For a lot of people, living off grid sounds like an attractive option.
Living Off Grid
At first, when you think about living off grid, you may picture sleeping under the stars or camping for a few days… but let me tell you, it goes deeper than that.
It is the ultimate change in you, to develop a self-sustained lifestyle; to just have what you need, not take from land, and to start eating straight from your garden.
The purpose of this article is to let everyone interested in a homesteading lifestyle know about the latent concerns. We sometimes overlook the challenges associated with this lifestyle.
Living off the grid also means living in a rural area, which already presents a number of safety issues that you must be aware of before choosing a property.
This article will explain most of the challenges that you must keep in mind before finalizing your decision to purchase off-grid property.
Distance from the Nearby City
Off-grid lifestyle lovers usually prefer living far away from cities. At the same time, they want to have access to the amenities that any big city offers such as medical care facilities and shopping.
Therefore, rural areas that are around 60 to 100 miles away from a bigger city seem to be an attractive option for those who want to go off the grid.
To manage your off-grid living, the property must have access to a reliable source of fresh water.
Make sure the rural area is blessed with a river, stream, lake, shallow-depth aquifer, or pond.
You can dig a well on your property to get easy access to the water, or you will have to utilize spring or lake resources to bring water to your home.
Homesteaders prefer to rely on nothing but natural resources. Therefore, you must consider the energy-generating potential of different sources including solar, hydro, wind, and geothermal.
In order to create a self-sustaining lifestyle, the property must have access to a reliable mode of creating power.
Most rural properties do not have access to a public sewer system. A septic system is a personal kind of sewer system to dispose of water organically.
Before deciding about the septic system on your property and checking its functionality, you must hire the services of a soil engineer to conduct a perk test.
In case issues surface, an engineer can suggest a special system that will be installed specifically for your location.
Those who live off-grid usually have plans to grow their own food and keep their own livestock.
To fulfill all these plans, the land must have fertile soil in order to grow a more self-sufficient farm.
Before purchasing the land, you must conduct a detailed soil analysis with the help of an expert.
Before even seeing different property options, you must have already imagined the style and design of your home.
Therefore, you must analyze the property from every angle, taking note of things such as exposure, latitude and longitude, water availability, and energy resources.
If you are unable to perform this duty yourself, I suggest you hire the services of an expert architect to make sure that you are purchasing the right land according to your plans.
When you find your property, it must be as ideal as possible for your logistical needs as it is for your emotional needs.
Threat Assessment of the Area
Before finalizing the property, you must have complete knowledge about the threats you will face in the area and how these threats will affect you. You can check the previous data to find out exactly what kinds of disasters happened in the past.
This data can help you determine what threats are most likely, the intensity of the disasters, and how the community responds to them.
For instance, if the area lies in a floodplain, you need to know if your property sits in the floodplain or not. And in case of emergency, how will you respond to the threat?
How far is your property located on the main highway, near the hospital police, and fire stations? Gather all this information before purchasing the property.
It appears that the demand for off-grid properties will continue to grow over the next few years as more and more people want to live a self-sustained lifestyle.
If you are among those looking for a self-sustaining off-grid property, I suggest you analyze the chosen property against these factors before handing over your hard-earned money.
Homesteading is more than just a hobby. It's a total overhaul of your lifestyle and a commitment to living a sustainable life off the grid. To help you get started on your journey to self-sufficiency, visit our friends at Pioneer Settler.
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on August 13, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.