Last Updated on October 22, 2020 by Milo Martinovich
So, you are interested in starting a homestead but don’t know how to get started. This guide will help you devise a plan to start homesteading for beginners. It doesn’t have to be an all or nothing venture and it doesn’t require unlimited land. It requires a mindset!
How to become a homesteader
Becoming a homesteader makes you commit to becoming more self-sufficient. It doesn’t mean you need a large farm. It means you are to focus on providing your household with products from your land as much as possible. This usually involves food production and preservation.
It can also include things like making your clothes, natural herbal medicines, and creating sustainable energy to take your homestead off-grid. If you want to start being more self-sufficient in any way in your home life, you are essentially becoming a homesteader!
How to start homesteading for beginners
It starts with a plan. You need to know what you can produce yourself with the land you are on. Most people start with gardens. Protein needs to be addressed for every homesteader, and animals can be raised on any amount of land for meat.
A small backyard can support chickens for meat and/or eggs and small livestock like rabbits. Larger homesteads can raise pigs, sheep, and cattle for food.
You can also implement a self-sufficient energy grid with solar and wind, depending on where you live.
Making tinctures from herbs and other plants that you grow on your homestead is easier than it sounds as well.
Making your clothes is a step further into the self-sufficient homestead, but isn’t where most people start.
The important idea regarding homesteading for beginners is learning what you can do for yourself with the land you have. Decide on what you can start right now and build more over time.
Starting a homestead with nothing
If you have land, even if it’s a city plot backyard, you can start homesteading. You can start with a small garden to supply fresh foods and preserve what you can’t eat right away by canning, freezing, or fermenting.
In that same garden, you can grow herbal remedies to store and use instead of store-bought medicines that do little for your health anyway.
Once that is established, one of the best ways to expand homesteading for beginners is to add in chickens. They don’t require much space and are a great source of eggs and meat. They are easy to raise and will also provide another source of compost with their manure, making your gardens more productive.
If you have no room outside, you can raise meat rabbits inside if you give them enough space. Many people don’t like the idea of eating rabbits but don’t knock it until you try it.
Building things you need yourself and DIYing your homestead will save a ton of money. Depending on where you live, you might even be able to DIY self-sufficient energy systems, like solar and wind.
The point of homesteading for beginners who are starting with nothing is to start small, save money, and invest as you go and grow.
Homesteading ideas & ways to homestead
Gardening for food
Preserving excess food with freezing, canning, and fermenting
Feeding excess garden food to livestock
Gardening for herbal remedies
Planting fruit and nut trees for long term food security
Raising chickens for meat
Raising chickens for eggs
Try out rabbits for meat
Raising pigs, sheep, cattle, and other large livestock for meat.
Raise an animal for dairy
Invest in solar to go off-grid
Invest in wind power to go off-grid
Build things yourself and DIY projects as much as possible
Start composting to boost soil quality
Capture rain and use greywater go reduce the need for city/well water
Make your soaps
Grow sustainable trees for firewood
Plant trees around your house to increase shade and reduce air conditioner needs
Take a minimalist approach to your lifestyle and get rid of things that aren’t necessary, reducing your need for shopping overall
Make your clothes
The possibilities are endless and there are no right or wrong ways to start homesteading for beginners!
Steps to homesteading
1-Make a plan that fits your family needs and land availability.
2-Start slow and build over time.
3-Expand when you can and experiment with new things.
4-Refine chores and duties on the homestead to increase efficiency, productive, and free time to expand more!
How to start homesteading today
Do something right now to start your homesteading process. Homesteading for beginners sounds difficult, but it is one step at a time. Most people don’t go from a city home with a small backyard to a 50 acre fully functioning farm overnight.
Start gardening, plant some trees, buy some chickens, etc. You’ll find what you like and can flourish by doing more and more as you move forward.
How to prepare for homesteading
There isn’t much to do except to jump in. Don’t start a bunch of new things at once. A good rule of thumb that I have used when starting a homestead is to try something new every season.
Garden this season and buy chickens the next season. After that, maybe it’s time to try rabbits, or bigger livestock like pigs if you have space. Building on everything with one new project on the homestead per season is a great way to start homesteading for beginners.
How do you become a homesteader?
Set your mind with the goal and start the process. You don’t have to be a big-time farmer to be a homesteader. Just producing more of what you need at home instead of buying it makes you more of a self-sufficient homesteader.
How do you prepare for a homestead?
Start small and build over time. Never get overwhelmed and back off when you need to. There is no law out there that says homesteading has to be all or nothing.
What is needed for a homestead?
Producing what you consume and use on your land is what a homestead can provide. Some people only produce food. Others make natural medicines and even beer and wine. Some only build self-sufficient energy grids.
Maybe you want to do it all and more by becoming 100% self-sufficient. The point is that there isn’t a setlist of rules for homesteading for beginners.
Where is the best place to start a homestead?
The best place to start is where you live now. Seriously, you can do it anywhere that you have access to a little bit of land, like a yard. If you want to invest in farmland later down the road, you can choose where it will be located at that time. A homestead in the suburbs that starts now is better than the idea of a homestead in the country in the future!
Can you still homestead in the US?
Yes. Some states may have regulations on homesteading activities, but you can do some sort of homesteading everywhere!
How do I become a successful homesteader?
Like I’ve said multiple times, start small and build over time. Be more self-sufficient every season and you can call yourself a successful homesteader.
What is a modern homesteader?
A modern homesteader is someone who homesteads by choice instead of by necessity. We could all rely on the big box stores to live our lives and ignore any desire to be self-sufficient. But, homesteading can be rewarding, healthier than traditional modern life, and contribute to a better world through less pollution and waste.
What states still have homesteading?
There are homesteaders in every state, no matter how small their homesteads may be. Remember, homesteading isn’t just for those who have 25+ acres. You can do a lot even when living in the city!
Homesteading for beginners
Now you know how to get started and have ideas of how to grow. Anyone can be a homesteader in some way. Grow food, create sustainable energy, make clothes, and do everything you can to be less sufficient in the modern world!