We Know we Made the Right Decision when we Left the City

We’ve owned our Prepper Property for more than a year and lived in it full time for about six months. Talk about getting out while the getting was good!

The other evening, my wife and I went out to dinner at a local brewery and restaurant. (I say local, but it was actually about a 50-minute drive from our house.) We sat on their deck, enjoying the sunshine and cool evening air while waited for our food. There was a view of mountains in two directions. Below us, families ate outdoors at tables under blue umbrellas, a kid played with his plastic truck along the sidewalk, and a bunch of young guys drank beer and played cornhole.

The last time I ate outside in a large city, we were bothered by panhandlers who practice urban extortion and won’t leave you alone until you pay them off. There was none of that here. We have plenty of poor people in the Appalachians, but I have yet to see a pan handler or a homeless person camped out on the corner or sleeping on a bench.

Unlike dining out in the last city we lived in, we didn’t have to wait for a table or book reservations weeks ahead of time.

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Crazy Real Estate Market Caused by People Fleeing Cities

After a recent renaissance in which cities where THE place to be, people are now fleeing large, urban areas and are desperate to buy rural property.

After my recent visit to help clean it out, our retreat went on the market. (For those of you who are new to the blog, a quick recap: Our retreat is an old family property that has not been well maintained but is in a good rural location. We no longer need a retreat as we moved to our permanent prepper property in 2020.)

One day after the listing, we had an offer, just below our asking price. The next day, we got a second offer at our asking price. By the third day, there was a bidding war, and we ended up settling at about 10 percent above the asking price. A nice premium!

Coordinating approval of the offers took some time because what I refer to as “our retreat” is owned by multiple parties and I am only one of three on the selling side. Ever try to coordinate something among three people? It’s not any easier when they are all related.

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What’s Best for You: Urban Prepping vs Country Prepping

Urban prepping is not only possible, its where many preppers start out, but should it be the final destination on your prepper journey?

When I started prepping, I was an urban prepper.  I lived on the sixth floor of an apartment building in New York City – about as urban as you can get. 

More than 25 years later, our prepper property is outside a small village on a dead-end road, halfway up a mountain.

There have been four other houses in between the apartment and the prepper property, each one more rural and less urban than the one before.  While I have been a prepper cities and in suburbs, and believe it is far better than being unprepared, it is far from ideal. 

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How to Develop a Gravity-Fed Spring Water System Like Ours

Our gravity-fed water system gives us free, clean water even when the power is out or in a post-SHTF situation.

I’ve mentioned that our new prepper property has a gravity-fed water supply is that it provides water even when the electricity is out.  Here’s the promised article on how it works.

Most rural properties, including the last two I have lived in, use wells for their water.  When the power goes out, the pump doesn’t work unless you have solar or a generator.  With gravity-fed water, we get full-power, high-quality, clean drinking water from a system that requires no electricity and uses no pressure tank or other moving parts that can wear our or break.

We can do this because our prepper property on about 20 acres on the side of a mountain and by getting water from a source uphill from the house, it can be delivered to the home via gravity.

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Prepper Diary November 5: Our House Sells Quickly

It took months of cleaning, painting, repairing, and getting new carpet in the basement, but our house sold within days of listing.

As I said in the November 1 post, there was immediate interest when we listed our house.  We had five showings within two days and one or two per day since.  After a short bidding war, we accepted an offer for our house that was above our asking price. I did not believe it was that hot seller’s market until I saw it first hand. People are highly motivated to move out of the city.

That’s a positive side effect of COVID-19.  Another is that it is now accepted practice to do all the signatures related to an offer and sale online via DocuSign or a similar app.  That made it easy to accept the offer from a remote location.  I doubt we will even need to go to the closing.

Assuming the level of post-election day violence remains low, we’ll be heading back soon to meet with moving companies and obtain estimates for our move.  Then, a few days later, we’ll bring another load of gear back up here.  We’ll be making a round trip every week until we officially move. If we stay on track, moving day will be before Christmas.

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Prepper Diary November 1: Bugging Out and on Being Charitable

Our old house is for sale so we’re bugging out to the mountains. Moving has encouraged us to downsize and minimize.

It took longer than I expected to get the repairs made, the painting finished, the drone photography shot, the video produced, and the appraisal done, but our house is officially on the market.

Happily, it appraised for more than I expected and the photography looks even better than the ol’ house ever did.  (I guess those stagers and designers know what they are doing.) Now we have to wait and see what it actually sells for, which may help determine if we can go solar next year. 

There are already showings scheduled, so we are loading up the truck, sticking the cat in the carrier, and bugging out to our prepper property for the pre-Election Day bug out.  We’ve left the realtor the alarm code and the keys, and we’ll let her handle everything on the showing end.

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Prepper Diary October 2: How to Build Your Food Storage Over Time

We have buckets of long-term storage food. We have cans of dehydrated food. But we didn’t build up this supply overnight. Live the prepper life and you can build up your supplies as well.

We just brought our fourth trailer full of long-term storage food and survival gear to our new prepper property, and it drove home how much prepping-related stuff we have. 

So far, we’ve moved one 4’x8’ U-Haul cargo trailer, two 6’x12’ U-Haul cargo trailers, and an 8’x12′ flatbed trailer, although the latter was mostly loaded with furniture.  Thanks to my friend Karl and his Ford F-250, we do have a bed, dressers, a sofa and some other furnishings at the house now, which is nice if we need to stay there before the move is fully completed.

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Prepper Diary September 26: Stocking Up For the Dark Days Ahead

We continue to take small steps on our prepping journey, buying a few things here and there.

My wife and I made another Costco run.  Their shelves were well stocked so we too advantage added a bit to our prepper pantry. We avoided fresh meat completely because we are trying to empty our freezer before the move.  I’m fine buying canned goods and other items that do not need refrigeration .  We picked up the following, all of which have been packed in some heavy boxes and will go up to our prepper property on our next trip.

  • 12 cans of corned beef hash. This is one of my favorite prepper foods.  Depending on the brand, it can have 700 or so calories in a can, which is a pretty high calorie-to-weight ratio. It has carbs, protein and fat in pretty close to equal amounts, which should give you plenty of energy for any task. It’s already cooked , so you can eat it straight from the can if necessary (blech!), but it is also easy to cook over a fire in a pan or your mess kit. We like it for breakfast but nothing says you can’t have it for dinner.
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September 15 Prepper Diary: More Moving Prep

Meeting with Realtors, cleaning, painting, repairing, etc. We’re getting our old home ready to list as we move to our prepper property.

We continue to make progress on the getting-ready-to-move front.

We’ve met with two Realtors now to discuss selling our house.  We just need to pick one and we’ve a pretty good idea who we are going to select. 

The pressure washer has come and gone.  The small pieces of rotting trim near the ground have been replaced.  The painters have touched up the exterior. We’ve gotten one quote on carpeting the basement and another one is expected any day.  We are also waiting on a quote to repaint the basement and do some minor repairs.

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September 7 Prepper Diary: We Celebrate Labor Day with Chores and Gun Fire

We take an extra long weekend getaway to do chores at our prepper property, but we take time for some fun as well.

We drove out to our new prepper property mid-week for an extended Labor Day Weekend.  In addition to bringing a pick-up-truck bed full of gear, we opened a post office box in the village closest to our new prepper property.  We can now start changing our mailing address.  With our new address and local phone number in hand, we also visited a local bank and opened accounts there. 

After we officially move, we’ll worry about switching over our driver’s licenses and concealed carry permits.


We are still in the clean-up, fix-up, and prepare mode, but we now have a bed so we no longer have to sleep on an inflatable mattress.  This trip, we brought up bedside tables because you don’t realize how convenient they are until you have to go without one.  We even brought a small sofa.  This means we have somewhere to eat, somewhere to sleep, and something more comfortable than a camp chair to sit on.

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