I just took possession of a property I purchased in Miami.
It is a single story CBS construction, 1 great room, 1 dinning room, 1
living room, 4 bed rooms 4 bath rooms, 2 car garage about 3300 SF of
It is VERY dated (built 1972). It needs major work. Some of the work
I can deal with such as upgrading the rooms and baths.
But it has some problems I need to solve.
(1) It has very few exterior windows. The house is a wrapped around
house with an interior courtyard with a pool in the middle covered
with an overhead enclosure. Most of the rooms open into this
courtyard. I believe the original design is for the rooms to receive
light from the courtyard instead and therefore there are very few
windows (and they are tall and narrow) on the actual exterior side of
the rooms. Most of the rooms are very dark.
(2) The rooms are disjointed. There is no way to go from the kitchen
to the great room without crossing the courtyard. There is no way to
go from the master bedroom to the living room without crossing the
courtyard. May be the intent was to include the courtyard as a part
of the living space, but when it rains it's a real issue.
(3) There are a lot of weird contraption about the house I am trying
to find out. The previous owner is an elderly man who had a stroke
and does not remember much details. There are no plans in the city (I
checked and they had a parasite that ate all plans prior to 1972 on
microfilms). The house has a lot of hidden gadgets. Inside the
kitchen there is a in-wall toaster oven that "springs out", there is a
blender that flips up from the kitchen counter, an in-wall steamer and
recessed ironing board with some weird electrical fittings, a burglar
alarm triggered by extra weight on the entrance of some of the rooms,
an in floor safe that has no combinations, an in-wall 8 track player
and record player that is wired to every room with speakers and
intercom...I am discovering weird stuff each day, but those are so
dated and non-functional I think I have to rip them all out. I can
see in 1972 it was probably state of the arts. What do I do with
these old junk? Ebay them or throw them out?
I am not sure where to go from here. I think I need some design help
to solve problems 1 and 2. I have a specific budget in mind for the
whole job. I don't know if I need to hire an architect for the whole
job, or to hire someone to just provide some advise then I will be the
one to execute the job. Of course I want to save money. Any advise
on which way to go?
The fact that there is no plans available, probably means any minor
work I would have to survey the house and submit existing conditions,
that in itself would cost some $...
Thanks for any advise,