What are Off-Grid Properties?

October 06, 2020

Off-grid properties come in many different forms and mean different things to different people. How to determine what off-grid living means to you.

How to Find a Property Suitable for Off-Grid Living

To live off-grid means you live autonomously without reliance on the utility grid. It means forgoing certain luxuries and replacing them with alternative means: like replacing traditional electricity with solar power or a hydroelectric generator, or replacing your current running water system with well water, spring water, or rainwater collection. 

Living off-grid is a choice that certain property owners make to increase their self-sufficiency and reduce their reliance on utilities they cannot control. For instance, what happens if the water company shuts your water off? Now, you’d be without. However, if you live off-grid, you would attain your own water from sources on your property or that you own rights to.

There are Varying Degrees of “Off-Grid”

Off-grid doesn’t mean the same thing to every property owner, and different elements of off-grid can be incorporated into your property to make you semi- or completely self-sufficient. 

While some may see a traditional generator as an off-grid means to produce electricity, it is still reliant on some form of an “outside” fuel source like gasoline, diesel fuel, or propane. Whether this is a deterrent or “off-grid enough” is up to the property owner. 

Similarly, if no well or spring exists on a property, cisterns (large storage tanks) can be used to store water that is hauled in from public filling stations. However, this still incorporates an on-grid resource in some capacity. 

What Constitutes an Off-Grid Property?

Given that there are varying degrees of off-grid living, different properties will satisfy different off-grid living needs. Many properties, including most mountain cabins, do not have a utility grid system nearby. Often, the cost to extend public utilities would be insurmountable. Without some form of off-grid measures, these properties would be very difficult or impossible to sustain life on. Off-grid utilities enable these properties to be inhabitable and enjoyed even though off-grid may not have been the purchaser’s first intent. 

Benefits of Living Off-Grid

Living off-grid can be a risk worth taking if you’re searching for a way to introduce more sustainability into your life or save money on resources. 

For survivalists and preppers, off-grid living is a perfect scenario. It enables you to distance yourself from societal norms, live independently from the rest of the world, and establish a basis for self-sustainability in the event of a total collapse. 

Even if you’re not preparing for a big event, living off-grid separates you from the dependency most of us have on the public utility system. Therefore, you save money on your utilities because you’re responsible for the generation and distribution yourself. 

Although the upfront cost of installing off-grid systems may be high, the idea of living without monthly bills for utilities is appealing to many. Oftentimes, if a power grid is nearby, a property owner can tie into the grid and sell excess electricity to the power company.

Taking the Plunge

If you’re looking to increase self-sufficiency from your land, taking notes from those living off-grid is a great place to start. It’s important to find a property that offers access to natural resources to support your goals.

If you want to make your food supply self-sufficient, then you need to look into farmland and ranch properties to grow crops and raise animals. If you want to make your electricity supply self-sufficient, then look for a plot of land near a power grid. If you’re worried about water supply, then make sure you invest in land with a stream, creek, or river. 

Luckily, Colorado land that supports off-grid living is rife. Here are a few of my listings that enable greater self-sufficiency:

40 acre hunting property

Hunting Cabin on 40-acre National Forest In-holding