Answers to your questions about gardening, energy, homesteading and other sustainable living topics.
I want to buy some land, preferably more than 40 acres, and build my house on it and begin organic farming. Are there any federal grants to help you buy land specifically for agricultural use? Is there cheap land anywhere? What are the best websites to find cheap land? Thank you and keep up the great work!
Asheboro, North Carolina
Finding the perfect land (and the funding for it) is not an easy undertaking, but thankfully there are many helpful resources to assist you. For those wishing to delve into the wonderful world of organic farming, the Center for Rural Affairs (CFRA) is an excellent place to start. Their Beginning Farmer and Rancher Opportunitiespage has just what you’re looking for, including advice on how to locate land that suits your purpose, how to obtain financing, and how to specialize your endeavor for today’s market trends. As far as grants for 2008 are concerned, it’s too late to apply for some, but because you’re still looking for land, I assume 2009 is the timeframe you had in mind. The type and availability of grants will vary depending on the outcome of the farm bill, but the current bill is likely to be extended for another year. Watch the regularly updated funding opportunities listed on ATTRA’s (National Sustainable Agriculture Network) website, and contact your local USDA Rural Development office (here’s the contact info for North Carolina) for other options regarding grants. You can read more about finding land in How to Find Your Dream Homestead. Best of luck!
— Alison Rogers, assistant editor
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