02 May 2014

Construction Adventures

This series – written in retrospect, not in real time – follows the ground-up construction of a 4,000+ sf modern waterfront home.

A short time ago, new clients - husband and wife – contacted me to find a modern home for them. The criteria were: minimum three bedrooms, two baths, between Fort Lauderdale and Miami, deepwater (local speak for "ocean access without fixed bridges"), pool and garden for two large dogs, all under $2.5m.

The buyers would be in town in a few days – could we please meet? Which of course we did.

The couple had very clear and concise ideas about the property and the style they were looking for: ideal from a real estate agent's perspective. Within seven days of our initial contact, we conducted the first six viewings.

But it quickly became clear that we would have to also consider ground-up construction. The clients being on travel again, I took video clips of areas I recommended to include in our search for vacant lots and tear-downs.

One of the waterfront lots the clients were considering

Upon their return, I also introduced them to several long-term rentals where they could stay during the construction period, which I anticipated to be at least 14 to 18 months from programming – the architect’s brief on the builders' criteria – to move-in.

Five weeks after our first contact, I met with the clients again. We looked at several larger rentals and as well as waterfront lots – including the rental they were going to live for next two or three years, and also the very lot they would have under contract only five days later.

To be continued.

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