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My family and I are looking at buying ten acres to build our homestead on. I've read that Stevens county is best due to lack of building codes. Does anyone else have $.02 that could help with deciding where to go? Right now we live in Texas and have about a year to plan the trip
 

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I live in ferry county two hours north of Spokane. Stevens county does seem to have less restrictive building codes than surrounding counties. Because ne Washington is the dry side of the state you want to have water. Some land has sub irrigation. There are streams, rivers, lakes etc. If you are planning to have animals, I would look around chewelah or newport area (different county) is nice. You can grow grass there.
We are on 10 acres on a river and have a small herd of Icelandic sheep.

Susan
 

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I used to live in Palouse county, so I have just one word for you. COLD! Outside of town I'm talking about winter lows of -30 to -40F. Are you ready for that?

Summers are pleasant, especially when the wheat is tall but still green. When the wind blows it looks like waves on the ocean. But winters are cold enough that you need to be concerned about physical injury. Just going out after dark and breathing the outside air gets painful.

If however you like to ski, then you will be rewarded with lots of thick dry powder.
 

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Winters in Stevens County rarely get into the teens, and it's a dry cold, which is very tolerable.

Will you have to commute to Spokane to work? If so, that will definitely limit your options, because driving Highway 395 in the winter can be treacherous. However, if you don't mind being an hour or more away from Spokane, there are some very nice options. Consider Colville, a small town with a population of 5,000. People call it "God's Country" for a reason. About 22 miles south of Colville is the town of Chewelah (pronounced Chu-WEE-luh), and about 8 miles northwest of Colville is the town of Kettle Falls. All are part of the same overall community. There are lots of homesteading options available in the outskirts of each of these towns. You can be pretty remote and still be within easy driving distance of a library, hardware store, etc.

It is true that Stevens County is very lax when it comes to building codes. People are pretty much left alone, which can be both good and bad, considering that it may be YOUR neighbor who decides to live out of a school bus with a chimney. Historically, the biggest negative about Stevens County is that employment is hard to find, although things are looking a whole lot better this year.
 
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