Miami Green Homes


Concrete foundation pour – in progress time lapse

Concrete pour for a large foundation/footing. Steel has been placed and inspected. 

Construction workers actually working! Jokes aside, you can see the setup to pour, the harmony between concrete truck driver and the workers, the vibrator machine to ensure that concrete is packed properly and the general smoothing and leveling of the top. Pretty good work! Pretty large footing. 

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Permits and board approvals! Miami overview and nuances…

Often referred to as the “necessary evil”, getting a building permit is a crucial part of any project. While the process may pose a considerable time impact, it is important to remember that the primary objective of a building permit is to ensure that safe structures are provided. Beyond the building code approvals, zoning codes also guide the local flair and style of many neighborhoods and cities. The check and balance of this process should instead be looked at as a safety net for the owner, to ensure that the hired license professionals are indeed doing their job – beyond just design.

SEA has been blessed with a plethora of approvals in the last weeks and we are celebrating alongside our clients;

The building permit process and requirements in the respective municipality are typically common knowledge, however some of the nuances that are required may not be completely known and can add substantial time commitment to the permitting process. Some of the more common approvals we help to obtain are the Coral Gables Board of Architects approval – a process that requires a preliminary and a full approval to present to a panel of volunteer architects, Historic board approval (typically in Coral Gables, Miami Beach and City of Miami) – and special Planning and Zoning approvals, such as the recent success in Miami Shores.

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(Miami Dade County Building Permit Application)

Following are some typical permit applications available online in Miami Dade County; these must be singed and notarized by the respective parties:

County: http://www.miamidade.gov/permits/library/building-permit.pdf

Miami: http://www.miamigov.com/nets/docs/permits/buildingpermitapplication.pdf

Miami Beach: http://web.miamibeachfl.gov/building/scroll.aspx?id=37842

Coral Gables: http://coralgables.com/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=741



Paint. non VOC… why do we still have toxic paint?

Something so simple and still so important. There is no excuse anymore not use VOC free paint. All manufacturers and places have it and the quality is as good as the previous blends or even better.

Sherwin Williams “Harmony”, Benjamin Moore “Aura” or “Freshaire” at the Home Depot. Pick your (non-)poison and breathe in clean air… so why is there still toxic paint on the market? I do not have the answer, but as conscious consumers, we can eliminate them all together.

Paying attention to paint is important not just for the applicator, but also during the first few weeks of occupation, when toxins continue to float in the air. Try to apply a non-VOC paint and notice the difference. The usual odors are missing and what may be in your mind as the” fresh paint” smell, is significantly diminished (you still got a new paintjob, believe it).

I have used paints 1 and 2 noted above in my office and applied them myself. The difference in air quality is noticeable and was noted by most of my initial visitors. The quality of the paint, as is the color selection, is excellent.

My favorite example is that of expecting parents preparing the room for the new arrival. New paint is a staple and will set the tone for the rest of the décor. When painting with toxic paint, you are adding to the overall bad air quality, likely will not air out the room enough for toxins to off gas long enough (we are in South Florida, open windows mean wastes AC dollars…) and voila, your key contributor for the gas chamber for the newborn is set. New furniture with Urea Formaldehyde content (such as most of the shiny new furniture that is affordable) will contribute to the overall un-healthy room.

 Instead use the good paint, pay attention to the furniture (do not be afraid to ask for the Material Safety Data Sheets!) or rescue that solid wood crib from your grandma and create a fresh welcoming room.

I use the newborn scenario only as an example, all of the above holds true for any room that you work on.

 

Ready to renovate your new arrivals space? Contact SEA for design ideas.

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