Off the grid: what to consider before committing to a cabin

Cabin off the gridGuest post by Brooke Chaplan.

Living off the grid may seem like a far-fetched dream, but many people are living this dream successfully with personal and shared cabins. Before you commit to your remote home away from home though, you should know the challenges you might have to face with different properties. If you are considering the purchase of a cabin and living without the convenience of outside power, there are several things you should consider.

Readiness of the Cabin
The main reason to go off grid is to save money and create the ability to generate your own power. However, if the cabin is not already equipped with a power source, whether it be solar or wind-power, you must consider the source. While you could certainly live off the grid without any type of power source at all, it makes sense to equip your cabin with certain necessities, including lights, a hot water tank, or a small refrigerator. If the cabin is not equipped, you will certainly need to compare the cost of hooking up to outside power renewable energy programs from a power company or installing an independent power source. Find the most basic necessities you’ll need and how you plan to power them.

Running water may also be a concern where you plan to move. You can find modern cabins updated with tanks rather than wells. A hot water tank from Buffalo NY or a company like Anderson Water Systems can help you save a lot of money and a lot of water.

Size of the Cabin
Many off-grid cabins available for purchase or rent are considerably smaller than the average house. The majority of people who plan to purchase a cabin will have to downsize and cut back on the square footage in many cases. This reduces the cost to heat it, and the need for an abundance of power. How much you are willing to downsize should play an important factor in the decision you make.

Distance from Work or Medical Facilities

As most off the grid cabins are located in more rural areas, you will also need to consider the distance you must travel for work or the distance to medical facilities. This is especially important if you or a family member have a known medical condition that requires constant supervision from a professional. In many cases, the travel costs or risks associated with living in such a rural location are just not possible.

These are just a few of the things you must consider before you commit to an off the grid cabin. Many other factors to be considered including the cost, the acreage included with the cabin, and the actual functionality of the land. By taking everything into consideration, you will be able to make the most educated decision in joining the revolution of living off the grid.

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