mis communication

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by to live free, Jan 11, 2005.

  1. to live free

    to live free Well-Known Member

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    my thread NEW COMMUNITY was more of a survey.

    this is my plan i have a chance to buy 48 acres with a possiblity to buy 42 more, or i can go a little further northeast and get 298 acres. i want to start a co community of "Homesteaders" Basically set up a "Self providing town" we grow our own food, make our own tools, furniture, anything that comes to our minds. i wanted to have a school run by volunteers, a store to sell our goods, and possible a mill run by water to provide some electricity. If people wanted to join they could, they can be free to go when ever they wanted to. If they had no money i don't care i just ask that they help out with the food and animal raising, so that the community would be provided for. i don't plan on working when i get out of the military except for the community. i'm goning to do this with or with out others. it would be nice to have others with my son, my wife,and me to do this. IT is very capable of working people would just need to all work together to get the job done. All that i would ask is that the buildings look like colonial America. This is a dream no doubt but then again this COUNTRY was founded on a DREAM.
     
  2. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    respectfully, i think i saw this on pbs not long ago.

    there were some dirty, unhappy people there.
     

  3. to live free

    to live free Well-Known Member

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    i think your reffering to the homesteaders in montana, if not then the one in maine was 1500 or 1600's not the 1780's or early 1800's that i'm looking at.
     
  4. caberjim

    caberjim Stableboy III

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    I see a lot of potential problems that you need to consider. What about housing? Communities/towns need houses. Houses cost money and require zoning permits and building codes. The builings may look like colonial america, but they have to meet 2005 code. To merge the 2 gets costly.

    How many houses can you build on that land? Many places allow only 2 residences no matter how many acres. To build more, it must be subdivided. That requires lots of paperwork, lawyers, etc. Plus, now you don't own it all.

    Who builds the houses? The builder will want some stake in the land. Once they own the land and the house, they can do pretty much what they want to. Lots of lawyer fees involved.

    If you own the houses and let people stay rent-free w/o contract, what will you do if they don't perform or behave to your standards? Also - consider the insurance/liability costs. A tree falls on someone. You are the property owner. You are responsible. It is nice to think that a fellower homesteader wouldn't sue you, but the reality is that there are medical bills and someone is going to pay.

    Building a store requires more code and permits. Selling food products out of a store may require additional permits and inspections. Who gets the profits?

    A mill, especially one attached to a river may require quite a few permits, including a possible inspection by the Army Corp of Engineers to assess environmental impact.

    We looked into a co-housing community very seriously a couple years ago. Large acreage owned by one family. Small houses, shared barn, main house and farming. Homeschooled kids. Lots of land for animals. It seemed idyllic. I'm glad we decided not to do it. A lot changed very quickly as costs went up, permits and codes interferred, the "community" started changing the direction of the vision. As prices went up, only people with money could afford them. People who would rather hire out work than do it themselves. The community only vaguely resembles the idea they started out with.

    Just some things to think about. Good luck.
     
  5. homebirtha

    homebirtha Well-Known Member

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    I'm getting a better idea where your overly idyllic post in the commuter thread is coming from.

    You really need to be realistic about what you want. It might look like fun on a reality TV show, but it's going to take A LOT of money in real life. I would guess you'd need at least $500k at the bare minimum to do the things you're talking about, not including whatever you're paying for the land. Oh, unless this isn't in the U.S. or Canada. Maybe in some other countries, you could do with less legal fees, etc.

    Personally, if I was going to do all that work, I would want it to be on land that I owned, where I could raise my kids, grow old, and have something of value. So I wouldn't be interested in doing it on someone else's land. But you may find people who are game for an adventure and would go along. But, I wouldn't count on many of them sticking around for too long. Maybe 1 in 10 would stay when the going got tough? Maybe.

    I hate to be a wet blanket, but I think you need a wake-up call. Especially if you have a family to consider.
     
  6. 3girls

    3girls Well-Known Member

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    Wasn't there someone earlier in the year, from Pennsylvania, that was attempting something like this? I cannot remember his name. Been awhile since we've heard from him.
     
  7. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    you mentioned colonial.

    there was one a few months ago called colonial house.

    in maine.

    it was cold.

    they were hungry.

    people argued.

    people left.

    it's nice that there are still people having that dream, but truth is many of the people on here are already living a portion of that dream, and know first hand exactly how hard it is. add in a whole bunch of unrelated people, and figure out who pays for what, who does what job, what happens what someone gets sick, or dies.... all the variables that go into every day life. lots of people have tried this in the past, one form or another. there are precious few that survived.

    i mean no disrespect, but if i had to guess, i'd think you found some land you like, and you can't afford it and are trying to figure out a way for people to go in together. am i right?

    it's all i can do to pay for what i've got.
     
  8. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    It's been tried many times before. It won't work.

    Only one person will be happy - the one in charge. That may be you? As fair & nice & easy going as you try to be - you will be considered the King, and people will try to tear you down. People will have different visions for the place. People will move in & try to free-load, putting a burden on everyone actually working.

    That is human nature, society, how we are.

    you wish to build a small society or community or country or kingdom.

    It will suffer all the same problems that any society now, has, or will suffer: Us humans & our failures.

    Just how it is.

    In addition, you will need to operate within the conditions set by the country/ state/ county you are in - you need to meet all those building codes, pay for fire & road & medical protection, etc. As others say, this will drain your resources.

    Either people will become dissatisfided & the whole thing will implode, or it will become suscessful & people will become jeolious & greedy & it will explode on you.

    Only the king is happy in these deals. The servants will go away or try to 'kill' the king, if figuratively.

    Menonite & Amish & such communities work because it is family, & you can bully family into things. It doesn't work with 'free' people.

    Sorry.

    It just doesn't.

    On a different note, I would much, much, much, much rather have my own 5 acres than try to live in a society with shared resources & have to abide by the rules of others. that is just a home-owners association, and if you read around here, that is a _hated_ thing to homesteaders! we want to be truely free, not bound to a bunch of others. We want to get away, not be tied up.


    Go for the dream. Not telling you what to do. Please be prepared tho.... Best of luck.

    (And i'm not implying you have an ego trip or wish to be a domineering king - I'm just using that as an example of what, realisticlly, happens. In your community, someone will bubble to the top as a king/ leader of sorts, and all the issues will surface. Human Nature.)

    --->Paul
     
  9. thebeav

    thebeav Well-Known Member

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    Maybe if you created a fictitious monster that lived in the woods it could keep people in line and hand out punishments.








    I saw an interesting movie last night The Village.
     
  10. JackieA

    JackieA Well-Known Member

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    My thoughts exactly! It was a really good movie!
    JackieA
     
  11. to live free

    to live free Well-Known Member

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    wow what abunch of pioneering INDIVIDUALS You all are. the land is 35,000 for the 48 acres, and it's owner finaced. second like i said people are FREE to go when ever wanted. 3rd UNLIKE the south there are NO Building codes in the town that the 48 acres is in. 4th houses would be built by the owner and the help of others as well as me. 5th co communites exist and there catching on quickly in the us. If people don't want to settle there then they don't have to.
    And like i said LOOK COLONIAL.
     
  12. MullersLaneFarm

    MullersLaneFarm Well-Known Member

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    best wishes to you. 48 acres is a nice beginning for a family for self sufficiency. Your animals will need hay and grain, what you don't grow you will need to hunt or you will need to buy. Yes, we are a bunch of INDIVIDUAL homesteaders.

    How much homesteading have you done??? From your original post, you have access to water - is this free flowing during the Maine winters?? Who will be willing to haul this water in the dead of winter ... the cozy, warmth of the idea wears pretty thin with a -40 degree temp facing a person.

    I think the thing that REALLY upsets me is you are going to take undeveloped land and start developing it....
     
  13. to live free

    to live free Well-Known Member

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    -40 never seen a winter that cold in maine maybe -10 on somedays. developing no harvesting and using yes free flowing all year. as for a hole settlement i'm not looking for some 40 families. the town requires 1 acre to build a house on. 5 acres for tax deduction for farming. the mill would hide generators when founds provided for electricity for small things as say a water pump. I have no doubt that there are alot of things to over come. But that is what i do best task me with a problem and i'll solve tell me to find somthing and i will. I have no problem taking on a major task it doesn't scare me. but if people want something bad enough and are willing to work then anything can done.
     
  14. caberjim

    caberjim Stableboy III

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    1st - If I didn't want to be an individual, I'd live in the suburbs and belong to a neighborhood association like all my friends and co-workers. Most homesteaders want to live on thier own terms, no one elses. Co-housing communities have rules set by the majority or the powerful. If you don't agree or want to do differently, you are SOL. There are no army or family ties to make people listen or stay in line.

    2nd - How are you going to make me conform? What if you don;t like what I'm doing and I don;t want to leave?

    3rd - I would check again on not just building codes, but development rules. There are always codes and taxes and rules.

    4th - If I build a house there, do I own it? If I own it, can I do as I please? Maybe I want 10 hounds at my house. Maybe 20 cats. Maybe I want a small weapons and explosives cache. Its my house, who are you to say.

    5th - Yes, there are many co-housing communities. We looked at quite a few. The most distinguishig characteristic is that they have A LOT of rules. And they are very strict and detailed. What type of roof, how many animals, how many sq ft, how many and what type of guns. No matter how like-minded you try to get, there will be MAJOR differences in lifestyles, personalities and opinions. This is why they have so many rules.

    "If people don't want to settle there then they don't have to. " - but once they do, and you don;t like them, what are you going to do and how are you going to do it.

    Also - you didn't address costs, insurance, liabilities, ownership, decision-making, etc, etc. Maine is a short growing season. Gonna cost ya to run greenhouses and feed animals in the winter.

    Not to rain on the parade, but I'd hate to see you go in and lose it all.
     
  15. tsdave

    tsdave Grand Marshal

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    I agree it would not work right if 'you' owned the land and let the people live it like a 'king'. But it may be possible to set up a corporation to own the land, take the liability etc. And if you could only build 'one' residence, just make it a giant string of rooms around a large courtyard, only one building, enough space for many families, only one septic/well. Let the corporation own it all. Setup the rules of governence in the corporation, maybe even form a legal 'town' to further sheild yourselves. Ive seen towns with populations of 5-15. Just make sure the corporation assumes all the liablilty and you should lose no more than the land / what you put on it. Course they may all vote you off the island, if you set it up that way, or you may never be able to get rid of someone annoying if you set it up that way.
     
  16. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    Personally I hate the idea of conforming to a bunch of rules dictated by a group of people, even if they were family and friends. And why would I put all this sweat equity into something I cannot own or pass down to children? Or be subject to eviction?

    My partner created a home in a community before I came along. They all built it with their sweat and tears and pooled their money. She was one of the few with a job and contributed $1000s of dollars. She is technically supposed to be a stockholder. Fat chance she will ever see that money again and isn't even acquainted with the majority of those folks. Some that left felt it was cult-like. And yes, there was a 'king'.

    Why not simply find a folks who are like-minded to live next to?
     
  17. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    or mr. free- you could buy a much smaller piece of land, get it all set up, then come back and see if anyone wants to live there. there's no substitute for experience. you can skip me though. i hate being cold.

    and really, no need to get all huffy with people. :rolleyes: everyone is trying to tell you the reality of this way of life.
     
  18. homebirtha

    homebirtha Well-Known Member

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    You're probably feeling attacked over this, which is unfortunate. This group has a lot of people in it that have had the same dreams and ideas you have now, but who have way more experience in homesteading than you do. They're just trying to save you from making the same mistakes. You can learn A LOT here.

    Anyway, I am curious... If it's not too personal a question, how much money do you have for this venture, in addition to what you need for the land? Do you have a budget in mind yet?

    Also, even if the town where the land is located doesn't have building codes, the county and state surely do. They may be minor compared to other area, but I'm sure there are requirement for structure, engineering, septic, etc. It won't be free. Everything costs money.
     
  19. Mastiff

    Mastiff Well-Known Member

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    Here is the deal it is your dream go for it.
    Don't let others stear you away with doom and gloom.
    The posibility is yours to create.
     
  20. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Since I commented earlier, I wanted to echo those exact same thoughts.

    I don't feel like attacking the ideas, and I hope L-F follows his dreams.

    I just also hate to stand by & watch L-F crash on burn on something that has been tried many times before, and rarely works.

    Since L-F said he was ready for the challenge:

    1. Work through the permits & such. There are septic & electrical codes that must be followed everywhere. Beyond that, City, county, & township rules apply. You would need to contact each govt body. A commune type of living area draws attention, makes people nervious, you will need to deal with these hoops.

    2. Who will own the place? Sold into plots, sell shares, rental, what? One needs a financial structure in place. Something.

    3. How will you deal with he laws & rules of the outside world? Being a part of the USA, you still need to deal with taxes, regulations, fire & police protection, and so on. These things cost money. Depending on #2, you will need to deal with these things. How do you enforce them upon the people living there? You had mentioned something about being free from society - but you will not be. You will have your own society that people need to deal with, in addition to the current society we all live under.....

    4. What happens when one member goes whacko on you? Will there be rules on what or who is allowed, or will it be open & free to all & the rest of you have to live with what comes in - however ugly that person turns out to be?

    5. How many people do you envision on under 50 acres? Are you thinking 5, 10, or ????


    You see, you will not be creating anything new. What you are creating is a much smaller society. but you will have all the flaws & falults - and good & wonderful - things we have in our large society.

    How do you deal with all those problems, while still being under the rule of our big society, yet somehow trying to be 'free' to live, but try to um - force people to live primatively?

    I hope I (and the others) are giving you things to think & build upon. I do not want to be negative or hostile or poo-poo your ideas. I just want to be realistic, and that requires some hard questions.

    --->Paul