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Home Forums General Discussion Help me plan to live completely off the grid? Re: Help me plan to live completely off the grid?


I was thinking Idaho, Colorado, South Dakota or somewhere in Canada for my range of choices. Maybe Oregon?

I want to go for a fully approved building. I am not a conspiracy theorist by any stretch but I also believe that the government is WAY out of control in the regulation of what people can do on their own land and the way someone chooses to live their life. I want to be sure that I give them no obvious excuse to shut me down.

I like the idea of being over prepared. Not only for the event of collapse which I don’t believe would happen but for general living as I am a solitary individual and being a woman who lives alone I believe that I should take every precaution to protect myself should someone or a group of people get it in their heads that they would want to rob me or something else. Better safe than sorry.

Something else that I think would be harder to adjust to would be complete solitude. Although I prefer to be alone I have always lived near other people and the background noise and false sense of security that provides is an admitted crutch of mine.

I am thinking of concrete flooring. Perhaps I can find some other form that is more eco friendly. I have always wanted radiant heat flooring although that is a luxury and not a necessity. I am also unsure of what septic system I would want to have. Call me spoiled but I will not compromise on a flushing toilet.

I like the idea of finding another use for tires that would otherwise end up in a landfill but there are just so many toxins in them that I don’t think I could use them in a garden without contamination of the food and I certainly wouldn’t want them in my home. Perhaps I could find use for them in border fencing of some kind?

In regards to my energy usage I can live just fine with using lights for only a few hours in the evenings and using only natural light during the day or even using candles or solar flashlights instead. However I want to have the option to use lights when I need them for emergencies. Lightbulbs are not good for the enviornment so I want to keep my usage to a bare minimum.

I have never used a wood stove but from what I understand they provide good heat which would work for a small home and if I were to buy land to plant firewood I could make it into a sustainable heating, cooking, light source so I am certainly willing to learn.

24/7 internet is something I require and is something that will be a power drainer for certain. What are the various ways to power a home? I think that in cold climates that are high in the mountains that wind would be my best option since cloudy days will prevail for most of the time and the panels might possibly be overshadowed by trees ect. If at all possible I want a power source that is renewable that will be available when I need it. Rechargeable batteries and storage are also things that I need to seriously consider. I would like to have plenty of backup power and be completely secure in this area. Better to have more power than I can use then to be out of power.

I would also like to have a small fridge/freezer along with a washer and dryer. The fridge/freezer I would consider a must but I can live without most of the time if I had to since I believe that I could learn to make due with canned eggs, powdered milk and cheeses that would hold up without one but I would like the option of having it if I needed one for something like a medicine that needs refrigeration ect. Better to include it in the plans if I might need access to it then to neglect it and be out of luck later. Ice is a luxury in the summer months but completely worthless in the winter when nature would provide the ability to freeze water naturally.

I could get used to handwashing and line drying clothing. I used to line dry clothes when I was very little so I could handle that. My concern with even having a washer and dryer wouldn’t be the electricity but the small size of them in the first place. I have huge comforters that would need a large washer and would be near impossible to wash in a tiny sink unless someone else here has a suggestion that I not aware of yet. I think I could live without a dryer although it might be difficult to do in the winter months since it would only freeze your clothing. Perhaps there is a way to line dry inside your home?

Tumbleweed homes can be built cheaply instead of buying one of those prefabricated ones. I think it would also be a good way to learn basic building skills on a small scale instead of leaping right into the thick of things and not have any idea of what I am doing.

There are people who live in 89 square foot homes. The bedroom I am living in now is well over 100 Sq. Ft. I could live in a tiny area like that for a time until I could build my dream home. Thomas Jefferson lived in a 648 Sq. Ft. box home with his wife for several years until the completion of his Monticello. I could live in under half that space for a year or two until enough work is completed on my home that I could move into it.

Another concern for me is trash and waste water disposal. I plan to limit my waste by using foods that have been canned in reusable jars and to store my dried goods like flour in reusable canisters. However foods like canned tuna, chicken packets and other such foods would still contribute to my garbage output unless I can find a way around that. I cannot raise livestock by myself. I know that I could not bring myself to raise chickens to kill them because I get attached to them. Knowing that limitation I may have to give that particular food up but I know that I could do it. However I do need some form of protein that comes from meat since I am not a vegetarian and I do not hunt.

Another issue for me is guns. I don’t like the idea of owning one but if I am truly going to be able to protect myself on my own and for security if things ever did get bad enough I would need one. While that is a completely different issue from housing it is relevant to where I choose to live because of how gun ownership laws differ by state.

I expect that any plans I make will need to change or that something will occur that will be beyond my control. I want to be sure that I have enough security on the financial end of things before I go about making this dream a reality. From those who are living the dream already would it be rude to ask how much it cost you to get completely off grid and approximatly how much you spend per year along with with state you live in and which luxuries you have so I could get an extremely rough estimate?

Again I thank you all kindly for your assistance.