There was a day when homesteading basically just meant living. However, in this modern day, where things are readily available and at your fingertips, homesteading has become a lost art. There are still some of us out there, and if you have a homesteading dream, we are going to give you a few tips!
What is Modern-Day Homesteading?
Modern-day homesteading most commonly means a person or family that lives in a more self-sustainable way. For some, this self-reliance is freedom, and for others, this way of living is the only thing that makes sense. Modern homesteaders typically live on a plot of land that is big enough for a home as well as some outhouses. These homesteads may or may not have livestock and crops, but typically they do.
You will also commonly see homesteaders with a garden of some sort, and most homesteads have chicken for eggs. Homesteading will have you taking fewer and fewer trips to the store, depending on how you set it up. Many modern homesteading families may also set up a water well and solar power system so that they are not paying utilities and truly living off of the land.
In the end, homesteading can be what you make it. If you live in a trailer on a small plot of land or have 100 acres to tend to, you can make your homestead dream work for you!
How do You Start a Homestead?
When starting your homesteading journey, the first thing you should look into is where you’re going to live. If you are buying a home already built on the property or if you plan to build a home on a raw piece of land as we did. We have also heard of people who were only able to start off with a motorhome on empty land, and slowly built a house there as well.
Once you know where you will live, you may want to think about your homesteading goals. What do you plan to do as a source of income? How can you set up your homestead to be as efficient as possible? If you want to breed animals to sell or eat, you would want to make sure that you have a barn or stables to house these animals and a fenced pasture for them to graze. If you do plan to have a lot of animals, this should be taken into account when looking at the property where you will be homesteading.
Another great way to start homesteading would be to start a vegetable and herb garden. Growing your own fresh food really goes a long way toward your monthly grocery budget! The other benefits of growing your own food include the ability to make fresh, healthy meals as well as providing fun family gardening activities. If you take the time to grow herbs as well, you can use them to make your own sauces and seasonings! Nothing beats the feeling of preparing a healthy meal for your family using ingredients that you grew yourselves, and homesteading makes it a regular part of your life.
What Should I Know before Homesteading?
Homesteading is not for people who just want to live like they are camping, this is hard work. Especially if you have any livestock, there are typically tasks that require your attention starting at the break of dawn. These tasks do not take weekends, vacations, or sick days, and this position will only provide a retirement plan if you put in the work.
Homesteading can include raising animals for meat, and this is not for the faint-hearted. These will be animals that you take care of day in and day out with the knowledge that they will eventually be utilized for feeding your family. While this is to be expected as most households are meat-eating, there is a special strength needed to provide this privilege.
In addition to this, the animals will require daily feeding, and regular care such as medicine, hoof care, grooming, and vet visits. You may also find yourself having to herd a bunch of goats back into their pasture, and you will want to make sure that you are knowledgeable about any care your animals need.
The most important thing that homesteading requires is basic knowledge of how to build, grow, and raise things. If these are things you already know, great! If they are not, do not worry. There is plenty of information out there to learn about whatever you want on your homestead! It would be wise to research all of the homesteading tips you can find before starting your own adventure!
You do truly reap what you sow with homesteading, though. Putting in the hard work is worth it at the end of the day when you take a look around! Thank you for following along with us on our homesteading dream, friends!
Christina & Trevor
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