How long have you been browsing the internet? Not just today but all of the days since the internet became the ‘it’ thing?
Now, how many forums have you read since you’ve jumped into the world of homesteading?
Well, if you’ve hung around many of them very long, one of the biggest questions is, “Can I make a full-time living from my homestead? If so, how?”
So after reading this question time and time again, I’ve decided I’m going to provide an answer. I want to give you some heads up though. It isn’t going to be what you think.
But here is the answer to the age-old homesteading question:
Can I Make a Living From My Homestead?
There are many different factors that can determine if you can actually make a full-time living from your homestead. You’ll have to take each one into consideration for your particular situation as we walk through them.
1. Your Dream
The first factor is your actual dream. Your dream isn’t going to look like my dream most likely, and I’m sure my dream probably won’t look like yours.
So you have to first come to grips with what it is you hope to achieve in the long run. Some people think that they’ll work on their homestead and be on easy street, not realizing exactly how much work running a booming homestead full-time actually is.
Or you could be that person ready to sweat to the bone for your land, but you also consider working from home as part of the deal too.
Then you have some people that want to be totally off-the-grid, working to sustain themselves and themselves only, and have virtually no outside expenses.
So what do all of these different scenarios mean? It means we all desire to live a different dream. What is yours? Once you’ve got it in your head, tuck it away so you’ll know what you are aiming for.
2. Your Specialty
Next, if you are planning on working a homestead full-time (even if you live totally off of the grid) you are still going to have to have a specialty that will earn some amount of income.
Because even if you have no other outside expenses, you can’t avoid taxes. So you’ll still have to make so much money a year just to keep your property.
But if you are someone that still desires to have a modern lifestyle while raising all of your own food, then you’ll definitely need a specialty or a skill that you can sell for a premium price.
Actually, you may need more than one set of skills or specialties. The reason is so you always have multiple streams of revenue.
So in the event that one stream gives out, you have other sources of income to fall back on.
Either way, you’ll have to figure out what your specialty is. Are you a great baker? Do you make jewelry? Are you a hairstylist who could work out of his or her home? Do you have a green thumb where you could sell flowers at the local markets?
Or are you a beekeeper who could sell both bees and honey? Maybe you could teach a survivalist class, a canning class, a quilting class, or a hunter safety class?
Maybe you could make your full-time income from raising meat or taxidermy?
As you can see, there are a bunch of different avenues you can take to make money on your homestead. We’ve even done a whole post on ways to make money from your homestead, and we’ve given you tips on how to monetize a homestead too.
So there are lots of options, but you have to figure out which options are going to be your cup of tea or your actual meal ticket.
3. How Much Is a Full-Time Income?
Once you’ve figured out your dream and your homestead meal ticket, you need to figure out what a full-time income actually means to you.
So you have to realize that some people make 6 figures which equate to thousands of dollars a month in income. If you are accustomed to living on this and your bills require you to, then that is what your full-time income goal has to be.
Then you have other people who have figured out how to live comfortably on minimum wage. This would be a full-time income goal for them.
So my advice when considering this factor is to look at your bills. Cut the bills that are not absolute necessities and if you have debt, then you need to develop a debt repayment plan so you can work on getting out of debt as quickly as possible.
Then you should add up only what your necessary bills are and that would be your goal for a full-time income.
But you have to figure out how to live on that amount and be okay with it. If you don’t feel like you can live a quality life on that little amount of money, then you may need to add some extra spending cushion in there and figure out how you will make up the difference with your specialty or consider adding another income stream to your plan.
4. Is Working at Home Part of the Dream?
Some people take up homesteading and want to completely forget the outside world. They want to get land as far away from civilization as possible, live off-grid, and work for no one ever again. There is nothing wrong with that if that is your dream.
But there are other people who live in an agricultural zoning area but are still close to a town. They are okay with going into town and working a part-time job while relying mainly on their homestead. Other people are okay with working from home for someone else over the internet, working their land, and never having to leave their land unless they so choose.
So which category do you fall into?
Obviously, if you fall into the last two, the idea of living basically full-time off of your homestead is easier to achieve.
But if you really only want to make money off of your homestead to meet every need you may have from property taxes each year to an unexpected doctor bill, then you’ll have to work really hard to market the products that you have to ensure that you can actually survive off of your land alone.
5. How Much Hustle Do You Have?
I’m going to be painfully honest, one thing I’ve learned over the past couple of years is that you can make it by doing pretty much anything you set your mind to. The question isn’t: can you? The question is: will you?
What I mean is, if you want to work from home on your homestead through the internet or strictly from the land, you are going to have to hustle. What I mean by that is that you have to work really hard. Sometimes that means you have to work really long hours.
Sometimes that means you are up before the chickens trying to get it all done.
So ask yourself, how much hustle do I really have? You might surprise yourself.
For me, my dream is to sustain my family from our homestead and be able to contribute financially to our family, so I work from home. When I began writing it was something I thought I’d simply try out to see if I could actually do it or not.
Then I got published for the first time. Then I got published and paid for the first time. Then it happened again. Then I was given a steady writing job. Then I was given another.
Now, realize, writing ebbs and flows. So you may have 5 clients (or more) one year and then have 1 client the next.
But during the busy seasons, I realize I can hustle. I’ll be honest though, I know how much income my family needs, and I try to stick with 1 main client and pick up a few side gigs here and there if we really need the money because when you raise a family, stretch a dollar, homestead, and work from home your days fill up quickly.
So you have to be prepared to not get so caught up in the hustle to where you have too many irons in the fire and fall short on the delivery. This means, if you are someone whose dream is to make money strictly from your land, that you if you take on too many grow projects in one year that you could lose out if you can’t provide the care that everything needs.
But you could push yourself really hard and come out on top too.
Just be aware, that when it comes down to your survival, you may be surprised just how hard you can and will work to take care of your family and yourself.
6. How Much Land Do You Have?
The final factor that can determine if you can actually make a full-time income from your homestead is how much land you have.
Now, there are some people who grow mushrooms and microgreens and make a pretty good living from a small chunk of land.
However, the more land you have the easier it is to have multiple income streams.
For instance, if you have a sizable amount of land, you could raise cattle as one source of income. Even if you take them to auction, you can make a decent amount of money from selling cattle (according to the friends I have that do this as a main source of income.)
Then you could lease part of the land you aren’t using for a fee each year which is another source of income.
Plus, you could have room to plant a sizable orchard and gardens, so you could sell the produce at your local Farmer’s Markets. You could do so much more too!
Obviously, the more land you have to work and the more room means the more possibilities.
The Answer to ‘Can I Make a Living From my Homestead?’
I’m going to say, “Yes! You can make a full-time living from your homestead.”
But there isn’t a magic formula to get you there. Some people dream of never leaving their homestead for a typical day job again, so they grow food to sell, raise animals to sell, start a blog on their homestead, and work via the internet so they can enjoy their homestead all of the time. I probably fit into this category.
Other people, turn their actual homestead into a business by producing quality products and rely on those items alone. They don’t ever want to report to a computer or desk again, even if the desk is their kitchen table.
So you have to figure out which category you fit into. Then you can make your plan to slowly work your way there.
Honestly, homesteading takes a ton of work (as most of us know.) But making the homestead pay your way is something that doesn’t happen overnight either. It takes work to get your expenses as low as possible and work to get the homestead to produce what you need in order to live and survive financially.
So I encourage you to be patient and develop a thorough plan, so you can begin working your way towards your dream as soon as possible.
Now that you have the answer to probably the most asked homesteading question on the internet, I’d like to hear your thoughts.
Does your homestead support your family 100%? If so, what does that look like (do you work from home or live strictly from your land?) How did you get there?
If not, what is your financial dream as a homesteader?
We love hearing from you, so please leave us your thoughts in the space provided below.