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Massive Debt or No Debt At All: You Choose

| 6/25/2008 6:21:11 PM

This year's onslaught of bad news for homeowners may have you thinking twice about willingly entering into massive debt in order to make a suitable home for your family. But consider something revolutionary: building a home with no debt! It's not easy, but a few inspiring folks point the way to successfully creating a simple life. So while Congress passes legislation to ease U.S. homeowners' troubles, you can start dreaming about a better way:

A Handmade, Debt-free Home 
Our DIY expert Steve Maxwell shows you how to blend vision, patience and perseverance to build your dream home.

The Good Life Center 
Learn from the legacy of Helen and Scott Nearing, legendary pioneers in simple living.

We're working on an upcoming feature about the philosophy of the Nearings for the October/November 2008 issue of Mother Earth News, and we'd love to hear from you. Have you been inspired by Helen and Scott Nearing? Have you built a home with no debt? Please share your experiences with us and our readers by using the comments section below.

6/14/2010 1:53:00 AM

THE HAPPY HOMESTEADER I appreciate the concern which is been rose. The things need to be sorted out because it is about the individual but it can be with everyone. and all we need a good house.

Paul Bock_1
7/15/2008 7:36:46 AM

I am very interested in building my own home. Though it also scares the heck out of me. We (my wife, four kids, a new one on the way, and I) rent a 1850's farmhouse (happily in a very rural area) about an hour away from where I work (a city). I like this arrangement because I get the best of both worlds. Prices are cheaper in the city because of competition between stores. But life is easier to live in the country where no one cares if you mowed your lawn this week. I have a firewood business on the side and the city people pay a lot more for firewood than the rural folks. Delivering the firewood helps pay the gas costs. Though with gas prices heading higher, I wonder if we should move closer to where I work. Complicating the issue, we bought 21-1/2 acres of land a few minutes from us, next to a relative's place with the intention of building a house there. I beleive organic is the only way to farm, though that is just an idea in my head right now. Half of the time I think I should build on that land because depending on how things go in this country and with fuel prices the way they are, the land may be my only chance of supporting myself. Kind of like Amish style. The other half of the time I think I would be better off to minimize my fuel expenses, and have more time with my family instead of commuting, by move closer to the city job. I think we have decided on building on the vacant land in the country. We recently inherited about $100K. I seem to have two choices. I could put the money toward a modular home which costs about $180,000. This would give me a house immediately with about $80K in debt. Or, I could build the same house myself, which I think could be done for less than the $100K. And so then I would have money left over when I was done. I think my first step is to build a medium size barn on the land. This will serve a bunch of purposes. I will give me a place to store equipment and materials for working on

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