I have Dish and have distant locals. We have a 211k receiver set up as a DVR. Since we fulltime, if we were to change to the local channels every time we moved, the timers to record shows would be all screwed up.
We have the roof antenna connected to the back of the receiver and scan for local channels when we get to a new location. Sometimes we get a lot of channels, sometimes as few, sometimes none at all. Here's the thing, though. If Dish doesn't have you set to receive the local channels from them, the program guide doesn't provide any data. It only says 'digital service' for all day. If you want to record anything, you need to set up manual timers.
If the guide is not important to you, this might work. Remember that you will be dependent on your ability to receive over the air broadcasts. With digital, when you get a strong enough signal, the picture quality will be the same as a Dish channel, at the least. Many times, it's a better picture. That's IF you get the signal.