Treehouse goes to the Supreme Court as City Bullies Residents Into Tearing It Down

Categories: News, Laws & Government, Life Stories, TinyHouse, places, On The Water, Inspiration, Homes / Dwellings

What is a home? 

“Home is where our story begins…”

“Home is the starting place of love, hope and dreams.”

“The magic thing about home is that it feels good to leave, and it feels even better to come back.”

 “Home is where love resides, memories are created, friends always belong, and laughter never ends.”

“A house is made of bricks and beams. A home is made of hopes and dreams.”

“Home is not a place…it’s a feeling.”

“With you, I am home.”

“What I love most about my home is who I share it with.”

“There is nothing more important than a good, safe, secure home.”

“Home is a place you grow up wanting to leave, and grow old wanting to get back to.”

“There’s no place like home.”

“Where we love is home- home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts.”

“In this home… We do second chances. We do real. We do mistakes. We do I’m sorrys. We do loud really well. We do hugs. We do together best of all.”

“May your home always be too small to hold all of your friends.”

“The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.”

“You will never be completely at home again, because part of your heart will always be elsewhere. That is the price you pay for the richness of loving and knowing people in more than one place.”

“Bless out house as we come and go. Bless our home as the children grow. Bless our families as they gather in. Bless our home with love and friends.”

“Home is a shelter from storms-all sorts of storms.”-William J. Bennett

“Home is where one starts from.” –T.S. Eliot


We all share many beautiful ideas about what a home is.  The state of Florida is a special place where people go to live because it's warm - especially in winter.  Homeless don't have to freeze, so there are lots of them.  There's no snow shoveling, and you can work year round.  The only weather breaks we get here are hurricanes.  

I would say that the cities and municipalities in Florida have a chronic case of PTSD .... still lingering from Hurricane Andrew.  They manage to make money continuously off of Andrew's aftermath by imposing taxes and permits on everyone to avoid a similar fate.  This process has lead to solid structures where structures are concerned, but the unregulated mobile home market still finds its way into every community, and no matter how hard they try to build hurricane ready housing, projectile-proned homes are still everywhere.  Depending where you live, some of those hurricane battered mobiles in the keys cost upwards of half-a-million dollars just because of the real-estate they sit on.  

Now that we have great communication - cell phones, internet, facebook, amber alerts, text messaging, weather reporting and planning, we are able to hunker down for a hurricane like never before.  We have plenty of notice to put things away, cover the windows, and get outta dodge if necessary.  So if there's to be rules about hurricanes, they can happen in the Summer.  There's no need to ban you from parking your RV by your house in the winter, but they do it, and they tag it and fine you and make you pay.  

Such is the story of a beautiful treehouse like you have never seen.  It's up on Anna Maria Island, and has been the target of city scrutiny.  If you call the city and ask them about permits, you never know what that answer will be.  When you start a project, it takes a week to learn if it's regulated by city, county or state, zoning department, if it's historical there's a whole other set of regulations to research, and honestly, you can't just look up your property and find color coding as to who to call with a question.  I'm in the construction industry, and we have to do extensive research on any home we do work on so we know which taxing entities we're to be dealing with for permits.  It's the biggest bumbling mess I've ever heard of.  

So when I heard that one family had to take their treehouse to the supreme court to save it, I think how the municipality that infringed on one family's castle should be dismantled or sued into oblivion.  Yes that's the case.  They owned their land, and the city is trying to control their land for them.  That's how I see it anyhow.  The city has a right to suggest... not to mandate.  A citizen has a right to complain that their land harms them, but the government doesn't have a right to say that your land could harm someone... unless they want to buy that land from you for a reasonable price, and purchase the right to speak about that land.

Okay okay... on with the story....  - turn the page.... 

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