A lot of folks are joining in the downward class migration in America. Living within you mean is nothing to be ashamed of. I’m a trucker and my future looks bleak at best. An improved economy would help but when! I hope to have a camper paid for, my van, and some stuff for living off grid by the time I’m 45, a few years from now. That will begin to free up some cash for cash spent on improvements to land, if I can grab some land at that time. My camper is on a friends land right now and I can stay there indefinitely. So I will be debt free and have a paid for place to stay in a few years, except for possibly land for debt.
A minimalist approach calls for small structures for living. 300 to 400 ft2 at most. Stick frame’s usually cost about $50 per ft2 at a minimum. Now if you only constructed the structure with no plumbing, electric, etc. It might be cheaper. If you can do labor yourself cheaper yet. If you can use materials from the land cheaper yet. I’m thinking that for the do it yourselfer there is some good investments in some types of equipment. A pickup with flat bed and possibly a boom and wench. A small tractor with some attachments such as front end loader, back hoe, box blade, concrete breaker. A bit more expensive would be a bobcat type tool with similar attachments. If wood is used a portable saw mill and log arch. Logs could be shipped to your location. For earth maybe a rammed earth block pressing machine. But all of that requires investment capital. And I don’t suggest credit cards for any of that.
On a side note, if you are able to invest in some equipment you may be able to hire out to do work for someone else using it.