Wondering about the feasibility of setting up an off-grid yurt with heat/winterized between now and winter (before Jan 1st). My partner and I are looking to purchase land as soon as possible in the northeast (central VT); we are looking mostly at raw, undeveloped, off-grid properties with the intention to slowly build a sustainable homestead. Our search has spanned over a few years, but we are now wondering at the likelihood of setting something up (assuming we closed on a piece of land ASAP) that could be lived in through the winter - the most conceivable (if any) seems to be to set up a winterized yurt (with insulation, platform, and wood heat) but is that realistic within the timeframe? Also, we are hoping to find a property with access to water - dug well or spring, but if it has a dug well but is not hooked up to bring water to a living structure in the winter, or it doesn’t have a dug well at all yet, how realistic is it that we could have running water in the winter on this property?
Of course we understand that so much of this depends on the specifics of the property, how soon we can locate and close on a property, the materials we have available, weather, etc., but we are also wondering—more generally—about anyone’s experiences or knowledge about how long this process could be expected to take, and which parts might take the most or least time, in what order?
Other things we’re thinking about, in conjunction with locating and closing on the property, is the extent of inspections, etc. we would do on a raw parcel, other than testing the water, maybe doing a perc test (as security)? And how long these inspections might take? For a little background, we have been searching for the last several years, and have committed to looking in this area if possible. Also we came close to closing on a property once, so we are somewhat familiar with the process, but obviously have areas where we’d like input.
A BIG question.
What do you define a sustainable homestead as being?
YURTS can be ordered and purchased, I think that is the least of your concerns.
It seems you may be very picky about what land you want.
Have you written your needs and wants down and reviewed each property using that chart?
Water or access to water must be a high priority.
Access to the property will be high
Good soil and access to firewood and construction timber in the future may be other matters.
The direction the land faces and is it a swamp are important.
How close to a town etc
What is a perc test [ as security]
John Daley Bendigo, Australia
The Enemy of progress is the hope of a perfect plan
I'd say the feasibility is highly dependent upon dozens of variables, but on average I'd say it's 12% likely that you could have all that done by winter.
Finding a good property takes a couple weeks to a couple months and depends greatly on what you're after.
Closing on a property takes a month or two.
Moving a RV onto the property would be quicker than a yurt.
Getting power/water takes a while after you've closed
Snow will be falling there in 2-3 months
If you can devote 12 hours a day to this project, the odds go up. If you aren't picky about the property or price, the odds go up.
I'd suggest spending the fall selecting and buying a property and getting any infrastructure you can complete done before the ground freezes. While living where you're currently living or by renting a place near the property. Then spend next year building and moving onto the property.