INDWELLING: Homes for the Future we Need


Axiom #2 - Choose the best location

Posted by on April 2nd, 2010 at 12:36 pm


For most of us, where we choose to live is a decision usually governed by concerns about affordability, environmental ambience, the quality of schools or safety. Living sustainably means also thinking about the energy expended in daily living – ie, commuting, community involvement, childrens’ activities, shopping – and the potential to generate food, energy or income from our property. It also will require us to rethink our culture’s easy acceptance of mobility (the average length of time between moves in NA is 6.8 years) and be more willing to put down roots for the longer term. A partial list for selecting a location for your home:

  • Is housing affordable?
  • Can I grow food there?
  • Is the area safe for our children?
  • Will I have a social network of family and friends and enough like-minded people to help keep me inspired?
  • Are the streets safe for walking and cycling?
  • Can I access nature or get to work, schools or shopping under my own propulsion?
  • Is it a decent place to nurture my life’s work?
  • Is the air, land, and water healthy?
  • Will I want to be there in 50 years?
To which we might add: can I keep chickens there? Are there opportunities to become involved in the shaping of the community and its ongoing governance at a scale I feel comfortable with? Something to watch for: a lifestyle that is self-sufficient in many regards – grow own food, burn wood for heat etc, - but relies on car trips to commute to work, or involves clearing forested land or disrupting ecosystems to create it. The goal: To live where work, friends, culture and opportunities can be found within walking or cycling range, where we can provide for a significant amount of our daily needs from local sources, and where we can be content to see our children grow up and to live out our lives .

 

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