Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Challenges of Rural Living

Living in a rural home isn't for everyone, but many people would much rather live somewhere more remote than in a big city. Even if you love living in a rural home, it's not without its challenges. People who grow up in a rural area might come to accept many of these challenges as normal, but things are different if you're used to living in a more populous place. Some of the things you have to deal with are a lot harder if you've never come up against them before. If you're considering moving to a more rural area or you've just moved, prepare yourself to face these challenges.

Access to Amenities and Services

Living in a rural home means you can be far from a lot of amenities and services you might need. These can range from doctors and hospitals to grocery stores and services for your home. Sometimes, there are alternative ways to get what you need. You might buy some of your food from neighbors or find local people who can do work on your home for you. Some things you might do yourself for a self-sufficient and sustainable way of living. However, there are some things you need access to that you simply have to accept are far away. If the nearest hospital is an hour or two away, there's not much you can do about that.


Relying on Your Vehicle

The sprawling and isolated nature of rural locations means you can't exactly survive without a vehicle of your own. Public transportation is likely to be non-existent, although some places might have a bus that comes through now and again. Much of the US relies on cars and other private vehicles to get around, so that's not too unusual. However, in more rural areas, you can't really get anywhere without driving, whereas in other places, you might at least be able to walk to the nearest store. This can be expensive, with the need to pay for fuel, tax, insurance and vehicle maintenance too.

Surviving in Extreme Weather

Living in a rural area often means dealing with weather conditions you might not have to combat somewhere more urban. Or you might be dealing with the same weather, but with less help. In a city, snow might quickly be cleared from the roads so that everyone can drive on them as soon as possible. In a more rural location, that won't necessarily be the case. Your home needs to be set up for any extreme weather you might experience, from blizzards and hurricanes to heatwaves and wildfires caused by high temperatures. You need to make sure you protect your property using the right methods, such as waterproofing your home. It's also important to know how to respond personally when disaster strikes.

Living in an Older Home

Many of the affordable homes in rural areas are older homes. In fact, there has been a lot of talk about the rural housing crisis and how new homes aren't being built. Living in an older home is a challenge in itself, let alone one that is in a rural area. If you live in an old house, it might require more regular care and attention. Sometimes, it's worth updating parts of the home so they don't require constant repairs. For example, replacing the roof can make more sense than repairing it all the time. Modern updates can help to make a home more stable and could make it more efficient too. It's also important to learn the quirks of an older home, so you know how to treat it well.

Dealing with Pests

If you're going to live in a rural area, you have to accept that there will be animals. They could range from raccoons and possums to deer and even cougars, wolves, or bears. Some animals are simply pests and could get into your home or destroy anything you might be growing outside. If you end up with an animal in your home, some of them might even seem cute for a while. But all animals die eventually, and you could end up with a dead one in your attic, basement or crawl space. Calling an animal control specialists dead animal removal service should sort the issue out in no time. Prevention is often best for keeping pests away, though. When it comes to dangerous animals, you should be aware of the best ways to keep them away and how to deal with them if you do spot one.


Alternative Plumbing and Electricity

Rural homes are often more "off the grid" and may use different methods for energy supply, water, and plumbing. Your home might have a cesspit or perhaps some form of renewable energy, such as a wind turbine, a hydro wheel, or solar panels. These are great for living sustainably and are often the most convenient way of getting the resources you need for your home. However, they can require some specialist knowledge and maintenance to keep everything in good condition. It's important that you become familiar with what makes your home tick so you can keep it up and running.

Backup Energy Supply

When you live in a rural area, you can't always rely on your energy supply. With the threat of blackouts looming over you, it's a good idea to have some form of backup. Plenty of candles and flashlights are fine for occasional power outages, but sometimes you need something more heavy duty. A backup generator can help you out if you find your home without power, especially if you have equipment that needs to keep running. For example, maybe you run a farm, or you have an industrial operation that requires electricity to keep going. You won't have to abandon your daily chores or lose any money if you have a way of powering everything you need to run. A backup generator is a sensible idea if you can keep it charged.

Living in a rural home can present a number of challenges, but many people think it's worth it. If it's a new experience for you, you can soon learn to love it.

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