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Pinellas County Home Replacement

I recently looked at distressed waterfront properties in the Pinellas County to see what the cost would be to build a 3000 sq ft home with 6 car garage underneath. It would have to meet all the elevation and wind requirements under the new construction guidelines. I wanted to compare similar homes in the area to see if it made more sense to purchase an existing home that met the new construction standards and codes set by FEMA. What I found out absolutely blew me away!

I found a condemned house close to Madeira Beach on the bay side. The lot size was 90 x 115 with a simple dock and no bulkhead. It was sailboat water with no bridges to the gulf. It would make a great place to live and enjoy Florida living at its best. The selling price was $199 but the bank would entertain a bid of somewhere around $175,000 to get it off their books.

I worked up all the necessary rough estimates with a modular design that would blend with the look of the neighborhood and fit the setbacks on the site. The estimates are below.

$6000 – demolition, removal

$8,000 – Permits and impact fees

$45,000 – Garage foundation (6 cars)

$180,000 – 3000 sq ft home well equipped stack porch

$20,000 – drive, flat work, utility, deck work

$10,000 – miscellaneous, custom work, etc

$175,000 – land cost

I looked at all types of building techniques comparing price, speed of completion and design. The most cost effective process was using modular construction. It would be made up of 4 sections with stacked porches on the front and back of the home. The time to complete the project once permits were obtained was estimated at 100 days. Considering the time factor when using modules and comparing the all the cost against stick by stick building the end results was at least 20% less across the board.

The total came in around $444,000. That 148 sq ft for the complete project. Comparable properties less than 3 years old were pricing around $600,000 these homes would have sold in excess of $1,000,000 in 2005.

If you ever wanted to live on the open water with your boat in the water behind your state of the art home but wasn’t sure you could afford it then think again. With rates as low as they have been in decades a beautiful waterfront home built to the latest and safest codes could be in your reach.

Affordable Waterfront Homes – not an Oxymoron

Building a house on the beach, canal, intercostals’ or river doesn’t mean you have to be a millionaire anymore. With new building techniques, interest rates under 5%  and waterfront sites at an all time record low, owning a house on the water may just be in reach for the average family today. Let’s face it, who wouldn’t love to have a getaway, vacation or retirement house on the water. For many of us, it’s why we live in Florida and many families are taking advantage of the market

Just 6 years ago homes with water access to the gulf coast were selling for astronomical prices. They would sell in excess of a million bucks. Today you can build a very nice home on one of these water ways for literally half of what you could buy a waterfront home at the top of the boom market.

Investors are already speculating on old homes and vacant lots on premier sites on the water. They are buying these old homes half their value 6 years ago, tearing them down and building beautiful elevated homes with state of the art materials built to the new codes for wind and surge

Modular construction has become the preferred method for affordable waterfront homes for many reasons. Modulars are served well due to the advancements in design but other factors contribute to executing a waterfront home with precision, and for less money than conventional methods

  • Strength and durability are designed from the inside out. Stacking as many as 10 modules side by side and one above the other requires state of the art engineering techniques as well as the best materials available.  Efficiency is at the heart of the designs which makes using modular construction more cost effective
  • Durable exterior components are a high priority when home is exposed to harsh weather conditions. Salt and sun can play havoc on exteriors so choosing components that are designed to last saves you costly maintenance for years to come. Products like Metal roofs are a smart choice that will add strength and come in a wide array of colors to give your home that coastal feel. Concrete board siding comes in an assortment of widths and is the preferred choice at the beach. Composite Lighting and fixtures come in many designs and wont rust or weather over time. Brass hardware adds to the period look and will last a lifetime. Composite decking, steps and rails wont warp, peel or splinter and holds its color under the elements

Time is money when building your home at the beach. Using modular components can cut building time in half and probably more without sacrificing design. Because the modules are being built while the elevated foundation is being constructed the timeframes to complete the project can be done in as little as 90 days. This is a multitasking process that saves time and saves even more money.