Episode-1439- Gary Collins on Remote Homestead Scouting and Set Up — 53 Comments

  1. Some really good information. Very informational. Oh man would love to have extra hands. How to get them is baffling to me.

  2. Nice story Jack about being here in VT… indeed. I housesat a professor’s house in college for a year and right before he and his wife took off for Africa for the next 12 months, I stopped them in the driveway and said “wait! you never gave me the keys.” They walked with me back to the front door and pointed at the door. No locks were even installed. Gotta love rural Vermont. It’s still like that for the most part.

  3. Expect the dollar to get stronger, interest rates to go up and gold/silver to weaken. I’m looking for gold/silver as low as $600/$10.

    • Don’t hold your breath! There is a lot of psychology at play in a buyers mind. The lower it goes the less likely the phyical holders are to sell and the more likely stackers are to buy.

      In my mind 15 dollars is a really strong number for buyers to start picking up.

      12 will set the market aflame!

      If you do see 10 it will be a very hard floor with quick bounces. In the mind of any that know the value of silver 10 will be a number they can’t stop themselves from buying at. I do have to say though when silver hits 15 bucks and it will, MSB is going to cost 2 ounces a year! LOL.

      Now gold at 600, part of me wants to say, I don’t even see it possible another part knows it could be possible. Right now I think 800 is the floor for gold. But you could be right and here is why.

      Gold is the metal of the rich, the rich don’t really “stack” they hold paper that represents a stack. Many put aside 10-20 or so ounces in a stack, this is a rich person SHTF plan. But that is about it. I know a lot of people that you’d call rich. All own phyical gold, none own more then say 40 ounces unless they are in the metal business as a dealer or something.

      This means gold is traded a LOT more like a stock than silver. Little guys just don’t buy much gold. They buy the fing shit out of silver though. So yes, gold could go that low, it is possible but I am not sure it is probable.

      The key is how far away is the next financial crisis?

      Not TEOTWAWKI but something like one of the many recessions we have seen in 30 years. This always hikes metals and the rich always profit from the hike.

      • “The lower it goes the less likely the phyical holders are to sell and the more likely stackers are to buy.”

        Respectfully, price is a consequence of supply and demand not a driver. The Fed is reigning in the money supply. Dollar-denominated assets will decline in price. It wasn’t that long ago Gold was at $300.

        I don’t hold my breath except when swimming or pouring a bag of concrete. When evaluating financial markets I change my mind continuously and think in terms of (continuously changing) probabilities. I started listening to the show and thought I would share my thoughts on price since it seemed to be a topic on your mind.

        This silver chart doesn’t look promising for $15 as a bottom:

        Gold/Silver at $300/$4 is an even less likely possibility but still possible.

        I wrote the following for a bitcoin forum.

        The Euro is sitting right on major support. GBP broke 1.60. Yen is flirting with 110. Gold broke a support point at 1200 and has a longer term support 1180 in its sights.

        US Unemployment report was positive, indicating the Fed will likely continue with its plan of reducing QE. The recently released Oct schedule indicates such and implies further strengthening of the dollar.

        Watch what happens with these supports. A solid move (and stay) under 1180 for gold could confirm continued dollar strength.
        Lower oil prices will continue. The US is/will engage its Middle East partners to suppress oil prices as an attack against Russia.

        In 2002, gas was around 1.50-1.75 in my neck of the woods and gold was at $300. Now gas is ~3.15, implying a price of gold around $600.

        That would probably put bitcoin sub-$200.

        • That’s just technical discussion not confrontation. My writing “voice” is stale, its a personality flaw I guess. I was always happy. 🙂

          Don’t fret so much. If you’re ever coming through Conway holler and drink a beer.

          Have a great weekend!

        • I thought the breath/concrete comment would come across as funny. It’s one reason I’m not a humor writer I guess.

  4. Jack,

    Love today’s show. I am not sharpshooting, but you said something I wanted to correct because it is a common misconception that negatively impacts veterans pretty often. Apparently it is even common in the lending community (even USAA that is a military-centric organization).

    You can buy an AG Exempt property using a VA loan. I did it about a year and a half ago in North Texas.

    I was told by several lenders that they would not do a VA loan on AG Exempt property. So we contacted a Title Company in the area that deals with a lot of rural properties and asked if there were any lenders that would do the VA loan. They gave a couple of lenders to contact and both were willing.

    After finding the right lender, everything went as expected.

    • Also greater proof that my last real estate agent was a MORON.

      Not that it mattered I had already used my VA loan benefits and not much of it was left. So it was additional info I didn’t need from her instead of information I was always asking for and never getting like,

      “Before we drive 120 miles, does this fing property have DSL or Cable Modem”?

      Met with uh, they say they have um, internet and it is fast, it is with Wild Blue or something like that.

    • Jim,

      What state did you get your loan in? I hit up every local bank, USAA basically everyone I could think of and they all told me no on the off grid property. All I had to do was get a construction loan throw in 80k of dept and they would finance me. I found that really funny, because they wouldn’t finance for having plenty of equity and being smart by having low debt to property value ratio. But throw in some stupid debt and now have a riskier loan and they are all in.

  5. The lender was not exclusively an AG lender, but I suspect that in order to operate in a rural area, they would tend to be more familiar with the AG Exemption. Rural areas, in my experience, tend to have a good number of vets as well.

    It sucks you had a bad agent.

    I do believe that you can use the full VA loan benefits each time you use it. You are simply limited to using it only once at a time. i.e. you can’t have a VA loan on more than one house at a time. You can however sell a home that is bought with a VA loan and that “sell” returns your ability to use the full VA loan again. I only know this because I have bought three homes using the VA in the last 15 years.

    Unfortunately this info is too late to assist you, but maybe someone else will read this and learn something.

    • That is new, the reuse of the VA Loan benefit. I don’t know how new but I remember very clearly a statement stating that I had used X of Y or my VA lifetime loan amount back when I bought my only VA property in 2001. So it is at least that new.

      This is something you don’t forget.

      Wonder if it was part of the Bush Mortgage reforms or perhaps the current assclowns bail outs etc.

    • Jim,
      You can most definitely have more than one loan on a VA benefit. I know a guy with three houses in Northern Virginia. It has everything to do with the amount of dollars out, NOT the number of times its in use. It does however require you to have the houses in the same state.

      For each location the amount of money you have access to is different. The standard rate (i think) is 417k, where as other places (like northern virginia) could be up in the 800s.

      • I should also point out it depends on the lender. He had to show income received for a year before he was eligible (in the lenders eyes I guess) to be able to receive another loan for another house.

        He owns 3 houses, obviously 1 he lives at, 2 he rents. He’s fixed them up and will be selling them shortly opening the amount of money he has available.

    • I currently own two homes under the VA loan program both bought at the time as my primary residence. When I found a new job out here in Colorado we decided to hold the old property and lease it out. It was a bit difficult to get the second VA loan and we again had to write a couple letters explaining our situation before they would allow the VA benefits.

      @Jim I’m going to have to check out the concept you mention that when you sell that home that the value benefit rolls back in to your future qualifications. I had always heard that once you used it up that it was gone…

  6. I don’t know how recently the rules have changed. Just now I went to and got the below excerpt.

    “…if the prior loan has been paid off, AND the property is no longer owned, they can have their entitlement restored as many times as they want. They can re-use their VA eligibility for every home purchase from the first to the last”

    It appears as though the VA loan (at least as of now) is different than the GI Bill in that the VA loan benefit does not deplete as it is used.

    • Yep I found that, like I said I wonder when it changed, it is definitely a good benefit for many. Especially if used smartly.

  7. Hey Gary, I am a couple years ahead of you in the process up in Stevens County. I have 100+ acres of pasture and timber, cows, pigs, bees, and plants galore…

    Not sure exactly where your place is, but it’s a shame you had to go through the permitting. Up here you can build whatever you want as long as you are the owner of the property.

    Only permits you need here is the Site Plan, the Septic, and Electrical. Unless you’re in town…

    As the county guy put it ‘Sure, you can pay for a formal building permit, or you can use that money to buy the windows for your whole house instead’

    Anyhow, welcome to the area. If you need more recommendations on contractors, etc, let me know how to contact you and I’m happy to help.

    • Hey Jeremy,

      I’m actually in Pend Oreille county, and a lot of the rules were instituted July 1 of this year I believe. Before that you didn’t even need a site plan. Now it is site plan, septic engineering plan approved and passing water test if you drill a well. Also need a permit to drill well. Not a big deal, I could build my house without the permits, but again you now have a non permitted structure, and no owner occupancy cert, in order to get an equity line on the property.

      I would rather pay for the permits, so when I go to sell I can sell more quickly and for a lot more than if I didn’t go through those steps. That is my back up plan mentality kicking in, I always have an exit strategy 🙂 I never plan to sell and move, but you never know.

      Where in Stevens county are you? I would love to checkout your property when I come up again Spring of next year. I’m sure there is a lot I could learn from what you have done. Most of my contractors are out of Spokane area, so definitely might hit you up on referrals.

      • They tried to take our owner builder exemptions here in Stevens earlier this year and failed miserably. There was a near-on riot. There’s some definite goofballs out here, but people are pretty attached to the ‘leave me the hell alone’ concept still.

        We’re between Colville and Chewelah. You’re more than welcome to come take a look. We are heavily involved in the local food / small-ag community around here so we can facilitate some good contacts there too, if you’re interested.

        I’ll hit your contact form at with my contact info. Reach out whenever.

  8. Gary,

    I did my VA loan in Texas. We are not off grid, so that may have made a difference.

    • Jim,

      That is the key, once you go off the grid everything changes. The banks and power companies don’t like you anymore 🙂 I have used my VA loan more than once as well, it used to be you paid more origination points every time you used it, but not sure anymore, as it has been a while.

  9. I know it is part of who you are and you’ve also noted that you don’t consider certain words curse words, but I just wanted to comment that the language on the podcasts has gotten pretty raw lately (including from the guest on this show). I did listen through this show but ended up turning off the “Free Your Mind” show as I just didn’t want to hear it any more. It used to be once or twice a show and now it seems it’s every few minutes.

    I know you’ve said before that you don’t care, but I don’t enjoy it as much and I haven’t shared episodes with other people that I otherwise would. My two cents.

    • I guess our former military potty mouths offend some Jack, what can you do. I was former military and law enforcement, people who serve and protect tend to use colorful language, because we have had far more concerning issues to worry about than if a curse word might offend someone.

      • What can I do, well what I DO IS,

        I stick to the exact way this show is done and has been done for over 6 years.

        I don’t say the F-word and I don’t say GD on the show with some very rare exceptions.

        I get why some are offended by the F-word so I hold at that line. Some let kids listen and that is enough to avoid all but the very rare F word for me. I have let two guests do it because it was genuine for what they were saying and I provided disclaimers both times.

        As for G.D. I think most Christians don’t even know what “shall not take the Lord’s name in vain” means. I mean they have not a damn clue, and it sure as hell isn’t G.D. but it is offensive enough to enough people that I don’t use it. I will say this to any Christian though G.D. is not taking the Lord’s name in vain, it isn’t what the commandment is about, period. You may want to investigate that!

        For those that don’t like words like shit and bitch, I have no time for them. Again I send them to, Section Three

        Now I wrote that in 2008, that should say something!

        • Heck, I thought we kept it pretty clean, was curious about the offensive language. Now if they were sitting in the back of a follow car with me, while VIP protection detail was ongoing and were offended, ok I get that. I think the F word was a staple during those times. You make it pretty clear some expletives will be used on occasion, that is life people need to focus on other things, instead of being concerned if one of us uses the word assclown or bullshit.

        • Some people you just can’t please. Frankly I don’t even get the bullshit complaint here. How long could this guy have been listening if a few utterances of shit, bull shit and bitch bothered him, all I can say is not long.

    • FreeMan, wow, if you were offended by the language in today’s podcast you must lead a very sheltered life. Raw? That that stuff didn’t even register on the cuss Richter.

      If you were to pop in on me while I’m working on my tractor or figuring my quarterly taxes …

  10. I couldn’t follow the story about Jake from the No Agenda podcast. Your guest was rambling in the background, and your story sounded a bit muddled. From what I can discern, there is a how to deal with annoying commenters video somewhere that made you decide to be liberal with the banhammer. Where is it?

    • No way I can remember the video. It was basically a guy saying, just ban haters and move on you don’t have time to screw with them, you have a job to do and serving their needs isn’t it. Resonated so I have tried to do just that. Basically my show is for people that like it and like what I do. I am fine with disagreements and I am fine when people point out that I am wrong in hard fact areas, I love that because it make me smarter.

      But when people have an ideological axe to grind I just get rid of them, I have no time to F with them.

      I have people that are pissed that I even DARE SPEAK my political views. Screw em, banned.

      People that think I am a horrible human because I don’t believe the song and dance on climate change. I don’t mean they disagree with my view they HATE me for my view, call me names, say I am on the oil companies pay rolls, etc. banned, no time for it, period, etc.

    • I completely agree, and I have learned from Jack. In the business we call them trolls. They are basically bloggers who “troll” other peoples social media and websites to start shit, in order to bring attention to themselves. Usually behind the scenes they represent one of your competitors and make money off of their affiliate links. It is really big in the Paleo movement. I’m getting better at recognizing them as they can be pretty sly, they instantly get banned, and if they piss me off enough I report them to Twitter or Facebook depending where they contacted me.

    • This is the video that Jack had a while back.

      I use the same principles in the automotive business. I will do everything in my power to resolve your conflict, unless you are just there to create conflict. Then we part ways. The world is full of really great people just itching to do business with really great people.

  11. Excellent show, Gary has a very good clear voice and really knows how to give a lot of helpful info and stays on track.

    Back in the 70’s I was in the back to land movement and got into gardening but lacked skills to take it to the next step. 30 years later I have developed many skills and want to do what Gary plans to do, teach what I know in a more northern location from where I currently live. After my visit to Perma Ethos this summer I realized I have the skill but just need a different place, and plan on shopping for one in the next year.

    Not sure if I would have drilled a well in Gary’s spot, might have looked into hauling and treating water from a local source and seen how that went. Kinda don’t know till ya get their I suppose. I have always liked a little bigger house for a couple of reasons, First, I have a lot of hobbies like making beer, preserving food and it’s nice to have a good amount of storage for such. Second, I think our family structures are going to change, I think there will be multiply generations living under on roof like it has alway been except for the last 60-70 years or so, so a bigger house will make that much more reasonable.

  12. Great show Gary, We are east of you near Sandpoint ID and have been off-grid for 16+years. I agree with your praise for Backwoods Solar. They have always provided excellent service.

    • Hey Philip, I actually do some shopping at the local healthy grocery store in Sandpoint. Backwoods solar is great, I met the crew at the shop outside of Sandpoint and they spent a couple hours going over everything. Picked up 6 solar panels they were discontinuing for super cheap.

      Wow 16 years that is awesome, I can’t wait to get started on the house next year. I’m really excited about getting off the grid, and not having to pay the utility companies anymore… they suck 🙂

  13. Great show. I live with my family in SE WA State, we’ve considered buying some property up your way, just waiting for some more time (kids are still fairly young) to start digging into that.

    I loved the discussion about how manipulated/distracted people become from watching the knee-jerk-headlines that compromises “news” these days. I recently read a fascinating book – “The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains” – and, in one section, he details the research showing how short, constantly shifting, information bites (that you have to screen/monitor) actually changes the physiology of your brain. It becomes like a chemical addiction, where your brain needs it’s ‘fix’ or ‘hit’ of rapid-fire information and reaction.

    Anyway, I know that’s a little off topic, but I recommend the book if you are interested into why so many are controlled by so little.

    • Glad you like the show Janet!

      I figured I’m single, so better get it done now, because you never know…. I looked in SE WA as well I really liked Cheney, but was looking for something more mountainous.

      I have noticed a huge difference in my attitude since I tuned out from most of the media. You become brainwashed with all the negativity, and you feel trapped and think the world is ending all the time. We are completely bombarded with absolute crap, oh how I wish for a simpler time. Disconnecting my cable was the best thing I could have done, what a waist of money. I have a monthly wi-fi hotspot that I use through Verizon, which has data limits, so that keeps me in check on the internet as well. Thanks for the book recommendation I’m going to Amazon to check it out.

  14. Good show…..
    My 3 rules:
    Pick your cause(s).
    Have the facts to back it up.
    Be prepared to defend it.

    There will always be loser douchebag assclowns. They, too, are teachers. It’s always good to have a good example of a bad example!!

    I have a super fantastic friend in Dallas, Dave Mack. I am NOT allowed any negative thoughts. He has helped me to improve my life in ways I don’t have words for.

    Please enjoy one of my favorites:
    “The longer I love, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company…a church….a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past…we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude…I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you…we are in charge of our attitudes.”
    ? Charles R. Swindoll

    Don’t like gov’t? Then BECOME gov’t. A fellow I know who raises grass fed dairy cattle, home schools and a long list of other things, did not like how his community gov’t was being run. The Libertarian put on some Republican clothes and ran for city counsel. And later ran for county supervisor. And made positive changes.

  15. Great Show, Jack.

    Regarding the history segment, religious restrictions and EMP…

    I’m not worried about an EMP destroying my Kindle, but I thought I’d throw that in because so many folks worry about an EMP strike. It is a remote concern, and there are other more pressing concerns… like food, water and shelter. If anyone is worried, store your Kindle in a metal box… preferably grounded… when not in use. It might help but it might not.

    Jack, you are correct that I cannot access my Kindle on the Sabbath due to religious restrictions on performing work on the Sabbath. One can leave electrical things going on the Sabbath such as timers or your computer and your phone. You just can’t touch them or cause them to do something different by your actions during the Sabbath.

    Sabbath restrictions are not absolute. For example: This Yom Kippur my mother-in-law had a medical emergency that required us to call 911 for an ambulance. Although it was my wife that made the call, I would not hesitate to pick up the phone on the Sabbath or the Sabbath of Sabbaths (which is another name for Yom Kippur) in order to save a life.

    Example 2: If their was an emergency such as a natural disaster and I needed life-saving information on my Kindle you can bet that I will flip it on and get the information. However, I can’t imagine any disaster where a Kindle would be required for some casual reading.

    This Yom Kippur, my daughter-in-law asked me about restrictions concerning pets, so I told her about farming on the Sabbath. Just because it is a day of rest, the cows still need milking and the chickens still need to be fed. Since I have never heard of problems with farming and the Sabbath there must be answers to these questions that do not harm the animals. Check with your local religious authority for the exact limits if you are concerned. You can certainly feed your pets.

    FYI, personally, I would milk the cows and set aside the milk and give it away to my non-Jewish neighbor after the Sabbath. I would probably set up an automatic feeder for the chickens. How hard can this be? In the old days they didn’t have automatic timers. They had neighborhood kids. You left some money on the table, the kid showed up, did a few things. At the end the money was gone. Imagine that.

    Gotta go. I’m building a sukkah in the backyard. (for the Festival of Booths or Tabernacles). Talk about survival shelters…. if I had to depend on this shack for my survival, I’d be dead. But the point of the holiday is to remind us that we wandered in the wilderness… the early survivalists.


  16. Hey there Mr. Collins,
    If you ever need help with your property or construction I live a few minutes away from you. Kinda cool that out of all the places you could have settled you chose Pend Oreille. I love it here, a lot of good things going for it.

  17. I just finished listening to this episode. Gary is quickly becoming one of my favorite guests. Thank you for being on the show, Gary.

    I’ll be moving to Spokane in a couple of months and my folks have some acreage in the Chewelah/Springdale area. I got a little excited when I found out how close I’ll be to Gary. Once we get settled, I’d love to come help out.