Living Off the Grid, a Girl Can Dream

During our recent move to Atlanta, Ga., I was reminded of my ultimate dream of finding a beach community where my husband and I can build a tipi (or a tiny home) and live happily ever after. Of course, this means our dream home would be totally off the grid. I was pleasantly surprised to find out, when […]

During our recent move to Atlanta, Ga., I was reminded of my ultimate dream of finding a beach community where my husband and I can build a tipi (or a tiny home) and live happily ever after. Of course, this means our dream home would be totally off the grid. I was pleasantly surprised to find out, when digging around online, that 750,000 Americans are living off the grid, according to Nick Rosen, author of “Off the Grid.” The only other population count I could track down, from Home Power Magazine in 2006, put the count at 180,000 families. Either way, I’m stoked that Americans are really doing this and can’t wait to one day be a part of that community.

There are some universal tips when considering living off the grid. More importantly for those of us not ready to jump in head first, here are several tips to lessen our home’s footprint and become partially off the grid:

  1. Use solar or wind technology to help offset or replace your reliance on electricity fueled by burning coal.
  2. Install a private water well and join the 17 million other American households that get water from a private source.
  3. Set up a septic system for your home and get off the grid’s sewer line.
  4. Consider a tankless water heater to save money on your energy bill while also conserving more energy than a traditional water heater.
  5. Avoid packaged foods and start a garden. Make sure to compost, and recycle those items that can’t be dumped in your compost pile.

I frequently peruse homes for sale on coldwellbanker.com with an eye for “off the grid” included in the property description. Here are my three favorites, which would make anyone’s off-the-grid dream come true:

  1. Living on the edge in Pahoa, Hawaii
  2. Modern design in Prescott, AZ
  3. Mountain retreat in Rifle, CO

Photo credit: Steffen Ramsaier

Senior Manager, Public Relations for Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Grew up in south Florida as an avid Seminole fan and attended college in the mountains of North Carolina. Athena wanted to wake up in that city that doesn’t sleep so headed Madison Avenue to start her marketing career. Athena has worked for Coldwell Banker for 11 years where she can be found generating buzz about this awesome brand in every way possible. On any given day, she can be found crunching numbers to searching for amazing Coldwell Banker properties to serve up to the media for features. In her spare time, you can find her either digging up a new area in her yard for another flower bed or scouring Etsy for that next amazing handcrafted gem. She resides with the Bukowski of our generation (AKA her husband), a cat and a fish in Atlanta, Ga.

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