Homesteading location; east coast v. west coast

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Gresford, May 2, 2006.

  1. Gresford

    Gresford Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Angwin, CA
    My wife and I currently reside in NJ and we are growing tired of the pace of life in this "rat race" focused area. Our plan is move out to a more rural environment in a year or so (whenever we can come up for air from our debts).

    We have been considering two locations: 1) Upstate NY (Binghamton/Utica area or up towards the Adirondacks) or 2) Eastern Washington state (up near the Canadian border; Okanagon county). Why the contrast? Well, my wife is from Washington and most of her family resides there. I am the adventurous type and I would be willing to give it a try. As far as upstate NY, it seems to have more land that has our ideal homesteading requirements.

    Our dream is to live on a parcel of land >10 acres that is rather secluded. We don't want to be hermits but we do want privacy. Our ideal is to live off grid and live off the land as much as possible. I realize that this is not something that can be done immediately but we would like to work up to that. Our perfect piece of property will have timber land, meadows for grazing livestock, and tillable farmland, runnning water (stream, etc.) and a spring. I know this sounds like a lot but we would be willing to compromise for a piece of land at the right price.

    Is anyone homesteading in Eastern WA or upstate NY? Can you share your experiences living in that area? I would also like to hear from anyone who is living off-grid. How did you adjust to the new lifestyle? What pitfalls can we avoid?

    One last thing; we are open to other locations. If someone knows of a better location for off-grid homesteading, please share.

    Thanks!
     
  2. MomOf4

    MomOf4 Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Indiana
    I am in central Indiana, and boy, is it flat here. If it's scenery you want don't move here! If you want flat farmland with rich soil, then definitely this is the place to be. And if you don't like the weather, hang out for 5 minutes, and it'll change! Southern Indiana is beautiful and has rolling hills though.

    I visited upstate NY once, and it was beautiful!
     

  3. FreightTrain

    FreightTrain Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Sullivan County Pa
    i own 20 acres near binghamton.. well actually 20 miles ssw in Pa... has everything but the spring, it does have 485' of creek that drops over 30' across the rear corner, and is on top of the endless mtns at around 1400' so i get a cool breeze almost all summer long...ill be living off grid and homesteading but since I'm not living there yet i cant comment on homesteading or transitions,... but one of the things i lov about it is its central location... max a few hours to all of the following... Adirondacks, Catskills, , lake Ontario, lake Erie, Niagara falls, alleghany nat forrest, Poconos, very close to rickets glen SP, and the finger lakes in NY.

    timberline realestate
    http://timberlinerealestate.net/pages/1/index.htm

    has some nice properties in the binghamton area... both Pa n NY counties.

    tell em Tonto sent ya :hobbyhors
     
  4. Gresford

    Gresford Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the information and the link "Tonto". Exactly what I'm looking for. That drop will serve you well for hydro in the future. What a blessing!!!

    Mom, do you live in Amish country?
     
  5. ckncrazy

    ckncrazy Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Parish New York
    I live half way in between Syracuse and Watertown NY. I dont homestead 100% but this is a good area. Winter can be rough and summer can be hot. there used to be mostly farms around here. The Amish just moved in around the corner, so it must be a fairly good place to homestead. Lake Ontario is 10 min away. Good hunting and fishing, Crops do well, Soil is rocky in my area but I work with it.
     
  6. Gresford

    Gresford Well-Known Member

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    how far from the adirondacks, Jake?
     
  7. Irish Pixie

    Irish Pixie Well-Known Member

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    We have 113 acres in Broome County about 20 minutes east of Binghamton. There is still reasonably priced property in upstate NY but it's not in Broome County-- look toward western NY. We moved from the Utica/Rome area almost 7 years ago, and back then anyway, prices were very reasonable.

    Good luck on your search.

    Stacy
     
  8. Brighid1971

    Brighid1971 Well-Known Member

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    New Jersey
    No kidding? Wherabouts? I live in South Jersey (Cumberland County, near Millville).

    We were looking near the Rochester area...I remember the magazine 'Progressive Farmer' had an article about the 10 best rural places to live, and Ontario County rated in the top five. That's the county just south of Rochester...and it is beautiful up there. I couldn't tell you about that part of the West Coast as I grew up in San Ysidro, California :)
     
  9. Obser

    Obser "Mobile Homesteaders"

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    Highly Variable
    Why restrict thinking to East Coast or West Coast? The central part of the country has many areas that are very appropriate for homesteading -- with lower population density and less inflated real estate prices.
     
  10. Gresford

    Gresford Well-Known Member

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    Angwin, CA
    Doreen, I live in Flemington which is in Hunterdon County. It's actually pretty rural compared to where I used to live (North Brunswick in Somerset/Middlesex county) but we are seeking a truly rural and simple environment to raise children. We drove through the Binghamton/Utica about a month ago when my in-laws came to town and we loved it. It seems to have everything we are looking for. But now that you mention Rochester, maybe we should venture a bit further north.

    Which issue of Progressive Farmer has that article?

    My wife grew up in western Washington and her sister lives in Spokane. That's why eastern Washington remains a possibility.

    If you don't mind, I would like to know how your search is going and any information that you may have from your research of the area.
     
  11. ckncrazy

    ckncrazy Well-Known Member

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    I am about 65-70 miles from the mountains. I have a camp up there, and it is the most relaxing place on earth!!!!!!
     
  12. happycat

    happycat Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Central Washington
    We live in Kittitas County right now, and considered a move to Tonasket last year. Okanogan county is one of the least expensive in terms of land in the state, but as is usually the case jobs are pretty hard to come by.
    Okanogan is also a bit on the dry side, not too many lush pastures from what I saw. People were friendly, and nearby Omak has just about everything you would need.

    We went all the way up to Oroville and, frankly, that was very dissapointing. I hear there are plans for a big resort at the lake, which would bring some jobs and vitality to the area, but the "resort" thing is happening here with Suncadia and it's destroying the real sense of community.

    We are to buy some land in Stevens County this summer. I like the proximity to Spokane (1-2 hours depending on where you go) and it's more like the climate we love here on the eastern slopes of the Cascades. Lots of great outdoor activities but you can still be pretty isolated if you choose.

    Can't tell you a darn thing about the east coast :shrug:
     
  13. Deb862

    Deb862 Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Upstate NY currently
    We are currently llooking in the entire central NY region and are finding it extremely difficult to find property. It seems that everyone wants to move here now and this is driving prices sky high and inventory extremely low. Property inventory is very low for anything with acreage thats decent. There are just too many people wanting to live here and not enough people wanting to move or list their properties! We can go up to $175 and still are finding it extremely difficult. Any property worth its money with acreage is sold immediately. Very competitive market. For instance, I have been watching hte Binghamton MLS for over a year now and so far this year, it is virtually stagnant for properties of more than 5 acres. Nothing new has come on the market in over 2 months now.

    We have also started looking out towards the Rochester area and St. Lawrence county, as the markets are a little better there. Still, both of those markets are getting more competitive also as more people like us get frustrated with hte market in hte Binghamton/Cortland area and begin to search farther west in NYS.

    I know, this is not the greatest news. NYS is absolutely beautiful. That said, if you have $225K or more to spend you can get a good rural property with acreage in most places in central NY.