There are so many factors about living off the grid that are appealing to many people.
In fact, each year more people chose to be self sufficient and try living off the grid. By 2035, Accenture forecasts that 12% USA and 11% in Europe will live off the grid.
There are so many reasons that people decide to try their hand at living off the grid.
Here are the 4 top reasons:
There are tremendous cost savings to never getting a water, electric, or gas bill again. However this needs to be off-set by the cost of setting up your own energy needs with solar panels, generator, water storage tank, drilling a well. Who wants to be reliant on any company that can raise prices at a moments notice forcing you to pay huge fees.
There are some, who just do not trust the government to look us and protect us- whether that threat is bio-terrorism, poisoning the water systems or major food source of a major city, not being able to prevent a major gas leak, or the release of a life threatening virus.
Part of the reason in living off the grid involves controlling your own life, buying your own land (current listings) that you control without too many rules and regulations, setting up your own energy and water needs, your own food sources, building a bunker (just in case), not paying for unnecessary services you that you never use, gaining more privacy and getting away from major metropolis and crowds where “things” are more likely to happen.
Many people choose a living off the grid lifestyle to help reduce their impact on the environment and help reduce their carbon footprint. They enjoy getting back to nature and look for ways to avoid being so wasteful with our resources. Off grid living will certainly highlight this. Once you are aware that you have to make one tank of water last a whole week for all your families showers, washing up, drinking needs and watering the vegetables, you will be acutely aware of how much you wasted before.
It is the dream isn’t it- to live off the land, eat organic, rise when the sun gets up and go to sleep when the sun sets. The aim is to reduce your living expenses, reduce your dependance on modern conveniences that you don’t really need, reduce your energy consumption, reduce “extras” like that double cappuccino, the 4 cars in the garage, the $900 shoe habit, the 6 surfboards, the cable TV, and so it goes on….
If you are living off the grid, let us know your main reason
To be honest, many things about this lifestyle appeal to many people.
Maybe it has appealed to you but you got scared about all the “unknowns” or all the “what-ifs”
Certainly a healthy dose of reality is needed…
There ARE some skills you will need to develop and a lot of planning
But that is part of what makes it fun.
Be prepared to go through some ups and downs but 3 years down the line you will be amazed at how far you’ve come and what you have accomplished.
Lets face it, it’s a big jump from having all your services on hand to suddenly having to source everything yourself. Especially if you have a family! There is a lot to get to grips with, to practice, to prepare and to learn. It is best to make a gradual transition. Accept that there will be unexpected surprises along the way.
Rather than going cold turkey, why not rent an off grid cabin for a week and try one week away. You will learn a lot in this short time.
Then try a month away living in a off grid cabin and you will learn more and work out of it is something you wish to pursue.
Then try a 3 month stint living off the grid. By now you probably will have a good idea of the skills you have and the skill you know you need.
Its time to start looking to buy some land off your own and start to build your skill set. Think about your housing needs, water and food needs. Will you build your dream home? Will you live in your van or RV? Will you create a tiny home? Will you build a bunker?
You could develop some off grid power sources and life style whilst you are still at home. And start growing vegetables. And see if you can manage for 6 months first before moving to a rural landscape and selling your home full of modern conveniences.
This is a common mistake among non-gardeners. You don’t know what you don’t know. Many no -gardeners think that all soil is created equal. Buy a soil test kit before you buy land if you know you will be relying on your own food sources.
Talk to some locals and see what they grow (if anything) in the area. Also if you have never gardened, try that for a year or two first. See if you can grow tomatoes, carrots, potatoes and some greens.
There is a lot of work to do all the time just to survive and it never stops. Once you have built your shelter, there is continual hauling, chopping, gathering, hunting, feeding animals and feeding your family.
It is constant physical work which is very rewarding for sure- as long as you are reasonable fit and strong and prepared that you won’t be lying in a hammock reading a good book all day. If you are allergic to hard work, this might not be the lifestyle for you. On the other hand, you will be fitter and stronger than you might have been in a long time- no need for ongoing gym membership. You will no doubt be lean, strong and have a gorgeous year round tan 🙂
If you hunt and eat meat, do you know how to butcher animals, catch fish(which species are toxic?), cook safely, prepare and store food for long periods? What about raising chickens? Protecting them and yourselves) from predators. Ensure you have some gun skills and knife skills. Attend some butchering courses, knife skill classes and homesteading courses. What hydroponics? Composting? Canning?
This is one of the most neglected questions when deciding to live off the grid. Are you mentally prepared for the social isolation? For missing Netflix? For the desperate cold of winter or the unrelenting heat of the summer. What about floods? What about droughts? What about a locust plague? Really take the time to think through these issues and think about the worst case scenarios – as well as the romantic vision of Little House on the Prairie
Know where your rural doctor is and how to get hold of them. How far away is the nearest hospital? Can you get there if there was a blizzard? Or a flood? Do you know your basic first aid? Advanced first aid? Can you splint a fracture? Safely extract a bullet from a gun shot wound? Apply basic antiseptic? What about food poisoning? What about an epileptic fit? Heart attack? Snake bite? You must be able to deal with all of these without a second thought- if you chose to live remotely.
Living off the grid is blissful existence for so many people. The return to a much simpler life(although it does have its own challenges), living in harmony with nature and reducing costs and impact of the environment.
For a lot of people though, it does not have to be “all or nothing”. Many people choose to have the best of both worlds. They buy their land, set up a cabin, tiny home or RV and have somewhere to go and chill out for a few months. Then they return “home” when they have had a enough or when they need to return for work or family commitments.
Over time, they slowly develop the skills they need to survive and thrive in a rural location without the stress of having to learn everything in just a few months and selling up life as they know it. It is reassuring to have the back up plan of knowing you still have your “normal” life there if and when you want it. Over time, many people adapt nicely to the simple life and then may choose to sell up- but only when they feel comfortable and ready. Others keep a foot in both camps and maintain the best of both worlds.
Whatever works for you. It is wonderful for kids to see and experience the living off the grid lifestyle as they become so much more appreciative of the world and the resources they have access to, when for s few months, perhaps, they no longer have them. Also kids love getting involved with the important “jobs” around the place like collecting wood or water or learnings about the seasons, how to grow things and how to look after animals.
For some of our customers, they say this was the biggest benefit to choosing to live “off the grid” was seeing the kids really develop, get their heads away from the computer and learn to appreciate nature and wildlife.