As a young man, I traveled across Nebraska on Highway 20 that parallels the main east-west interstate across the state. It’s very beautiful country. The scenic byway was far more interesting than the interstate which I had traveled many times going back and forth to Colorado on vacation. Places like this would be a great place to homestead.
Hi Owen, I plan to build in Cochise County, Arizona and they have what they call an “Owner Built” building permit program (for rural residential dwellings) that does not require regular inspections, etc. Owners can build pretty much anything they want as long as they apply, and pay for, a permit. After that there are no inspections or approvals.
Most people who want to build a sustainable homestead look for the perfect piece of land with good soil for their garden. The trouble is, the most productive land is locked up in profitable farms that’s typically not for sale, or if it is for sale it costs a fortune. This blog post explains one way to solve this dilemma.
When buying land, natural builders are faced with one of their biggest challenges trying to decide: what area is best?, how much to spend?, what will I need?, what about codes? It helps to hear firsthand advice from people actually living off-grid like the couple in this video.
The following comment left by a reader got me thinking about publishing a few blog posts about areas in the US with few or no building codes that allow do-it-yourself alternative building with earthbags, straw bales and local wood, and homesteading. As we’ve said many times here, building in areas with codes can skyrocket the construction costs ten-fold, which essentially wipes out the savings of using alternative materials. That probably explains why our blog page Counties with Few or No Building Codes has always been our most popular page.
Urban areas have strict building codes that often make it difficult and costly to build with natural materials. Good rural land is expensive and hard to come by. So where can you live? Pinyon-juniper scrub land is very abundant, cheap and worth considering.