Living off the grid in Arizona

by Shari Hogan
(Salem, OR,)

Lived off-the-grid on 120 acres in No. AZ for 5 years. Business, construction, went south so we had to move back to a city to start over after losing everything but the ranch itself.


Yet our place was/is fantastic! I say IS 'cause we recently had to foreclose on the buyer after 5 years, so we own it again... the renters arranged by buyer remain.

When buying off-grid, no regular lender will touch it, so we carried the loan on our property, just like the people who sold it to us. It is isolated, yet we had more friends and social life there (2 miles from nearest neighbor, 4 miles to Hwy) than in any tract home before or since!

The silence, sunsets, stars, and lack of light pollution are GLORIOUS! There is a man-made pond in the middle of a creek. The dogs and other pets loved it!

Yes, we had to truck in our water (500 gal at a time (VERY cheaply) to fill a 2500 gal tank), but added a water PUMP (as gravity was not making it to the bath at other end of house), water heater, solar system and backup generator.

Also found we could get by on 100 gal of water each per month while the Los Angeles stats are 75 gal of water usage per PERSON per DAY! Funny what you can do when paying attention!

It is a wonderful life and we miss it greatly. The 2-bedroom house existed, while we added an 8,000 sq. ft. barn and raised a couple cows & hogs (for our own use) as well as 40 chickens, rabbits and goats which brought money in for eggs, goat milk, rabbit and goat (meat or) for squiring. I could go on forever about the great advantages of this life...




Comments for Living off the grid in Arizona

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Mar 16, 2017
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
I have a small parcel near the Grand Canyon NEW
by: Anonymous

Hi,

I have been reading this thread and see that some folks are looking for land in AZ. I have a 1 acre parcel of land 25 miles south of the Grand Canyon. I would like to sell it because I have moved abroad and will not use it myself. Is it ok to post here that I have it available for sale?


J Reimer

Dec 09, 2016
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
property purchaced NEW
by: Anonymous

I did purchase a 1 acre lot between Tucson and Cochise. so, i will be going over there after the holidays to start the process on the land.

Nov 13, 2016
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
off the grid in arizonz NEW
by: Anonymous

I 2 want to live off the grid in arizona. There is my husband, 3 dogss and myself. We are retired. Would love something already done. Would love company maybe another family or 2. Please contact me tibbsp2016@mail.com. very interested

Nov 05, 2016
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Arizona off grid NEW
by: Christopher

I too have been researching area's to move to in
Arizona.I also am weighing the option of a mobile
home in a park versus, buying a lot and building a "TINY" home
There are many off grid properties and i have researched the counties they are in to be sure of zoning laws.

Cochise County has numerous areas and i could still
commute for a part time job.On the other hand...Buy
a mobile home and pay $330.00 to $500.00 monthly
for the space rent AFTER you purchase a mobile?

I can build and have all my tools and know building
codes also.



Aug 13, 2016
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
interestd in retiring off grid NEW
by: Anonymous

I am interested in purchasing someplace to retire in AZ but want to live back to basics- any one know of reasonable property for sale where i can raise my own animals and food and peacefully live? am very independent and not afraid of hard work -ready to get out of the rat race. I have seen lots of cheap property but am not familure with the areas. any help? please email me at deborah_lewandowski@yahoo.com

Dec 29, 2015
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Great article
by: Anonymous

I lived off grid in Northern Az for 15 years, sold my place, moved to town, then to Denver, moved back to Arizona, rented, then bought another parcel in Northern Arizona. I can relate so much to what you wrote. I love the fact that I made this choice to do this again. This is my nursing home, living in the Boonies, with my animals, We have community gatherings which is nice, as I'm a 60 year old single woman living by myself so I get to socialize. To all the ladies out there, you can do it.

Feb 13, 2015
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
sounds great
by: Anonymous

could you please contact me if any left. teddysbear007@yahoo.com

Feb 11, 2015
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Land and home
by: AnonymousSusan Brown

HI my name is Susan Brown I was woundering if your land is still available I am vert interested in it please Email me at quiltingbysuzieb@yahoo.com.

Nov 18, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
To Jess from PHX
by: Shari Hogan

I did respond to your inquiry via-email so you might want to look for it if not in your in-box. This is also 2nd time have posted this note here but doesn't seem to be showing up. Hope it works this time!

Nov 18, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Off the grid vs. Phoenix
by: Shari Hogan

I replied to your inquiry via e-mail. May have gone to "junk/spam" so please check there. THX!

Nov 15, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
We Are Interested :)
by: Jess

Hello,
I was wondering if you had sold your acreage. My husband and I currently live in Phoenix AZ and are looking to move and live off grid. If you could please email me at tempepd2010@gmail.com and let me know either way I would greatly appreciate it.

Sep 02, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Ron Ito - Off-the-Grid
by: Shari Hogan

Ron - You can't POSSIBLY BE the Ron Ito I knew (as Sharin Rafferty) in The Valley. If so, write me at slogan417@yahoo.com. If not, it's still a great place to live (or invest in)for future! Only circumstances out of our control forced a move back to city-life (which I detest)!
My understanding is that our mile-high 120 acres (that sold for $160K is now only worth $80K since the home (& 80 sq. ft. barn WE built) on original 40 acres deterioriated greatly; being empty or rented out since we "carried the loan" (as all must do off-the-grid). My Wusband foreclosed on the buyer.
I still miss this way of life & peace, not to mention the sunset & gazillion stars seen there.
So it's back on the market (unofficially) for only $20K more than we paid for all 10 years ago, including a pond & creek & w/the latter 80 acres added on a solid hill where I wanted my ultimate home (or manufactured) built/set - what a VIEW! At least 2 miles from nearest neighbor!
If one is still working, requiring larger towns, it's an hour north to Flagstaff, or east to Prescott, both of which have airports. Williams (the Gateway to Grand Canyon & closest Supermarket) is 20 miles north up I-40/Route 66.
We were indeed blessed, yet it could easily be yours, too. Think about your future...
Truly yours,
Shari Rafferty Hogan

Sep 02, 2011
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
There is an a!lternative
by: Ron Ito

Sounds like a wonderful way to live. Being in Southern California, it's hard to imagine what it is like to be in a peaceful, serene and tranquil setting. You are blessed.

Jan 25, 2010
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Thanks for the details
by: Gary

Thanks again Shari for Sharing your story.

It reinforces the idea that if you want to retire you can...you will find a way.

Hope your story encourages others to try off the grid living.

Jan 24, 2010
Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Additional info on previous text...
by: Shari Hogan

Didn't really address COSTS (as well as other details) and that's what this site is all about!
We were 4 miles of dirt road off I-40/Route 66 and Int. 89 in AZ. A mile up, so high desert - a few cacti, mostly (and a LOT of) Juniper trees. Understand that in current economy our 120 acres with house and barn would sell for only $70,000. We purchased for $60K in '99, sold for $160K in 2005. Totally raw, empty land is ridiculously low. 300 residents in (and always has been) the economically depressed town of Ashfork, yet 3,000 in surrounding off-grid 40-acre lots - 188,000 acres of old ranch broken up. Nearest FULL grocery in Williams (gateway to Grand Canyon), 15 miles away - Flagstaff 1 hour to East, Prescott 1 hour to south for monthly stock-up. For the record, property west of I-40 is less expensive and crowded than that on the east side - different counties...
Water to fill 500 gal tank in PickUp truck was only $7-$8 per load in Ashfork. Filled gasoline tanks in Williams and stored. Propane (main source of power for stove, fridge, water heating, etc.) came from "Superior Propane" in Williams as they are the BEST! Bill & Lindie are WONDERFUL, reliable, delivered to tank they provided, and were least expensive.
We only purchased 4 solar panels and... can't recall... controller(?); no, but somethin' like that. More than enough power. Only used back-up DIESEL generator during cloudy monsoon or snow-time or MOVIE night with friends. We knew others who bought 30-40 panels (who REALLY [and inappropriately] wanted to have CITY life off-the-grid) but then couldn't sell their homes for having outpriced the area.
Insurance for home, autos, barns and ranching was GREAT through "Farmer's" in Williams - Don Dent and his daughter. They even covered windshield replacement (as rocks DO pop up on dirt roads)!
One must be frugal and READY for this lifestyle. We weren't, but adjusted quickly. I wanted to retire in Prescott, but it had GROWN too much! Had no intention or knowledge of off-the-grid, but as we drove north toward Chino then onward, came upon this really cheap land. We collected rainwater in 8 barrels around house (during times we could). Before improvements, I could take an entire shower & shampoo with a 2-liter bottle - half full of tap water and 1/2 with boiled water, just standing in the bathtub!
I know people that built homes of haybales, tires, and even aluminum cans. One fella actually put his compost bin in a large wooden box in his living room, acting as his coffee table! Yet compost puts off heat if attended to properly and also then doesn't smell badly at all!
Have thought of other things that don't come to mind just now - guess I should've used my knew Web site! Hope I've provided answers here that I didn't before. It really IS a great life!
Sincerely yours,
Shari Hogan


Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Living off the Grid Review.