• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Looking for land in Western WA (suggestions please)  RSS feed

 
Andrew Tuttle
Posts: 20
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My wife and I are planning on purchasing land in Western Washington.  We want to build a home using natural local material and establish a homestead.  Once we are established we hope to start a non-profit organization teaching Permaculture and Natural Building techniques.  We currently live near the town of Index and our property is too small to do what we would like to.  Also it is much too rainy here for us sun worshipers.  We are open to any suggestions of where to look for land.  Our family is all up in Whatcom county so we would like to be not too far from there.  Do any of you know which counties are the best for building codes?  Thanks!
 
Jack Edmondson
Posts: 240
Location: Central Texas zone 8a, 800 chill hours 28 blessed inches of rain
11
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
If you already live in Western WA then you know the weather.  It will be more or less the same anywhere west of the Cascades.  You other option is to go east of the mountains.  Lots of sun, but colder temps, snow, and water availability issues.  Do you research.  Also anywhere in WA state is going to be pretty heavy govt. regulation on land.

This one comes with some 'baggage' but it is east of the mountains, but just over the pass in Cle Elum.  It is green and water rights are available (but probably not in that price).  It backs up to Federal Land but is not remote.  In fact you are just on the edge of town.  40 acres for $60k.  If you can live with the wetland  designation, it might be worth looking into:


http://www.windermere.com/search#!/location_search_field:910515/mls_number:910515/company_uuid:1234567

not affiliated in anyway.  just a quick search on the net.
 
Emma Turpentine
Posts: 1
Location: Cowlitz County, Washington
books forest garden tiny house
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
hi there,

did you ever find a place?
 
Ben Zumeta
Posts: 191
Location: Redwood Country, Zone 9, 60" rain/yr,
7
dog duck hugelkultur
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
The Olympic Peninsula is woefully under regulated and the east side of it like around Sequim or on the Key Peninsula are much drier (down to 18" in places) and are zone 9b in lowlands.  Look up the post by Hans Quistorff about permie land (I think 5 acres) out near Longbranch.
 
Andrew Tuttle
Posts: 20
1
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thanks for the replies.  I have not found a property yet.  Currently we are interning at farms in the area and still looking around for land.
 
Brian Hackethal
Posts: 7
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I work in the real estate industry and am a self builder. If I can be of any help let me know. I have enough raw land knowledge, building knowledge, and government knowledge to be dangerous.

I currently reside in rainier wa where I am building a small family farm with livestock.
 
Devin Lavign
pollinator
Posts: 475
Location: Pac Northwest
39
books chicken forest garden goat hunting solar trees wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Have you looked into the Deming area, since you have family in Whatcom Co? The River Farm is out that way, and there are a lot of great like minded folks in the area.
 
Andrew Tuttle
Posts: 20
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thanks guys.  I have been keeping an eye open in the deming area.  It is quite beautiful out there.  I will have to check out that farm sometime!
 
Devin Lavign
pollinator
Posts: 475
Location: Pac Northwest
39
books chicken forest garden goat hunting solar trees wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
River Farm used to (not sure if they still do as it has been a long time since I lived in B'ham area)hold festivals with a more education, knowledge, and skills bend to them. Plus one of the community members taught solar tech at Fairhaven College. Real good neighbors to have if you can find land in that area. Also they are some of the nicest community folks I have met. I used to hang out with one of the members regularly at a coffee house in B'ham.
 
Adam Li
Posts: 3
Location: San Juan Islands
fungi solar trees
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My wife fell into the "sun worshiper" and not "too rainy" arena when we were hunting in Western Washington. I spent a year looking and waiting for something good to pop up in the Rain Shadow region (San Juan, Sequim, E. Port Angeles, Port Townsend). Might consider watching those areas for something. We ended up on San Juan Island ourselves. Another reason I found San Juan (the sunniest of the islands) a good choice was knowing that The Bullock's are on Orcas. Different Island but same county, so that alleviated some of the worries about ending up in a place with building codes that weren't accommodating to permaculture practices.
 
Libbie Hawker
Posts: 102
Location: Friday Harbor, WA
6
chicken food preservation hugelkultur
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
If you want more sun, you can find it in Western WA, but you need to get inside the Olympic rain shadow. Sequim, Port Townsend, and parts of Chimicum over on the peninsula...and the San Juan Islands are also in the same rain shadow.

The trouble is, land can be fairly pricey in the Islands, but it's excellent ag land. The rain shadow combined with glacier-deposited soil is pretty sweet. We just bought 9/10th of an acre on San Juan Island, with a little 1935 cottage on it (well maintained, but still an old house) for $450K.

Prices on Lopez Island are lower, and if anything it's even better farming land there, but Lopez is not as "livable" as San Juan--just a tiny village with a few shops, one grocery store, etc. Little in the way of entertainment, no hospital...all that jazz. But great ag land! I keep an eye on the real estate market up here, and I've seen some big chunks of land on Lopez (30+ acres) sell for around $300K, often with a fixer-upper house included. So that would be one place to keep an eye on.

Orcas Island is too expensive, IMO, and there are fewer lots that would make good ag land. It's more rocky/hilly/mountainous there, more forested, less sunny.

Shaw Island is more isolated than Lopez, but still serviced by Washington State ferries so you can get to and from the mainland reliably. Good growing land there, and cheaper land prices because of the smallness of the community.

If you want to get your own boat and go really rural, Waldron Island has excellent prices and fantastic farm land, and a reputation as one of the oldest and best farming communities in the Northwest. We have a weekly farmer's market here, and every weekend in the summer I buy up all the Waldron Island produce I can get my hands on. So good! Decatur Island is also fantastic, price-wise and ag-wise, but again must be accessed by private boat.

The benefit of being in the Islands is that it could be a big draw for a teaching farm! A lot of people want to check "visit San Juan Islands" off their bucket list, so I'd think you would have lots of eager participants in your workshops!

The Peninsula (Sequim, Port Townsend for the rain shadow) is also very beautiful and has fantastic communities, but is more accessible and has more affordable land.

I also wouldn't write off the east foothills of the Cascades! Some really great prices and fantastic growing land out there, and still very scenic and beautiful! The Methow Valley is one of my favorite places in the world!
 
The government thinks you are too stupid to make your own lightbulb choices. But this tiny ad thinks you are smart:
Rocket mass heaters in greenhouses can be tricky - these plans make them easy: Wet Tolerant Rocket Mass Heater in a Greenhouse Plans
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!