Aging in Place The NAHB is encouraging builders to plan for the future early by making homes user-friendly for all buyers, including those looking forward to aging in place. Suggestions include first-floor master suites for potential mobility issues; adjustable controls or dimmers for proper lighting for failing eyes; and multiple lighting controls in a room to help limit the number of steps needed to turn lights on and off. In addition, creating at least one entry without stairs and providing wider doorways and halls creates effortless access for all.
The NAHB Remodelors Council offers a Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) professional designation, the only national program that teaches professionals how to modify a home for safety and accessibility while ensuring an aesthetically pleasing environment. For additional information on the CAPS program, visit www.nahb.org/caps.
Save on Shipping The NAHB and UPS have joined forces to offer NAHB members discounts of up to 30 percent on shipping. The NAHB discounts extend to domestic air and ground, international export, and international import shipping. Association members can also take advantage of hassle-free online shipping, 24/7 access, and advanced package tracking. Visit www.savewithups.com/nahb to enroll. For more information on the NAHB's complete Member Advantage program, go to www.nahb.org/MA.
Imported Woods The NAHB has been actively looking for new foreign lumber markets to begin trade relations with the United States. The United States does not have the domestic capacity to meet its demand for lumber, with 38 percent of the lumber used in the country last year coming from Canada. Although the United States has relied heavily on Canadian imports of lumber in past years, a new softwood lumber accord between the United States and Canada, scheduled to take effect Nov. 1, will create a system of border taxes and quotas that will raise prices on Canadian lumber.
In an effort to stem the tide of rising lumber prices, NAHB leaders have met with both Russian and Swedish officials, encouraging them to export lumber to the United States. “We support opening up competition in the U.S. lumber market because we know that it will be beneficial for those families in our country who want to buy homes,” said Jerry Howard, executive vice president and CEO of the NAHB. He also noted the benefit increased wood imports would be for home builders, as it would provide affordably priced lumber. Howard went on to say, “Today, the United States is overly reliant on Canadian imports to meet its lumber needs ... and we are looking to Russia to add equilibrium to our market for this essential commodity for the home building industry.” Howard told Russian officials that the NAHB estimates that American builders will construct 18 million new homes over the next 10 years, and added, “we want to work with you to open up this new trading opportunity.”