I’ve been a member of this board for some time, but don’t post much because I have been more of an “urban homesteader” the past few years (renting).
We have wanted to move to the country for a LONG time, and have spent the last 10 years gaining skills we need to make it work (lots of study, hands on work, practicing things at home, etc). That said, we are ready to start the journey.
I’m being realistic. By that I mean I have a very generous 5 year plan that I hope we can complete before we move out to the country.
We don’t have a lot of money, but want to live debt-free in a home we love on “just enough” land (my goal would be about 5 acres, but would be happy with 2). The land that is being sold right now in our price range is in a great area, only about 2 miles from town, which would make it about 5 miles from the hospital and grocery store. The kids would even stay in the same school district that we’re in now. Hubby could keep his current job. The only change as far as city-resources really would be about a 5 mile move from where we are currently at. The land is fairly flat where we’re looking, and doesn’t have trees, so clearing the land shouldn’t be too much of a hassle.
We’re going to buy land within the next year, and then start slowly building, using cash only. We are planning to do an earth-bag home, and will be spending some time either designing or finding plans that we can get permits for. We have a plan over the next 5 years of how to budget it out, and plan to do a lot of the work ourselves, with the exception of utility hook-ups, and other specialty things that you really need a certified technician to do correctly to be to code or make it last. My goal is that in 5 years we will have our land bought, our home built, and some of the basics of the homestead started (garden, orchard, and some small farm animals like chickens, goats, and angora rabbits).
We are living in a small home, and plan to try to stay here for as long as possible. It may not be easy with our growing family, but people have done with much less for much longer and been plenty happy. This house is really affordable, and we can have a nice sized garden, etc. I am hoping to get chickens and possibly a couple of angora bunnies this summer or fall. We have two kids (I’m pregnant, so it will be 3). The older two are in school. In 5 years, our youngest would be in school too, starting pre-k (another good reason that this time frame may be good).
My question to you all is, what things should I keep in mind about this transition? What advice do you have for those who are changing from city-dwellers to homesteaders? Just anything you have to add would be greatly appreciated. :) Thanks!