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  #1  
Old 06/06/10, 01:48 PM
rickfrosty's Avatar
RF in Western Mtns.of ME
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: N.W. corner of ME by both NH, & Quebec border.
Posts: 811
Anyone interested in survival homesteading in New England ?

Are you in Maine, or might like to move there ?

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Anyone interested in homesteading in New England - western mtns. of ME to be precise ?
I'm in need of a female partner, but can use any partners to make a stand.
I believe we're either in a depression, or going to be, & that's when I'm feeling optimistic !
Have some housing, have some land that needs to be gotten ready for gardening & pasture - one particularly great, defensible 20 acres (fully owned), as well as other land nearby that can be used. One halfway decent sized garden now & chickens & rabbits . Area surrounded by thousands of acres of Paper Co. land open to the public, and there's a huge wilderness lake at the foot of the dead-end road my retreat is on . Close enough to walk to safest-state N.H., or Quebec. (ME is 2nd safest state by a nearly imperceptible margin, according to one report I saw - almost no crime at this point.)
If you're a single guy, or a couple who might like to pitch in w/me I prefer you have something to contribute other than just labor - I'll talk to ya, but I don't have the wherewithal to take care of any partners who don't come their own 'preps', and some way to make at least a little income.
If you're a single woman, then I'm a little more flexible.
I am squeezing the last crap-dollars out of a declining career in Real Estate, looking forward to when I can work full time on farm/retreats - I also can set up some employment for myself & others doing odds & ends of work in resortish town nearby . I was a carpenter/builder & know all the local contractors, also have tools & experience, as well as an excavator to build cool stuff like earth-sheltered greenhouses & homes, wells, driveways, septics, etc., etc., even plow land ! See my website at SurvivalRealty.com .
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R. F. in Western Mtns. of Maine

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  #2  
Old 06/06/10, 02:24 PM
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: CHINA
Posts: 9,283

A note:

The job market pretty much does not exist in this area, the deer hunting is very limited, moose hunting is by lottery and the chances are slim to none of being picked. The fishing is ok but you don't want to eat too many of them because waters have lead/mercury issues...coyotes are plentiful and will eat your livestock given the chance and mountain lions have been seen. Lots of bears.

The mosquitoes are worse than when I was in AK. Your first acre of land is taxed at like $30k...our cabin has higher taxes than our home. In the winter it snows a lot...3ft storms are common.

Beautiful country...provided you have mailbox money coming in and you are not afraid of rough characters and rough country living. A good place to become lost (in the task of cutting enough firewood to last the Winter).

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  #3  
Old 06/06/10, 10:22 PM
Cyngbaeld's Avatar
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Between Bryan and Austin, TX
Posts: 27,871

I cannot imagine mosquitoes worse than in Alaska.

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  #4  
Old 06/07/10, 09:38 AM
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: CHINA
Posts: 9,283

While bathing in the Dead River under the bridge I was bitten enough to need a blood transfusion...LOL (actually I was almost mad with itch)

The Dead River....makes you wonder why they named it that, huh?

The moose/deer are driven into the open roadways by bugs....I believe Rt16 has the highest rate of moose crashes in the state...

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  #5  
Old 06/07/10, 10:35 AM
ET1 SS's Avatar
zone 5 - riverfrontage
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Forests of maine
Posts: 5,483
Smile

We are in central Maine, not as bad sounding as Western Maine.

We like it here.

However I do admit that I made mistakes, had I known more about Maine before we moved here we would have planned our homestead differently.

We moved to Maine in 2005 and began building our house and farm.

It is a wonderful area.

The local economy is very depressed. It has been depressed for many decades. Basically since refrigeration began to replace ice-boxes and the ice-block shipping industry collapsed.

The average household income is low to mid $20k. This is a region with a really low cost-of-living. Families here are not wealthy, but they are able to raise children and prosper on minimum-wage jobs. Which is simply impossible anywhere else in the US.

Taxes here can be 'high', or they can be low. It depends on your standard of living, and how you do things.

Automobiles are taxed [just like everywhere else], but here they are taxed at a higher rate if they are new. And they are taxed a percentage of blue-book value, so a more expensive car is taxed more. The tax rate drops with each year that a vehicle gets older. In 2010 if you bought a really expensive 2010 vehicle then you will be taxed a lot. Whereas a mid-1950s truck will be taxed $5. Or if you bought a cheap car then your taxes will be far lower than in most other states.

If you can live frugally; or if you are a homesteader; then Maine is wonderful.

Maine is fantastic for anyone with a pension. I have a pension and even though it is 'taxable', our income is not high enough to be taxed. So like most other retirees, I pay no income taxes in Maine.

Most land in Maine is forest.

Maine's property taxes include a system where 'Treegrowth' [forested land], 'Farm land', 'Working Waterfront' and 'Open-Space' [for wildlife] are protected by having super low taxes.

So if you wish to live in a forest, or have a farm, or open land which encourages wildlife, then you might be paying 50cents per acre in taxes for you land. We pay around $1 per acre for our land.

However if you live in a suburban housing tract, or an urban apartment, or if you own a McMansion then your property taxes may be 'high'. [Not nearly as high as in most other states though]

So you see the cost of living in Maine is really all about how you live.

Homesteading in Maine is great!

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  #6  
Old 06/07/10, 11:42 AM
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: CHINA
Posts: 9,283

My 11 yo subaru outback costs $140 yearly registration

Most people do not have 20 plus year old vehicles due to the corrosion caused by the road "Salt" used in Winter...its unavoidable.

I suspect those families living on $20k are living with family or inherited property, live in subsidized housing and or get heating oil assistance and mainecare(free health ins.)
We make just above qualifying for anything as a family of 5 on more than double that and live VERY FRUGALLY. Health ins. is our biggest expense...but we do cut wood, farm, garden and preserve more than your average bear...vacations are not something we have the time or money to indulge in because "Vacationland" is a tourist point of view!

It is a nice place to live, but you have to make the most of each season. (Which reminds me...I should be outside in the garden!)

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  #7  
Old 06/08/10, 12:18 AM
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Central Wyoming
Posts: 197

Been there, done that and moved back to Wyoming. The taxes were way too high and there was very little return on taxpayer dollars. Lived just outside of Bangor near Bucksport. Loved the landscape but never adjusted to the tax burden. That was 13 years ago, can't imagine what it's like now in this recession. I'm glad y'all can make it. You have my admiration. I figured it would be an easy transition to make, one frontier to another. Never figured the 2 states to be so distant idealogically. Even went to school in Orono for a while and worked at Old Town. Its a beautiful place to visit though.

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  #8  
Old 06/08/10, 09:42 AM
PhilJohnson's Avatar
Cactus Farmer/Cat Rancher
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Central Wisconsin
Posts: 1,974
Quote:
Originally Posted by mpillow View Post
While bathing in the Dead River under the bridge I was bitten enough to need a blood transfusion...LOL (actually I was almost mad with itch)

The Dead River....makes you wonder why they named it that, huh?

The moose/deer are driven into the open roadways by bugs....I believe Rt16 has the highest rate of moose crashes in the state...
Dang that sounds rough I've seen some really cheap land over that way, now I know why. Lack of cash I could handle, swarms of stupid skeeters no way! Maine's tax structure sounds a lot like Wisconsin's. If you make next to nothing the cost of living is really low. Wisconsin has all sorts of freebies for folks that live near or under the poverty line. If I was an absolute welfare slob I could make it on 6k a year (or less if I didn't believe in having hobbies).

Quote:
Originally Posted by mpillow View Post
My 11 yo subaru outback costs $140 yearly registration

Most people do not have 20 plus year old vehicles due to the corrosion
Heh, that is when you use redneck undercoating, drain oil. Might be mighty environmentally unfriendly but it sure does work. I let the oil soak into the metal real good. Once every fall does the trick. All my cars are over 20 years old (more like closer to 30 years old) so I do everything I can to make sure the evils of road salt don't make my cars disappear. I also suspect that most of back country Maine like Wisconsin only plows the roads and lays some sand down. I've noticed on cars that those that were driven mostly on back roads in the winter don't rust out as bad.
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  #9  
Old 06/08/10, 10:31 AM
ET1 SS's Avatar
zone 5 - riverfrontage
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Forests of maine
Posts: 5,483

I guess I should have included that I am a military retiree, I have a pension that is just below minimum-wage, and my Dw works in a grocery store.

We receive no government benefits outside of my pension and military benies.

So I am able to focus most of my time on building our house, orchards, gardening and livestock; while finishing the 'raising' of our children.

We have lived in Southern California and Northern California, the PNW, Florida, Virginia and Connecticut; as well as the UK and Italy. My siblings all stayed in Central California where we were raised on a farm, some of them are still farming. During our travels we looked constantly for a region where we would have been happy to homestead when I retired. In our search, from our perspective, Maine better suited what we were looking for.

With a small outside source of income, we were able to buy a tract of forest land, build a house and begin farming.

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  #10  
Old 06/08/10, 10:49 AM
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: CHINA
Posts: 9,283

Aroostook and Washington counties are where the cheap land is...not in Western mountains. An acre of land up there is double what it is here in China...and China is way more hospitable! We fell into a deal when we got our cabin...and have fixed it up to be comfortable on the cheap (my husband does plumbing and heating)
There are also Indian Reservations up there and they have dibs on the hunting. PAper companies own a good deal of the land and the "woods" roads and ITS trails make for great recreation (ATV and snowmachine) plus the Appalachian Trail.

We entertained moving up there when the kids were little BUT the job offer was half of what hubby makes and seasonal at Sugarloaf MTN (ski resort). We tried to buy the grown up field bordering us for farming but to no avail.

But to tell you the truth there is drama no matter where you live and its no different up there... hard core drunks and druggies, cross dressers, business men from out of state screwing around on their wives during hunting vacations and some darn fine people with stories from the old days...

It takes a cord of hardwood to heat our cabin for 3 weeks in Nov. and it isn't even cold yet...

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  #11  
Old 06/08/10, 11:51 AM
ET1 SS's Avatar
zone 5 - riverfrontage
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Forests of maine
Posts: 5,483

I agree. Maine has different regions and each region offers different things.

Down here in Penobscot county land prices are much higher than up in Aroostook / Washington. I have an adjoining tract here that is marketed at $300/acre, and I see land going as high as $900/acre. Up in Aroostook/Washington land prices should be much better.

We do have reservations and they do have dibs on the hunting.

There does seem to be a lot of drunks. I am not aware of any cross dressers, but I do not doubt they exist.

A lot of hard working people trying to get by.

We consumed 3 1/3 cords of wood this last winter.

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  #12  
Old 06/08/10, 11:59 AM
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: maine
Posts: 1,140
Quote:
But to tell you the truth there is drama no matter where you live and its no different up there... hard core drunks and druggies, cross dressers, business men from out of state screwing around on their wives during hunting vacations and some darn fine people with stories from the old days...
Cochise, LOL
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  #13  
Old 06/08/10, 12:50 PM
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: CHINA
Posts: 9,283
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Originally Posted by woodsy View Post
Cochise, LOL
He's confused a good many Canadians at the White Wolf....

My son as a youngster used to call him "Dude looks like a lady" because he had seen Mrs. Doubtfire and it was my only way of explaining "it"
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  #14  
Old 06/08/10, 06:22 PM
Ode Ode is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: SE Michigan
Posts: 808
Quote:
Originally Posted by ET1 SS View Post
We are in central Maine, not as bad sounding as Western Maine.

We like it here.

However I do admit that I made mistakes, had I known more about Maine before we moved here we would have planned our homestead differently.

*snipped the rest to shorten my post*
My husband and I are saving for a property in Maine, we plan to use it for a vacation property and eventually to retire to. In what ways would you have planned your homestead differently, knowing what you know now?
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  #15  
Old 08/26/10, 03:55 PM
rickfrosty's Avatar
RF in Western Mtns.of ME
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: N.W. corner of ME by both NH, & Quebec border.
Posts: 811
North Branch of the Dead River

Thank you so little, but it's interesting that I grew up on the N. Branch of the Dead & that's where my main garden is.
Y'all have to get used to making a living somehow, avoiding the bugs, stayin on top of the snow & have an efficient house - then all the things you didn't like just keep away the undesirables !
There is almost no crime in ME & it's more rural places will be defensible when shtf .
Is your last name Pillow ? I knew of a couple who had a camp in Coplin by that name.
I think the job to population ratio may be pretty similar anywhere, no ?


Quote:
Originally Posted by mpillow View Post
While bathing in the Dead River under the bridge I was bitten enough to need a blood transfusion...LOL (actually I was almost mad with itch)

The Dead River....makes you wonder why they named it that, huh?

The moose/deer are driven into the open roadways by bugs....I believe Rt16 has the highest rate of moose crashes in the state...
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Wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then !

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  #16  
Old 08/26/10, 04:05 PM
rickfrosty's Avatar
RF in Western Mtns.of ME
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: N.W. corner of ME by both NH, & Quebec border.
Posts: 811
now I know you're the same 'Pillows'

Yeah, y'all's camp was almost across the road from ol' Coshise the farming cross-dresser ! They kicked him off the street here in Rangeley this summer - his skirt was too short. Poor ol' dude is like, what 65 yrs. old ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mpillow View Post
Aroostook and Washington counties are where the cheap land is...not in Western mountains. An acre of land up there is double what it is here in China...and China is way more hospitable! We fell into a deal when we got our cabin...and have fixed it up to be comfortable on the cheap (my husband does plumbing and heating)
There are also Indian Reservations up there and they have dibs on the hunting. PAper companies own a good deal of the land and the "woods" roads and ITS trails make for great recreation (ATV and snowmachine) plus the Appalachian Trail.

We entertained moving up there when the kids were little BUT the job offer was half of what hubby makes and seasonal at Sugarloaf MTN (ski resort). We tried to buy the grown up field bordering us for farming but to no avail.

But to tell you the truth there is drama no matter where you live and its no different up there... hard core drunks and druggies, cross dressers, business men from out of state screwing around on their wives during hunting vacations and some darn fine people with stories from the old days...

It takes a cord of hardwood to heat our cabin for 3 weeks in Nov. and it isn't even cold yet...
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