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Old 12-17-2011, 10:08 PM
 
Location: Kronenwetter, Wis
420 posts, read 661,085 times
Reputation: 235

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Just wondering, if you build a house off-grid, will the bank give you a mortgage for that house?
Here in my area we have kind of a large Amish population.
Never verified this but I've heard that if an Amish house has utility wires running to it the owners still have a mortgage on house, as bank will require this because in case of foreclosure it's easier to resell. Supposed to have wiring inside house as well. If no sign of wires, house is paid for.

As far as trying to leave a small carbon footprint, the gas company doesn't appreciate that. A few years back when I started burning wood and my natural gas bill went way down a guy came out to check meter and do audit. When he saw I was burning wood he got upset and stated the gas company expected me to use their product because they spent a lot of money putting the gas lines in area. I shut my gas furnace off completely a few years ago and depend 100% on wood. (It helps that my son-in-law owns a sawmill/logging company) I still rely on gas for hot water though.
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Old 12-18-2011, 11:02 PM
 
Location: Kronenwetter, Wis
420 posts, read 661,085 times
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I googled "financing an off-grid home and got a few hits.
Didn't read all of them but the word "challenging" came up alot.
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Old 12-19-2011, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Londonderry, NH
33,864 posts, read 29,368,532 times
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I live in a partially solar heated condo in southern NH that became "unheated” for a week twice in the last couple of years. The great ice storm required a night or two in a shelter but the Halloween snow did not. I expect to buy a 5KW gasoline fueled generator next summer and distribute power with extension cords to a radiant portable heater and a couple of lights. This system would be completely separated form the utility. By using a camp stove on the deck we would be able to have tea and coffee as well as hot meals. We would also be able to read and power a radio receiver/cd player. No TV, but that is not a big deal.

I expect we will be having more ice/slush/freezing rain events for the rest of our lives in New England. I expect the snow season will decrease as the growing season increases and the transitional ice/sleet/FR storms will increase in number and intensity.
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Old 12-19-2011, 10:40 AM
 
Location: Northern Maine
6,318 posts, read 8,194,033 times
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Last time that happened there were farms in Greenland. Those farm sites are under hundreds of feet of ice today. During WWII some P-38s rand out of fuel and belly landed on the ice field. When salvaged a few years ago those planes were under 100 feet of ice. All this is a normal cycle going back thousands of years.

There are ice core samples from Siberia where they charted gas content of the ice going back 400,000 years. The carbon dioxide content varies very regularly every 90,000 years. It has to do with ocean currents and the sun. These things are known. Man had nothing to do with normal climate changes on our good planet than and it is foolish to think we can control it now.

The "Red Paint People" lived in Maine as the last ice sheet receded. Their campsites and bones of mastodons they killed litter the bottom of the Gulf of Maine in about 200 feet of water. That was the shoreline over 10,000 years ago.
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Old 12-19-2011, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Londonderry, NH
33,864 posts, read 29,368,532 times
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I was not suggesting we have anything to do with or should try and do anything about the changing climate except to notice that it is geting warmer over the last few decades. Also it is pretty damn obvious that it is warmer than 14,000 years ago. I did not want to rehash Global Warming but only wanted to point out that freezing rain conditions were more, not less, likely in the future. Thus having an "off-the-grid" or an emergency generator protected home makes sense.

I am much more interested in discussing the financing of an "off-the-grid" home.
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Old 12-19-2011, 01:13 PM
 
Location: Backwoods of Maine
2,539 posts, read 2,907,187 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregW View Post
I am much more interested in discussing the financing of an "off-the-grid" home.
Probably it can't be financed. Not without jumping through a lot of hoops. That's why we are saving to buy our land outright for cash, and build the structures largely ourselves, and all for cash.

I guess if you want real independence, you need to be really independent!
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Old 12-19-2011, 02:16 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
21,907 posts, read 28,804,435 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nor'Eastah View Post
Probably it can't be financed. Not without jumping through a lot of hoops. That's why we are saving to buy our land outright for cash, and build the structures largely ourselves, and all for cash.

I guess if you want real independence, you need to be really independent!
That has been what we are doing.

Bought land, paid cash.

Built a house, paid cash for each piece of it. Only a couple of times have I hired anyone to help me.

Next will be off-grid power.
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Old 12-25-2011, 07:27 AM
 
384 posts, read 492,298 times
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We got our construction loan and mortgage through Norway Savings Bank. They did not have a problem with a home being off-grid.
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Old 12-25-2011, 09:19 AM
 
Location: Northern Maine
6,318 posts, read 8,194,033 times
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Most banks want 30% down on land with construction to start on the construction loan within six months. Insurance is the key. Most insurance companies won't issue a homeowner policy if the fire department can't drive there year round. Some carriers offer camp insurance which does not cover theft or vandalism, but does cover fire. I don't get their reasoning, but the grand underwriters on the 27th floor in Hartford don't understand rural America anyway.
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Old 12-25-2011, 09:53 AM
 
675 posts, read 1,145,541 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northern Maine Land Man View Post
Most banks want 30% down on land with construction to start on the construction loan within six months. Insurance is the key. Most insurance companies won't issue a homeowner policy if the fire department can't drive there year round. Some carriers offer camp insurance which does not cover theft or vandalism, but does cover fire. I don't get their reasoning, but the grand underwriters on the 27th floor in Hartford don't understand rural America anyway.
You won't get home owner's insurance during construction for any home I'm fairly certain. You can get insurance, but it's construction insurance, and many times more expensive than homeowners. Before an insurance company will sell you homeowners the place needs to be near completion. I found they wanted the heating system in and operational bathroom before they would write a homeowners policy even though I was doing all the construction. I had no mortgage, but would imagine if a bank was financing the construction, they would insist on the construction insurance. I self insured because of the outrageous premium for the construction insurance.
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