Is it the right place?

The whole reason for the selfsufficientish website was to offer a place where anyone can ask, HOW DO I...? So who knows why it has taken us so long to have a HOW DO I? section, but here it is. So if you want to know how to do anything selfsufficientish then here is the place to ask.
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lifechanger
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Is it the right place?

Post: # 274910Post lifechanger
Sat Jun 22, 2013 12:29 pm

I currently live in Suffolk and I'm looking for a holding in Wales due to scenery, water, affordability and (I thought) the soil. Reading a post earlier it was mentioned that clay was under peat. I've been trying to move away from clay soil as I hate it with a passion. Does anyone know if this is general to all of wales - I was always led to believe that it was acid but not clay. Also, there seems to be several less expensive properties in the Tregaron area. Does anyone know why that might be or am I being overly sceptical?
Are there any pitfalls that I need to be looking at because I'll only get one chance at this.

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diggernotdreamer
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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274912Post diggernotdreamer
Sat Jun 22, 2013 3:10 pm

That is big change from a county that is fairly dry to a country that can be wet, windy and have very marginal land. I moved to Ireland from SE England nearly 5 years ago (major culture shock I can tell you) I have kept animals and grown stuff for 25 years, so when we came here we had some idea of how to go about setting up. It all depends as well on what you plan on doing, if you look around and see what is going on the the local area, it will give you some ideas. We are on heavy clay soil here but by using good cultivation methods, we have some very rich soil now and are growing plenty of crops , in spite of some locals saying we would never get anything to grow. What do you want to do? are you planning on having lots of different animals or growing certain crops, protected crops, how many acres are you looking at, are you thinking about buying an existing smallholding. There are some very experienced people on here
who can give you lots of information and advice. I can tell you this, if land is cheap then there is something wrong with it, good land in Wales can cost a lot of money, if populations are small like we have here, work is harder to find and so is a market for your produce, just a couple of things to consider although you probably have already.

lifechanger
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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274913Post lifechanger
Sat Jun 22, 2013 5:31 pm

Thanks DND, I was thinking around 4 acres (depending on quality). Animals just for personal food and fed from the land. It will not be a business, just an effort to be as ish as poss. Good advice in checking out the local area which I will do when I leave work soon. Ireland looked attractive to me but my daughter put a guilt trip on me as she didn't want me so far away. Ideally I'd like the S.W but far too expensive. Further down in cornwall it seems prince Charles owns anything likely and has to have an annual payment - blimming cheek - talk about having your cake and eating it!

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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274915Post oldjerry
Sat Jun 22, 2013 7:22 pm

diggernotdreamer wrote: I can tell you this, if land is cheap then there is something wrong with it, good land in Wales can cost a lot of money, if populations are small like we have here, work is harder to find and so is a market for your produce, just a couple of things to consider although you probably have already.
Simply excellent advice......should be stamped on the cover of anything written by Seymour...


Also old Jug Ears doesn't EVERYTHING in Cornwall,by and large the rising house/land prices that mean so few local people will ever own their own place (and so will be ripped off through the MASSIVE demand for rented properties)is caused by early retirees from the SE who've made a killing on some poxy 3 bed detached in Woking.

berry
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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274926Post berry
Sun Jun 23, 2013 10:17 am

Don't get me started on rental prices in Devon and those frelling second home owners who leave some places a ghost town for most of the year! Im Om the lookout for a decent plot Here in devon for some time but I'm making do with my 1/3 acre and not being able to keep pigs :(

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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274928Post Crickleymal
Sun Jun 23, 2013 1:42 pm

berry wrote: and those frelling second home owners
Do I detect a Farscape fan? One of my favourite scifi series.
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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274931Post lifechanger
Sun Jun 23, 2013 4:23 pm

Crickleymal wrote:
berry wrote: and those frelling second home owners
Do I detect a Farscape fan? One of my favourite scifi series.
Me too - thought I was the only one! If I could drag you all off your soap boxes for a second (safety nets in place) and ask you guys if you think Wales is a viable prospect?

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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274934Post Zech
Sun Jun 23, 2013 4:53 pm

Lack of employment opportunities is the most likely reason for low house prices. I live about 15 miles north of Tregaron and there are two types of soil in our village: You either have clay or you have have rock. That said, we bought a house with a garden that's been cultivated for about a century, and our soil's lovely (if a bit depleted), so it is possible to get good soil. One factor you may not have considered is an effect of all that rain: It washes nutrients away. That said, it could be quite different a few miles south. As you've probably already found out, there's the Cors Caron (Tregaron Bog) nature reserve nearby, so you might have quite peaty soil there.
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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274936Post diggernotdreamer
Sun Jun 23, 2013 5:59 pm

If you have 1. enough money to buy yourself a decent house and land 2. enough money to live on without having to earn any, then anywhere you fancy living is a decent prospect, although we have hardly any extra money to spend and it rains quite a bit, we have a lovely, quiet, peaceful existence. The things we have found most useful in our life has been my partners ability to turn his hand to anything practical (he is a precision engineer), we have made animal pens, vegetable garden, put up polytunnels, completely refurbished an old house, done numerous running repairs which is a wet and windy climate need doing on an almost daily basis it seems, grow nearly every vegetable and herb we need, sell eggs and salads and OH does milling and turning jobs for local farmers, lorry drivers. How we will manage in older age he is 60 and I am 52 remains to be seen, your health is your wealth and this life is fine as long as you can get about, having a partner with similar interests and energy has been a turning point in my life, I feel very lucky and if you can find something that makes you as contented and happy we are, then go for it.

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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274940Post oldjerry
Sun Jun 23, 2013 8:02 pm

I moved away from my roots,as there was no future there for my lately aquired children (see previous rant).I would encourage anyone that sees the prospect of a long sought after holding in an unfamiliar place coming to fruition,to take a sideways step and be sure you take in all the considerations that make up a home to you.
In many ways the 'ish' thing is about making the best of what you have ( balconies,window boxes etc) If we all lived in idyllic small holdings (and I have) the world wouldn't be a bit greener,but people growing/stock-keeping ,foraging,in small areas..Well for me,that's what it's all about.I love the fact that we don't have to drive everywhere!

But still,it wouldn't be much fun if we all thought the same would it?

berry
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Re: Is it the right place?

Post: # 274942Post berry
Sun Jun 23, 2013 9:41 pm

lifechanger wrote:
Crickleymal wrote:
berry wrote: and those frelling second home owners
Do I detect a Farscape fan? One of my favourite scifi series.
Me too - thought I was the only one! If I could drag you all off your soap boxes for a second (safety nets in place) and ask you guys if you think Wales is a viable prospect?
Yes, I am a Farscape fan!

I second Oldjerry. It may seem a good prospect on paper but the reality is usually a wholly different kettle of fish.

I first moved here(devon) from birmingham. the average annual wage here is 15k a year (take out the top earners the reality is around 10k) Thats no where near enough to live off even if you do have a small holding to provide your basic food/needs. I'm barely breaking even each month on my income even with every frugal thing I do. You still have bills to pay, admittedly lower bills if you cut your outgoings so you still need a reasonable income.

What would your back up plan be? savings? returning to work? If the place you are looking at has limited local work should it all go t!ts up what would you do? I don't mean to sound all doom and gloom but I honestly believe you should treat such a thing with a business mind.

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