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Do you want financial freedom? Are you tired of being told what you can and can not do on your own property?
Then you are probably one of the thousands that are looking into Off Grid Living.
Before you give your two weeks notice and put your house on the market, there are 12 Things You Must Do Before Moving Off The Grid.
#1 Make Sure Everyone Is On Board
Are you planning on moving off the grid with other family members?
Making an enormous life-changing decision such as this isn’t something to do lightly.
The scariest part of making a monumental life change is that the decision ultimately falls on you.
Before discussing the situation with loved ones, you need to think it through on your own.
Take every family members feelings into consideration, listen to them and address their concerns.
See if compromises can be made before the move to Off Grid Living and weigh out all the pros and cons.
If your teen is worried about not having internet, check to see if the off-grid location has signal and buy a solar charger.
It will take 100% dedication of every family member involved so it’s important to have their full support.
#2 Go Camping
A true test to see if off Grid Living is for you (and your family), is to give it a trial run or two.
If you don’t have access to primitive camping areas, many state parks offer primitive sites.
Pack the family up with none of the comforts of home and test the waters.
Plan your camping experiment for at least one week.
A weekend will just seem like fun, a week should give you a good feel of the real experience.
#3 Evaluate Your Energy Usage & Reduce Your Electricity Dependence
Many urbanites have dreams of living off the grid and expect the same conveniences they have in the city of unlimited power.
Before you decide to move off the grid, you will need to determine your electrical needs.
Once you determine your households electricity usage, you can purchase the proper equipment to provide for those needs.
If you realize you consume more energy then you will be able to produce off-grid, you can perform your own energy audit and make adjustments where needed.
How to Perform an Energy Audit
Buy a Kilowatt Meter, follow the instructions on the package.
Determine how much energy each electronic item in your house uses.
Eliminate unnecessary items one at a time until you have reached an ideal energy consumption number.
If you are wanting to provide the same amount of power living off grid as you have in the city, it is going to cost a lot of money, but it is possible.
#4 Learn Carpentry and Mechanic Skills
Living off grid often means living in remote areas.
That means no handyman on call 24/7.
Acquiring the basic carpentry and mechanic skills can mean all the difference in the world when living off the grid.
From building a frame to mount the solar panels to fixing a chainsaw, basic skills can help save you time and money.
Check local colleges or extended learning facilities for programs to teach you.
Youtube offers many instructional videos to help you learn, but nothing beats hands-on experience.
#5 Fire Building
Fire-building may sound easy but it’s harder than most people think.
Having a fire source is essential when living off-grid, from sterilization to keeping warm.
Fires are second to water in the must-have skill in homesteading and off-grid living.
So many things can prevent a successful fire: humidity, moisture in the wood, rain, wind, tinder, damper closed (if starting inside), poor placement or kindling, wrong kindling, wrong type of wood, and flow of oxygen.
- Practice starting fires (without the use of store-bought fire starters).
- Make your own fire starters.
- Start fires in various weather conditions using wood that is indigenous to your area.
Learn to Make The Perfect Backpacking Campfire by Wild Backpacker
How to Build A Fire: Indoors and Out by Lifehacker
Troubleshooting Fires by FIREase
5 Frugal Ways to Make DIY Fire-Starters by Preparedness Mama
#6 Preserve Food
If you are planning to live off the grid, there may be times when you can not generate enough power to run a refrigerator or freezer.
Or during the garden harvest, you will often have more food than your family can consume.
If you are a prepper and the grid goes down or some other disaster, food availability will be scarce.
For these reasons and many others, it is important to know how to preserve food.
Food Storage Preservation Methods by Preparedness Mama
Meat Curing Methods by Morton Salt
How to Can by Simply Canning
How to Smoke Cure Meat and Fish by Outdoor Life
#7 Collect and Purify Water
We can live for three weeks without food, but only three days without water.
Water is essential for all life to survive.
Water collection and purification are must-have skills when surviving off the grid.
You and members of your family can practice different water collection methods and purification.
How to Find The Best Place To Drill Your Own Well by Off The Grid News
How to Find Water In The Wild by The Art Of Manliness
25 Methods to Purify Water by Environmental Alternatives
#8 Cook from Scratch and Without Electricity
In a day and age where most meals come from a drive-through or out of a microwave, one can almost say cooking from scratch is a lost art.
Unless you are planning to eat out for most meals or really love PB&J, now is the time to break out some of your grandma’s cookbooks and get to cooking.
Most off-grid locations are remote and away from grocery stores.
Not having an ingredient or a box of your favorite stuffing is a big deal when you have to drive 1 hr round trip to get it.
Cooking from scratch and without electricity allows you freedom and independence.
I will never forget when our city lost power for a week because of a hurricane, people in town didn’t even know how to make a cup of coffee; they were panicked to find a restaurant with power.
Some of my most memorable meals came from a campfire and cooking outside.
The Lost Art Of Cooking From Scratch by The Organic Prepper
Baby Steps To Cooking From Scratch by The Art of Simple
Never Buy Bread Again by Common Sense Homesteading
11 Ways to Cook-Off Grid by Melissa Norris
#9 First Aid and Herbal Medicine
Just like a mechanic, doctors will be a far cry away when living off the grid.
While natural medicine is not meant to replace treatment and advice from a doctor, it can save your life when one is unavailable.
From treating a bee sting to finding relief for an earache, home remedies and first aid are something every homesteader and off-grid’er should know.
Herbal Remedies by My Homestead Life
Home Remedies That Work- Use Natural Cures To Promote Wellness by Common Sense
Learn First Aid by HealthFinder.gov
#10 Hunt, Track, Trap, Fish & Grow Your Own Food
Growing your own food can be the biggest act of rebellion you can do.
When I first started Homesteading, I had these grand ideas I was going to be able to grow all of the food my family would need- organically.
I don’t think I harvested enough to make a big salad that year.
I also remember many fishing and hunting days where the only thing I caught was a good nap.
Not only will hunting, tracking and trapping help provide food for the family, but you can also use these skills to protect your land and livestock.
How to Track Animals In The Wilderness by Mother Earth News
How to Build A Trap: 15 Best Survival Traps by Outdoor Life
Gardening by My Homestead Life
#11 Forage and Plant ID
Did you know nature offers free food right out your front door?
Many wild, foraged foods have more nutrients than anything you can buy in your local grocery store.
Before you eat anything in the wild, make sure you can identify the plant or mushroom 200%!
Contact your local extension agency to see if they have a wild edibles class.
Tradd Cotter, with Mushroom Mountain, offers the best mushroom classes and workshops around.
Foraging and Feasting by Botanical Arts Press
Foraging for Food In The Wild by Edible Wild Food
Mushroom ID, Foraging and Hunting by Mushroom Mountain
#12 Get In Shape
Many people want to live off the land but don’t have the physical ability to do so.
When you are out of shape, chopping wood and scouting the land for predators becomes more difficult.
Living Off The Grid is hard work. It is rewarding work- but hard.
Every simple task we take for granted living on the grid now becomes an hour-long chore.
Running out of breath and energy before the task is complete will set you up for failure before you begin.
If you live on flat land and are moving to the mountains, it will be harder to breathe because the air will be thinner at higher altitude.
- If it’s been a long time since you’ve had a physical, schedule a visit with your doctor.
- Have your teeth cleaned and checked for cavities.
- Increase your stamina by walking, jogging or running.
- Start lifting weights and build endurance.
- Volunteer on a farm.
- Get comfortable with nature and dealing with severe situations.
#13 Bonus Tip- Get Out Of Debt
It’s a great idea if you are wanting to live off the grid so you can get out of debt and save money.-IF you are keeping your job.
But if you plan on quitting your job, move off the grid and still be in debt- don’t do it.
Start saving money by getting rid of all your unnecessary bills.
Unnecessary bills are anything other than house payment/rent, insurance, child support, food (cook from scratch), and water.
If you have a car payment, sell your vehicle and pay cash for a used model.
Cut out the bills you don’t need. Cable TV is one. Unless you use cable TV for business, there’s really no reason other than temporary entertainment. You can watch TV again once you go off the grid. Wouldn’t you rather put that $50-$120 or more per month toward your off-grid fund?
Moving off-grid is usually a slow and deliberate transition which happens over a period of years. A transition from modern city and suburban lifestyle to a lifestyle in the country. Let’s face it, simple country living is the main thing I think most appeals to folks who want to live off the grid.
How to Move Off The Grid for 10k by Off Grid World