If you’ve always dreamed of having a home built on your lot miles from the city, now is a great time to fulfill that dream. Whether your lot is truly remote or in a rural community, you can enjoy the freedom from city ordinances and picky subdivision rules. You can also enjoy freedom from the electric company and most of your produce shopping. Even if you don’t have a huge lot, with modern technology, you no longer have to devote acreage, or hours of hoeing in order to produce your own organic vegetables. New methods of self-sufficiency have been developed which could allow your family a self sustainable lifestyle if you choose, with a lot less effort than in the past.
Home Built On Your Lot: Building Materials
Though you can choose any material for your off the grid home, I would recommend insulated concrete for a durable, maintenance free energy efficient structure. Other good choices include log homes, possibly with added insulation, or a stick built home with six inch exterior walls, which should be filled with closed cell insulation, and feature a radiant barrier attic.
Your best bet for energy efficiency is to build a small heavily insulated structure equipped with energy star appliances. Also consider a solar hot water heater, or a tankless hot water heater. Which you choose depends on your climate. Another ecological development is the incinerator toilet, which may actually get you out of having to build a septic tank, and conserve water and electricity as well.
In order to go off the grid, your energy consumption must be cut to the bone. This can be done with energy star appliances, and any specialized mechanical devices which replace electronics. In addition it is helpful to unplug appliances and electronics when not in use. You can have the outlets to your entertainment center controlled by a simple light switch for easy access. Once you turn them off, you can cut power to them, and save a lot of electricity.
The solar panel is probably the best known source of alternative energy, but there are others, including homemade perpetual motion generators, and a host of wind and solar adaptations. Solar panels alone should be manageable if you keep your needs low, or install a lot of panels.
You may wish to include a green house, a small gardening shed, or a large garage, as well as your home. City and subdivision lots can be very restrictive about these sorts of buildings, but rural and remote lots are usually free of these sorts of ordinances. These types of small shelters can save on the amount of storage that needs to be included in the house.
An entirely glass sunroom, can be a really nice addition to your home. Placed on the south side it provides passive solar. It can also be equipped with an aquaponics system, which grows a garden’s worth of organic vegetables in a very small space, and raises farm catfish or tilapia for your table as well. Using your home to produce its own energy and raise food adds significantly to its value, and saves you money. Though Aquaponics can be added at any time, building it into the design from the very beginning will make it substantially easier and more attractive.
By building a self sustaining home with a low maintenance alternative energy plan, and a aquaponics system, you can save money on your future expenses. This will make those house payments easier to make. An off the grid home built on your lot, provides a comfortable and self sustaining lifestyle, that makes families closer. For more information on having a home built on your lot, we hope you will download our 98 page free book, and enjoy the many articles on this site.