I'm pretty much trying to bounce ideas off of people here.
I am still a year away from being able to move out of my parent's home into my own home but I'd like to start getting ideas for the future. At first I was planning on picking up and moving to a house in the next town over becasue I like the location better. My church is there and that is where I go to the library and some other community events. However, my parents have four acres and have offered to let me build on their land. The main downside is the location. It isn't terrible, mind you. It takes me about half an hour to get from my house to any location in the town I go to most often. It takes about a half hour to get from my house to the highway to go to the bigger cities, which are about an hour away. It is a two hour drive to my children's father's house, which I have to drive to two to three times a month. Yesterday I sat down and made a list of my priorities of what I wanted out of life. They are:
1. Time with my children.
2. Space for outside playing
4. Quiet neighborhood
5. Access to community events
6. Fulfilling Career (I'm in nursing school and graduate in December, I guess this more means access to good place to work. There are plenty of hospitals in the area and I'm thinking about going into home health, anyway. I put this one lower becasue I don't have to worry about it much. This doesn't change based on location, except shave some time off driving depending on my location.)
7. Home I can freely decorate/paint/renovate/etc.
The biggest thing I need to worry about outside of keeping a frugal budget and getting a good job is affordable housing. The options I see right now are:
1. Buying in the neighboring town
2. Building on my parent's land
To move to then next town, the cheapest thing I found are foreclosures which are about $60K. They probably would not be in good condition and would require a lot of repairs and I assume I would need to obtain new appliances. I might be in a more favorable location, but will have a drastically smaller yard. I also am close to my parents and am planning on having my mother help out with childcare so it actually makes more sense to stay here. She even has already said that even if I move to the back she will respect it as my house and won't pop over uninvited all the time. The main disadvantages with staying here are easy access to events and noise. The noise comes from the road, which isn't too bad and will be reduced from building farther back off the road, and the gas wells; which isn't a constant but is a nuisance when they are working on them. I'm sure there would still be some noise living in the suburbs so I'm not sure this is really an issue. The rest of my requirements are more than fulfilled by building here.
What would be the cheapest/ most frugal way to obtain housing in my situation? Should I go ahead and move to cut down on my drive time, which might actually increase if I have to drive my kids to my mother's for childcare? What are frugal ways for building on my parent's land? Should I invest in building a house right away or buy an adequate mobile home I can pay off quickly and save for my "dream home?" I've never done anything but rent before, and want to go into as little debt as possible. Thank you for any help you can offer me.