If youâre ready to trade in the fast paced life that youâre living for one that is quieter or self-sufficient, listen up. No matter how savvy you are, youâre going to need to generate some income in one way or another. In fact, even the most die-hard survivalists know that itâs near impossible to live without cash.
Youâre going to need supplies and the only real way to acquire necessities is by bartering for them or buying them. It is neither cheap nor is it free to move off grid. According to The Everything Guide to Living Off the Grid: A Back-To-Basics Manual For Independent Living by Terri Reid, âThe reality is, even if you are totally self-sufficient, there is no escaping expenses like property taxes.â With that said, letâs examine some of the authorâs suggestions for generating income off the grid.
Depending on your needs, the type of property you choose to live in, and the nature of side projects you decide to take on, living off-grid can be very expensive. There will equipment to buy and livestock to acquire. You may want to install solar panels to replace traditional electricity sources or purchase rain barrels to collect water. These expenses add up. Without a steady stream of income coming in, it may be impossible to make your dreams of self-sufficiency come true.
Reid suggests first speaking to your current employer to see if you can telecommute. If your boss isnât keen on you working from home, youâll want to do a self-assessment and consider the different skills you possess that others will find marketable. Do you know how to design websites? Create custom newsletters? Write product reviews? If you do, youâll find a treasure trove of opportunities through Craigslist.
If you possess carpentry, painting, remodeling or plumbing skills, chances are youâll get a lot of referrals through family members and friends. Advertise through your local newspaper or create your own free WordPress blog and Twitter accounts. Both are free and allow you to customize messages. They serve as virtually free advertising.
Here are a few other ideas for you to consider whenever youâre planning to move off-grid. Reid lists the following as legitimate ways to acquire what you and your family needs:
- Bartering and Dealing â’ Why pay cash for something you can acquire by trading goods or services? âThe key to successful bartering is to be sure that you offer equal value for whatever you are bartering for,â says Reid.
- Farmersâ Markets â’ If you have excess produce and herbs from your garden or farm, this is the perfect place to get rid of it and make a profit. Making sure that your bounty is fresh, clean, and visually appealing will help you sell it.
- Craft Sales â’ High-quality artisanal work is in demand. Whether itâs beautiful quilts that you create or mixed media art pieces, one thing is certain. There is a market for these items. Itâs up to you to find it.
- Online Stores like Etsy.com â’ Having your own website is the norm these days. Make sure that yours is professional and easy-to-navigate. If itâs cluttered or unattractive, people will be hesitant to buy from you.
Learn more about living off the grid by picking upÂ Reidâs book. In it, she addresses the different types of shelters you can live in, the buzz about beekeeping, the importance of herbs, and dealing with rodents, critters, and pests of all kinds.
Charissa is into frugal living and saving money.