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03.12.2014 admin
First and foremost you must consider what being off grid is and what it means to you before you choose your land. So suffice it to say, it’s probably a good idea to choose a property that fits your lifestyle choice and allows for expansion and building upon these core values.
AWAY FROM THE CITY – This is perhaps the second most important aspect when searching for the perfect off grid property. PHYSICAL ACCESS (Year-Round) – Being close to a main road and having legal access is important, and just as important is physical access. NO RULES OR FEW RULES – This is where protective covenants and restrictions will limit your choices. FREE FROM ENCUMBRANCES –  Make sure that there is clear title, no tax liens, taxes are current, mortgage is current or paid off, the property is not in foreclosure, and that the land is not in the midst of a legal battle. Ultimately, and most importantly, it comes down to doing what’s best for you and your family.
Make sure you have a clean natural water source, whether that is a well, a lake, river, stream or natural spring. Wood, rock, stone, clay and mud are all natural materials you will need in some form or another. Having horses or cattle will provide you with plenty of manure for building and growing crops. Buying land that is practical and lends itself to building an off grid homestead is by far the MOST IMPORTANT aspect. It seems no matter how hard you look, you’re always going to have restrictions on what you can do or build, and how you do it. San Diego, CA for example and the county is very strict in what types of buildings can be built. Ideally, you’ll want to choose a property that is free from as many restrictions as possible. Another reason to buy direct from the landowner is you are more likely to be able to negotiate a better price and lower interest rate. Every penny you save on the purchase price and the interest, can go directly back into your property.
The portraits in Scrublands show farmers, homesteaders, herders, who seem at once weary and peaceful set against beautiful landscapes and environments largely of their own making. The farmers and homesteaders in the series were found mostly in remote mountain ranges, like the Carpathians and the Swiss Alps. While the photos include images of wisened farmers and community builders, many of their subjects had no experience in living a self-supporting lifestyle prior to setting out on their own.
Part of the reason Bruy wants to extend the trip to the US---particularly places in New Mexico---is the influence that he says stories from the US have had on the European homesteaders he met. At one with nature: French photographer Antoine Bruy travelled around Europe living with families who have turned their backs on modern civilization for a humble existence deep in the wilderness.
Rustic: Arriving by donkey 20 years ago, English woman Kate settled on some land near the village of Bayacas in Sierra Nevada, Spain. Humble existence: The French photographer has documented families who have chosen to turn their backs on the breakneck speed of modern life to become at one with nature.
Living off the land: Mr Bruy captured this picture of Olivier nursing a sheep while spending a month with the French shepherd. He said: 'I give them a hand for different kind of tasks, like growing vegetables, fixing a roof, building a straw bale house or taking care of animals if they have some. Real estate is a complex and detailed business, and there are many rules, regulations, restrictions, covenants, and ordinances of any given town, city, county, municipality. The type of building you will be living in is just one aspect of how to find and choose land for off grid living. The closer you are to a larger city, any city for that matter, the more rules and restrictions there will be on what you can build and do with your land. A land-locked property is one that is surrounded by either private or public land and that has no legal access.
This will not only dictate how much you will pay annually in property taxes, but also in how much you pay for the land. Of course you must be able to afford a property, and it’s rather pointless to tell you to only buy something if you can afford it. The last thing you want to do is move onto your new land and find out a month later that there’s a legal battle and ownership of the land is being disputed. These are simple tips that are meant to give you an outline of how to find and buy land that is conducive to living off grid, farming, homesteading, and living the sustainable lifestyle. This sounds like a no-brainer but there are places in the country where folks haul their water for miles to their properties, and to me in a survival situation, this is just plain dangerous UNLESS there’s a dependable clean natural water source nearby. Simply put, the amount of energy in fuel and labor to go pickup, pump, transport, and place the water on your property is astronomical. It makes sense to make sure you can provide materials for every aspect of living that you can.

It’s even more important than the legalities of building codes, city ordinances, restrictions and covenants.
Keeping practicality in mind instead of aesthetics or price will help narrow the search considerably, and it’s probably worth a little more money for practical reasons. Well the same holds true when buying land for living off grid, your location is very important when considering energy generation, and climate for growing and preference.
They have indepth information at a glance an offer tons of demographic, geographic, and climatological options when searching for locations. The quickest easiest and most practical way to find a good location is avoid larger cities. Zoning and ordinances are also strict, and you’re more likely to find properties which are part of a development of some kind or suburban neighborhood.
This ramshackle house in Ramounat in The Pyrenees belongs to a German man called Peter who has lived there for the last 30 years.
It’s a way to get back to our roots while also keeping the luxuries of high technology and comforts of modern home life. Here’s a short list of things you will need to consider while on your journey to find off grid land.
Stockpiling resources is an option, but ideally you will want to have the land provide as many resources as possible.
Choosing land outside of developed areas will go a long way to providing you the freedom to build what you like because land is not only less expensive, but it has fewer restrictions.
They also have small topography maps, tables, maps, charts and graphs with more information than you could ever possibly use. This poses a problem because then there are not only restrictions on types of homes and zoning (what you are able to do on the property) there could also be Home Owners Associations which could require strict adherence to their rules of their community. First and foremost is that the landowner benefits directly from the sale of the property through a Contract for Deed or Lease Option.
They will act on your behalf whereas a real estate agent is hired by the seller to sell the property. Hopefully you have done enough research to know what your property is worth, and you can make an informed offer. Some land and lots for sale might have protective covenants and restrictions on what types of dwellings are allowed. Some small towns and counties will even tell you that they don’t enforce building codes outside city limits. Yes there are properties out there like that, and there are unscrupulous people who would sell them to you.
If the roads leading to your property are not maintained year-round, how will you reach your land? However, find affordable land that is free from covenants and restrictions and subdivisions, and home owners associations, that my friend is an entirely different story. Fossil fuels are NOT sustainable, and during an emergency you will probably not have access to a fuel source unless you store it in a tank. If you’re planning on building a cabin, then obviously it would make sense to have plenty of trees on your property. You can find an AWESOME price on a 100 acre piece of land in Wyoming or Montana, but it could be land locked (surrounded by other private property) with no access via roads or driveways. So it goes without saying that you need land to start a homestead, you need land to go off grid. Some HOA (Home Owners Associations) even dictate what materials you are allowed to use to build your home, even down to what color and how your home looks.
If there’s 2 feet of snow on the road you will be stuck in your home until the snow melts, or someone comes along to plow the road and driveway for you. Most likely you will not be purchasing commercial land unless you have a business and need commercial land. Because sometimes the taxes are so high on a residential zoned plot of land that it could be nearly as much as the mortgage payment itself.
It’s about planning, and planning is about doing the research you need to do to make a wise and informed decision.
Because with too many restrictions the land is NOT practical to build an off grid homestead.
Some locations in the Western United States are more open to things, while other areas are not. This would mean you would not be able to do anything on your property without going through your neighbors. If you’re more comfortable going the traditional route, then find a real estate agent that will help you negotiate the best deal possible.
For without land you’ll spend the rest of your life making everyone else rich through your labors. Because when it comes down to it the land you choose now will be the land you have to deal with tomorrow.

And in the long run, it’s more practical to buy the equipment and make your own lumber, than purchase it at the store. But alas, finding land that you can afford, that is open and free to build upon, and that will lend itself and is conducive to off grid living is difficult to say the least. Building codes are meant keep people safe, and it’s best to build to code anyway just in case.
Ultimately it’s probably best not to own a property which is land-locked, but if there is a good easement, and everyone is in agreement, then it might be the ideal location. An entire book can be written, and many have been, on real estate zoning and that is way beyond the scope of this short article. How to find off grid land is the purpose of this article and we’ll delve into the fundamental basics of choosing the perfect property. The point is that the further you are away from a major town or city, the less likely there will be restrictive covenants and regulations preventing you from building what you want.
Suffice it to say to simplify things, land that is zoned residential typically has higher annual taxes than agricultural land on a per acre basis. Even $25k is hard to come up with, and people are stuck saving money for years and years to get enough money to make the move. The obvious choice here (if all you were considering were your property taxes) would be to choose a piece of land that is zoned for agricultural use. The only problem with this is that most counties throughout the USA have a minimum parcel size to qualify for agricultural zoning, and that usually ranges around 40 acres or so. You could get stuck very easily if the roads leading to your property are not well maintained.
This will increase your initial investment amount, but will lower your property taxes over time. Some remote communities have well maintained roads, either by the city, county, or by the home owners associations for the subdivision or community of residents. But honestly, it’s a waste of time, effort, energy, and money if you want fast results. In a typical home owners association like this, some of the annual dues go to the maintenance of roads and fences, especially during inclement weather. If you’re willing to wait, then saving is the way to go, and investing is even better. See, as you are saving money to buy your off grid homestead, or dream home in the mountains, inflation is eating away at your savings.
Which is why the further away from a major city you go, the less restrictions there will be as a general rule. Not directly mind you, but it’s destroying the foundational value of each dollar you save. Figure out what you are going to do with your land, if you will have livestock, a garden, a ranch, or just a cabin in the woods. That’s why it takes so long to save enough to buy a large pice of land, or any large ticket item because a dollar saved today is not worth as much in a year as it is right now. Then choose the type of land which is zoned in a way that will allow you to live the lifestyle you wish to live. Sure you might earn some interest on that dollar, and you might have made a good investment if your money is invested in stocks or bonds, but the fact is, the dollar, if left alone, will most likely not be worth as much next year as it is now. So, when you save money, you must continue to offset inflation by saving even more money to compensate. And this is exactly why it takes so long to achieve the dream of owning your own home and land.
If you’re going to go the traditional home lending bank mortgage route, then consider getting a loan from a local bank instead of an international bank. This is not ideal because it’s still a bank loan, but it will help support the local economy and the community more readily than a loan from an international conglomerate. You’re also saving yourself money in bank fees and probably interest accrual as well if you can negotiate a good interest rate.
A Contract For Deed directly through the landowner is probably one of the most powerful and most simple financing options available in the real estate world. Contracts for deed usually require a larger down payment to the landowner because they have to pay off the current mortgage, or if it’s owned outright, the landowner probably at least wants their equity out of the land and wants to make a profit. See if you can just take over payments with no money down, or do a lease with an option to buy.

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