Katharina Grad Steinmeyer
designer and aging in place specialist
Katharina was born in Germany and moved to the US almost 20 years ago. She travels to Europe on an annual basis with her sons and is still deeply connected to the European lifestyle.
She started her professional training as an apprentice to a master in fine wood working carpentry. Her interests in furniture design and interiors made her want to learn design and construction of furnishings from the ground up.
She moved on to getting certified in interior design and European design furniture trade in Heidelberg.
After her move to Washington State, she spent her first two years remodeling a 100 year old craftsman house back to it’s original state.
In 2002 she and her family moved to Portland, OR, where she began her studies in therapeutic horticulture and gerontology.
With her background in carpentry and design, she was searching for a way to combine all her knockledge and skills to create a custom designed supportive living environment for anybody, any age and any ability.
She met her business partner Paz through their love for Argentine Tango and quickly discovered that they had highly complimentary skills and that they shared their interest in creating supportive and intentional communities.
In 2013 UDU Design, LLC was officially born. Katharina and Paz realized that they had found their answer in designing and building their own brand of ADUs (Accessory Dwelling Units). They decided to create UDUs (pronounde uh-duh) (Urban/Universal Dwelling Units) which would be custom designed to each personal goal, dream or special need of their clients. They knew they had found a niche, when they received an overwhelming welcome from the existing Portland ADU community.
They are very involved in their community and work closely with local ADU advocates and the City of Portland planners to help streamline the process of building ADUs in the Portland metro area.
Katharina’s passion is to create holistic living space which includes the interior as well as the surroundings. She is specialized in desgining for aging-in-place and to create beautiful supportive and even healing gardens, no matter how restricted the space. Even a sunny window sill can be enough!
Katharina received her Real Estate licence in 2014 and is currently getting certified as a Senior Real Estate Specialist. UDU Real Estate is the sister company to UDU Design, LLC. Walter Pozarycki, the principal broker has been in the real estate industry for over 20 years.
Her goal is to add this service to the long list of services she and Paz already provide to their clients.
She wants to better assist their clients with finding or selling the right property to helping them design, remodel, or build the perfect home or UDU to support their personal life style, needs or investment objectives. She serves everyone in the community, but her passion is to work with people who are looking to age-in-place or who have special accessibility needs for their homes. Her strong background in gerontology and horticultural therapy, as well as her training in interior design make her uniquely qualified to assist this specific group of home owners.
UDU Design can furthermore support their client’s needs in helping them with all aspects of design-build and educating them on the most current trends in down-sizing, ADU ownership and creating intentional community to support healthy, sustainable and independent living.
Minor studies in Architecture and Green Building Design at University of Colorado and Ramapo University NJ.
Worked in the building trades and was trained in HVAC design and bidding working for his father for 4 years.
Began working for Energy Services Companies in the late 80‘s into the 90’s in energy efficient lighting design and project management for Metropolitan Power Technologies and Enersave Inc. These companies worked extensively in ‘Demand Side Management’ coordinating with Con Edison NY to implement energy saving programs in the NY metropolitan area.
Moved on to work for EUA Cogenex as a lighting engineer and project manager. He was trained in the new PSE&G Standard Offer Program. I was the lead designer and project manager for Stevens Institute of Technology campus and building in Hoboken, NJ, various hospital retrofits and large scale warehouse and office buildings in the NY, NJ area.
Began work as a private consultant in the mid 90‘s working for Siemens Technology and then began a private company selling and implementing energy conservation projects under PSE&G’s Standard Offer program.
After moving to Portland Oregon I began to utilize his skills and experience in project management, lighting design, and general contracting to begin investing in residential and small commercial buildings for upgrade, rental and resale.
UDU Design LLC has now become the perfect culmination of utilizing his past experience to begin focus on design and construction building experience to bring a whole new level of expertise to their clients. This newest venture with his business partner Katharina Grad Steinmeyer has allowed them to focus on their diverse and complementary skill sets to achieve many different goals for their clients. They work with clients in a complete and holistic manner to help them realize the sometimes hidden potential within their projects.
Working with UDU Design and Real Estate services allows their customers peace of mind knowing that they consider every aspect of where to spend every dollar to live in their perfect ‘Dwelling’, create their dream income producing UDU or share a Universally Designed space to care for loved ones.