Where's the Best Place to Live

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by JonnyMysto, Feb 25, 2005.

  1. JonnyMysto

    JonnyMysto New Member

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    I'm thinking of living on a small farm, growing my own food, and getting away from cities, taxes and all that stuff. Someplace that's low cost. I'm willing to trade many gov. services for peace.

    So, where's the Best Place to live?
     
  2. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

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    ................You are asking a TOTALLy , Subjective question that has uniquely personal answers from each and every person who responds . What makes YOU happy maynot be suitable for anyone but YOU . There are 100 variables that most people cognitate upon before making a decision to move to any given point on the map . In short , you have to Answer this question for yourself , AND to answer it Correctly ....You have To KNOW thyself , as it were . fordy.. :)
     

  3. Freeholder

    Freeholder Well-Known Member

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    That is a question that comes up frequently here, and there is no one answer that will suit everyone. It will take a lot of research on your part to determine the correct answer for you. You should sit down and make a list of the things that are important to you, then prioritize them. Read the archives here, also, as there has been a lot of good advice given on this topic. Just some thoughts of things to think about:

    climate
    taxes
    building codes/permits
    water availability and water rights
    kind of terrain (flat and open, hilly and wooded, or ?)
    recreational activities
    work, schools, churches, etc.
    growing season
    local pests (mosquitoes, chiggers, snakes, ticks, fire ants, and so on)
    distance to drive to (work, school, shopping, church, etc.) (Might not seem like a big deal now, but when gas goes to $5/gallon, as it eventually will?)
    flood zones
    solar exposure
    wood for heating and building
    local hazards such as hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, volcanoes, blizzards, ice storms, etc.
    cost of real estate

    Climate is something you will have to evaluate for yourself. I would suffer in Texas, someone from Texas might have a hard time with a northern climate.

    Taxes -- there are some resources on-line to help you evaluate this. You'll want to look at all sources of taxation -- state income, sales, property, and government fees and such. For instance, it costs a lot more to get a building permit in California than it does in Oregon, even for the same size house. Personally, I am not so concerned about the income and sales taxes as I am about the property taxes, because as long as I have some land to grow food on, I can live without much of an income, buying very little.

    Building codes and permits -- it is difficult to find places where at least some of these don't apply. There are still a few places, but act fast because they won't be around much longer. There are some ways around getting a permit, but it usually involves building a tiny shack on property that already has a house on it. If you go under a certain square footage (200 square feet here in Oregon), you don't have to get a permit for the structure, but there has to already be a house on the place before you start building shacks.

    Water availability -- make sure you can get good water. Some places have bad water, some have really deep water. Some don't have any water at all, and some have too much, too close to the surface. Do your homework on this one.
    Water rights are more likely to be an issue in the Western states, and here they can be a *very* serious issue, and likely to become even more serious in the years to come. Again, do your homework. Some places (Colorado in particular) you aren't even supposed to put in a cistern to catch rainwater for home use.

    Think about what kind of terrain you want to be in. Flat and open can be windy, and lacking in trees. Steep hills make it difficult to move things around on the property, including yourself as you get older or if you developed a handicapping condition. The cheapest land, though, is going to be what other people perceive as undesirable, so you may have to make compromises.

    As far as the growing season is concerned, you can either decide what you want to grow, and select an appropriate location to fit, or you can let your location determine what you are able to grow.

    Solar exposure and wood for heating are pretty site specific, but very important and will become more important as the price of oil climbs over the next few years.

    For local hazards, you'll have to determine what bothers you the most, and if you choose to live in a hazard-prone area, build in such a fashion as to minimize the effects of the local hazards. Don't build on a mudslide-prone hillside in California, or on a beach in Florida, or in the ash shadow of an active volcano . . . these things ought to be common sense, but common sense isn't really all that common.


    Cost of real estate --- this is something you can probably find on-line with some research. Everything is going up, though.

    Hope this helps.

    Kathleen
     
  4. Hoop

    Hoop Well-Known Member

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    Try Mexico.

    Land is cheap. Low/nonexistent property taxes. No zoning. No governmental services.

    Of course, when you are traveling across the US/Mexico border, you'll witness a strange occurence. People are migrating (both legally & illegally) in droves away from cheap land, low/nonexistent property taxes, no zoning and no governmental services and into the US.
     
  5. Helena

    Helena Well-Known Member

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    Never thought about that about Mexico..makes you wonder doesn't it ?? But...make a list of all things you want in your new home area. THEN..make a list of the things you really need to have and the next list of things you just can't live without !! You would be surprised how your list will come into the "real world" mighty fast. Do your really need a million acres of land or will 10 or so be Ok for your needs. Also consider how far you are from the local hospitals and services. Time goes by fast and before you know it you might need these services for emergencies or just the fact that you are getting older and more doctors visits etc. Things like this we don't think about when we are young but the years do creep by fast...I am finding that out !! Remember you might kiss a few frogs before you find your dream land so keep in mind that you might sell "up" a few times before you actually settle into one location. Good Luck !! (we have some really pretty areas here in upstate central Pa..come take a look !!)