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5 Ways to Live off the Land

Learning to live off the land may have a different meaning to each of us, but we can all agree that it mostly means to find a way to use our natural resources to survive. I feel that living off the land means learning how to garden, farm, and use unconventional methods to heat water, fuel the home, and so on.

Setting a goal to live off the land isn’t that far fetched. If you enjoy getting your hands dirty and living in the country then chance sare living off the grid won’t be that difficult for you. If, however, you’re more of a fast-paced city person then living off the grid may be a shock to your lifestyle.

I’m more of a country life person. I like the slow pace of the small town living. I enjoy seeing trees around my yard, a lawn for campfires, and outdoor activities. I love grilling outside with no neighbors in sight. I most certainly would enjoy learning a few ways to live off the grid in a country setting.

As a means to learn more about how to live off the land in preparation for a future lifestyle change, I’m sharing some of the easiest ways you can start living off the land. If you’re on the search to find new ways to be more self-sufficient in your country life, then consider checking out these ideas to get started in living off the land.

5 Ways to Live off the Land

Repurpose Items

When you start living off the land you should always find ways to repurpose items. You can learn to upcycle old coffee tins or old clothing. Items that you’d normally throw away can be repurposed as a means to start learning how to live off the land.

Grow Your Own Food

This step of learning to live off the land is simple and anyone can do it. If you’re still living in a small apartment or confined space while you’re planning this next move, then start a container garden. You can grow many veggies indoors or in containers using a small space.

Consider Relocation

At this time interest rates are super low so you may consider relocated to find a good piece of land that allows you to live freely. Research areas that allow you to live off-grid and find a piece of land that allows you to grow your own food and start using our natural resources to survive.

Conserve Energy

Consider starting solar power for a backup in your current location. Some areas, such as the New England area, may not get as much sun during the winter season but you can learn how to conserve energy and use solar power all year round.

Downsize Stuff

Living off the land isn’t just a lifestyle change, it’s a mindset change. You can start downsizing what you have now to prepare for simpler living in the future. Go through everything you own and only keep items that are useful for your family.

The above are just a few ways you can start learning how to live off your homestead. Yes, even someone who currently lives in an apartment can start implementing the above changes. I highly suggest that you take small steps towards this new goal in life so that you’re better able to be successful in your goals to live off the grid.

Can I legally live in the woods?

Now here is the fun part, you may want to just go live in the woods. Pack up the family and start camping out there in the middle of nowhere. The problem with wondering if you can legally live in the woods is that most of our backwoods in New England are privately owned.

There are some camping locations in the woods that you can legally go camping in a tent to test out this new idea of living off the land. Once you’ve established that living off the land is something you truly want to do, consider purchasing a piece of land to get started with your homestead legally.

Where can I live for free?

Another thing that many people consider when they’re looking to start living off-grid is to find a location where they can live for free. There are four places in the United States the offer you the chance to “live for free”. As with most things in life, it’s important to know that nothing is truly free, so here are the details:

  • Live free in Claremont, Minnesota – You can get one lot of land to build on for free. There may be some stipulations as to what you can build there and how soon. You may still have to pay property taxes though.
  • Live free in Anderson, Alaska – This area is trying to build the number of residents they have so they’re giving away a few 1.3 acre lots. This is on a 1st come 1st serve basis and you must build a homestead within two years.
  • Live free in Detroit, Michigan – The Detroit Write A House program will offer homes to fiction writers, journalists, poets, and people in similar literacy arts careers. The owner will be responsible for paying their own taxes and must live in the home for at least 2 years among other things.
  • Live free in Beatrice, Nebraska – Using a new version of The Homestead Act, there are lots of land that will be given away and the owner must live there for a minimum of three years, but build a homestead there within one year among other stipulations.

Whether you opt to get a piece of free land in some of the country life states referenced above or use your current location, it’s important to know that living off-grid will require a lot of planning, investing, and hard work. You’ll be stepping back in time to live in a way that our ancestors lived without electronics or readily available resources.

The biggest thing that appears to me for off-grid living is that you can feel a sense of pride and accomplishment for building your homestead, preparing for responsible use of our natural resources, and working to grow your own food. Living off the land will help you feel confident and secure as a person so that your family won’t ever have to rely on anyone else except nature to survive.

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7 comments

  1. Living off the land would be a good option especially if you will be given a free lot. I can only imagine the fresh air, the laid back lifestyle and lots and lots of free space for the kids to roam around. We will have to think about this and discuss it among ourselves if this would be a decision we could make in the future.

    1. I’m certain this wouldn’t be a decision to take lightly. I think we’ll ultimately live off the land fully once our kids are grown. We have 6 more years of childhood years before our youngest is technically an adult, plenty of time to plan 🙂

  2. I love any sort of lifestyle bearing a close resemblance to Little House on the Prairie, haha. I had no idea there was a new version of The Homestead Act in Beatrice, Nebraska. That’s pretty cool. While I don’t think living off the land is possible for this season of my life, it’s something I always dream about. 🙂

    1. It’s so interesting what options are still out there in the states. I’m fascinated with this idea, being the child of both dairy and beef farmers who’ve ever the years had to go out of business.

  3. Awesome tips but for sure something my indoorsy self would never be able to do!

    1. It’s most certainly not the lifestyle for everyone. It is, although, what I dream to do someday 🙂

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