs. You also need to factor in other crucial elements like your budget. Additionally, you also need to identify which days you would need someone to provide care.


If you figure out your loved one will only need help a few hours each day, you can easily determine those times. For instance, if your loved one needs help with just bathing or dressing, you might find it ideal to have someone who’s available in the mornings.

You can hire an in-home caregiver on your own or through an agency


While hiring an in-home caregiver through an agency can be a bit costly, it is also more convenient as the agency takes care of the paperwork, payroll, and taxes. However, if you want to hire someone independently, you can start your search by asking for recommendations from medical staff, friends, or local senior organizations.


You also need to ensure that you hire someone with the proper license and insurance. Performing a background check and asking for references is also considered ideal. You also need to figure out ahead if you want to hire the caregiver as an employee or a contractor. To ensure you are covering all the financial and legal bases, it is recommended that you consult a lawyer or an accountant.

Staying involved is crucial


Ensuring there is excellent communication between you and the in-home caregiver can help warrant your loved one’s needs are satisfactorily met. It will also help if you schedule regular meetings so all the parties concerned will have a venue where everyone can voice out their questions or share their concerns.


It is also recommended that you keep the in-home caregiver informed about any changes in your loved one’s condition and if there are changes in their responsibilities so adjustments are made when necessary. In the same manner, it is also crucial to check with your loved one about the caregiver’s performance so you’ll know if everything is going well.

Final Thoughts


If your elderly loved one is no longer capable of living an independent and safe lifestyle, hiring an in-home caregiver is one of the best options you can look into. As long as you have all the crucial factors covered, you can rest assured your loved ones can live comfortably and get all the assistance they need.



About the Author:


Sarah Keller is the Content Marketing Strategist of A To Z Home Care, a team of professional home care providers based in Phoenix, Arizona that specializes in long-term care for your loved ones. She enjoys riding horses and camping with her friends and family in her spare time.

Age Safe® America Earns AOTA Approved Provider Status!

AOTA Approved Provider


The purpose of the AOTA Approved Provider Program (APP) is to promote high quality and relevant professional development activities for occupational therapy practitioners that support best practice services to consumers. By becoming an AOTA Approved Provider, Age Safe America has demonstrated the ability to comply with required systems, policies, procedures, and educational practices appropriate for occupational therapy practitioners in a manner that meets AOTA APP Criteria and Guidelines.


One of the online courses offered by Age Safe America is the Senior Home Safety Specialist™ certification which offers a holistic approach to home safety for seniors and their families, and has been taken by professionals throughout North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The course empowers professionals with actionable ways to better help educate clients, older adults and their family members on the serious issues of home safety, fall prevention, financial exploitation and personal safety, as well as performing a comprehensive 240-point home safety assessment.


This coveted recognition by the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) as an Approved Provider expands continuing education opportunities for their members and builds further credibility for Age Safe America as a training leader.


Occupational therapy professionals are vital contributors to the well-being and safety as clients recover from a fall or injury, cope with progressive conditions or simply need to learn easier, safer ways to remain independent in their homes. As we grow older, we start to lose strength and mobility. Tasks that were once easy become increasingly more difficult. It’s important that a home is accommodating of these changes. Occupational therapists are trained, professional advocates for aging at home.


Read More NEWS from Age Safe®




Dehydration is Serious for Older Adults


Anyone may become dehydrated, but the condition is especially dangerous for young children and older adults. Older adults naturally have a lower volume of water in their bodies, and may have conditions or take medications that increase the risk of dehydration. For seniors, being dehydrated could cause confusion and anxiety, as well as an increased risk of heart disease, infection and falls if not getting enough fluids.


Severe dehydration is serious, and even life threatening.


There are many reasons older adults do not drink enough water. One is that as we age we may lose our sense of thirst, so they may not seem thirsty. Also because of continence issues, frailty or forgetfulness. Below are tips for incorporating more liquids into your daily life for people of all ages.


Avoid soda, coffee, tea, and alcohol.

Your body needs fluids, but not all fluids are equally beneficial. Caffeinated beverages such as coffee, tea, and some sodas have a dehydrating effect. The same is true for alcohol.


Keep a water bottle handy at all times.

Because seniors can have a diminished capacity to recognize thirst, and some seniors might have difficulty moving around, keeping a full water bottle with you will remind you to drink up each time you look at it.


Drink a full glass of water with any non-mealtime medication.

If you take non-mealtime medication three times a day, this will automatically get you three glasses of water.


Replace water lost through environmental factors and exercise.

Since water is lost through perspiration, keep a water bottle with you when you exercise and when you’re outside in warm weather.


If you hate the taste of water, add a little natural flavor.

There’s no need to pay for fancy water. Add a squeeze of fresh lemon, lime, or orange to flavor your own water. For more variety, try putting some sliced melon or cucumber into a pitcher of water.


Eat foods with high water content.

Fresh fruits and veggies, along with broth, gelatin snacks, ice pops, and Italian ices contain lots of water — and they can help hydrate you.


If you start to feel sick, start sipping water immediately.

Vomiting and diarrhea can dehydrate you. If you can’t tolerate water, suck on crushed ice or an ice pop.


Use a straw or squeeze bottle.

Either method can help when you’re not up to sitting up and drinking directly from a glass.


Drink throughout the day.

Consistent hydration is better than flooding your system with a large quantity of water all at once. Independent seniors need to remind themselves about hydration, and setting alarms at intervals throughout the day can help. You can also leave sticky notes around your home to remind you to drink more water.




Age Safe® Live Well.


Happy New Year 2021

Happy New Year from Age Safe® America


As 2020 come to an end, we want to express our most sincere gratitude to all those who have worked tirelessly to assist our seniors throughout this unprecedented time. Times of difficulty and crisis show us the importance of kindness, compassion, and the strength of humanity.


This year Age Safe® America has been honored to have trained professionals, organizations, non-profits and entrepreneurs in eight countries. We are grateful for the continued trust and respect of our clients and partners and we stand strong and willing to support families looking for trusted aging in place resources.


Age Safe® Live Well.


The Age Safe America Team