Join our Natural Living, Off-Grid Homesteading and Natural Building Groups.

 

Pick a group that suits you and join 70,000+ other members...

Each of the Natural Homes groups is a place to network, share your experience and learn from others. The groups are carefully administered, keeping us on track and any commercial interests and spammers out. The content of the groups overlap a little but we stay within the scope of each. Here is a detailed scope for each of the groups.

 
 

Natural Living

The Kitchen Table is where we talk about healthy living, natural foods, natural cosmetics and crafts.

 
 

Off-Grid Homesteading

Permahome is where we talk about living sustainably on the land, management of water, waste and energy.

 
 

Natural Building

Talking Natural Homes is where we talk about natural building, materials and architecture.

         
 

We discuss topics related to natural living. We keep a list of popular natural living conversations so you can pick up some of the skills our members share.

We talk about things like growing food, crafts using natural materials such as basket weaving, healthy eating, natural cosmetics and living lighter on the planet. The group hosts Natural Living Workshops.

 
 

Permahome is a systems approach to living taking its framework from sustainable materials, sustainable agriculture, resource management and off-grid technologies.

The group includes topics such as small-scale farming, woodlands, social structures such as intentional communities and alternative money systems. The group hosts Sustainable Living Workshops.

 
 

The group contains many of the world's professional natural builders and many people who have built their own natural home. It's a great place to browse the past topics and pick up natural building tips.

Post questions about using natural materials and how to minimise the use of polluting and/or high embodied energy materials. The group hosts Natural Building Workshops.

 

 
 

Before you join ...

Please read the scope of the group you want to join. You will find it as a description on the group's front cover picture. If you think the group is an interesting place where you can participate, either by learning from members or contributing your own knowledge and skill, then please join us. If you don't agree with the scope of the group, particularly what it excludes, then please don't join it.

 

When you join ...

One of the administrators will look at your profile to make sure you don't have the typical characteristics of a Facebook commercial spammer. If all is well you're in the group. Welcome...

We might reject your request to join if your profile looks like an advert, an event, a cause, a franchise or a spammer e.g. your profile is devoted to a single issue rather than about your interests. You may also be rejected if you belong to over a 1,000 groups or you have joined 100s of groups within the last few days or your profile was recently created (less than a month) or we can't see any activity on your profile. All profiles less than 5 days old will be ignored. Please come back later.

Your request to join one of our groups may take 24 hours to approve. If you didn't get in it could be because you look like a spammer. If that's the case please leave it a little longer and try again. We are so sorry if our spam filtering filtered you out too but we hope you understand we need to do this to keep the groups a pleasant place to meet.

We may need to contact you about your post in a group before it is approved. PLEASE allow your user profile to be @mentioned so we can message you in the group's pinned post. If @tag is not enabled we will write to you in a facebook message.

Friend Requests: Please do not send a Facebook friend request to the administrators. The Natural Homes groups has many tens of thousands of members. Many new members send friend requests to the administrators that overwhelm their organic friendships. If you want to discuss something with an administrator do it via the group publicly so everyone can benefit from the conversation.


Now that you've joined a word on etiquette ...

A general overriding rule is: be positive about the good things, not negative about the bad.

New to the group ...

If you have just joined a group and you are a professional in your field of work please don't just post content from your website or Facebook page. Start by posting pictures that illustrate your work, ideally content that shares some aspect of your skills. If people then ask you questions, by all means answer with content from your Facebook page or website. Take your time and people will get to know and respect your knowledge and skills. Once you are a regular contributor to the group you can, at times, post content from your website or Facebook page but ALWAYS with an introduction that encourages a discussion and ideally includes some aspect of knowledge sharing. More on this here and here.

Posting events to a group ...

We do our best to help you reach our members and audience via the services we offer. If you are trying to publicise an event in any of our public listings then you MUST use these workshop calendars. There are three calendars, one hosts natural building events, one natural living events the other sustainable living events.

Looking for volunteer work ...

There are plenty of established organisations such as WWOOF, HelpX and Workaway that offer volunteer places in projects around the world. Please use these services. Natural Homes does not offer this type of service and you should not make volunteer requests in our groups.

Getting a conversation going ...

To get the best engagement from members of a group please write an introduction for any picture, video or link you want to share. Please say more than just a few words, 3 or 4 lines are ideal remembering the purpose of the group is to both inspire and educate. Posts that are introduced always get a conversation going and conversely posts without an introduction tend to be ignored.

Note: Please do not just repeat the text of a shared picture, video or album from your page or profile. Add something extra to the group.

 

Be considerate and think the best ...

Because you can't see people it's easy to misunderstand their intent, especially if they aren't using their mother tongue. Please keep this in mind and respond to defuse what may appear to be a confrontational discussion. If you slip into a public argument the administrator will delete the comments and message the participants asking you to take the exchange out of the group. Keeping the group civil in this way is a group decision.

Pictures and Albums ...

If you want to share pictures or albums from your profile please make sure they are visible to the public, not just your friends.

Stick to the scope of the group ...

Each of the groups has a cover picture which if you click, you will find the scope of the group written in the picture's description. We have wonderful conversations in the Natural Homes groups but none of them are about infomercials, philosophy, art, music, politics, religion, poetry or cute animal pictures. If you want to share things like this please join groups that specialise in them.

Posts that are out of scope for a group, but within the scope of one of the other Natural Homes groups, may be approved but you will be directed via a comment by the administrator to post the same question in the appropriate group. Commenting will then be closed on the original post.

Keep the conversation on track ...

When someone starts a discussion you might drift off-topic on a side issue with other group members. As long as this is brief that's OK but if it dominates the original discussion then you may be asked to take the conversation out for private discussion or, if the side issue is within the group's scope, you might be asked to start a new post.

Please be sensitive to the nature of the group ...

When you have something you want to share you may find the content provider uses an image that doesn't fit the 'natural' scope of the group. This is illustrated by the picture far right (red cross) of edible flowers (natural) served on icing sugar coated cup cakes (not natural).
 

   

If the content you have found has this dilemma please try to find similar content that uses a more natural image, as shown above left (green tick). We ask you to make this effort because every time a non-natural (cup cake) type picture is posted to the group it triggers a wave of other non-natural posts that are not in the group's scope. This takes valuable time from the administrator managing the group. If you can't find similar content to share then it's OK to use the non-natural picture source but please, in your comment with the post, explain the image e.g. "A great collection of edible flowers but not so natural if you serve them on sugar coated cup cakes".

 

Please don't post too much too quick ...

It is easy to get carried away posting lots of stuff that interests you. It probably interests others too, but if you post too much at the same time people tend to ignore the posts. It is far better to slow down and spread your posts over several days or weeks.

Not everything is good ...

Goal... The natural Homes groups support our organisation's goals, to help people live more natural, sustainable lives. If you post content that does not support this goal then your contribution is unlikely to be approved. Please don't interpret this as censorship, it's just not in scope.

Tools... The use of power tools and sharp hand tools can sometimes be represented in inappropriate and dangerous ways. If a picture or video is posted to the group which encourages people to adopt bad and possibly dangerous practices it will not be approved.

Research... Generally info-graphics with the phrase "Please share" are published to popularise a Facebook Page, not tell the truth. Please don't share sensationalist content unless you have done a bit of research to determine the validity of the claim. 

Copyright... Sadly there are a few social media publishers and websites of low quality and low integrity that publish content without proper attribution to the originator and/or are knowingly misleading and/or breach copyright. Posts which take members to those publishers will not be approved. A group administrator will contacted you to explain why.

Our groups are non-commercial and open source ...

All of the information published by Natural Homes is non-commercial and open source i.e. the readers do not have to sign up or pay to access the content. In keeping with this, please do not post content to the group that contains promotions for 3rd party products or requires members to sign-up to access the content either through a pay wall or an emailing list.

Commercial products and services...

All the Natural Homes groups are non-commercial. The ONLY promotions approved are those for the group's members and then only if the product or service fits the philosophy and scope of the group. If you want to discuss a commercial product then do so in generic terms e.g. the properties of its natural ingredients. Please do not mention brand names, post product videos or links to suppliers.

Help keep out spammers ...

If you see a comment that is obviously spam please mark it as such ['Hide' and then 'Report']. All posts in our group a pre-approved by an administrator so you are unlikely to see a spam post but if one gets through you will find a down-arrow at the top right of the post. Click the arrow to get a pop-up menu. The last entry is 'Report/mark as spam'. This will flag the problem to the next administrator that visits the group making the spam easier to find and remove, along with the spammer.

Clean up your Facebook apps ...

Some Facebook users give permission to Facebook applications (apps) to post content, often inappropriate, on their behalf. If you have given such permission, even unwittingly to an app which has posted in the group, you will be removed and blocked immediately. When you realise you have been removed, please clear up your app's permissions and then write to us giving your Facebook name. The block will be released and you can apply to join the group again.

 

Copyright ...

Please do not use comments or posts to distribute web links to PDF versions of copyright protected books, or invite people to contact you so you can distribute a copy.


 

A note to Natural Builders and Natural Living Artisans ...

The groups are for sharing and learning natural building, off-grid and natural living skills. If you want to promote your business in the groups then the best way to do that is demonstrate your experience by helping others to learn. If you are running workshops then you can promote them via the natural building workshops and sustainable living workshop pages on this website which indexes the pre-prepared monthly workshop posts in our groups.

You should not overtly promote your business by posting links to your website or Facebook page unless it contains an article or content that forms part of the answer to a group member's question. Of course everyone is encouraged to share their work to inspire and educate. If you would like to promote your business directly then you can join the Market Place which is publicised regularly on the Natural Homes Facebook pages (1.5 million+ members). All these services are FREE and maintained to help you reach a growing mainstream audience.


A note on administration of the Natural Homes Groups ...

Approving posts...

Collectively the Natural Homes groups have over 60,000 members. Membership is popular because we provide a well managed, focused, spam free discussion environment. Sadly this popularity invites increasing numbers of spammers, companies who want to promote their products and people that don't always understand the scope of the groups. For this reason all posts to the groups need approval by an administrator. We do our best to minimise any delay this might introduce. 

Why was I removed from the group...

There are two types of spammer. One that posts on the wall and one that comments on multiple existing posts. The first type is filtered out because all posts in our groups require approval by one of the administrators. The second type is not so easy to catch. Once a spammer has made the first comment we remove the user immediately to save the effort of having to remove multiple spam comments. It typically takes 20 minutes to remove the spam comments of a persistent spammer. Once the spammer, or potential spammer, has been removed we check the profile to see if there has been a misunderstanding. If there was a misunderstanding we write to explain why the person was removed from the group and allow them to rejoin. Please don't be upset you were removed from the group because your comment had the characteristics of a comment spammer. More details here.

If you have blocked any of the group administrators you will be removed from the group without notice.

On the edges of natural...

Our aim is to help people use sustainable natural materials to reduce our collective negative impact on the environment and improve health and wellbeing. For example, if you are building a home you may be required by your local authority to use CO2 polluting high embodied energy materials like cement and steel in your design. Questions about the non-natural materials in your project should not be posted in our groups. We do this for two reasons:

We strive to offer advice on the use of natural materials for all aspects of building. This helps people move away from the non-natural alternatives that are polluting our environment.

While your non-natural related building question or comment might seem logical and harmless, for the administrators it is a catalyst for other non-natural posts that will collectively take the group away from its goal and increase the administrative burden.

The administrators are people, not robots...

Abuse: Our administrators volunteer their time to maintain our groups for its members. They apply the guidelines here to maintain the focus and quality of the groups. This may require an administrator to contact you to ask you to repost or edit a post to comply with the guideline. If you don't agree with the request the administrator will refer you to these guidelines. If you continue to ignore the guidelines the administrator will suggest you leave the group. If you are abusive towards the administrator you, and the organisation or company you represent, will be banned from the group.

Feedback: From time to time we ask our members if they are happy with the way our groups are run and the services we provide. The last time we asked this was the 8th of April 2016. You can read our question to members and their comments here. From time to time we also run a questionnaire to find out what members appreciate about the group(s). The most recent of those was on the 20th of September 2015 and can be seen here

 

The groups are for people, not a version of you as an alias or companies ...

The Natural Homes Groups are for people to exchange ideas, share experience, network and learn new skills. They are not for companies to use as a platform to sell products. If you are running a company and using a Facebook profile then please get a Facebook page and come back as a person. You are welcome to join as a person, not an alias. More on this here.

NOTE: You must be YOU behind your profile. If your profile is managed by an intern, relative or employee then you may not be a member of our groups. We are real people supporting other real people building relationships and trust.

If you are keen to present your product, and it fits the Natural Homes philosophy, then please write to us to see if we can support you. We may be able to write an article for publication on our website.

 

Crowdfunding and fundraising ...

Sadly there are many people in need of help, among them others not in need but nevertheless asking for support. The level of requests for support can swamp a group so unfortunately crowdfunding and fundraising requests are not allowed in any of our groups or made on any of our Facebook pages. Of course your fundraising project is important, but please understand that there are thousands of other projects trying to get the attention of our members. Posts to crowdfunding or fundraising sites will not be approved, nor will posts that are obviously designed to draw people to a crowdfunding destination.


Reasons you might not stay long in our groups ...

Conflict with the philosophy of the group ...

The natural homes groups are a place for people to share and learn about sustainable natural living. If you disagree with aspects of sustainable living it is fine to discuss them, but it is not appropriate to mislead others suggesting unsustainable practices are justifiable because they are an integral part of your current lifestyle.

Posting the same content to multiple groups ...

One of the tactics of brand managers and unethical SEO service companies is to drive visitors to their client websites by posting links in popular web forums and social media groups. Even if the post is within the group's scope you may be removed if you have posted exactly the same content to many groups.

Invitations to your group or page ...

Having just joined one of the Natural Homes groups please don't invite members to your own group or page or fish for audience by sharing content from your page. If you want to publicise your work then write to us, we might be able to write an article about you.

Not following the group's guidelines...

If you don't follow the group's guideline one of the administrators will send you a link to the appropriate section so you understand how the groups work. Hopefully you will understand why we need to run them the way we do. Even if you pay no attention to the guideline and repost outside its scope an administrator will again send you a link to the appropriate section. If you continue to ignore the guideline you are wasting our time but worse still, taking it away from more important tasks. This means it's easier for an administrator to remove you from the group or perhaps ban you so you can't ask to join again. We try our best to avoid this but if you persist in ignoring the guidelines please expect to have your access to our services, network and audience removed.

 
   

Natural Homes is an unfunded not-for-profit organisation.

 

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