Please help me to get started.

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by countribound, Jul 3, 2005.

  1. countribound

    countribound Happy in Houston

    Messages:
    42
    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2005
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Okay, we have recently purchased 11 acres and soon we will be beginning the stages of development. It has been occupied by cattle for the last 100 years or so and it is completely undeveloped. We want to prep it for a builder to build our house in a few years. It already has barbwire side fences.

    I know the basics--clearing (only for the house, the rest is being kept wooded), run electricity/phone lines, septic/well, gravel drive, front gate,???)

    For those of you who have made a similar move, in what order did you do these and any lessons learned? (Like types of septics, where to or not to run lines, how to take drainage into account.) We are trying to do a little at a time as we can afford to.

    This will be for a 2,100 sq. ft house (3/2) on flat central Texas land. Just general advice would be helpful--I can do the research. Muchos gracias!
     
  2. Orville

    Orville Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    145
    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2005
    Location:
    SC
    Do a perk test...hopefully you will find sufficient percolation to allow for a simple trench-style drain field. House can be located just about anywhere on site (with regard to property lines), so find good perk first. If perks poorly, may need county-designed mound system. Get building permit. Contact power company for temporary power at site. Run permanent power underground, if possible (my own preference). Once you have temp power, just build like crazy. Well goes uphill from septic, distance from septic depends on local ordinance. For some reason I can't remember if we put in the well before or after the foundation was poured. Make sure you don't have your garage door opening to an up-hill grade, which will deliver vast quantities of water into your garage. Ensure that water flows away from house at all sides. If slope requires lots of earth moved in order to fill in around foundation on the low side, consider building a drive-in basement. I wish I had....it would have saved me thousands in earthwork. Find out who puts in the culvert, if needed. Sometimes the county is responsible for that...they charge you a few hundred bucks, of course. Face house to receive morning sun in your bedroom and breakfast area. Don't skimp on floor joists, subfloor, rafters, windows or insulation. You will regret it.
     

  3. countribound

    countribound Happy in Houston

    Messages:
    42
    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2005
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Orville, this has been incredibly helpful. Thanks! I'll share this with my DH.

    Courtney
     
  4. whiterock

    whiterock Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    3,868
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Location:
    South of DFW,TX zone 8a
    MIght as well call the county first. Each TX county does things a bit differently and all of them are persnickity.
    Ed
     
  5. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    15,981
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2004
    Location:
    Michigan's thumb
    Go look at the land after a big storm. You will see where it likes to puddle/pond up.

    Our first story is the garage with two workrooms. Because the living is all upstairs, we have a great view.