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Old 06-24-2013, 11:44 PM
 
13 posts, read 15,200 times
Reputation: 17

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I'm in my 60's and would like to move away from a big city. I've lived a good portion of my life in this city and I'm just tired of the traffic, the growing rudeness of people in stores, on the streets, etc. I have been looking for a small piece of land to build a tiny house, while living in my travel trailer. I don't have much money so need to be very careful in my search. So far I see mostly areas where there are a lot of restrictions and a person is buying a lot instead of acreage, though I really can probably only afford one to two acres, that's fine though, it would still give me space from any neighbors. I'm pretty much a loner so I could probably do without neighbors anyway. I've read about people finding their land in national forests, or right next to one.....how do they do that?! I'd like an area with trees for shade, space for a large garden and room for a few chickens. It would be nice to have some cool weather...doesn't have to be snow....just a change of season. Here it's just hot, hotter and hot as hell. I've learned to be frugal, which is a good thing because I'll probably need to live on my social security. I expect I won't be moving for about 1-2 years so I can get more money saved up. I've been through Arkansas and really liked it, loved Colorado...especially for fishing... but it's pretty much out of my price range, New Mexico or Arizona might be nice.....I just don't know how to get started! I really want an individual piece of land.....not a lot, not a subdivision or whatever they're calling them. Any suggestions, advice?
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Old 06-25-2013, 12:13 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
31,301 posts, read 50,609,311 times
Reputation: 20158
Quote:
Originally Posted by madmaxine View Post
... I'm just tired of the traffic, the growing rudeness of people in stores, on the streets, etc.
I hear you



Quote:
... I have been looking for a small piece of land to build a tiny house, while living in my travel trailer.
If you google 'tiny house', you will find lots of options.



Quote:
... So far I see mostly areas where there are a lot of restrictions and a person is buying a lot instead of acreage, though I really can probably only afford one to two acres, that's fine though, it would still give me space from any neighbors. I'm pretty much a loner so I could probably do without neighbors anyway.
Our homestead search lasted for 15 years. In our observation, the more urban [densely-populated] an area than along with that it had more restrictions, higher taxes, higher crime and more municipal services. At the same time the more rural areas have fewer restrictions, lower taxes, less crime and less municipal services.



Quote:
... I've read about people finding their land in national forests, or right next to one.....how do they do that?!
Look at communities that are near to a national forest, speak with a local realtor in that community.

We moved to a state that has very little 'national' owned forest; however it is over 92% forested. Privately-owned and publicly-accessible forest with many rivers, lakes and ponds. So it was very easy for me to buy forest land.



Quote:
... I'd like an area with trees for shade, space for a large garden and room for a few chickens. It would be nice to have some cool weather...doesn't have to be snow....just a change of season. Here it's just hot, hotter and hot as hell
We live under the forest canopy. The back of our home over looks a river bank.

We like it.

We get all four-seasons, which we also enjoy.



Quote:
... I just don't know how to get started! I really want an individual piece of land.....not a lot, not a subdivision or whatever they're calling them. Any suggestions, advice?
This forum is a good start.

Land prices are funny. A person can buy 100 acres for $30k: chop it up and sell a few 10 acre parcels for $30k each; and along the pavement chop some land into 150' house lots selling those for $30k each also.

So what was the price of land? It was all bought and sold, but the prices change a great deal as you go from a 1/4 acre house lot, to a 5 or 10 acre parcel, to a 100 acre parcel.


I wish you luck in your search
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Old 06-25-2013, 12:47 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
29,705 posts, read 64,689,413 times
Reputation: 34604
Quote:
Originally Posted by madmaxine View Post
I'm in my 60's and would like to move away from a big city.
I really want an individual piece of land... not a lot...
The complicating issue is the utilities: water well, septic and electricity.

For that reason... buying an existing home that already has the utilities on land that is
cleared and graded, with a garage and a garden shed... makes the most practical choice.

Quote:
I'd like an area with trees for shade, space for a large garden and room for a few chickens.
An acre w/should be plenty to do that with.
Two would be generous and probably more work than you'll want to take on anyway.

Look for something just outside of a smaller city or bigger town.
A place that has the OTHER things you'll want & need as you retire in place.
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Old 06-25-2013, 02:56 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
23,816 posts, read 41,479,306 times
Reputation: 25695
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrRational View Post
... buying an existing home that already has the utilities on land that is
cleared and graded, with a garage and a garden shed... makes the most practical choice.

...Look for something just outside of a smaller city or bigger town.
A place that has the OTHER things you'll want & need as you retire in place.
Good ideas ^^^

Consider your future needs / desires, and pick out a desireable location. (For me I need an international airport and a college with a great classical music program). I have bought 3 places in the last 2 yrs that are 20 minutes from each venue, and in different parts of USA. All were under $100k on acreage and very nice (livable w/o remodel / extra investment).

Consider a property with a very poor house or mobile home (legally placed) where well, septic, power and driveways are all there (and hopefully a few buildings that you can salvage. You can bulldoze the house and bring in a nice repo Modular or build your tiny house. (which I don't recommend). I would build a very CHEAP and effeicient small zero energy passive solar home. ~ $30- $50k will get you a NICE one (if you do the finish work and plumbing electrical yourself... Not too hard.). I buy lots of home building supplies from Habitat ReStores.
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Old 06-25-2013, 03:22 PM
 
Location: SW Missouri
15,849 posts, read 30,943,488 times
Reputation: 22427
Quote:
Originally Posted by madmaxine View Post
I'm in my 60's and would like to move away from a big city. I've lived a good portion of my life in this city and I'm just tired of the traffic, the growing rudeness of people in stores, on the streets, etc. I have been looking for a small piece of land to build a tiny house, while living in my travel trailer. I don't have much money so need to be very careful in my search. So far I see mostly areas where there are a lot of restrictions and a person is buying a lot instead of acreage, though I really can probably only afford one to two acres, that's fine though, it would still give me space from any neighbors. I'm pretty much a loner so I could probably do without neighbors anyway. I've read about people finding their land in national forests, or right next to one.....how do they do that?! I'd like an area with trees for shade, space for a large garden and room for a few chickens. It would be nice to have some cool weather...doesn't have to be snow....just a change of season. Here it's just hot, hotter and hot as hell. I've learned to be frugal, which is a good thing because I'll probably need to live on my social security. I expect I won't be moving for about 1-2 years so I can get more money saved up. I've been through Arkansas and really liked it, loved Colorado...especially for fishing... but it's pretty much out of my price range, New Mexico or Arizona might be nice.....I just don't know how to get started! I really want an individual piece of land.....not a lot, not a subdivision or whatever they're calling them. Any suggestions, advice?
I would choose Arkansas myself, if I were in your position. Once you have decided on a general area, contact the "planning and zoning" office at the county courthouse and make sure you know what *all* of the rules and regulations are for building in the country. Some places require you have a certain number of acres to drill a well, some require a septic tank and laterals. Some might have restrictions on minimum square footage. Once you read the requirements for the county in question, and they are acceptable to you, then you need to contact a realtor who won't mind working with you. Most realtors are wanting to make big commissions off of expensive homes and will not put in the effort to help you, so choose one wisely. You can also access the MLS listings of most places and look for a piece of property yourself before contacting a realtor. The key phrase is "NO RESTRICTIONS". That means that besides the county planning and zoning, there are no additional restrictions to what you can and cannot do with your property.

Smart people will look for a piece of land that has some kind of live water (year round creek or spring). That way you will always have a source of water available for your animals, and possibly a garden. If you cannot afford to drill a well right away ($2,500 - $5,000), you can always collect rain water for your cooking and use creek/spring water for other needs.

Even though you are something of an introvert, having good access is a benefit too. Your land can border a paved road and you can just set your cabin back off the road so it cannot be seen.

Take a look at properties around Gassville and Cotter (Arkansas).

20yrsinBranson
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Old 06-25-2013, 03:29 PM
 
Location: NH and lovin' it!
1,780 posts, read 3,475,424 times
Reputation: 1318
Hello, madmaxine and welcome to City-Data!

If you are looking for ideas on how to procede, the above posts are all good. I would say the first thing you need to do is determine WHERE you want to live. Narrow it down to one state or region. Then check the state tax rates, availability of services that you might need, like doctors, grocery stores, etc.

Find a few desirable areas and compare property availability, property taxes, and zoning laws. You will make yourself crazy trying to compare areas if the whole country is on your plate!

I know this because I was in your position a few years ago. I sold my home in the south and determined that I wanted to be in the northeast. Tax rates were a big factor for me, so I dropped the idea of going back to NY state. The whole world was my oyster at that point, and it was really hard to just pick one place.

So do some daydreaming and some research, and start visiting some of the places you choose. It might take a while, but obviously this is something you want to do thoroughly.

O, by the way, look up Tumbleweed Tiny House company. I drool over those pictures regularly! You can even learn to build your own in one of their workshops and save a ton of money.

I found a place I really love in a rural area (after living in/near big cities for a long time.) I hope you find yours as well. Keep us posted!
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Old 06-25-2013, 09:44 PM
 
13 posts, read 15,200 times
Reputation: 17
Thank you all for your responses! I really appreciate the input. I've actually been leaning toward Arkansas for some time.
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Old 06-25-2013, 10:34 PM
 
Location: Kirkwood, DE and beautiful SXM!
12,054 posts, read 20,612,219 times
Reputation: 31776
Take a look at the thread on the classified ads board about Big Sandy, TN. Maybe something that would interest you.
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Old 06-26-2013, 06:55 AM
 
Location: Stuck in NE GA right now
4,585 posts, read 11,050,258 times
Reputation: 6618
I tried to send you a private message, I might have what your looking for if you want to live in NE GA.
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Old 06-26-2013, 07:04 PM
 
Location: the hills of TN!
283 posts, read 795,548 times
Reputation: 305
I have 5 1/2 acres in east TN, north of Knoxville, that I am toying with the idea of parting with. No restrictions, rural, but within 15 minutes of a town with shopping, wallyworld and a hospital. No house, but we have made several improvements since we bought it: a 30x42 open pole barn with septic and electric hookups for an RV or trailer; 25x51 workshop that has a 48 ft semi-trailer in one half, and an insulated, concrete floored, kitchen, bath, and workshop with full electric, water, and heat in the other half (makes a lovely 15X51 foot canning kitchen and craft workshop for me!). We put in a 2 bedroom septic system (got the proper permit for it, which is about the only permit the county requires!), and a 1200 gallon cistern to collect water from the pole barn roof. Whole place is fenced, with a large flat field at the top and rolling hills down the sides. Small pond. I think it is reasonably priced. If you are interested, pm me and I will give you a link to see pics and details.

Edited to add: TN has no income tax, and eastern TN has a pretty low incidence of tornadoes. The people are very friendly, and it is beautiful with typically mild winters with occasional snow, and only a few days of really hot weather in the summer (we came from SC, and although folks complain of the humidity, it is nothing compared to the deep south!).

Last edited by sassykat&joe; 06-26-2013 at 07:14 PM.. Reason: add more info
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