NARI Remodeler Certifications and Why They Are Important

Our company decided many years ago to affiliate with the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) and our local chapter, NARI Pacific Northwest. Not only are these great resources for clients looking for qualified remodeling companies, but they are also great resource for the companies that join for keeping up to date on products, networking, continuing education, and certifications. Starting the certification process with NARI seemed like a natural extension of our company’s morals and views, would allow our employees to take continuing education courses, and only better our company and give our clients more peace of mind in the long run.

What does it take to become certified through NARI? First and foremost, a commitment to learn and attend classes or be disciplined enough to self-study. Applicants must demonstrate technical skills, have business and project management expertise, and a tenure in the industry (based on the certification). If an applicant has proven, they meet the pre-requisites they can begin the certification process. Each certification requires multi-week preparatory courses. Once the courses are complete, a rigorous examination is taken by the applicant and overseen by a proctor that adheres to strict criterial. Once the applicant has passed the exam, they are officially certified and must take continuing education each year to keep their certification. They also get to rock some fancy letters after their name, here’s what each letter stands for:

CR – Certified Remodeler, this was the first certification that Mitch received! To be eligible, you need to have 5 continuous years working in the industry, and 90% of the work volume must specifically be remodeling work. The Certified Remodeler course is 12-weeks long, followed with a test consisting of 200 questions. Certified Remodelers must meet 16-hours of continuing education per year to maintain this certification.

CRS – Certified Remodeling Specialist, is a service remodeler that specializes in masonry, electrical, plumbing systems, roofing, etc. The certification process is the same as the CR.

CRA – Certified Remodeling Associate, is designed for professionals that support the remodeling industry such as architects, designers, manufacturers, suppliers, and consultants. This certification is the same process as the CR.

CKBR – Certified Kitchen and Bath Remodeler, are for professionals who specialize in kitchens and bath remodeling. To be eligible, you are required to have 5-years in the remodeling industry working specifically with kitchens and bathrooms, and the company you are working for must meet a minimum number of kitchen and/or bathroom remodels per year. This was the second certification that Mitch sought, and the first certification that Debbie received. The course was similar as above, as was the test of 200 questions. Debbie was the first woman in Oregon to receive this certification. Each year Mitch and Debbie must submit 16 continuing education hours for recertification.

MCR – Master Certified Remodeler, these folks are veteran certified remodelers who have held their Certified Remodelers certification for 10 consecutive years and hold at least one other certification through NARI. They must also have served with their local NARI chapter, and be involved as a leader in their local community. This process includes an extra step of including 3 letters of recommendation. Mitch has gained this certification!

UDCP – Universal Design Certified Professional, Mitch holds this certification as well. Universal design specifically addresses many components around designing for ADA compliance, but in a residential application.

CLC – Certified Lead Carpenter, this certification is for professionals in the remodeling industry that have worked for a continuous 5-years, and at least 2-years as a lead carpenter. Being a lead carpenter means they oversee every onsite aspect of the project, management, trade contractors, scheduling, safety, administration, and customer satisfaction. After the course study there is a 180-question proctored examination.

CRPM – Certified Remodeling Project Manager, is for competent remodeling professionals that are well-versed in operational and business aspects of remodeling projects that are completed on time. This certification also requires a minimum of 2 continuous years in the remodeling industry and also to be employed by a company that operates in compliance.

You can find more information regarding each certification on the NARI website.

You can also read more about the Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics that must be upheld by all members.