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Thu Jun 12, 2014, 12:43 PM

Off the grid livig in a micro-home (trailer) [View all]

If one wants micro-home that is relatively easily road transportable and doesn't require special permits to move, then in most states one is limited to about 340 square feet with a maximum height of 13'6" (the height includes the wheels).

I think I could live in such a place if I am alone and maybe have a small pet. There is property over at the old family farm where I could park the micro-home and thus not have to pay property tax in exchange for work done at the farm.

The stove, refrigerator and lighting would have to be propane and the toilet a composting one or an incinerator type. Firewood for heat is plentiful and there's enough small stuff where I'd just need a good handsaw and an axe. It might be a good idea to have a 10k btuh propane space heater to use as a backup for the wood stove.

I could build a root cellar to store garden produce and it'd be useful to have one of those small storage buildings on site to store tools, my moped and to have an indoor work area.

Waste would be taken care of in burn barrel, compost bin or the composting toilet. Non glossy paper products and cardboard can be cut up and put in the compost bin. Glossy paper and some plastics can be burned in the burn barrel and metal can be cleaned and set aside to be pick up for recycling along with many plastic containers.

I could capture much of the water I'd need from the rain that runs off the roofs and it'd be just drinking water I'd need to bring in or have a system to purify rainwater or melted snow. Laundry would be hand washed or washed in a portable hand cranked washer and then hung to dry on a clothes line.

The hardest adjustment I'd have to make is to go without the internet. I can go without tv but I get so much entertainment and news from the web that it'd be a big adjustment for me to go without. It's also the main way I keep in touch with friends and family via e-mail and facebook. Something like the K-TOR pedal generator in conjunction with a portable solar array along with 12 volt batteries and an inverter could provide the power. Might have to downsize from a laptop to a tablet though. Looking at various satellite provider plans, internet access could cost me close to $150 a month with tax and leasing fees included. It'd be less then $100 if I cut my internet time down. I think that would be worth the price. I have what many refer to as an Obama phone which costs me nothing as I get 125 free minutes a month with roll over of any unused minutes.

However, I'd be giving up a lot of convenience and comfort for little gain. As it is, the small house costs me about $355 a month on average and this covers gas, water, electricity, tv, internet, phone, garbage pickup, taxes, and fire insurance.

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