Ideas to start a homestead (for cheap or free)
We have been living at our current homestead for almost 3 years now and in that time we have built/acquired a fenced garden, a chicken coop with chickens, a duck house and enclosure and two sheds. And here’s the kicker, we are on a very tight budget. Why is the budget so tight? Well, it’s a combination of price of property in our area (property values are extremely high) and a couple of not so smart financial decisions. We are (like a lot of people) working hard to put a lot of money into paying off our debt, so that doesn’t leave much in the bank for homestead and house projects.
Just to recap, our little homestead is just under 1 acre and when we moved here 3 years ago the only structure on the property was the house. So, here are a few ways we have built up our little homestead and you can too:
- Scour sites buy and sell sites like Craigslist, Freecycle, local Facebook buy and sell sites, Pennywise ads, and talk to your neighbors and friends for things like free coops (that maybe need a bit of work like ours did)building materials, deals on fence posts, and tools like fence post hole diggers.
- Ask for things like gift certificates to garden centers and building centers for birthdays and Christmas.
- Reuse materials from demolition projects. We used a bunch of 2 x 6 x 10 boards from when we tore down the deck from our old house to build our raised garden beds.
- Buying materials in small bunches when the budget allows instead of all at once and putting it on a credit card.
- Start your garden from seeds. Starting from seed is way more economical than buying plant starts.
- Talking to family, friends, neighbors etc. if they have animals they want to part with. We got our sweet ducks from my husbands mom as she had too many.
- Have patience! This is sometimes the hardest part for me. I want to see a fully formed little farm, now! But taking things slowly is the best thing we can do right now, both for our budget and for our busy family.
Do you have any suggestions for building a homestead on a budget? If so, please share with us in the comments!