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Our Homesteading Journey - The Barefoot Acres

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Every journey has a beginning, middle, and of course an end. We’re still writing the middle part of our journey and learning so much along the way. At the time of writing this post, we’ll have been on our property for two years. But where did this journey start?

Queue the flashback

What came first? Desire!

It all started on a dark and stormy night. Who am I kidding, I don’t what the weather was like. But what came first was a desire. A desire to do more with our lives than climb the corporate ladder, spend 2-4 hours a day in traffic (yay, Houston traffic), and live on a small patch of dirt with neighbors 10ft away from you (or so it feels). Don’t get me wrong, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that life; it just was not something we felt led to continue to be part of.

I believe most of us, at least those reading this post, would agree that city life just doesn’t “do it” for you anymore. It was the longing that drove us to do a lot of research. Of course, by “research” I mean watch all the YouTube videos and read all the blogs on homesteading and Full-time RVing.

Before we moved out of the city, we spent a lot of time in the woods already. Our family made an attempt to go camping at least once a month. Sometimes we take a day trip, sometimes a weekend trip, and when we could, we’d take 1-2 week vacations. We had a small camper that fit our family nicely and we entertained the thought of upgrading and hitting the road. While that lifestyle would’ve been exciting, it ultimately wasn’t in the cards for us. Plus, my wife likes the stability of staying in one place but having the option to go away for a few days.

So we armed ourselves with as much information as we could about homesteading and life on the road. But we didn’t know when we’d ever do this. 5 years, 10 years, when we retired. We didn’t have a plan for making that happen.

At this point (2015-2016) I was a managing director at a tech consulting company that afforded me the opportunity to work-from-home. The pay was great and the ability to work remotely was even better. This really got our wheels turning about what life might be like on the road or at least out of the city. We started looking at Internet options for a remote and on-the-go lifestyle. We followed channels like Gone with the Wynns to get inspiration and education. It was getting exciting, but still no plan to get out of Dodge.

Then we got an email

This would be the email that would change our lives. Literally, our lives changed from that day forward. The email came from our Landlord; we were renting a house across the street from my in-laws. We’d had a great relationship with her for the past four years and we had no reason to leave. She’d even offered to sell us the house. We didn’t take her up on the offer and wouldn’t you know it, she was looking to sell. And sell the house she did! The contents of the email went come thing like, “Hey, I sold the house to our friends, we close on Friday”. The email came in on a Tuesday (that might not be 100% accurate, but you get the point; no notice).

Thankfully, the new owners and our former Landlord were friends and so they made arrangements for us to stay in the house for an additional 90 days. This was a huge blessing for a few reasons.

The hunt begins! But not for a homestead 🙁

We had lived in this house for just over four years. We locked in our rent and she never increased it; a huge blessing considering the rent in the area was increasing all the time. Knowing this, we didn’t know what other options we had. We happen to have two family friends who are REALTORs and they gave us lots of great advice. But our search did not start with looking at homestead properties. We first began searching for other rental properties in our area and even looked at buying in Houston. The options were lackluster.

My wife and I had already had it our minds that if we ever moved, we wanted to move out of the city. But how?!

Thanks to the sage advice of our family friends; the REALTORs, we started looking at our options outside of the city. We had 90 days to do a few things, mainly, raise our credit and find the right house.

Raising our credit was actually the easiest part. We hired a specialist to help knock off some of the bad debits and we were rocking after about 45-60 days. We raised our credit and applied for a USDA loan which afforded us the opportunity to buy a home on a property up to 20 acres with ZERO DOWN!

And so our journey began. We documented a lot of that journey which we’ll be sharing with you in the coming weeks. We hope you enjoy the journey and if you have any questions about how we did it, feel free to leave us a comment here or on our Facebook page!

Side note: I was also watching A LOT of Casey Neistat at the time 😉

Watch Part 1

Spoiler Alert: We didn’t move here.

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