Getting Through the “Shift” on a Budget

I am finally back from a long hiatus. I have been trying hard to come up with a way of getting through the paradigm shift predicted to happen in the next few years on a tight budget and I wanted to share my solution with all of you. Maybe you can think of something I missed, or add to it in some way- just be sure to give solutions to the problems you see.

Like many of you, I’ve lived month to month for far too long and have no savings and far more debt in my life than I wish to. With about $150 dollars a month over and above what I need, it is really tough to save up for a house (or even a down payment) and I knew moving out of the city was my top priority. I have moved to a town in rural area which has everything I could have missed where I was and taken on a roommate to help accelerate my plan. My rent has stayed the same, the bills have largely stayed the same, but I’ll have an extra $250 to spend bringing my monthly budget surplus to $400.

I am here for 12 months, bringing around $4800 into the home building budget, not much, I know, but it could be a lot worse. But what happens if the shift happens sooner rather than later? I figured that out as well. I estimate phase 1 will cost just about $1000. I am going to be building a small trailer, something I can always use for family camping later, and it’s mobile, so however the winds of change blow, I’ll be able to find a safe harbor without relying on a pre-conceived plan that could end up in a worse place than where I started.

I could, of course, buy a small used camping trailer for $1000, but in my case, I need something very lightweight and versatile. I estimate that it will weigh 400lbs empty, which means that I’ll have another 400lbs of gear to play with and still be within my car’s towing capacity. It will be heavily insulated, unlike a used trailer, able to take a hard winter storm with the only heat source being an electric heating pad. I plan to buy a heater/air conditioner combo unit later for about $650 to be able to block out both the winter cold and the summer heat. Also, unlike a used trailer, the camper will be removable from the trailer frame so that I can still use the bare trailer for making runs for building materials, gear, or whatever. A small generator will also be a later purchase; my car will work in that role for now. If the shift happens before I’m ready to buy land, there is about 160 acres nearby and the light-weight construction of the trailer means I should be able to pull it cross-country into an unused area.

Phase 2 will be a temporary shelter 20 feet long and 10 feet wide and should add around $800 to the cost. One of those car port frames you can get from Sam’s Club or Costco will work using the provided tarp for a cover and screening all the way around with removable tarps able to be placed where needed. The trailer will easily fit inside this with plenty of room for a cooking and eating area and a shower/dressing/and toilet area off to one side. The cost also includes tables, benches and bathroom necessities. This should all fit into the trailer I’ve designed and still be under the weight capacity of my car. By this point I could be living rent free on purchased (or financed) land saving considerably on rent. I also plan to build a garden and composting bin around the same time.


Phase 3 is the first permanent shelter; it’s a (PSP) pole barn that will one day be my garage. It’s hard to say what it will cost because I hope to use wood cleared from the land, but I know I will need 390 board feet of 6”x6” pine (or similar), 722 board feet of 2”x10” stock, 434 board feet of 8” round posts and 1240 square feet of 2” thick stock (2×4’s 2×6’s or 1.5” thick (min) slag wood from a lumber mill). In addition to this, I plan to use all the cuttings from these trees that are too small to use for the frame in the cordwood masonry walls on three sides of the barn or use them for heat. The fourth side being earth-sheltered just needs a vapor barrier and insulation. It will have a small concrete block foundation a few courses high to keep the cordwood from getting too wet. This structure will be 31 feet long and 26 feet wide. The trailer will fit into this as will every other amenity so far and it will be easier to heat than a tarp covered car port and it’s big enough to house a workshop too.

The area I live in allows for a pole barn without a permit. Since it’s a storage barn, I can get electricity out to it without much of a fuss and while the building inspector is there checking the electrical a camping trailer and boxes of gear will not be too suspicious. I may still have an apartment and a P.O. Box so it won’t seem suspicious when I let my lease run out and quietly move in. If I wait until after the paradigm shift, it won’t really be an issue, as people will be clamoring for every inch of available shelter anyway and building inspectors will have more important things to do, if they still have jobs.

Phase 4 involves digging a small pond and building a small houseboat on it, which gets away from the building inspectors and permits yet again because their jurisdiction stops at the water’s edge. Don’t get me wrong, it will be built to a far better standard than the National Building Code, I just don’t want a bunch of fees and misguided legislation getting in the way of building a home for myself. I don’t plan to ever sell my land, but if I do, I want the ability to pull everything I have off of it and leave it largely as I found it. Eventually, there will be a 2100 sq. ft. permanent home with all the permits and red tape that includes and a 1250sq. ft. garage and a 640 sq. ft. green house on the site my family can use for generations. The house boat will become an in-law suite.

I see this progression from a small mobile home to homestead in the same light as the old wagon trains bringing settlers across the west. This time though, there will always be heat, electric light, reliable cooking fuel and few, if any flies to contend with. Also, the settlers didn’t have a super market or lumber mill a few miles away with a car to get there and back on a road going 45 miles per hour. I’m sure it’s not the life for everyone, but as long as it’s just me and my wife, we can put up without some of the comforts we’ve become accustomed to and build a solid life in a changing world. Until next time… Dream big.

9 comments to Getting Through the “Shift” on a Budget

  • Ant

    Rob this is great. Look into straw, earth bag, rammed earth, and coord wood building construction methods (I can recommend some books to start off with if you ask). Understanding the techniques can help you optimize your building methods given any site particulars. You can build a very inexpensive home but it takes time and effort to do so. I would like to continue this discussion with you and others (offline or whatever). I really love this topic and it is very reliviant to me as well.

    I just wish we could as a group find a sutiable bug out property for such efforts. I think that this is one of the major issues that should be addressed. Perhaps it has been but I do not know of any. The problem that I see behind waiting to consolidate after shtf is some of us would not make it where we could have if we were smart about our neighbors and location. With most of our money in silver there is not much left over for moving to new locations. I dont want to give up my silver for a home right now but without life what is the point of having silver. If I cant find some group to connect with I think I will just make a bug out home on my decised Grand Dads property. Currently my plan is to build a composite home (straw, soil) and aquaculture for food.

    If you want to communicate further lets do so. What is the best way?

    • Rob

      I would like to suggest reading some of my older posts on construction techniques. I’m well aware of the ones you mentioned but if you haven’t read Mike Oehler’s “$50 and up Underground House” and John Hait’s “Passive Annual Heat Storage” you’re in for a real treat!

      My posts usually have a link going back to the first article I wrote embedded at the bottom. I forgot this time. Here is the link to my last post…

  • Anonymously Friendly

    I admire your plans and your courage to share them with others for comment not to gloat but to share… and it’s in the paradigm of giving that I share some news with you that may be something to include in your plans and how you value the exchanges you make for things in your life.

    Did you know that Nikola Tesla created a power station capable of giving the whole world free power, wirelessly using a cavity in the atmosphere? Did you know it was tested and working but was shut down by J.P Morgan (Tesla was a genius except when it came to whom he trusted). Morgans reasoned he had nowhere to send the bill, he allowed the CIA to demolish citing “Security” issues.

    I mention it in light of your plans as this happened in 1890 (I’m pretty sure, check it out) so I imagine that a bunch of young Indian kids will probably figure it out before too long and that may change how we value everything, Imagine your car being worthless because you can power a mattress?!?! that’s still not a reality so I still have a car a place in the country, and I know where to get food that’s growing out of the ground… but if give me hope that the next paradigm may be a lot more advanced than we can currently recognise.

    My solution is to avoid spending money on anything that I can’t justify in terms of the hours worked to create it.Using this train of thinking I used Chris Duanes measure of 1/10 of an ounce being a days hard labour.

    When I’m buying anything I work out how many hours labour as 1/10 is $3 so if it’s $30 then I measure it as 10 hours labour. Using this strategy I can decide how much time I’m willing to spend on things. I think I’m up to stage 4 in your plans already and mostly I feel like rushing to get here just wasted lots of resources. Remember fear is what the elite use to control us, fear causes you to waste resources and is only beneficial if you can do something about it directly.

    Something else to consider, the possibility of an Electro Magnetic Pulse EMP. The Elite do not want you to know about this stuff. It’s well known they have well laid plans for one and even if they don’t the world has had them before and will again. This Astrological event is predicted to coincide with the beginning of the new Backtun of peace.

    My solution for this is to find out how to make your trailer into a big Faraday Box and then try to spend as little as you can until we start seeing the suppressed technology leak through… I’ve bought solar a solar panel and haven’t used it yet, just hard to make plans when things are changing.

    Mostly I spend my days seeing as few people as I can and supporting myself with my own garden. Everything else is a luxury waiting for a new way to see the world.

    I remember Chris Duanes words and ask myself,

    Do I have a problem?

    If the answer is no then I have nothing to worry about,
    If the answer is yes then I ask myself

    Can I do something about it?

    If the answer is yes, then I have nothing to worry about
    If the answer is no, then I have nothing to worry about

    I like it… it really helps me

    Apart from that the first part of your strategy sounds good, I definitely recommend finding a place you can just be on your own with time to think and plan. Thanks so much for sharing and I hope as myself and others reply in a consciousness of thoughtful inclusion you can find your own unique solutions.

    Thanks again for sharing your ideas… (tips hat to CD)

    • Silver Shield

      I had a discussion with a new friend on Tesla and when we do something with our sovereignty we will move ahead with his awesome 100+ year old technology.

    • Rob

      Actually I am aware of Tesla’s wireless tower and the JP Morgan scandal (one of many). The man would destroy you simply because he could.

      Whether or not kids from India figure it out or not, I will still be able to power what I need to. I have no plans to live in a Faraday Cage, simply stow my electronics in a shielded box if I feel the need to. I can live quite comfortably with or without them. It’s not going to change anything if there is a solar flare or man made EMP. We know how to build electronics and they will be back afterwards even if the whole world were hit by one, which is very unlikely.

  • SilverJunkie

    Rob, you have some great, and I’ll have to say, VERY ambitious ideas & goals. I wish I had the youth & energy to have the same goals & expectations as you, but I’m not saying I’m afraid of hard work, or doing something to forge a new future for my wife and myself. As a member of the Silver Shield Group, I think we need to have a little more urgency about what is happening, and getting more organized as a group or smaller groups, to decide where we are going forward from here. As a group, with combined resources, we will be much stronger than each of us trying to make a go of this on our own (especially when there are very few family or friends who are awake).
    Ant, where are you located? I would prefer to start doing something constructive, rather than sitting here, clinging to my silver & preps, hoping to survive the coming winter, not knowing when the SHTF. By the way, I’m located in Wisconsin.

    • Rob

      I’m from Ohio. You are right about building a community… that’s why people traveling West went in wagon trains instead of one-by-one. However my first priority is my family, no matter how awake or asleep they are, and making sure I have room for them when the time comes is very important to me. Finding people with extra skills and resources can be found in any community but don’t limit yourself by hand-picking the ones you deem awake! You will miss out on some amazing people if you do.

  • Annie Wade

    Solar Panels must be put in a Faraday cage to withstand EMP.

    • Rob

      I believe you are right Annie.

      The reason the power-grid is so susceptible to E.M.P.’s and solar flares is because the grid crosses great expanses of land and transmit so readily- an event in Utah can cause problems in California. Most flare and even E.M.P. activity is somewhat localized. The problem is transmission wires can catch more of it and take it further from where it’s started than it normally could.

      Anonymously Friendly’s solar panel (as long as it’s not grid-tied) will not be able to absorb very much radiation due to it’s tiny footprint and it’s likely that the nearest event will be hundreds of miles away so he is unlikely to be affected by it whether or not he has it in a Faraday Cage.

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