What are the top tips for living off grid in Spain, also in particular relating to The Alpujarra.
These are not just made up, these come from both my own personal experiences of living off-grid but also from many others who have contributed to these tips with their many years of experience.
Living off-grid in Spain is an entirely different proposition to many countries due to the huge amount of sunshine for solar systems, but this can vary across the country as it is a very large area and there are very different climates in the North to the South. SO, for this, we will be focusing on the south of Spain, in Andalucia and in particular the Alpjuarra region.
These are in no particular order and I am sure there are many more, so please do not hesitate to add your own tips in the comments.
The top tips
Firstly assume everything may cost more and take longer than expected.
Solar systems are not always very cheap to set up if you have high power demands. Make sure you understand what you really need and also how to repair it. Do some research on exactly what system you need. If you are installing it yourself there are plenty of off grid groups where you can learn from others. If you are getting the system installed professionally, make sure the installer comes recommended and that they work to what you need, with plenty of experience of Off grid systems, they are very different to a grid tied system.
Try things out, when something goes wrong or doesn’t work you learn from it. You do not have to know how everything works or how to repair everything, but learning from mistakes is part of the joy of off grid living.
Don’t be too rigid with your plans, it all takes far more time than you think, start by making your bedroom, living room and bathroom how you want them and work out from there.
Remember that the countryside has its own rules that you may not be used to, burn permits, no fires of any kind in summer etc, getting to know your neighbours and making friends with them is an essential part of country life.
Check the area around you to see what people grow and stick with that, you can often choose early or late varieties and depending on your altitude you may want later varieties to avoid any frost damage, especially with fruits. The people who have been growing in the area for many years will probably have made a lot of mistakes and will be able to share their knowledge of the local conditions.
Get familiar with your hand tools. This will mean that you can repair and adapt them, ensure you have the basic necessary tools but do not go overboard buying new tools straight away.
Ensure you have a good quality first aid kit on hand, if something does go wrong and you are a long way from help this can literally be a lifesaver
Enjoy yourself, this is usually one of the reasons you are contemplating making the move off grid, so sometimes it is really important to remember that you are here to enjoy it.
Finally for this list, although arguably the single most important tip. WATER.. make sure you know exactly what your water rights are, where the water comes from and how it is supplied. It doesn’t matter if it’s a spring, well, stream, acequia or another source. Ensure you really understand the water on your property. Do not reply on the word of anyone, ensure you have proof of the water rights.
To see some off grid properties just click here: OFF GRID HOMES
These are just some of the tips for starting out and we will certainly add more over time, but feel free to add your own in the comments.
Tips for living off grid in Spain for the first time.
Moving off grid in Spain
How to live off grid in Spain
How to live off grid in the Alpujarra