This leads me to look at housing prices near where I work where I would pretty much have to move in with someone else whose making the same income as me to afford much of anything nearby. Also since I keep worrying that if the economy continues to weaken it'd be hard for me to be employed in 5 to 10 years, making me rather uncomfortable about the idea of committing to a 15 to 30 year mortgage.
This then leads to the crazy idea of buying raw land and building on it. Though I was worried about building something fast enough and sufficiently code compliant that I could move into it quickly.
This morning I realized something, that since the raw land around here varies in price from that of an average car to an expensive SUV and I have no car payment, I could afford it while continuing to rent a place closer to work.
So I could buy something that I could pay off in a few years and slowly develop it. First would be to do things to help retain water on the plot. Followed by planting some fruit and nut trees and building a small storage shed.
If my insecurity turns out to have some basis in reality and I find myself under-employed I would then have a place I could use to meet my basic needs. (And then would have the time to extend the structures and bring them up to code compliance.)