Thinking of trying to Homestead. Need advice!

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by edgerunner2000, Dec 11, 2003.

  1. Hello everyone. I am new to this forum so first let me say hello and give a brief intro. I am 42, married with 4 wonderful homeschooled children (girl 15, boy 14, boy 11, girl 10) and currently live in the Hudson valley of NY (near Newburgh). I have been mildly interested in homesteading since I was in high school (read the Nearings books, 5 Acres and Independence, occaissional Mother Earth News mags, etc.) but got sucked up into the rat race of life in corporate America and raising a family in the burbs. I have worked for the last 8 years as a Project Manager in the e-Business area for a large insurance brokerage firm and most recently for Reader's Digest.

    Two things have jarred my life severely in the last couple years. First - was losing 200 of my colleagues in Tower #1 of the WTC on 9/11. I was saved by being 15 minutes late to work that day. Second - I was laid off, downsized, outsourced . . . whatever the current catchphrase is back in Sept. from Reader's Digest and have been out of work ever since.

    Both of these events have been wake up calls for me and I now realize that half of my life has gone by and I am really not happy with the routine of working my ass off to make some corporation exec's rich, spending every waking hour of my day commuting (2 hours + each way into Manhattan for me), and never getting to see my family or pursue MY dreams & passions. (Music, Art, woodworking, & carving, reading, and fishing)

    So here I am . . . feeling trapped! I just found out that if we were to sell our house, after paying off my mortgage and all fees, I would clear about $90k. So, my question dear readers is this . . . is it possible in this day & age for a family like mine to shuck it all, find a piece of land (10+ acres) somewhere in this country, build a house ourselves (cordwood masonry, earth sheltered, log home, etc.), learn to grow our own food (or as much as possible), have time to pursue our passions, not pay exhorbitant taxes (my taxes are about $5k /yr & rising fast), and not end up completely miserable or destitute?

    We love where we live and our community & friends here, so leaving would not be easy, but I am fed up with wasting my life away on trains and doing unfulfilling work to make the $80k a year we need to make ends meet here. I should mention that I have a bad back (had a disk removed 20 years ago) that occassionally flares up on me, but a quick adjustment from the chiro usually clears it up. My wife & family will probably think I am nuts to consider such a major change. Am I? I am not afraid to work hard, but the rat race is killing me . . . physically, mentally, and emotionally.

    We have no other savings to draw on after paying off debt. Will $90k be sufficient to get set up on?

    Looking for thoughts & advice and a dose of reality.
    Thanks!

    Chuck
     
  2. HilltopDaisy

    HilltopDaisy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Chuck, you're not nuts. You're in a tough spot, for sure. What's enough for me may not be enough for you and your family. And it would probably be hard to make such a big adjustment unless the entire family is excited about doing it. Selling out and moving away is a life change that I wouldn't call "an escape". You need to be pretty involved.

    I'm in NY State, about 1/2 hour north of Binghamton. We have a couple of large colleges here, and the usual hospital jobs. I work for the state, at the Psychiatric Center. I bought 5 undeveloped acres, put in a well, septic, driveway, and gravel pad for a mobile home. I bought an old mobile and put in a new propane furnace and hot water heater. I fenced a large yard area, built a chicken coop and bought a shed, 10' x 16'. I spent around $30K. Many folks could not live this way (think "white trash" :haha: ) I've never been happier!

    I'm 46 years old. This is something I've wanted to do for most of my adult life. I waffled for years, I was afraid, what if I can't make it, blah, blah, blah........ So I hung around the homesteading forums for close to 5 years. I saved as much money as I could, and read everytning I could get my hands on concerning country living. Remember, there are a wide range of lifestyles represented amoung us. (I'll have to work full-time for close to 20 more years. I need my health insurance). Some of us live alone, some homeschool several children. Some of us actually make money from home, others have a few chickens and rabbits. Do you subscribe to Countryside Magazine? Do that, and read some of the archive material. Take enough time to really think about what you'd hope to achieve living in the country. Talk to the family. Keep us posted, 'cause I'm already feeling excited for you!
     

  3. Alex

    Alex Well-Known Member

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    I am sure you will get lots of very knowledgeable advice here.

    Based on what we did thirty years ago, I would say that you should get your money idea worked out first. You need to figure that out and be responsible for your own finances and level of spending. Figure out how much you can live on. Do not expect to make any money from your place at first.

    For us, we had a small duplex rental in Redwood City, CA, and a three bedroom house, with a one bedroom rental in Woodside, CA. The rentals paid all expenses and gave us $300 per month income (that's like about $3,000 now). Plus we had $5,000 (more like $50,000 now - you accountants out there my be able to tell us the real inflation over 30 years). With that much our life was great! We built our on log cabin, bought 160 acres ($2,000) and had money every month for things we thought we needed. We had a big garden, and at the time hunted (previous and now we do not eat meat).

    If you build your house and grow your own food, and simplify drastically, then you can figure out how much that will cost. Simplifying drastically can be regarded as wonderful or awful. If the whole gang doesn't think its wonderful to be skilful and "live-off-the-land" then maybe there will be bigger problems than working in the city. Going straight from $80K a year to nothing might be challenging at best.

    First, you must have a strong romance and love for being in the country and doing for yourself (and neighbours - who you will help and get help from when needed). After that, you need secondly to have enough money every month. Once you find a way to get that money, then your life can be like a dream.

    You need to compare what you can get to what you need.

    Good luck,
    I agree, commuting sucks - big time - much better on the land or real near your work.

    Alex

    [​IMG]

    Our Cabin Today
     
  4. goatlady

    goatlady Well-Known Member Supporter

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    In answer to your question - $90K should be enough to get you set up but then what. That electric bioll comes in every month, the property tax is due every year. Do you have any workable plans past the set up stage to generate monthly income from the start? I think most of us work on or off the homestead at a nonhomestead job at least part=time to pay those every present bills.
     
  5. Sharon in NY

    Sharon in NY Well-Known Member

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    I agree with everyone that if your family isn't totally on board, you'll be back in the ratrace in six months. And you have to deal with the psychology of this - on 80K and commuting to Manhattan, you've been used to a particular lifestyle, I suspect. Restaurants. Keeping up appearances. Presents for the whole family at the holiday. Not often saying, "we can't afford it." New clothes, not yard sale clothes. Your extended family is going to think that this is insane. Your kids and spouse may as well. Everyone has to be ready to *look* poor as well as be poor - they have to have the confidence to believe that this life is better than keeping up appearances.

    We did something similar, but on a smaller scale. DH and I lived in Boston during graduate school, bought a house in a small urban community, and got our first academic jobs, but decided that that wasn't how we wanted to live. But we'd never really gotten into the habit of living up to our new income, and were used to being students. Our only child (at the time, we're up to 3) was 15 months old when we made the move, and so had no opinion on his clothes. And parts of my family farm, so they thought we were only moderately, as opposed to totally insane.

    In a practical sense, you need to think this through. Yes, you absolutely can clear 90K and go find land and a house (I'm not sure I'd build unless you are very good at that already - there are plenty of older farmhouses that you can live in while you renovate them that don't cost much more than bare land, and the transition will be a lot nicer than life in a tent), and have some left to buy tools and have a savings, but you'll need an outside job. You aren't going to make a living on the homestead right away, if ever, and you probably won't grow that much of your own food the first year. That will be your learning period.

    I would consider parts of rural NY, within driving distance of a small city or large town - St. Lawrence County, Schoharie County, Otsego and Chenango Counties. Next, think about what you are going to do for money - you are going to need benefits with four kids new to the country - someone is going to get hurt at some point, and without insurance, your savings could be gone in hours. If you want to be the farmer, and your wife has useful skills, maybe she could get a job. If not, it will have to be you. Find something not to strenuous, and don't expect to make 80K. Be happy if you get 30-40, but keep your workweek down and recognize that cost of living is as low as you want it to be - you don't *have* to have most of the stuff you've probably got now. You also don't have to be a computer professional - what other skills have you got?

    Some websites to look at:

    www.valleyviewrealty.com
    www.farmsunlimited.com
    www.countryboyrealty.com
    www.odbr.com
    www.northcountrytoday.com
    www.krutzproperties.com

    Don't get fixated on needing 50 acres. What you need is a house with some bedrooms, and 5-10 acres. That's a lot of land, and more than you'll need for a very long time. Start talking this out seriously with your family. Take them on trips up to see the areas and the properties. Do some job searching. Get your kids some age-appropriate livestock and farming books, and give your old books to your wife to read. And if they don't want to do it, consider something else. For example, you could probably find a decent job in Albany that paid 60K plus, and buy a small house on two acres about 40 minutes west. That way your family would have urban resources and a decent income, but you'd have room enough for a garden, some chickens and goats. It doesn't have to be all or nothing.

    Sharon
     
  6. Runners

    Runners A real Quack!

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    My parents moved us from the city into the country when I was 5. It wasn't homesteading, but a run down old farm, a house with outdoor plumbing & no insulation. The first winter, my mom says, she wanted to go back... Those wonderful stories we speak / hear so much about, ie. the hardships, are REAL. If you're never lived frugally, in poverty, on the edge of financial & emotional collapse, wondering how you're gonna feed your family, heat the house, etc., homesteading and/or farming can give you first hand experience. It's a different kind of stress. Having lived in the city the first 18 years of marriage, and then moving my family into the country (still work in cities), I have a certian advantage.

    What's interesting, the day to day stuff my wife and I (both from farms), grew up with, our kids are just learning. Animals come first, before we do. We grew up feeding & watering 2x a day, tending to their needs early mornings, before we ate breakfast - they were our source of income. Now that they've seen the fruits of their labor, the complaining about the daily chores has ceased! My kids learned how to raise, handle, care for and market turkeys and ducks - my wife and I gave minimal help, usually a reminder of how important the birds are... obvious to us, but they needed to experience it first hand. We coached them on how to address & sell the birds in the farmers markets, presentation, phone manners, etc.. All life skills we took for granted because we grew up with it.

    Because there are TAXES, and INSURANCE, I don't see how anyone can "live off the land" in the complete sense. Either you're made your money beforehand, or you've got a product to market. I subscribe to HomePower magazine, and these guys live off the grid in the middle of nowhere. They have a product to sell - but I'll bet behind all the rosey sounding articles, they're working, sweating, agonizing, and wonder from time to time where their next meal or how the blown engine in the car is gonna get repaired/replaced. Home Remedies might carry you through the minor stuff, but if your child's appendix ruptures, who's doing the surgery, or paying for it?

    The cost of liability insurance for my parent's business was near $5000 twenty years ago, it made sense to insure more than just properties, but the 95 animals we used to put food on the table (horses). One lawsuit could have ended our country living. If you're selling a food product (eggs, meat, veggies), or live animals, the prospect of losing everything through one act of negligence is very real! The bigger your operation, the bigger the target. People are less forgiving for accidents, insurance companies even less forgiving - somebody always pays. When my nephew burnt down the shop last year, it had to be replaced. It was hard to believe that little warm torch could ignite a damp rag - oil jug - car - metal building and turn it into a smouldering mess while he ran to the hardware store.

    Having come FROM the country, and now returning TO the country, I envy neither city nor country dwellers. Men are usually concerned with providing the bulk of the $$ and infastructure - stressful in either case / place. The hours are LONGER on a farm and the vacations are SELDOM. We were blessed with a neighbor that took on taking care of our animals this year. But, on the ranch I was raised on, somebody stayed behind for chores. When you livelyhood depends on the care of livestock, you're gonna be REAL careful about temporary care.

    To make our transition to the farm is still in progress. We grew a big garden in the city, and started buying those 'tools' to make the transition happen. Again, being raise on a farm/ranch, we have a working knowledge of what we'd need to make things work. It takes more than a chain saw to build a cordwood house, and you'll get tired of hand mixing cement in tubs - despite what the glossy magazines imply. Book / magazine knowledge might help you with the design & layout, but plain old common sense, practical experience and willing neighbors goes a long way towards bringing your dreams to fruition. I think web sites like this are helpful in thinking things through - it's helped me and my family.

    Sorry, ... I have a fault for long messages, just like to write, I guess...
    Bill
     
  7. Sharon in NY

    Sharon in NY Well-Known Member

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    Bill, I'm not sure I agree that men end up providing the bulk of the money *and* infrastructure - I see a lot of the opposite. Men provide the money, and some "big project work" but women, often a SAHM, homeschooling Mom are the ones to do the day-to-day labor. That's why I'd be especially careful to be sure that the original poster's wife wants to do this - if she's going to be the one homeschooling the kids, she'll be the one hoeing the garden, chasing the animals back in when they get out, canning, cooking, hauling water, making sure everyone is fed and cared for.

    Most of what you said is right on the money, but I would point out that I think that there's a good chance that this fantasy is going to be a lot more fun for the man than the woman, who is stuck with the day labor.

    Sharon
     
  8. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    The answer is yes and no to all of your questions. I left NY 20yrs. ago with everything in 2 trucks and a trailer. I am financially well behind everyone I left. Was it worth it? To me it was to others it wasn't. I have inlaws that stuck out the rat race until retirement. They have pensions and have sold their house for half a million. They can buy houses, land and everything else they want. Can they buy happiness? ,We'll have to wait and see. Meanwhile I have been happy since I left NY. I have lived the "white trash" life and it suits me fine. Having lived in the Hudson Valley and worked in Manhattan you would have a major life adjustment to do the dream that's in your head. You would probably have more of a struggle keeping your family together. I was an outcast in NY and didn't fit in. I was raised on LI by parents that basically homesteaded on a 60x100 in suburbia. Don't believe it?, I have the pictures to prove it. Goats, chickens, ducks and rabbits in the backyard and the rest was garden. This was in Nassau county about 4mi. from the city line!
    I do have a friend that left NY to "homestead". It only took 100 acres, a pond and a $300,000 house to keep his wife. Oh yea, I forgot about the new Suburban so she could go shopping and visiting back in NY. And now that his kids have gotten older guess where they are?,Back in NY. His daughter lives in Manhattan and his son on the Island. So how much does it cost him now not to live in NY?
     
  9. Runners

    Runners A real Quack!

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    Thanks for filling in that gap! I was trying to word that in a general way - but you hit it right on the mark! Absolutely correct in saying the woman SAHM (like my wife), keeps everything running while I'm out building the next structure, electrical, plumbing, digging ponds, putting up fences - hence "infastructure". My wife has the daily drugery, I'm the guy that gets to troubleshoot the generator in the rain & sleet, fix the roof, keeping the heat & water going, etc.. She's also the one that gets to see the little stuff first hand, the memories... the funny kid stuff... she gets to tell me when I get home... sigh.

    You know you're really in for it, when you walk up to the house, stepping over the toys, chicken poop, dog & cat fur, and she's at the door, baby in outstreached arms with that look on her face :eek: and the floor behind her is barely visable. Then you realise that chocolate, bath oil beads, massage oil, scented candles, herb tea and snuggly blanket WAS a good deal - and you should have bought it all. :eek:

    Come to think of it, has any farmer's wife ever have time to watch a TV soap? :no: Correction - in the hospital, after delivery, back surgery, hip replacement..

    Bill
     
  10. Well, you have all given me much to think about and I am now reigning in a little my rampant case of "escapism". I guess when I said I was thinking of "homesteading" (a very broad term with lots of personal definitions) I should have clarified what I really meant. I am looking for a way to radically simplify and scale down our lifestyle to a less expensive one and gain a country atmosphere. (God - that sounds awefully yuppie. ugh!)

    What I mean is that I am not truly looking to be a farmer raising livestock to earn a living etc., but rather to find a mortgage free life where we can garden on a larger scale (we do some minimal gardening now) to reduce food costs, preferably build or purchase an earth sheltered cordwood type home to cut energy bills (my house currently costs me about $2000 a year in oil for heat/hot water), reduce current house/auto insurance & tax costs, and hopefully find a satisfying job (MS in Computers in Education - perhaps I could work coordinating tech for a local school district, or some other management related position) for 1/2 of what I have been earning that is within a more reasonable commuting distance, while allowing us to build our skills and artistic talents to develop a possible income stream there. I think that get's a little closer to accurately describing what I envision. Perhaps still too romantic a view?

    The one good thing about my wife & family, is that we are not as caught up in the consumer madness (we spend very little on clothing) as most people. We lived in a one bedroom co-op that we couldn't give away let alone sell for 11 years with 4 children, so we do know how to endure at least some inconvenience. We are very active in our church and are WAY less concerned with storing up treasure on earth than in heaven. Not that we don't still have a long ways to go in getting even more frugal. Our biggest splurges are spending on the children's activities & lessons, movies, and an occassional Pizza or Chinese Food night.

    Most of our monthly income goes to mortgage, consumer debt that we racked up in car repairs for 2 old clunker vehicles that were killings us (we now have two newer vehicles under 40k, one paid off the other paying for over 5 years), commuting expenses, food, & utilities. When people hear that I was making $80k they seem to think that left a lot of room for living an extravegant lifestyle. Believe me it doesn't around here. We haven't had a "proper" vacation in 17 years of marriage. Most of those around us who live that way have 2 incomes. We decided early on that one of us would always be with the children, and it has cost us, but I wouldn't do it any other way. The other killer that hampered us, was taking a $30k dollar loss on the 1 bedroom co-op that we bought when we were first married. (We just finished paying Citibank off for that fiasco.)

    I guess what we have to get figured out, is what is the bare minimum we can live on after buying in a more rural place, and than can we find that income in that kind of an area?

    As for the family, I think they can get on board this type of change if we HAVE to leave this area (which if I can't get an offer soon we will have to sell the house or risk losing the equity we have). We can stay temporarily with my parents in NH if we have to. The hard part will be leaving friends behind.

    Does any of this make sense to anyone? Anybody else in this boat?

    Sorry for yet another long winded post. And thanks to anyone taking the time to read this and offer your input.

    Chuck
     
  11. Quiver0f10

    Quiver0f10 Well-Known Member

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    Chuck, we are doing exactly what you describe right now, just on a smaller scale. We lived in Southern NH, husband had a good paying job, had the 1500 month mortgage payment, the debt etc.

    We sold the house (closes in 2 weeks!) and paid off all our debt in the process. We are buying a 5 bedroom farm on 14.5 acres in N Maine and will have a very small mortgage. My husband will continue to work full time, but we will raise as much food as we can on our own and just live life simpler.

    One of our biggest reasons for doing this was our children. We wanted to give them a simpler life and give them the chance, when grown, to own land and be self-sufficient. To us, working 70 hours a week to earn enough $ to pay the 1500 mortgage, car, credit card etc is not living.

    We also home school our children and are believers, though we are still searching for a church here.

    Good luck in your search and I wish you the best!
     
  12. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    I left California six years ago and moved to the midwest. I left behind...a very stable job with good benefits and good pay, my entire extended family, a bunch of long-time friends who I was very close with. My kids were 13,11,10,9 and 3 when I moved.

    I left because I was sick of the ratrace. Work, come home and do homework, baths, housework. My weekends were full of grocery shopping, errand running and more housework. I had a nice house, new cars and was miserable.

    I cashed out my 401K (under $10K), sold the house, packed up a u-haul and moved. Debt free, no credit cards, no car payment.

    Moving was not easy. There was a huge amount of culture shock and homesickness, both for me and my kids. We moved into a house that cost $20,000. It was adequate, but I had never even SEEN a basement, much less had to deal with a scary, wet, DIRT one!!!!! We were very, very broke for most of the first couple years. I did end up with a job that paid better than what I was making in CA, but I quit to farm full time.

    Things are better now. My children no longer talk of moving "back home". My parents and I have a better relationship than we ever did living close to each other. I do not have friends like I did, but I have not put much effort into that. I have my farm, my animals and that's good enough for me.

    Sit down with a calculator, your debts and your wife. Figure out what can go, what can't. Discuss this with her and see what you figure out.

    Have you considered the thought that this is typically what is referred to as a mid-life crisis? I don't think that's a bad thing and the time spent in mid-life reasessing where we are can be a tool for positive change, just be sure that you think things through on an intellectual level and also deal with the feeling level as well. Don't let your feelings lead you to poor or hasty decisions.

    Jena
     
  13. Sharon in NY

    Sharon in NY Well-Known Member

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    Well that sounds like a bit of an easier transition, definitely. And the answer is, yes, sure you can. I admit, I still think the weakest point in your plan is building the earth sheltered /cordwood house - are you going to build it yourself? How and when? Do you have the skills? Can you build *fast?* If you are going to have someone build it, I'm not sure you can find land and build a house under 90K.

    No offense, but even when you describe your "scaled back, non-consumer" lifestyle, it sounds pretty extravagant to me - and I used to live in Boston. Two newish vehicles? A house that costs 2K a year to heat? I live in a 3000 sq foot farmhouse built well before the days of insulation, and we pay less than 1/2 that *if* we use oil all winter instead of wood. And we manage with 1 1/2 (we carpool with neighbors) vehicles, neither of them new, both bought for under 3K and none with more than 1K of repairs in them. I don't mean to be discouraging, but I think it makes sense to go into this with eyes open, and to have you realize that even near NYC, 80K is a lot of money (ask all the people making far less than that - trust me, there are plenty), and that while costs of living are much lower in the country, living on 30-40K is going to involve real changes - things like giving up pricey activities for your kids, cutting back on those pizzas, getting rid of the car payments and the habit of owning cars that require expensive repairs (ie, learning to do your own simple repairs and knowing how to buy and maintain cheaply).

    I'm sure you can find a job paying 30-40K - look at universities, smaller cities, school districts, hospitals. I'm sure you can find cheap land or a house. I'm sure you can grow a bigger garden. I'm sure you can live more cheaply. All of those things are feasible - many people on this board do them. It sounds like you have the right basic attitude. But the question you are asking seems like not quite the correct one - not, "how little can we live on" but "how much can we change our expectations"

    Sharon
     
  14. No offense taken Sharon. I was expecting to take some heat for the "80k not a lot here" argument. Though I stand by it.

    A reality of living here is that I needed a car to commute to Reader's Digest (50 min.drive), and Theresa needed one to do everything else with 4 children & their activities (sports, drama club at school, play dates, etc.). There was no practical way to do this without 2 vehicles. Prior to having the two newer vehicles we had a 91 Dodge minivan with 150k+ miles (bought used in '93 w/35k on it), and a 91 Honda Civic bought new with 150k+ miles on it. The engine and transmission were shot in the Caravan so 2 years ago we replaced it with another used Caravan that had 16k on it for about $12k (could have gone less expensive and older, but I like to by them 2 years old and then keep em for as long as possible). Last spring the Honda Civic died and after sinking $3000 into it over the previous year (radiator, alternator, distributer, exhaust, tires, clutch, timing belt, & a host of other minor problems) I decided that putting new engine in just didn't make sense as the body was starting to rust out. So I bought a new Hyundai as I needed something in a hurry and they were offering great terms & price.

    As for the house heating - what can I say? We have no practical way to install a woodstove here (we looked into it), and the house is in desperate need of re-insulation and new windows. Its about 2000 sq ft. and we keep it set at 60 deg. So - this isn't extravagence, just a terribly inefficient system & house.

    Anyway, as I said . . . I know we still have a long way to go in our cost cutting even if I find a new job locally and we stay here for awhile. We definitely have had our cash leaks on splurges - but now on unemployment, they all have to go since unemployment won't even cover the mortgage. So like it or not, we are forced to cut way back.

    Well, enough. I hope this doesn't sound defensive - just trying to point out the logic behind at least some of what you felt was extravagent. Perhaps we could have gone with older vehicles to save $, but like I said . . . I try to make 'em last at least 10 yrs so I don't trade in every couple years.

    I do take your points and agree that we need to look much more closely at what else we can do to cut costs. I also agree that building a house may be taking on too much. I have some skills (worked in construction for a few summers in college), but I am certainly no expert. Just been reading Rob Roy's book "Mortgage Free" so it got me thinking along these lines.

    Thanks again for your feedback, and likewise to all the others who took the time as well. I appreciate it.

    Chuck
     
  15. barbarake

    barbarake Well-Known Member

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    edgerunner2000 - I understand what you mean when you say 80K did not provide an 'extravagent' (sp?) lifestyle. I think many people don't realize exactly *how* expensive New York is. I moved from NYC in 1987. I remember paying over $300/month for heat in the winter in a studio (one room) apartment!!

    I grew up in Upstate New York (Schoharie county). Taxes will kill you. You might want to consider other parts of the country, someplace with lower taxes and a more moderate climate.

    I am in pretty much the same situation you are in. I was laid off from my IT job (outsourced to India) and I used to work in the World Trade Center. Stuff like that really makes you think.

    You need to have some serious talks with your wife and family NOW!! The kids are old enough to understand the situation. Obviously the money you have isn't going to last forever so you have to decide what you want (and can) do. But the backing of your family is of paramount importance.

    (Speaking of family, my son wants to use the computer so I'll check back in later....)
     
  16. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    East TN
    You're not the only one thinking like this so you might have to go a distance. I was visiting in W.Mass. about 4 hrs. from NYC. there are a lot of new houses being built in the area. When I asked my BIL he said it was all NYC workers looking to get away from the city. He's in construction so it's helped him work wise, but things are getting very expensive in any rural area around NYC. He's 4hrs. away from the city and I'm sure it's going on even furthur away.
     
  17. Depening upon how far you are willing to move.... taxes here in the cultural hub of the universe are about 400 per year on 5 acres with my 1800sqft 2 story old farm house [remodeled]. Ive got an old barn and chicken coop and only a partial fence the rest is fenced using solar charge electric fence cause its movable for the horses.

    acreage is high here, from $3-7000.00 per acre for unimproved ground depending upon the type of acreage it is and what is usable.

    As a former contractor i know i can build a 2000ft house for around $40k for a tract type house and a few dollars more for some added features, and the same log house would cost about $70K for a really nice layout and full scribe shell.

    Since i now work as a system admin for a ISP, ive been rethinking about how to sell property around the area, mostly because my job entails the installing of Wi-Fi connections which require line of sight for signal reception, but it pays the bills we have, not much more at all, and i make $350 per week, my wife makes $800+/- month working as office manager for the funeral home in our small town of www.kooskia.com, we did run a parttime Karate school but closed for the winter [still have the $400/month lease] due to lack of interest and burnout on our part. but I am gonna offer computer classes starting out with 5 OLD boxes and small monitors and charge $10 per class per person and figure those will be about an hour or 1.5 hours per lesson, and problably have enough clients for twice per week in a population of 1200 or so from the surrounding area....for a few months anyway. So there are ways to help out with income EVERYWHERE, not by just working for someone else, myself i needed to stop working from the neck down and start from the neck up for awhile, however i cant get away from building.... a friend ask me to build a new wall in his auto shop cause i did a good job for him last time....

    Freinds come and go, how many of your friends would be there for you with firearm in hand if you were surrounded by a gang of thieves? how many would help you out when you lost your job with finacial help or supplying you with some extra food or fuel for your family to use at none expecting any return until they are in dire need? ture friends would really do that and around these parts I have witnessed all of it, although the gangs of thieves part was a rally around a fellow who was running from the corrupt law officers and finally left and went to mexico... but the point is people hang together or hang separately..... friends dont let friends suffer alone without giving some sort of hand up when needed. What i am getting at is that do your really know your nieghbors and friends? Move to the country and most likly you will meet interesting people who cann give you the help you sound you are in need of now.

    There are places where people are leary of newcomers, here is no exception, i moved here in 1988, and it took me 5 years to be accepted as a local, and thenit was only cause all the idiots who were moving into the area at that time didnt fit in with the oldtimers..... but I stuck and have left my mark on the area in a place or two, and folks know me and my family as good people, and know we are ones who help others too.

    if you sell out, and move cross country [be it 50 miles or 3000] you will make new friends, retain old ones, and have a good life if you really try, hardships come differently to everyone.....

    advice would be buy an older pickup 4 wheel drive, a utility trailer, and a camp trailer, then put it all on some acreage where you can build a small shop to live in while you build a house as your funds dwindle to nothing, and at least you have a bigger roof over your head for awhile. unless you can find an old farm house all set up ready to move into......

    I could go on.... and if you have anything you really want to ask me about PM me i am more than type happy from time to time!!!

    William
     
  18. Blu3duk

    Blu3duk Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,843
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2002
    Location:
    central idaho republic
    the above post was mine and the quote below... i guess i typed to long and timed out..