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Forested land in eastern Canada rent free.  RSS feed

 
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I just purchased land in NB, Canada. Basically, we would be looking for as many as 3 tiny homes to move into out forested 9.4 acres (4 including our family). Satellite internet is available in the area and we plan to clear the main road to our property as well as three other roads branching off into the very back of the mostly square property. I hate the idea of renting land while trying to live off the grid. We decided to buy the land and crafting a five-year plan to prepare before we took the leap and moved in. Because We hate the idea of paying rent on land we figured a trade for labor instead of charging other like-minded tiny home adventures would be a much better deal. Our thoughts for this trade, in order of importance, would be....

1: Land clearing. For our site, we would need trees cleared. sounds easy enough and the majority of the hardwood on the property is on the smaller end of the scale so a chainsaw, while it would take time, is viable. We would be putting in solar so not only does the home site need clearing but the surrounding trees as well to take full advantage of the sun during all seasons. (kinda a bigger job)

2: fencing. We knew we wanted to fence and with all the clearing needed the smaller diameter trees could make for a good perimeter fence around our homesite. (not the entire property) Nothing crazy fancy needed. A nice rustic looking fence with some waves in it would add some charm in my opinion.

3: Gardening. Ok, so we're not the greenest of thumbs. Of course, we are doing what we can here in Calgary with our small garden but after clearing the land we would, of course, need a sizeable garden between the 4 of us. (kids 7 and 11) Basically producing compost and weeding along with maybe some pro tips throughout the growing season would be simply amazing.

My question, is this something people would be interested in? I like the idea of trading the work for a chunk of forest to call there own. To better make it in an off-grid situation the small amount of money people would pay for renting an area could go a long way for more important things. we defiantly want to go the full legal route so, permits are needed for living in a tiny home. talking to the county and the company that sold us the property it seems to be an easy and welcome process in the area, (35 min drive northeast to Sussex). This includes rainwater collection, the home its self, solar, land clearing, composting toilet, chickens, the whole package.

At the moment the land can be developed but not lived on. The payments for the land need to be paid in full before we can even think of setting up shop BUT... we plan on paying this off within a year (at least).

Thoughts regarding the plan? would you personally make any changes or have suggestions regarding any of it? Shit, would you even be interested in the future?

Leaving the rat race behind and planting roots in the unknown can be a bit overwhelming. It's my opinion that working with each other can be beneficial.

- Side note. Watching YouTube videos on tiny homeowners has been fun and there are tonnes to learn but one thing I never understood is the building or buying a tiny home without having a spot to drop it in. We decided to grab up the land first and go from there. To each their own I suppose.
Thanks for taking the time to read about our ideas and plan.
 
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Location: Sierra Nevadas, CA 6400'
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Welcome to permies, Ryan!

This all sounds very exciting. I think you've got a generally good idea and should get to work! That being said, I've found that land has a way of making it's own plans. I doubt whatever you plan now will end up being what you do. That's fine, it's always worth it to think it through.

I'll give you a few anecdotes of my experience with similar efforts…

- Fencing is a hard job. Unless there's a pressing need (livestock, legality), it will most likely get deprioritized. Many rustic-looking fences also serve very little purpose. Barbed wire is the usual go-to cheap-but-usable version, woven wire more often the expensive-but-utilitarian version.

- Where are you going to store tools? Firewood? You'll need utility structures, and ones that can be locked up tight to prevent dirt-biking idiots from screwing around when you're not there.

- It's hard to find people to help. Real easy to find people say they want to help. Be wary and get your agreements in writing.

- Think about moving / processing the trees once you've felled them. Trees suddenly get a lot bigger once they're on the ground.

- You've got a lot of goals. I'd try and focus on a smaller set of them, spend a year, then revisit your plans. Something like: clear the main road for trailers (tiny houses) and make a clearing for a parking spot.

Best of luck!
 
Ryan Hillmer
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Thanks for the reply Kyle.

I agree with the fencing, it would be simply for looks so you would be correct about priority now that I revisit the idea.
As for structures thats no issue as we already have our tiny house designed and the money for sheds for water collection storage, solar system, tools and vehicles, firewood etc with the majority of them heated.

Most of the trees from clearing the roads would be cut and seasoned for firewood but as for the large clearing needed for the home and solar area, a disk mulcher might just be the fast cheaper way to go.

The main plan is to have the areas clear we need and the roads to the other quadrants done as well. Once we are ready to move in we have detailed plans to hit the ground running including a professional solar install, 7500 gallons of rainwater collection system heated for the winters, a below frost line pantry as well as the separate structures for the kids that will also be connected to the solar and water system.

Most of the help needed would be in clearing and keeping the trees that needed to be cleared for the "infrastructure". A huge task but a necessary one. After those are saved for firewood a bobcat with a disk and have its way with the roads.

More than "needing" help I guess I wanted to offer likeminded people a cheap way to fulfill their dreams. This would require some screening of course and a good amount of time before the process could begin.
I believe not only will this help with some costs but also cut down on the time we initially need during the move.

Believe me, the first 5 months will be the most labor-intensive of our lives but with detailed planning, the money to back us up for solar installs as well as excavating for the pantry and help from contractors I know. I think we have the makings of a great life out in our new little slice of a forest.


 
Won't you be my neighbor? - Fred Rogers. tiny ad:
Perennial Vegetables: How to Use Them to Save Time and Energy
https://permies.com/t/96921/Planting-Perennial-Vegetables-Homestead
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