There are a lot of people that are becoming interested in Homestead Living where you get away from the City and you live life out on your own. There are good and bad points about this type of lifestyle and before you jump in you should understand all of the resources and skills you will need so your experience is a good one.
The most important part of Homestead Living is finding a piece of property that fits your needs. Not every person that homesteads will live completely off grid and many still have hookups for electric and internet and many will even have county water and maybe even sewer. It really depends on how far out you are going and how developed the area you are looking in is when you are buying. You will also have to consider the climate not just how cold it gets in the winter and how hot it gets in the summer but also is the area prone to Hurricanes or Tornadoes. What amount of rain do you get and how long are the seasons.
Unless you are into extreme living many places that you might pick really are not places you will want to live when you are older or have a family. Even if you want to live a quiet life your kids will need to interact with others and you will too so you have to consider just how far away from others you are planning to be. In most cases though you will find that there are properties that give you a good balance of freedom and at least a light grip on civilization.
Water The Most Important Thing For Homestead Living
If you haven’t lived in an area where you have to depend on getting your water off your land then you will be in quite a surprise to find that many properties do not have quality drinking water. Even if you can drill for water the quality might be so poor or polluted that you can’t drink it and if you can’t drink it then it won’t be good for your animals and most likely you won’t want to use it on your crops.
Along with water is your septic system and some land has bad perk rates. This means you can’t really support a sewer system with a septic tank and a leach field for your waste. You might need to truck in sand or materials and build a leach field and that can cost thousands.
So, the first two things you need when selecting a property is to know the availability and quality of water and then the quality of soil for your septic system.
Soil Quality And Topography
Soil Quality will go along with your Perk Test for your septic and you should know more about your property once you find out if it can support your home. The next thing you need to know is if you can plant crops and I don’t expect everyone to want to be a farmer and have 40 acres of wheat but you will want to have a very large garden with a variety of foods that you can eat while they are fresh and put up for the off season. This type of soil can be obtained by amending what you have or by trucking in topsoil but in reality that is not something that you are going to want to do because of the cost. I have seen people move to desert like areas of Colorado and expect to grow fruit trees and that is just pure insanity because of the amount of water and soil it takes. On the other hand I have seen people turn out enough for their family and their animals with not much trouble. Having soil tests are important but your ability to use the land also has to do with the topography. If you have some nice wooded areas that have hundreds of years of organic material but it is on the side of a steep hill then it is going to be very difficult to farm the area or even have animals on it. Goats will do fine but maybe not other animals. You have to consider what work it might take to prepare your property for your home and for your work areas.
You must consider the cost and the equipment it will take and most of all if you are able to do this work on your own because most likely you won’t want to pay anyone.
Another problem with hilly and mountainous areas will be the ability to get cell service and also television reception. Some people overcome this by running an amplifier for their cell service but if your tower is on the other side of the hill you can’t overcome the loss of signal.
We have looked at a couple of the most important aspects of choosing land for your homestead but there are many other factors that will either have you living the life you want or wishing you never took this path.
If you are considering this lifestyle then the most important thing to do is meet others that are in the same place that you want to be. There are some online communities for Homesteading and many people post their lives on Youtube. Take all of that with a grain of salt and the most important things you want to learn are what these people really hate about living so far from the City.
You can overcome the lack of Antenna and Cable with Dish and you can also get Internet off of Dish and Cell reception if you have it. Other factors you can live with but your land and its ability to support you is a necessity you can’t overlook.