Many people have a romantic notion of starting a homestead. It certainly can be a good life, allowing you to work towards self-sufficiency, but it is also very hard work and not everyone is up to the task. Here are some things to consider before you start a homestead.
The Cost of Land in Your Area
Homesteads can be started with as little as three acres of land, but the amount of land you need will depend on many factors, such as what level of self-sufficiency you wish to attain.
It’s worth using First Star Realty to find land for sale in your area to give you an idea of the prices. You’ll need to check whether the land will be suitable for the sort of homestead you want to start, whether it’s for growing or raising animals.
What Skills You Have
Simply being able to garden isn’t a guarantee that you can establish a homestead. There are many skills you may need, including:
- Growing produce
- Building and repairs
- Taking care of animals
- Preserving food
You don’t need all the above skills when you start, but you should try and learn the basics. The more you learn, the less you’ll spend on professional help, so you can get through those first tough few years. If you have a partner, make sure they pick up some skills too
What Animals You’ll Raise When You Start a Homestead
Homesteaders will often have livestock on their land, so you may want to consider what animals you want to raise and how they can help your homesteading effort. Even with a small amount of space, you can raise chickens to get eggs, and they’re fairly low-maintenance animals.
Beekeeping is also a popular activity for homesteaders, and it provides you with a source of honey that you can use or sell.
The point of a homestead is that you can work towards self-sufficiency and save money. However, most homesteaders will need tools that can make their life easier and they may also want to make improvements to buildings to make the place more efficient.
How Self-Sufficient You Want to Be When You Start a Homestead
Starting a homestead doesn’t mean you have to be 100% self-sufficient, especially because that’s difficult to achieve all at once. Some people who homestead still have jobs and do it on the side, so you should consider your cash flow in the early days and make a plan that suits what you want to achieve.
Homesteading isn’t an easy lifestyle; it can be very hard work, but also extremely satisfying and enjoyable if you love working the land. Before you jump into it, make sure you’ve done your research and crunched the numbers so that you are financially secure and prepared for the early days.