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    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Sun Mar 02, 2014 12:41 am

    yeah, it's good that you've put a lot of thought into an exit strategy.

    i haven't put much thought into it.

    i can't tell you how many sleepless fucking nights i have.



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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 05, 2014 3:44 am

    Yeah, me too man.

    But I'm telling you, it's possible.

    The America I left was in 2002.

    These properties I'm looking at have been decreasing in price steadily since 2009.

    Obonga just raise minimum wage.

    It all sucks, but it also adds up to something good.

    Plus folks like us have learned to live under a much lower standard of living.

    I'm pretty happy with a hotpot of old veggies and spam myself.

    Small cabins use way less heat and electricity and water. Heck, I can shower in under a minute.

    Washing machines? Don't even get me started!

    And I'm adapted to thinking months and months in advance for my living.

    I only drink two beverages: 2 cups of coffee per day, and the rest room-temperature water.

    Being back in the US would be a cakewalk at this point!



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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 05, 2014 3:56 am

    I'm looking at a lot of parcels.

    The main consideration is how how close the parcel is to population center. Anything near a city in Maine is bound to be a 1-4 acre lot. The big parcels of 20 acres or more are probably further away. Of course with those big parcels you get wood, wood, wood.

    But with the smaller ones you get access to population centers, which have retard jobs. It's a tough call.

    Don't forget, FUEL costs money. So if you are commuting 30 miles back and forth everyday, that's the same as a second bank payment on land.



    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
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    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."
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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 05, 2014 4:00 am

    I've been searching through all the MLS listings on realtor.com.

    Some have owner financing.

    Bank financing I don't know, I've been off the scene for 13 years in china. And I can't even prove my income here for a bank loan.

    But I bet if i can cover the downpayment, they'll think about it. Even on the bigger properties, that still works out to $100+ USD a month. I can handle that easily.

    I don't want to make high payments now, cuz I want to save enough in the next year to cover the cost of a decent pickup truck (4k) and the cabin shell (4k) + other associated expenses like the foundation and blah blah blah.

    There's also septic to think about, but that can be nigger rigged for the startup. Water maybe too if there is a low area to dig a shallow well.



    _________________
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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 05, 2014 4:01 am

    I'd like to get a dog too, or a couple. Dogs are really great for scaring off critters. And they make good friends.

    Only problem is they require constant care and feed.


    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
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    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 05, 2014 4:13 am

    I'm more a cat person myself.

    Cats, btw, are not entirely useless.  

    They keep the small critters like mice, rats, and chipmunks at bay.

    And larger insects.

    You can keep dogs and cats at the same time, contrary to popular belief.  They get along once they get to know each other.


    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."

    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Tue Mar 11, 2014 8:34 pm

    if you're not working 9 to 5, you can wash clothes by hand like the old chinese ladies do.

    keep your carbon footprint down.

    yeah, my ex back home had a cat and a dog. i think some of them don't get along, but even if you get 2 cats they might be jealous of each other and not get along.

    but yeah, i'd like to have cats, dogs, horses, monkeys, and dolphins as pets.

    it all sounds a bit complicated. it's not for me. i'm not self-reliant enough.


    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Tue Mar 11, 2014 8:52 pm

    I don't think it's healthy to have a penny-pinching attitude and think about how many coffees you consume in one day.

    At least not if there's any truth to what the the New Age assholes say about flow of abundance and all that crap.

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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:04 pm

    It's not just about being frugal. It's healthier to limit consumption of any beverage that isn't WATER.

    I've finally broken the habit myself, about the last two months. Two or the three cups of black coffee per day, and the rest of the time it's nothing but room temperature water.

    Not counting the liters of liquor I consume on my benders, which probably negate a lot of the benefits.


    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."

    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:22 pm

    That is what I have been saying, you fool.

    Who the fuck are you trying to fool?

    We all know you put baijiu in your corn flakes in the morning.

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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:26 pm

    Self-reliance is gonna come in real handy when things go all to hell in a handbasket.

    And they do. Wars, civil wars, floods, famines, repressive governance, economic depression....

    The stress of behind on bills, debt, and being one paycheck away from skid row takes a physical and mental toll as well.

    Your money is spoken for before you even earn it. Imagine having most of your income be disposable!

    Hell, I'm even reading about some of these aquaculture guys making substantial income from these farms. You can even get that stuff certified as "organic" and fetch higher prices.

    Now I'm thinking about a windmill to pump and aerate the water. Sure I'm gonna have electricity, but I don't need to wasting so much money running the water pump, when a windmill can do it for free.

    I'm kinda thinking about a new method, where you've got a raised moat (built by earthbag concrete and a pond liner) going around the interior perimeter of the greenhouse. (One end will have a bridge so you can get in) On top of the greenhouse there's a windmill that connects to a smaller "water-mill" mostly sumbermerged on one end of the moat in nice simple analog style. Might require some gearing.... But I've been reading up on how windmills with more slats can be turned in even 2-3 mph winds. That means it would run constantly, providing aeration and a mild current around the moat. (a backup electric aerator would probably be a good idea in case wind speeds reach 0.)

    Cuz you don't want your fish to drown Razz

    There's on method of aquaculture called "rafting", where you float foam panels on the surface of the water. Tapered holes are drilled into panels for the plants roots to poke through down into the nutrient-rich water below.

    I mean, I get that my idea is entirely hypothetical (though I have been doing a shitload of research!) but if I'm right, you could have a system that requires almost no maintenance: just plant, feed, and harvest. Producing thousands of pounds of fresh veggies and fish, way more than enough to feed a family. And what's great is that if your neighbors garden or farm, you can trade off on stuff. Sick of fish? Trade it to your neighbor for some of his homemade beef jerky. I'm also thinking a smokehouse for the excess fish. Smoke that stuff, package it and sell it on e-bay.


    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."
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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:29 pm

    The Great Splendini wrote:That is what I have been saying, you fool.

    Who the fuck are you trying to fool?

    We all know you put baijiu in your corn flakes in the morning.


    Nah, I'm a binge drinker. Not that that's a good thing by any means. Most days I'm sober.

    But when I do drink.... it's a shitload. Another good reason to be out in the countryside. I can't buy dirt cheap liquor five minutes from my home 24/7.





    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."

    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:38 pm

    yeah so if things go to hell in a handbasket, do you honestly think you'll be safe?

    nope.

    people will kill you for your fucking organic fish.

    you'll be swimming with the fishes.


    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:45 pm

    0.01% of people living off the grid doesn't accomplish anything.

    the grid needs to be scrapped.

    the whole system needs to collapse and be changed.

    until everyone lives off the grid and sustains themselves.

    we need pioneers. we need people getting the ball rolling.

    but you ain't gonna be safe off the grid if things get ugly.

    so i'm not a huge fan of being off the grid because as long as most people are on the grid, i think it's kind of pointless. and it sounds like way too much work.

    better to live in the system and be a fucking virus.

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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Tue Mar 11, 2014 11:57 pm

    Um, again.... I'll be doing this ON THE GRID.

    The purpose of the windmill is to minimize my usage and avoid high electric bills.  I'm talking about a mechanical setup where the windmill directly pumps the water, not an electric generator.  100 years ago this was a common practice, and it's picking up again.

    I need electric to run my power tools, appliances, lighting, and PC.  That's it.

    There's a huge margin of difference.  If you have electric heat and run a dryer, etc, your electric bills will be huge, hundreds of dollars a month.

    Mine are gonna be tiny, like 50.

    Dryers, air conditioning, especially heating really suck up a lot of power.  Wood or propane or ANYTHING is a lot a cheaper.  Electric heat is the dumbest fucking thing you can do.

    Air conditioning won't be a big concern, i can get through july and august with a fan.  
    Dryers are completely unnecessary.  I've spent over a decade in china without one.
    I'm thinking a cedar "drying room" would be a nice addition to the house, with a heater/fan in it for wet days.  Not just for clothes, but also to dry veggies and stuff.  But you know, I *could*  have a dryer, because I'm gonna be using propane hot water and coooking off it, and they do make propane dryers.  Also there are refrigerators that run off propane.  Propane heat is not a bad way to go either if you don't want to deal with wood or pellet stoves.  In a small well-insulated cabin it won't cost much at all to heat your way through winter all cozy like. I'm still gonna go with wood though, cuz it'll be FREE.


    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."
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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 12, 2014 12:25 am

    Plus it'd just be cool to have a windmill.

    There are some other configurations as well.  Like to deal with low wind conditions and insure a steady supply of moving water (essential to keep your fish alive) you can go with a windmill generator and battery setup.  But you know, as soon as you're converting energy, there's loss. Sometimes the old ways really are better.

    For example, a small water tower.  This could even just be barrels raised up on a high platform.  The way it works is that if the wind is dipping below 3-4 mph (no water pumping) it won't matter, because when it does blow the windmill pump fills the barrels (and cuts off when they're full).  A purely mechanical setup with no eletrical bullshit that provides constant flowing water FOR FREE.

    Really I agree with you about staying on the grid.  Solar, fucking hydro, batteries, controllers, voltages, converters.... omg it always gets unbelievably complicated.  And the setup costs are astronomical.  the power company delivers steady safe 120v current to you.  So to me, in makes way more sense to stay on the grid and minimize usage. $40 electric bills sound a lot better than dealing with all that bullshit.

    Heck, I bet if I did LED lighting, propane hot-water, windmill/watertower, wood heat... and all that stuff I've blabbing about, my electric bill would be less than $40, maybe just $20. Well depending on how much I'm using power tools in any given month.

    The one thing that makes me want to stay on the grid more than anything is my PC. PC and internet I absolutely can't bear to think aobut living without. A few months ago I lost internet for a week, I thought I was gonna die. I would have preferred to have to fkn water shut off instead!


    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."
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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 12, 2014 12:33 am

    I mean I spent the first half of my life without internet, but now I just can't imagine it.

    When my internet goes out I literally go into withdrawal symptoms. Really, I start losing my mind.


    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."

    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Wed Mar 12, 2014 1:23 pm

    actually, youtube is my favorite site. so that's part of why i'm a bit nuts in china. can't access my favorite site.

    but yeah, when internet goes down, fuhgettaboutit.

    and yeah, well, good luck with it and keep me posted.

    you're a braver man than i am.

    i would only attempt something like that if i had a lot of money and could pay people to help me set it up.

    otherwise, fuhgetaboutit.

    i don't know shit about wind turbines.



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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 12, 2014 6:32 pm

    I don't know shit about wind turbines either, I'm just reading up.

    I could start fully on-the grid with just the cabin and an outdoor fish pond that gravity feeds into a garden for the first year. Greeenhouses and windmills are kinda out of my initial budget too, and I don't want to overextend myself with debt.

    But, like I said, you don't need to have mad carpentry skills (although stick building isn't actually that hard for a single floor cabin) Also you can have a modular cabin delivered right to your site for a few thousand dollars.

    Other startup costs may include:

    1. Well drilling (approx $3000)
    2. Foundation: This can be done cheaply on raised concrete or pressure treated wood pillars, or extremely cheap just set on gravel. Or you can do it right and shell out a couple more grand for a slab.
    3. Hooking up electric. This could be miminal depending on how far you are from a public street and pole.

    That place I listed before already had an electrified cabin on it. So it would just be a matter of winterizing the cabin for a few hundred dollars worth of insulation and wallboard. And getting a well drilled. Plus adding cheap plumbing and a temporary septic.

    Plumbing can be made real simple. Just a water line into the house connected to sink, shower, water heater, and toilet. All of which would be near each other. (Side by side kitchen/bathroom).

    What that means is that you could just buy the fixtures, $100 a pop for toilets and sinks. Then pay the plumber to hook it up for you. The cost wouldn't be exhorbinant.

    The important thing to remember here is the return on all this investment. It's a huge return, since thereafter you will be living rent and mortgage free.... FOREVER!

    So you know, with all that money you won't be forking over to banks and landlords, you do anything you want. You can build an even better family size house on site piecemeal and turn the cabin in a guest cottage. I plan to say in the cabin, only build a workshed (metal worksheds are supercheap, like a few hundred dollars) and go for the aquaculture greenhouse. But really, you can do anything you want with that money. Like work less hours. Or travel. Invest. Or whatever.















    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."
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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 12, 2014 6:48 pm

    I spent  years saving for a downpayment.  Then I bought a house for my ex-wife and worked my ass to broke all the time paying the mortgage.

    All for nothing, cuz I got fucked in the divorce.  Like I wasn't even notified of the fucking thing and they handed all assets to her (she never contributed financially, in fact I'd been supporting her entirely for all those years).  

    What a fucking joke right?  Years of my blood sweat and money stolen away.  I spent so many years achieving that, and wound up living in a fucking tent.

    And guess what I learned from that?  I fucking LOVE living in a tent!  I was living well, better than well.  I had heating and solar electric, cooking, dry comfort, lighting...

    Sitting by the fire at night, drinking coffee.  Reading a book.  Watching a sunset. Listening to the birds sing.

    To me a cabin is just like a permanent tent, without the inconvenience of having to find a place to shower.  Outside I'll still be in a forest setting.  I'm thinking of doing like a wild garden, replanting local species.  Plus raised garden beds.  Paths.  Picnic table, fire pit.   Bat-houses to keep the mosquitoes at bay.  It's gonna be a sanctuary!

    And when inclement weather comes, I just retreat back into my warm, dry cabin which provides every necessity, including internet.

    The bank don't own a piece of me.  The landlord don't own a piece of me.  Bills are low to non-existant.  Including the much overlooked grocery bill!  Property tax is under $1000 a year, maybe even half that depedning on location.  Cabins are taxed like land not houses.  Shit for money I could put up some more cabins and rent them out. Then sell food to my tenants Razz I've got a thousand ideas... and the great thing about them is they are all completely practical.


    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."
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    Psioncy

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  Psioncy on Wed Mar 12, 2014 7:04 pm

    Nothing is set in stone.  I'm thinking about Fire Island too, cuz a lot of startup costs would be cheaper there.

    Fish and vegetables fetch good pricing.  

    And land is cheap.

    And there's always online teaching.  It'd be rough going initially, but still offers some benefits over the US.

    What I hate about china is there's no future here for a foriegner.  We will always be outsiders, just one naval incident away from losing our visas.

    And the culture sucks, lying cheating shit everywhere you turn.  It's a way of life, deeply ingrained into the populace, and it ain't gonna change.


    _________________
    "It's all part of the plan."
    "What is the plan?"
    "I kind of make the plan up as I go."
    "That's not really a plan then."
    "Okay, so it's not a plan. Look, I'm not good with plans."

    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Wed Mar 12, 2014 7:10 pm

    wow! i didn't know your ex took you to the cleaners.

    many people are slaving away at jobs they don't like for these houses. the houses may be comfortable and nice, but you're in a city. so no matter how big and beautiful the house is, you're living in a concrete jungle. and you have to depend on corporate assholes for your sustenance and they're all corrupt aholes.

    to me, living in nature is more important than a big house anyway. yep, simple pleasures like smelling fresh grass, watching the sunset, hearing the birds chirping. or the sea also. i love the sea and i'd like to live near the sea if at all possible.

    if you can pull it off, it sounds pretty interesting.

    in fact, if you report back here that it's a successful project, i'll consider it.

    when are you thinking of actually doing it?

    the other issue is finding a girl to hitch a ride and live there with you. but if it's pleasant enough, it shouldn't be a problem i guess.



    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Wed Mar 12, 2014 7:19 pm

    i'm still not sure if i should stay in china.

    there's a lot of things i don't like. i mean, when you're afraid to eat in fucking restaurants, does it make sense to stay here?

    and the chinese schools must be total crap. would i want to send my children there if i had any? international schools cost a bloody fortune.

    china, as one of the superpowers, could be problematic. tensions between other countries can arise easily.

    i know that thailand is the same. some foreigners buy homes but the home is never really under their name because of protectionism and if they have problems with the wife, they're fucked.

    i'm totally lost about my future. i don't know what the fuck i'm doing.

    but i would feel much safer in a country that offers permanent residence and that has fewer problems.



    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Wed Mar 12, 2014 7:22 pm

    yeah, the cheating stuff is pretty bad.

    there was a foreign woman who opened up a restaurant somewhere in china. she was doing really well, so when the landlord realized how much money she was raking in, he tripled the rent. so she was forced to shut down.


    The Great Splendini

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    Re: Dirt Cheap DIY Housing

    Post  The Great Splendini on Wed Mar 12, 2014 7:34 pm

    when i was in thailand, i met a few guys who divide their time between thailand and other countries.

    one guy works in singapore and goes to thailand often.

    so one option is to work in a country where the wages are good and then spend some time in a country with nature where the cost of living is much lower (like philipinnes).

    you can work 9 or 10 months a year in a country with good wages, then live in philipinnes the rest of the time.

    and as you get older, work 6 months, take 6 months off.

    then retire in philippines. your money will go a longer way.

    just a suggestion.


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