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Hi all, it's my first time on this site. Me and my partner have been living in an apartment until now and we've been doing all we can to learn the skills we'll need on the homestead until we can afford our own land, BUT I just found out my aunt is moving out of her small farm and we have the opportunity to move there in December. It's a small plot in Florida, and she has some animals at the moment, including chickens (unsure of the breeds but I'm pretty sure some are silkies), guineas, a turkey, and a cow (again unsure of breed). We currently live in Massachusetts so we only have one opportunity before the potential move to visit and take stock of what she has going on right now. I was hoping some more experienced folks might be willing to share some advice for where the best place to start is. We definitely don't intend on adding any animals until we have the hang of caring for what's already there, but I will be working on gardening and have a small greenhouse to move there with us. Any sort of record keeping advice would also be greatly appreciated!!
 

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I guess my first thought is wondering how you intend to support yourselves while you acquire country skills. Some things cannot be completely learned from a book so there will be learning involved as you grow into your roles. If you have skills that you can put to work and monetize during the learning process it will be a real bonus. At any rate, I wish you good luck as you will be living my dream!
 

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1. Have the water well checked.
2. Make sure the septic system works.
3. Hire a licensed electrician to check the wiring and breaker box(es) for problems.
4. Have someone check the roof for soundness.
5. Hire an exterminator to check for termites.
6. Be sure you understand where the legal boundaries of the property are.
 

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Welcome.
Your aunt is moving out of her little farm in Florida. How little is the farm? Why is she moving? Does she own the farm? If she does own the property, will she retain ownership or will you buy the property? Will either or both of you need to find jobs or make your living on the farm?
This could be the chance of a lifetime but be very cautions, it could also be the source of years of grief. Learn as much about the farm and area before your visit. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I guess my first thought is wondering how you intend to support yourselves while you acquire country skills. Some things cannot be completely learned from a book so there will be learning involved as you grow into your roles. If you have skills that you can put to work and monetize during the learning process it will be a real bonus. At any rate, I wish you good luck as you will be living my dream!
We will be close enough to the city to drive to normal part time jobs, both of our current jobs have branches down there we could transfer to. Part of the house will also be converted into an Airbnb, so there will be some profit from that as well. I'll also be working on skills such as soap making and other bath and body.products that I intend to sell once my skill is sufficient. To me this seems like the perfect in between opportunity before we buy our own land.
Thank you! We will need all the luck we can get 😅 the barn/coop etc all need a little refreshing, but we both enjoy hands on work so it should be fun!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Welcome.
Your aunt is moving out of her little farm in Florida. How little is the farm? Why is she moving? Does she own the farm? If she does own the property, will she retain ownership or will you buy the property? Will either or both of you need to find jobs or make your living on the farm?
This could be the chance of a lifetime but be very cautions, it could also be the source of years of grief. Learn as much about the farm and area before your visit. Good luck.
Hi there! Thanks for the advice, we're definitely trying to get this right! My aunt will be retaining ownership of the property(she's been there for 7 years, however her urge to wander has returned so she's buying a camper and traveling the country) and part of it will be turned into an Airbnb where we can host guests and make a bit of money. We will also be close enough to the city to work normal part time jobs to make the rest of the money we need while leaving time to do chores and projects. I'm also interested in learning skills such as soap making and other bath and body products, so iIl be able to sell those once my skills are sufficient. Ibelieve the farm is approximately 4.5 acres, with about 1.5 acres available to use.
 

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I highly recommend that you have a written agreement with your aunt. It could be a checklist of what she expects you to do, and both of you sign off on it. It could be a legal document prepared by an attorney. It's just SO MUCH BETTER if both parties know EXACTLY how the property is to be maintained and what your responsibilities are.

Other things to make sure of:
A. Insurance on the house and buildings
B. Liability insurance on the whole property
 

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Great advice already.

If you've never lived in the deep south before, I would start studying up on gardening. It's a whole different thing from gardening where you currently are. Timing will likely be very different - the dead of summer there is treated like the dead of winter up north, too hot for anything to grow. Depending on how far south you are in Florida you may be growing spring/fall crops (or even summer crops) through the winter. Our garden in Florida when we lived there was straight sand, so raised beds were a must. I'd check out the soil and make alternative plans if you need them.

Gardening there is a learning curve, and I'd start reading everything you can to increase your chances of success.

Sounds exciting, good luck!
 

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Going from Massachusetts to Florida, prepare yourself for some god awful heat. Was just in Florida a couple days ago and it was 98 degrees, air thicker than molasses, this midwestern guy could not live there. In regards to gardening, for every one problem bug gardeners have in the northern US, you will have about ten times more in Florida.
 

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Is this going to be a sleepover airbnb? with sounds of the guineas going off at night when everybody is asleep. And just when sleep comes back the cow starts bellowing.............Might want to rethink it.........

geo
 

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Air B n B is a more complex business than folks realize. To be affiliated with the Air B n B organization, there are a LOT of rules to follow.

 

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In many Minnesota locations, resort and hotel owners have complained that Airbnb's have been cutting into their business.This competition isn't so bad except the hotels and resorts are paying a higher property rate than an Airbnb is, which is typically being taxed at a homeowner's rate. Consequently, in many locations, if a person has an AirBnB their home and property will be taxed as a corporation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Great advice already.

If you've never lived in the deep south before, I would start studying up on gardening. It's a whole different thing from gardening where you currently are. Timing will likely be very different - the dead of summer there is treated like the dead of winter up north, too hot for anything to grow. Depending on how far south you are in Florida you may be growing spring/fall crops (or even summer crops) through the winter. Our garden in Florida when we lived there was straight sand, so raised beds were a must. I'd check out the soil and make alternative plans if you need them.

Gardening there is a learning curve, and I'd start reading everything you can to increase your chances of success.

Sounds exciting, good luck!
Yeah I definitely have to look into differences here. Luckily my aunt has some things already growing (like 25 blueberry bushes, plenty of other fruit like bananas and papaya and passion fruit and lemons and figs as well as some herbs and flowers) so I'm pretty confident in the soil, I'll be adding my own compost anyway and I'll have free range chickens and rabbits and maybe some goats so the manure will also help. I'll have to look into what zone I'll be in and check out gardening schedules. Thanks!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
In many Minnesota locations, resort and hotel owners have complained that Airbnb's have been cutting into their business.This competition isn't so bad except the hotels and resorts are paying a higher property rate than an Airbnb is, which is typically being taxed at a homeowner's rate. Consequently, in many locations, if a person has an AirBnB their home and property will be taxed as a corporation.
Ooh I didn't even think of this, I actually misunderstood that part though, she wants to turn it into an Airbnb after we move out so we don't have to worry about that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Going from Massachusetts to Florida, prepare yourself for some god awful heat. Was just in Florida a couple days ago and it was 98 degrees, air thicker than molasses, this midwestern guy could not live there. In regards to gardening, for every one problem bug gardeners have in the northern US, you will have about ten times more in Florida.
Yeah my whole family lives down there so I'm familiar with it. Luckily most of my family has pools 😂😂
 

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Find out what the rules (laws) are concerning animals for the area (Department of Agriculture). Your aunt may have been up to date on proper husbandry but possibly not. Also what the status is with the animals and their veterinary care. A friend just found out that the herd of goats he inherited have not been assessed for the disease that is killing our wild goats and thus requiring domestic goats to be assessed. If not already vaccinated they will not be allowed to enter the territory or be destroyed.
 

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In the U.S. all goats transported across state lines are SUPPOSED to be examined by a veterinarian and have documentation of that examination that are less than 30 days old.

Just throwing in a bit of extraneous information. I have a tendency to do that.
 
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