A Home Not an Investment
Ever since we started living off the grid we have noticed a very prevalent opinion that goes something like this - " your home is nice, but how would you ever sell it?"
We used to get kind of irritated at the question as being off the grid has given us the option of not looking at our home as an investment at all.
We built the house as our own, without any thought of selling it.
Recently it has become all the rage to flip a house for profit. Buy it, fix it and sell it.
And keep doing it until you are rich presumably.
That's fine if you really like building and want to look at your home as a business, but does that make it a home? For the most part it doesn't.
It is really difficult to translate the intangibles about living off the grid and how we look at our home differently than most.
The best we can come up with for folks who ask is that our home is a work in progress, and it has grown with us and our changing needs.
And we have built it to be permanent, in other words it is our home.
Certainly things could change and our home could become unattractive to us through outside influences. The very same thing happened to Helen and Scott Nearing with their first homestead in Vermont. It is a very interesting story told to us first by Helen.
The area had become a tourist trap and resort area and they were lead to believe that their home would be preserved as it was, instead shady real estate developers bought their home and made it part of the same resorts.
We don't build anything here that we don't want to be permanent in our homestead. Part of self sufficiency certainly is thinking things through before you do them.
Every tree that we have, every rock, every acre of land we take it very seriously that it is our responsibility to look after it as best we can.
Most of the material for our home here came directly from this property, dead and damaged trees, stone for the fireplace and root cellar (even the chicken coop and greenhouse) All came from right here.
If you look closely you will see a lot of change on our property over the years, but most of that change has been a more permanent relocation of all the material we have used.
With the addition of concrete and sand nuisance rocks have become walkways and steps even foundations.
It is all in how you look at it. Why would I build a home, or even fix one up that we are not going to live in? It just does not make sense. Is the next house going to be our home? Why not live in the one you have now?
The strange part is that lately we have noticed a change in the question, and a definite acknowledgement that our building for ourselves theory just might appeal to another owner as well, go figure...
Build your home how 'you' would want it, not how you 'hope' the next owner would want it. That is living, and certainly living off the grid gives us this option better than any other.