IMG_0642I need to let you know how my Saturday project went. In my last post, I told you about a home improvement project that I needed my dad’s help on. And I told you about the concept of “highest and best use.”

I asked my dad to come by at 9 am. He brought a low wattage, high illumination fluorescent shop light that gave off way more light at a lower heat than the work light I had. He also brought a ten inch sliding compound miter saw, saw horses, and a saw table, plus a whole lot more.

The work went pretty quickly, and it had to. It gets hot fast in an attic in Florida this time of year. It was very cramped and hard to get enough room for a good hammer swing on the mend plates. No such problem installing the construction screws. My dad pre-drilled the 2 by 6 splice lumber. (“Son, this drill is practically a family heirloom.  It was my Uncle Bob’s. It’s a 3-way drill, so it can hammer, drill, and do both at the same time. Works great on concrete. They don’t make ‘em like this anymore.”) The power screwdriver made the rest easy.

I was grateful to have my dad’s help (actually, I was the helper, although you probably figured that out by now). I learned a lot about his life growing up. His dad operated a small saw mill; my dad and one of his sisters helped operate the saw mill, starting under the age of 10, handling the logs, operating the carriage, and doing other work at the mill. I tried to picture a current 9 year old doing that…. I learned some more carpentry skills, too. My dad was even pleased with my lumber selection, although he pointed out, “this one’s got a bow in it.” I couldn’t see it, but he said that was fine, we’d put the concave side out and screw it in which would eliminate the bow and the splice piece would be flush.

Just as the temperature in a Florida attic can change during the course of the day, the value of real estate can change with the passage of time.

With this in mind, you will want to understand the operative date for applying highest and best use in order to maximize the value of your property. In Florida, the operative date is when the property is appropriated. Under Florida law,  property is “appropriated” when the condemning authority makes its deposit into the registry of the court after establishing a right to obtain the property before a jury trial on the value of the property.

If you’re faced with a taking of your property, be sure to talk to your lawyer about “highest and best use” and the operative date for applying that highest and best use.