Sixty-five-year-old self-described “hillbilly” Richard Aiken is many things. He’s a husband, a father, the recipient of two PhDs and a medical degree, an opera singer, and an author of The New Ancestral Diet. He’s also, apparently, a pretty great builder. Richard had wanted to live in the woods for a long time, but always thought it would be a bit expensive. After all, can you imagine just wandering into the woods and making a new home for yourself out there? Talk about a tough project! When a man in Missouri told Richard about his old cabin that had fallen into disrepair, he immediately saw an opportunity. With some hard work and determination, he was about to have the getaway of his dreams!

Richard Aiken paid $100 cash for a cabin in Missouri, even though the man selling it offered it to him for free. With the idea he had in mind for the structure, he knew its real value was far more.

It was full of debris, and its roof had collapsed. It looks dangerous just peering in through the doorway, never mind actually hanging out inside!

When Richard looked over the contents of the abandoned cabin, he knew most of the wood was badly rotten. Clearly, this was not a structure sound enough for living in.

He meticulously labeled and cataloged each piece of wood after removing the rubble. That way he would know how they would be put back together later…

The cabin may look like a wreck at this point, but real estate is all about location, and location doesn’t get much better than this. So beautiful and peaceful!

It got even better when Richard and his family discovered a natural spring nearby. Now that is lucky. They could create their own waterfront property!