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Map resource for choosing where to live

 
master steward
Posts: 8716
Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
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I just came across this article with an amazing number of maps of the US showing different factors.  Rain, heating and cooling degree days, cost per acre, broadband, soil carbon, tree canopy, diversity, road safety, natural disaster risk, nuclear sites and on and on.  It even shows maps for what the hardiness zones could look like in 25 years.

If you're hunting for land, I'd check out this article:

Back To The Land US Map
 
Posts: 50
Location: Ozark Border
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Nice resource!  I'll often putz around on communitycommons.org- it's free to build your own map and add relevant layers- soil type, cultural resources, streams, depth to bedrock, as well as information on the best place to site septic fields, outbuildings and the like.  
 
Posts: 5
Location: Door Co, Wisconsin, USA, Earth, Sol
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Mike Jay wrote:
Back To The Land US Map



Excellent one-stop-shop.

USGS & NOAA built an interactive map that we found invaluable for finding floodplains and flood histories.  Our agent warned of this when we mentioned the "cute little farmhouses along the creek" and our ask for a natural source of surface water.  He said many of the houses are built too close to the water and sadly get flooded.  

The map is at hosted by the US Weather Service: http://water.weather.gov/ahps/
 
pollinator
Posts: 1290
Location: Green County, Kentucky
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Justin Pittman wrote:

Mike Jay wrote:
Back To The Land US Map



Excellent one-stop-shop.

USGS & NOAA built an interactive map that we found invaluable for finding floodplains and flood histories.  Our agent warned of this when we mentioned the "cute little farmhouses along the creek" and our ask for a natural source of surface water.  He said many of the houses are built too close to the water and sadly get flooded.  

The map is at hosted by the US Weather Service: http://water.weather.gov/ahps/



Flooding danger is something I was watching carefully for when I was in Kentucky a couple of months ago looking at houses.  It's usually pretty easy to spot property that is in a danger zone, but not everyone thinks to look.

Kathleen
 
steward
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Location: West Tennessee
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When we had our "500 year flood" in 2010 here in Nashville, I had a friend who lost his house to flood damage. I asked him if he had flood insurance, and he did, and he told me the bank wouldn't issue him a mortgage on the house without flood insurance because it was in a known flood plain near a creek, so he was required to pay for flood insurance. I think what caught people off guard here was all the damage and loss in previously unknown flood areas.
 
Justin Pittman
Posts: 5
Location: Door Co, Wisconsin, USA, Earth, Sol
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James Freyr wrote:I had a friend who lost his house to flood damage



Cannot imagine loosing one's whole home to flooding.  My grandfather's home was flooded a couple times, each time the whole family cleaned up the muck left behin, until FEMA finally condemned his house -- which in hindsight was better than him living in mold.  Stories like these stick in your head when looking for a home.  Seeing the videos of fires in Cali devouring people's homes is terrifying.  Natural disasters happen but I'm aiming to be informed.

BTW: Another invaluable, interactive map I meant to share is the USGS Web Soil Survey.  It's impressive how granular the surveys get and the kind of detail.  I've found water table depth, soil composition (silt/clay/loam), depth to solid rock, etc.  It doesn't have NPK or chemical sample but impressive nonetheless so I meant to share it.

USGS Web Soil Survey system: https://websoilsurvey.nrcs.usda.gov/app/HomePage.htm
 
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