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Homesteading and Livestock

Self-reliance and sustainability in the 21st century.

Homestead Expense List

New Window ViewMany people have contacted us the past few years asking about how to get started planning their own new homesteads. I have written numerous articles about how we went about building ours. They include articles like  Homestead - Where To Start? What Have We Gotten Ourselves Into?, Lessons Learned Parts 1 and 2, and many others found here at Mother Earth News.

For this article I have created a checklist of potential expenses to consider when planning your own homestead. It is by no means comprehensive and most of the items you are already aware of as typical living expenses. The list is based on the probability that you will be living in a rural area although homesteading in the city is certainly possible.

As you may know, homesteads can vary hugely in cost depending on the level of comfort and convenience you choose. Some people may choose to live in a tepee and others like us will choose a more traditional structure. You may choose to have satellite services or not.

The list below is intended to get you thinking about your own expenses you may choose to afford and others you may not have considered. An “oops” moment later on can be expensive. Your own similar list can help you make choices on when to start your homestead, how much money you may choose to borrow, or what you are willing to live without to get started.

The List:

• Land
• Realtor Fees
• Clearing
• Road Building
• House Construction
• Barn or Out Buildings
• Fencing
• Septic System or Other
• Well or Water Source
• Permits
• Moving Costs

Homestead Angora Goats
• Animals
• Feed
• Pens and Fencing
• Vet Care
• Garden Supplies and Fencing
• Tools
• Generator(s)
• Farm Equipment
• Craft Supplies
• Food Prep Supplies

Monthly Bills
• Food
• Homeowners Insurance
• Medical Insurance
• Fuel for vehicles, generators, farm vehicles, and equipment
• Property Taxes
• Other taxes (income tax, sales tax, etc)
• Vehicle Licensing
• Other licensing (hunting and fishing)
• Clothing, etc.
• Satellite for TV
• Satellite for computer
• Phone service
• Propane or other heat and cool fuel expense

• Repairs and Maintenance

Ed and Laurie Essex live off grid in the Okanogan Highlands of Washington State where they operate their websites  and

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