In a recent conversation with a friend, they mentioned how they were considering going off-grid. They're tired of the rat race, the high prices of everything, and want to get away from it all. So, I decided to do some digging to see how easy it would be.
Here's what you need to know before going off-grid in the Lone Star State.
Is Living Off-Grid In Texas Legal? That's A Little Tricky
As I'm cruising around the Internet looking at all of these off-grid enthusiast websites, I began to notice something that was never stated outright. Living off the grid in Texas might be technically legal, but that's not all you have to worry about.
Say hello to "zoning." How easy it will be to go off grid on your land depends on how its zoned.
Rules, man, they're everywhere. The man's always trying to keep us down.
Once I got past all of the "jump in and do it" websites, I found some sources that stated you need to be careful. Do some real research regarding what you may or may not be able to do with your property.
There are some weird rules out there.
Where Is The Best Place To Live Off Grid In Texas?
I started looking for places that might be a best bet for off grid living, and I saw a lot of pros and very little cons to pretty much anywhere listed. For the most part, it just felt like people picked a place with pretty scenery and threw it on a list.
For instance, unless you love cutthroat politics, you probably want to avoid Loving County. That's even though it comes highly recommended for getting away from it all because there's almost no one there. Loving County, though, is notorious for it's sometimes crooked, vicious, and insane politics.
There's basically a group of families battling for control of the sparsely populated county.
Another place that always comes up is Terlingua. Don't go there. It's a brutal desert and unless you have a strong skill set and plenty of resources, you're going to have a bad time no matter what that cute couple on YouTube and Instagram said.
That doesn't mean some people haven't found a way to live and love life out there. They all, however, are quick to point out that it isn't easy and it takes a certain amount of guts and know-how to make it work.
A little luck doesn't hurt, either.
Is There Anywhere In Texas Good For Off-Grid Living?
Sure. If you can get the land for it, there are plenty of places that would make for a good spot to set up shop on. Here's a good list, even though it lists Brewster County (Terlingua) and Loving County.
My big worry is that there are no longer any real "frontiers." Places that are sparsely populated and ripe for those who wish to go carve a life of their own from the land are becoming few and far between.
Over the years, these types of lifestyles have become increasingly popular. Also, there are a lot of companies buying up land and putting up trendy Airbnbs and glamping sites. For instance, those in Brewster County who used to love being isolated, now find themselves being surrounded by tourists and people who are caught up in the trend.
If you really want to go off grid, do a lot more homework than just where to buy some land. It's apparently not as easy as it sounds.