Florida Home Renovations – M’s Project #1

After purchasing our new home on December 31st, I returned to BC to house sit for three months in Victoria.  M stayed in Florida for the month of January to take out the old kitchen and remove the tile floors to expose the original terrazzo floors.  Terrazzo floors were popular in Florida homes built in the 1950s. Unfortunately many were later covered with carpet and ceramic tiles.  Terrazzo is a solid, groutless floor  that is a blend of one part cement and two parts marble. After pouring this floor (and before the interior walls were framed) the builders would sprinkle marble chips of varying sizes and colors over the cement so that about 70% of the floor is covered with marble chips. Our terrazzo is a combination of black, grey, beige and rusty brown marble chips.

This was an incredibly difficult and dirty job and it would be difficult to live in the house while this was going on, although M did.  In addition, he didn’t have a vehicle and rode his bike many times to Home Depot which is about a 15 min car drive from our home.  He had to rent a special jack hammer which he packed on his back in a backpack and rode home.  On two occasions the equipment didn’t work and he had to ride back to Home Depot and exchange them for new ones.

First M had to break up all the ceramic tiles and then after clearing them out and loading them into a large garbage bin in our driveway, he had to remove the larger pieces of grout with a special grinder.  Fortunately the company we hired to polish the terrazzo were able to remove a lot of the surface grout with their big grinders and this saved M a lot of back breaking work.  But to get an idea of the scope of this job, we have 4 bathrooms and 4 bedrooms, a kitchen, livingroom/dining room and a Florida room for approx. 2400 square feet of floor space and it was all covering in 18 inch ceramic tiles from the 1970’s or 80’s.  This was one big job!


As you can see from the last 2 photos the results were amazing!  On the negative side we found that the main entrance area is only grey concrete and one of the bathrooms was half terrazzo and half concrete.  Not sure why this was done but we were told that any time there was a repair done on these homes where they had to dig into the foundation, they would have to replace the area with concrete as it was too expensive to match with the existing terrazzo.  Anyway 95% of the house has terrazzo floors and we are very happy with the results. Thanks M for your hard work on this project and bringing back our terrazzo floors to their original beauty !

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