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Thursday, August 21, 2014

1711 Atlantic Boulevard - Key West - Renovate this Mid-Century House or Tear It Down and Build New?

1711 Atlantic Boulevard in Key West offers an interesting opportunity to renovators, flippers, and builders looking for a new project. This architecturally pleasing mid-century home was built in 1958 is different than most Key West mid-century homes built 50s and 60s which are concrete block with stucco finish on slab foundations a tad bit elevated over street grade. There are two additional factors that distinguish this house from others that make this property particularly appealing.

First, the house sits on a large 8050 (70' X 111') square foot lot across from the City of Key West Nature Preserve situated between Beach Club Condominiums to the west and 1800 Atlantic Condominiums to the east. Nothing will ever be built on this stretch of ground - no houses, no condos, no nothing.

Second, the family that built this brought in fill dirt and elevated the site about five feet above Atlantic Avenue as well as neighbors to the west, east, and rear. Rain water drains off this lot and not into it. That's important in the current day when elevations are used in pricing flood insurance. Beyond the cost savings of flood insurance is the opportunity to possibly add a second story above the current house or alternatively build a new house which might get water views of the ocean located on the other side of the mangroves - maybe 300 feet to the south. Click GOOGLE MAP for a view of this home.
The existing house has been added onto over the years. A small building at the rear was expanded as well. That structure abuts property lines and is grandfathered. You could not build that building today, but you would not be required to take it down. According to the Monroe County Property Appraiser this house has 1802 sq ft of living space. However, it looks like a doorway between the main house and the Florida room was removed which expanded the real living area by an additional 288 sq ft. There is another room with 121 sq ft of space to the rear of the garage that provides interior storage. So the actual square footage of usable square feet is much larger than one would see by viewing the public record. (The rear building is not shown on the Property Appraiser site and the square footage of that building is not included in any property valuation.)
If you are like me you have probably watched countless HGTV shows where 1950s homes have been updated and sold or renovated to meet the way we live today. 1711 Atlantic Avenue embodies the spaces, usage, materials, and style different era. Key West has a 50% limitation on spending for renovation of homes. The limitation is related to value of the improvements and not value of land and the structure.  And that is the conundrum - whether to spend money to renovate and bring this fairly large house into the 21st Century, or whether to tear it down and build new. Renovation costs in Key West are very high.  Every penny would count on a renovation of a house like this.
On the other hand, if a new owner would tear down this house and build new, the only limitations would be budget, complying with city building height and density issues, and imagination. I urge potential buyers to CLICK HERE to view more photos of the lot and house and then ponder how you would handle this property. Key West has few opportunities as good as this. This won't be a cheap deal, but it could end up being a fantastic property.

CLICK HERE to view the Key West mls datasheet of 1711 Atlantic Boulevard. Better than looking at pictures on the internet, please call me, Gary Thomas, 305-766-2642 to set up a private showing of this property. I am a buyers agent and a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties Key West. Let me help you find your place in Paradise.


Anonymous said...

Gary I am surprised to hear about the 50% renovation rule. Really? I can point to house after house across KW, particularly in old town and casa marina, where I know for a fact that the renovation costs have far, far exceeded the 50% rule. Are there factors that allow one to exceed 50%?

Gary Thomas said...

Go Here:

to read the city's question and answer page regarding this issue.

Q: What is the 50% rule?

A: FEMA's Flood map first became effective Dec. 31, 1974. Buildings construction after that were required to be at certain elevations above sea level. Existing buildings in regulated flood zones were grandfathered into the National Flood Insurance Program at their current elevations. However, that grandfathered status ceases once the building has been renovated by half it's market value. Once that threshold is reached, renovation plans must include elevating the home to current flood levels.

The questions and answers are lengthy. Go to the site.


Anonymous said...

And it is 50% of the value of the structure not including the land.
Ed Radin


The information on this site is for discussion purposes only. Under no circumstances does this information constitute a recommendation to buy or sell securities, assets, real estate, or otherwise. Information has not been verified, is not guaranteed, and is subject to change.


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Key West, Florida, United States
I first read about Key West in a magazine called "After Dark" sometime in the mid 1970's. But it wasn't until March 1984 that I made my first visit to the island that would become my home. I had two weeks for a vacation and reserved a room at Colours Guesthouse (now Marrero's Guest House) for one week. I thought that if I didn't like Key West, I could always go back to Miami or Ft. Lauderdale for the rest of my trip. But after a couple of days in Key West, that was no longer a consideration. But when I wanted to extend my stay for the extra week I found there was no room at the inn. The guesthouse owner did find me a room at LaTeDa, the infamous guesthouse/restaurant. That's a story I'll write another day. But those two weeks in Key West gave me the realization that I had found Paradise. Key West has been my home since 1993 and my only regret is that it took me so long to get here. I am a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties CRI. Let me help you find your new home or business in Paradise. Living in Paradise is not a slogan, it's a way of life.