Sweat Equity Homesteading


Jim BakerGood morning all! The cancer is in remission as of yesterday, not spread anywhere else and I have been given the go ahead to work on my ‘farm’ as I choose to. And those of you that read this little blog of mine have figured out I don’t think like many people do. And all this brings me to this little observation.

I met a young lady at the Cancer Center that her and her husband has land, a lot by my standards, slightly over 100 acres. I have not seen the property as of yet and they want to do something with it all yet neither of them is interested in farming, doing the homesteading thing or anything like that. Their main goal is something helping with a tax break. They are financially better off than me if that is their consideration, just so you know. Not pointing fingers or faulting them, just something that I doubt I would even give a second thought to.

So with that as my intro and me knowing folks that want to get into this lifestyle yet have neither the resources nor the property located to do what they want to do, why not develop a ‘partnership’, perhaps with the help of a county agent, 4-H clubs, whatever networking can be in place to have those wanting to get into the life working the land of those that don’t? Different strokes for different folks, if the property in question is large enough and there are livable dwellings on said property, could that be a ‘live on’ arrangement? I realize that personalities would have to be compatible, legalities worked out, all of that, yet long term it could very well be a win/win for the two parties as well as profitable for both. I feel certain this person I met has many counterparts throughout the country with land being under or not even utilized. Yet those owners wanted to live in the country, so to speak. And there are people like me, stuck where I am due to finances, that can’t or don’t want to sell the house I am in and yet ache for more land to make into something better than what it is and live the simpler life and maybe share that bounty with the land owner, make some money in the process and maybe, just maybe, in some cases even have a low rent or possibly free place to live as you rent your current residence to others. The downside, if there is one, the time, trouble getting the necessary legalities being drawn up by a qualified attorney that would give both parties full protection through this whole process. Back in the day there were share croppers all over the South. That was nothing more, at times, than legalized slave labor. Yet the concept is viable when done properly I feel. Think about those that are older, that have land yet are unable to work it. Think of that knowledge that will disappear unless someone takes the time to knock on the door and discuss the possibilities, and as a bonus, they may have all the equipment required just sitting there collecting dust.

Consider the X-Gen youngsters, living in apartments yet wanting to know what we all do regarding where their food comes from, how it is grown, processed, etc. Yet they do not want to ‘own’ a place. Their choice, yet it does limit their options regarding all the other things we discuss about living simpler and being more self sufficient as we do.

I will be talking to the young lady I met at the Cancer Center since she wants to plant a few hundred chestnut trees and I have the containers for her to use for the endeavor until they get large enough to transplant onto the property without something eating them.

So dear readers, suggestions, thoughts, comments or criticisms. I am open to all!

2/26/2016 9:09:15 PM

Great idea! We have a small parcel of land sitting fallow and have been trying without luck to find someone interested in homesteading it. Wish we could find someone like you in East Texas.

2/25/2016 4:23:34 PM

Jim, thinking creatively is a great thing. I must agree that there is a log land not being used even within towns. I don't have to travel far in my city to find vacant lots that are in neglect. I bought two vacant lots from the city that were in foreclosure and am in the process of turning them into gardens. I'll be interested in following your progress with gardening without owning the land. ***** Have a great day figuring out legalities.

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