I found my property but ...

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ao's picture
ao
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I found my property but ...

I've been looking for a long time for a property upon which to move farther along the path of self sufficiency and have found the closest to ideal property yet.  It has a good location (rural yet close to town and an excellent road), 175 mature fruit trees, a large fenced raspberry patch, small vegetable garden that can easily be expanded, plenty of cleared land, fertile soil, hardwoods, a clean stream running through the property, a pond containing trout and bluegills, a hand water pump, plentiful wildlife signs (including deer, game birds, and waterfowl), and an aesthetically attractive, relatively new, well built house heated with propane (expensive, I know) with back-up wood heat.  It has a nice outbuilding with a 3rd garage space, sauna, work room, and wood heat as well as a shed.  It would be no major problem to add solar and wind power and geothermal heat.  The downside is that is has only a half basement with a sand floor (although this could be a plus as I could dig out a nice root cellar) and it is only 2 bedroom and 2 bath (and I'll most likely need one of those bedrooms for a home office).  We're presently living in a roomy 4 bedroom 4 bath house in a nice neighborhood and even though our two children are both in college (and one will be graduating to a job out of state at the end of the year), we'd obviously like to have room for them both when they visit or for other visitors.

Here's my problem.  My wife refuses to step down to a smaller 2 bedroom house.  I think we could put an addition on to the house and/or change a 2 story cathedral ceiling area into another bedroom via a sleeping loft type arrangement but I'm concerned it might compromise the aesthetics of the house.  Another thought is buying a micro-home for the kids or visitors.  I'm having a hard time imagining finding another property as beautiful as this one and as suitable for self sufficiency so how do I convince my wife to scale down?  We are well prepared in most other ways so those thoughts are not a concern.  Any suggestions will be appreciated.  .  

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Re: I found my property but ...

 If the price is right I would move in a heart beat .   You can build  cute little cabins for visitors or kids to come home to  and they would have more privacy .   The kids and friends will love coming to watch your ducks on the pond  and pick apples .

  Fm

 

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Re: I found my property but ...
Full Moon wrote:

 If the price is right I would move in a heart beat .   You can build  cute little cabins for visitors or kids to come home to  and they would have more privacy .   The kids and friends will love coming to watch your ducks on the pond  and pick apples .

  Fm

FM,

I like the privacy angle.  Thanks!

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Re: I found my property but ...

ao,

It sounds like a great place. Don't give up easily. FM's privacy angle might help you.   I wish you the best with your "weak link" to your vision. Keep us posted.

Resilience is the key, in my opinion, and it sounds like this is a huge step in the direction of resiliency.  Good luck.

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Re: I found my property but ...

http://www.log-cabin-connection.com/small-log-cabin-kits.html      Let her start googling all the possibilities with  little cabins .   Get her dreaming  about  all the people that would like to come out  for a getaway .

We stayed at a place that was set up so  each cabin had  privacy   and connected by trails .  We could eat meals at the main house, on the deck  or cook in the efficiency kitchen .

  FM

 Ps.  Get the kids to talk her into it . 

    .

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Re: I found my property but ...
MarkM wrote:

ao,

It sounds like a great place. Don't give up easily. FM's privacy angle might help you.   I wish you the best with your "weak link" to your vision. Keep us posted.

Resilience is the key, in my opinion, and it sounds like this is a huge step in the direction of resiliency.  Good luck.

Thanks Mark.  I've looked a long time and nothing else has come close to this.  We'll see how things go with the better half.  This is the first thing that she's balked on anything and she has great intuition with these matters so maybe there's something I'm missing.

ao's picture
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Re: I found my property but ...
Full Moon wrote:

http://www.log-cabin-connection.com/small-log-cabin-kits.html      Let her start googling all the possibilities with  little cabins .   Get her dreaming  about  all the people that would like to come out  for a getaway .

Very nice.  The second one in particular was sweet.  That's what I had in mind with regards to a micro-house.  Thanks FM! 

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Re: I found my property but ...
Full Moon wrote:

http://www.log-cabin-connection.com/small-log-cabin-kits.html      Let her start googling all the possibilities with  little cabins .   Get her dreaming  about  all the people that would like to come out  for a getaway .

We stayed at a place that was set up so  each cabin had  privacy   and connected by trails .  We could eat meals at the main house, on the deck  or cook in the efficiency kitchen .

  FM

 Ps.  Get the kids to talk her into it . 

    .

I think FM's perspective is spot on. Take your time, be smart and make it happen.  Good luck.

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Re: I found my property but ...

  You are  welcome .

  Maybe golf carts would be in the budget for the visitors to come to the main house ?   These will work  in case you need to move the in-laws out there .

 FM

   Remember the visitors will love to come work in the garden and do the chores .  ( well maybe not the kids, they will be sleeping in )

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Re: I found my property but ...
ao wrote:

This is the first thing that she's balked on anything and she has great intuition with these matters so maybe there's something I'm missing.

Smart man. Intuition is a valuable tool mostly neglected. Perhaps there's a way to refine it with her regarding this property. She might be able to articulate it if given enough time and you let your intuition direct you to give her the right prompts.

Now might be a good time to seek guidance if it suits you. "No man should embark upon any great undertaking without first invoking the blessings of deity."

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Re: I found my property but ...

I was in your situation not long ago. The key is not your family memeber like or not. The problem is when everyone is hungry, you house may become a target. Think of this : when you have full of friuts on your trees and something in your gardens and others have nothing, are you in a better position or a bad one? I bet the post peak oil situation run into a spiral downward and self reinforcing. During such gray period before it gets stable, any "Resilience" is not resilience at all.

Dr. Martenson's community effort is a great idea. But most people won't believe it and act together in my community.

My ideas is: learn to survive in that gray period first, of cause it means we need to stock up stuff. I did it two year supply so far. My goal is at least five years. Then we can  talk about the future not how to "resilence", but how to prosper in post peak oil economy.

I believe farm or land price will continue to go down for a while. It is still too early to buy a farm, especially with a house in it.

 

 

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Re: I found my property but ...

My wife also balks when I find a nice rural property, even close to a town.  Her objection is that we would need more social interaction than would be possible in a remote area.  Yes, people would love to come visit, but maybe only once a year.  Will that be enough community for you and her?

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Re: I found my property but ...

ao, the lhome and land you describe sounds like it has so much going for it!   I know I have been looking for a more ideal location for a couple of years now, and have been surprised at how long and hard a search it has been.  Meanwhile I keep preparing in place, but I keep hoping I'll find something that feels closer to "right"; a place with more going for it.  Given  your and my experience looking for a place, I'd have to wonder if you are going to get another shot at something this good again real soon.  I know I'd jump if I found something that came that close to meeting my criteria!  Plus it sounds like FM has some good ideas on how to address the issue of additional places for the kids.

If you really believe that times are going to get extra tough, and that we'll need to be able to be as self-sufficient as possible, then giving yourself time (whatever time we have between now and then) to establish your homestead before then, and make the adjustments you need to prepare, may be  incredibly important (timeand -critical).

I hope you are able to resolve this with your wife.  I know my husband and I don't see eye-to-eye on this, and it makes preparing for the future very hard.  Good luck!

Kennyq, interesting post.  I've thought along those lines alot.  And my husband also thinks that if even tougher times are ahead, that I'm "preparing all wrong", i.e., who is going to keep that mob of people who didn't prepare out of our garden and fruit trees?  I don't have a good answer for that, except that getting wrapped around the axel thinking about all possible futures does not serve me.  So I go ahead and prepare for the "being able to stick it out at home" scenario.  But at the same time, I do realize this may not be the initial scenario that faces us, and that alternative preparations to weather out those times may be worth considering.   

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Re: I found my property but ...
ao wrote:

  I've looked a long time and nothing else has come close to this.  We'll see how things go with the better half.  This is the first thing that she's balked on anything and she has great intuition with these matters so maybe there's something I'm missing.

 

Most likely what you are missing is she doesn't believe any of this "end of the world" stuff and doesn't see a need to leave her comfortable nest and run off to the woods.  You're attempting to fight a lack of belief combined with emotional attachment of current location with the logic of what might happen down the road.  You'll loose that fight, even if she does finally capitulate with reluctance, and move to the woods.  You most likely need to work on the underlying issue instead of location of living quarters.

I say this, because I have a couple friends who have or have had ( one divorced over it ) this problem....and I've picked up on it time and again with spouses that don't understand the other half's need to prep.  I mean, heck, let's face it.....it's hard to walk into a mall or a Walmart, and come to grips with the concept that all this might disappear someday.

I've always been blessed with a wife that has had complete faith in my genius (and even then, there are periods the faith wanes...... ahahahahaaaa ), or as her mother once said " IF THAT SOB DECIDED TO JUMP OFF A BRIDGE, YOU'D PROBABLY FOLLOW HIM, HUH ?"  Turns out that was somewhat true.....we took up skydiving.

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Re: I found my property but ...

 How much peak oil does sky diving use ?      Even us here are having a hard time coming to grips of peak oil  and the changes to come .  Our walmart is becoming more bare by the week .   

  AO ,  please to listen to your wife's reservations ( she might see something you do not ) if she has not ever pitched a fit before you are blessed .     I pitched one when we made a move to Germany and a Royal one when we moved to Japan .  Many of us ladies just want to know we have our little protected nest ,  our own bed, our own  familiar surroundings .     Talk to her honestly of the advantages of moving then  give her time . Women have  followed their men since the beginning of time .  Do not give up on her or your dreams   Go ahead and make plans ... you do not have to sign .   Be prepared to give it up if you need too .  Better to live on a roof than with a contentious wife .  How long have you lived at your home ?   Maybe do not sell the old one yet  if she knows she can come back to it she will be more open to trying the new place .

  We do understand your excitement  .  It would be so much easier to add on  than to get all the other bonus things to the state of prep  you find this place .     I too do not think there are that many out there .   We are rooting for you ...

  If you have to give it up maybe some one else  here will want it .

 FM

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Re: I found my property but ...
Full Moon wrote:

 How much peak oil does sky diving use ?     

 

In the "for what it's worth" column, that was 40 years ago.  I've come to appreciate the folly of jumping out of perfectly good airplanes. Wink

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Re: I found my property but ...

Talk grandkids.    A micro house witrh small cabins for the kids to visit is perfect for bringing grandkids for extended visits.  The parents (your kids) get privacy and the GK can run amok and climb trees and learn to fish and run over to granma's for milk and cookies.

We live next door to my in-laws.  It requires work,  don't get me wrong,  but it allows us our own space and yet we can help them as they get too old to handle the land etc and our kids run back and forth getting extra love and attention and lots of space to wander.  I know my mother in law puts up with me to get a chance to spend time with those grandkids of hers!!  Wink

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Re: I found my property but ...

 Dancer ,           And  the gravity pulls harder now days .   Frown    oops this is for the sky diving remark ! 

 

  Land ,  Jewels in your crown      You are a better person than I .   

 FM

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Isolated Rural Locations

 

In his self-published, yet highly informative and interesting book, The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse, author Fernando "Ferfal" Aguirre talks about isolated rural farm locations being especially vulnerable.

He mentions a typical Argentinian farmer firing warning shots to keep potential scavengers away, help or medical attention being far away, and the example of many White Zimbabean farmers living isolated, heavily armed and fortified, and yet beset by attacks and kidnappings and murders - or even just being sniped while out doing daily chores.

So an isolated area may not be the best option unless you are prepared with defenses - suggestions may be round-the-clock watches, heavy armaments, cleared out brush, high walls, secure buildings resistant to fire, reinforced walls and windows instead of drywall, etc. A residential neighborhood that can arrange for security patrols and neighborhood watches was his suggestion.

Poet

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Re: I found my property but ...

Here's another source of small homes. You can build 'em or buy 'em and they are fully self-contained:

http://tumbleweedhouses.com/

Arthur

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Re: I found my property but ...

I grew up in Zimbabwe, and my family still farm and live there. I agree with poet, about isolated rural areas being more vulnerable.

KennyQ, while you may be correct about people wanting what you have making you more vulnerable, my exprerience in Zimbabwe was that community does indeed pull together.they linked phones together, rallied around anyone in need, but were unable to stop random catastrophe. The fear is indeed other humans, Isolation does make you more vulnerable.

The community is extraordinary in times of crisis, even ongoing crisis like Zimbabwe. Religion also becomes more prominent (or alcohol!) The thing to remember, is that people dont WANT to live in a 'Mad Max' movie. Even during collapse, they try hard to have happy times, they want the 'good moments' to outnumber the 'bad moments,' and the community works very hard to stamp that desire into people around them. They collaborate to weed out eggressive elements, they collaborate to construct joyful ceremonies and moments, using less 'stuff' but more human interaction as the basic material for this construct.

ao ...on persuading your wife....most people I know who live in the country have a more active social life that city folk. Maybe make some country friends, go to some community events in your chosen spot to help her see this? The key, I believe, is finding something very close to a small town or hub, where you can build a richly meaningful life, not far in the woods where you sit with your gun waiting for the hordes

I am going through this with my hubby. moving slowly, involing him emotionally in the choice, making him a part of the process, even if it takes longer and you loose that ideal home, rather than trying to impose my choice on him.

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Re: I found my property but ...

Poet,

Ferfal's book makes a good point about rural isolation.  Seems to me if one is going to go rural, one should either be in or very close to town, or VERY far in the sticks.  Either have the protection of a sizeable community, or have the protection of being extremely isolated and hidden.  On one hand you have more potential risk of encountering trouble (higher probability-less impact) but have the assistance of a community, and on the other you have less potential risk of encountering trouble but no assistance should it happen (lower probability-higher impact).  Given most peoples' need for human contact, most are probably better off being part of a small town or other community.  Ao said the property in question was very close to town, so at least there's potential there for community assistance or support.

ao,

Maybe there's something you can build at the new place that can entice her?  Maybe it'd be a larger greenhouse, or a place to make and fire pottery, or a garage or shop building to work in privacy etc.  Something that will get her started thinking about the potential possibilities more land/space might provide.  In addition to the other guest housing recommendations, you can also consider one or more ger (yurt) tents.  I spent most of two weeks living in one, and aside from the lack of an indoor toilet it was rather comfortable.  Not too difficult to assemble and disassemble either, at least the traditional ones.  Plus any children you have over would probably think it's the coolest thing Smile 

- Nickbert

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Re: I found my property but ...

In 2001 my wife and I downsized from a 2800 sq ft. house to a rather secluded lake cottage of 460 sq ft.   Two bedrooms, one bath.  The reduction in costs and housekeeping chores allowed us more time for travelling, camping and leisure activities.  The greatest challenge for us was re-establishing a social network.  You cannot expect people to beat a path to your door if you're the new comer.  We had to make an aggressive effort to become socially active.  But, most people in the boonies are in a similar boat, so if you're friendly and helpful, then you can be successful.

Before we downsized, my wife held onto the expectation that our three kids would come and visit us more than they did.  They live in  all corners of the country, and only came home for major holidays.  We found ourselves rattling around a large suburban house, but the kids had their own agendas and really couldn't find the time to visit us as much as we wanted them to.  At the lake house, we get lots of visits from them, because it's a cool place.  The grandkids absolutely love it here.  In addition, we have lots of friends who stay with us for varying lengths of time.  We recently built a 15 by 30 foot "bunkhouse" onto the garage with an extra bedroom, bathroom, laundry and cooking facilities which gives our visitors more privacy.  We close it down when nobody's visiting, thus saving the hassle of heating and maintaining unused facilities.   We have a "scalable" operation which expands and contracts depending on how many people are here.   Now we have to be careful about scheduling people up to visit, or we find we do not have time to go camping or travelling like we want.

When we moved here, we did not consider sustainablity or self sufficiency as a key attribute.  But, as time goes on, we have been moving more and more toward that vision.  The greatest challenge that I see is that self sufficiency sort of precludes going off on long camping trips away from the homestead.    One of the nice things about the "scalable" aspects of the bunkhouse setup is that if things got bad enough for one or more of the kids, we could easily accomodate their families here and we would welcome the extra hands if we had to quickly ramp up our self reliance capabilities.

 

     

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Re: I found my property but ...
liesl, post 20 wrote:

I grew up in Zimbabwe, and my family still farm and live there. I agree with poet, about isolated rural areas being more vulnerable.

Liesl

Welcome to the forum.  Your background gives you a unique perspective on what can really happen, compared to what we speculate might  happen.  I'm sure many of us would like to hear more of your observations.  Have you visited the web site or read the book mention by Poet in post 18?  Ferfal lived through the Argentina collapse.  It would be interesting to compare your observations to his.  http://ferfal.blogspot.com/  Of course you're welcome to post on any topic any time.

Travlin 

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Re: I found my property but ...

ao,

Did you decide on the property?  I've been AWOL from this forum because my husband and I have been out-of- town scouting for sites.   

Lisa

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