I grew up in upstate New York. The beautiful rolling hills, the Great Lakes. The lovely farm country. I would never go back if you paid me millions of dollars. Never.
But for the better part of a decade I have resided well south of the Mason-Dixon line. In fact, when I spoke to a relative a short time ago from New York State, they were shocked I didn’t sound like a Yankee, or even speak like one. “You’ve gone native,” they told me. Which is well and good in my book.
New York is about as liberal/progressive of a state as you can get. It’s a state that does not honor life, the sanctity of marriage or gun rights. It taxes its residents to death, does not value homeschoolers and has no more respect for Almighty God than does Richard Dawkins. Since I have left, the New York government has only worsened.
For many of us who homestead and farm on a small scale, we also raise families, own firearms, go to church and desire a quiet life lived in peace. Sadly judging by the moral and political climate in some places in North America, we often have to leave the place we call home in order to find these things. I believe there are still good places out there to put down roots and farm and raise your children, while other places in the USA have gone quite authoritarian.
Here are three areas in the United States for those seeking fair land prices, less government involvement, a religious friendly atmosphere, low taxes, and a place friendly toward gun owners.
The land of cotton has changed much in the past half century, but the area is well-known as a bastion of conservative and Christian values in the USA. The land is good for agriculture and there are many homesteaders and small-time farmers who have flocked to this region over the past two to three decades from all over the USA and Canada.
My pick for the southeast:
Tennessee. The state’s motto of “Agriculture and Commerce” speaks of the beautiful and lush farmlands — and low taxes. There is no state income tax in Tennessee. Gun freedoms are very good, and in fact after a recent shooting, Tennessee’s lieutenant governor urged people to go and get their handgun carry permits. No such thing as an “assault weapons ban” or magazine restrictions exist in the Volunteer State. Land prices are expensive toward the Blue Ridge Mountains, but Middle and West Tennessee land prices are affordable. Homeschooling conditions are great for families.
Texas. Don’t mess with the Lone Star State. A conservative government, coupled with excellent gun laws, makes Texas one of the top places to live for the small farmer or homesteader. While not as fertile as some states, ranching is big business in Texas. A farm on the Edwards Plateau will provide your family with water from the aquifer with the same name. In the more fertile east, row crop farming as well as vegetable growing does reasonably well.
With the end of the recent drought, Texas received more rainwater this year than it had in seven years. Beware of buying land near the Mexican-US border and stay away from the more progressive cities like Austin or Dallas. Most Texans value liberty and independence, a great thing for the homesteader or farmer.
Idaho and Wyoming. Both of these states tie for the best places to live out west. Excellent gun laws, conservative government, a fierce independent spirit, and excellent farm country make these Rocky Mountain states ideal for the homesteader/farmer. Rich soil is available, and land prices are cheap. If you want to be away from people, this is the perfect place for you. You want to hunt and fish? This is the ideal location for the sportsman, with teeming populations of deer, elk, pronghorn and even bison. Idaho is the more temperate state, whereas Wyoming is known for its brutally cold winters.
New Hampshire. The last bastion of any freedom in the Northeast is the Granite State, but even this state is slipping slowly toward the liberalism that has transformed the Northeast. If you must live in the North, New Hampshire or perhaps the north woods of Maine are really the only two viable options I see.
What are your picks for best places to live off-grid? Share your suggestions in the section below: