The Bekins Blog
Your Guide for Moving to a Remote Off-Grid Location
Everybody has their reasons for wanting to leave the suburban or full urban lifestyle. You might want to retire close to nature, with ample chances for living off the land. You might want the challenge of living a greener lifestyle with minimal carbon impact. Or you might simply enjoy the isolation and resilience that can come from embracing simplicity.
Whatever your reasons, preparing to move from a more traditional home to a fully remote area can be a challenge in and of itself. You might not know where to begin when planning the move. Here are some guidelines to consider as you approach your day of change.
Committing to Downsizing
Remote minimalist living means living on a smaller scale than you did before. You might have reduced available storage, smaller rooms, fewer appliances, and less square footage. When moving from your larger home, you need to be serious about downsizing.
Take measurements of the new space before moving day. Sell or give away furniture that will end up being too large or bulky to fit into your remote home. If you’re going to be living in a mobile home, such as a trailer or an RV, don’t keep any appliances or furniture; instead, you might sell them or rent them out with your current home as a single package.
Part of downsizing for remote living is getting rid of items that you normally used for suburban or urban living that you won’t need any more in favor of making room for the things you will need.
For example, you won’t need a large set of fine china, but you will need room to store tools for building, planting, and harvesting on the land. You might want canning jars and other supplies for preserving food. If you have a road bike you use for commuting, you might sell it in favor of a bike that can handle rougher country terrain.
Remember, you don’t want the added stress of moving out to a remote area only to discover you still have too many things that you’ll need to pack up and haul out again. Instead of moving everything with you, you might rent a storage unit temporarily until you get a feel for the things you need.
After a couple of months of adjusting to your new life, you’ll be able to look through the items in storage with fresh eyes, adeptly assessing their value and place in your life.
Planning for Essentials
Before moving day, you’ll need to make sure you have the essentials ready to roll at your new home. If you have a source for electricity, make sure it is functional. Check generators and solar panels to make sure you’ll have access to services when you arrive with the moving truck.
If you don’t have a water well at your location, have your first load of water hauled in a day or two before you plan to move in. This way, you can hook up for services and have drinking water for moving day. If you do have a well, make sure the water is tested for portability before you move.
Check to make sure you have fuel available for heating and cooking. If you use a propane tank for fuel, notify the fueling company of your moving date so that you don’t have two large vehicles trying to share an access road.
Choosing the Day and the Roads
Moving to a remote area can be a logistical challenge. You need to make sure that your new home is accessible to the moving vehicles. Plan for your move well in advance, checking weather trends to decide the best month to make the change. You will want to go ahead of the truck to remove obstacles, such as trees that might have fallen in the road.
Try to plan for a day with ideal weather. Rain can create impassible mud or cause dangerous road conditions. Have an alternate day planned in advance so that you don’t have to majorly shift your plans in case of poor weather.
Country roads can be hard on your belongings as you pull into an area with remote access. Check with the county to ask when road grading is normally performed so you can move on a day when the roads are in good condition. Give yourself plenty of time so you aren’t feeling rushed when traveling in a remote area.
Even though you can rent vans and move things yourself, if the roads are tricky, such as mountain roads with single lanes and hairpin turns, try scheduling a professional mover with experience operating a large vehicle.
Make Arrangements for Animals
If you have dogs, cats, or any sort of livestock, board them until after your moving day. You don’t want to have to juggle your own moving needs with the needs of animals who will have to be settled in.
After you’ve had a few days to unpack and get things ready, then it’s time to bring your animals out to join you.
Moving to a remote area can be a huge undertaking, but it’s the first step toward the homesteading, minimalist lifestyle that you might aspire to. Contact us at Bekins Van Lines, Inc., for more information about how you can prepare for a move.