Hopefully that is a simple question that gets a simple answer. (Maybe I should say before March 2002? as thats when the 2001 FBC went into effect).
Did Florida as a whole follow any building codes?
Or was it county by county?
Was it a national code?
What were the city and county inspectors looking to?
Or did people just do whatever and build whatever they heck they wanted?
Up to 1971 there were no local ordinances regarding building codes prior-All State Statutes
1971 the state gave local counties “Home Rule” to establish there own laws and ordinances.
The SSBC or Southern Standard Building Code went into effect 11/12/1974 with the 1973 Code. then the was amended or re-written every three years until March 1, 2002 when the current FBC or Florida Building Code went into effect and that is amended or re-written every three years.
Of course this precludes any of the Dade/Broward or SFBC versions of their code.
It’s not simple. Before the Florida Building Code, by state law, municipalities had the choice to adopt one of 4 different code, the SBC, the One and Two Family Dwelling Code, the EPCOT code, or the S FL Building Code.
Except for South FL, most adopted the Standard Building Codes, but different cities and counties adopted different versions of the codes at different points in time, and also added local amendments.
The only way to know for certain what code was in effect in a given city at a given point in time is to research local ordinances passed by the County Commission or City Council that adopted a version of the code.
It was very confusing back then, you could go 2 miles and be working under an entirely different version of the code. Made life difficult!