Retired Couple Living Off-Grid Shares Their 8-Year Experience

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Dropping out of the grid and living a simple, self-reliant lifestyle is tempting to the pioneer spirit in most of us. It’s an escape from the hustle and bustle of urban existence; an admirable way to cut down on the environmental footprint; a way to seek the romanticized serenity of nature.

What does living off grid in retirement involve? What does it really mean to pack your essentials and cut ties with modern life? While it’s easy to assume that its as simple as moving to the wilderness, building a DIY cabin, drilling a well, and installing renewable energy sources like solar, that’s not the full story.

According to Art and Mary — a retired couple that live fully off-grid — thriving in the lifestyle takes some planning, preparation, and maintenance. The veterans of frontier living share their experiences and the invaluable skills they’ve picked up in over 8 years. The recurring theme in Art and Mary’s experience is that preparation and adaptability is key to a successful transition to off-grid living. While going in blind is wholly possible, it is not advisable.

When building an off-grid home, it’s important to consider the prevailing weather conditions and landscape of the region. This is important for factors such as proper insulation. In Art and Mary’s case, they built their house with Durisol Insulated Concrete Forms (ICF) and triple glazed windows to regulate heat during cold and warmer months. You should also understand the building codes and regulations that are applicable to your dwelling.

Another important skill is learning how to cultivate a garden and how to preserve foods. Fresh food is always better for both health and culinary purposes. This ties in closely with having a source of drinkable water (Ps: consider a rainwater collection system) that’s treated.


For power and fuel, the retired couple in the YouTube video makes use of a mix of solar panels, a generator, and wood to meet keep them warm and to power their standard home appliances. All in all, living off-grid is not as simple as most would assume—but it’s a worthwhile experience.

Retired Couple Living Off-Grid Shares Their 8-Year Experience
Retired Couple Living Off-Grid Shares Their 8-Year Experience – Images: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2RAKB1z2MaQ

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