A frequent question I get from newbies to a more self sufficient lifestyle…is what exactly is a homestead? What does it mean to be a homesteader? If you google this question you will come up with many different answers. For me the most simplistic way to describe what I mean when I refer to homesteading, having a homestead, and being a homesteader is this…
What is Urban Homesteading?
A homestead is a productive home, a home that brings value. To be a homesteader is to work within or around your home to make it productive.
Well, think about your own home. Is it an asset? And no I am not talking about it’s market value or its ability to appreciate in monetary value. Does it “produce” something that either makes you money directly or does it provide value in the form of money you no longer have to spend elsewhere?
Homesteads are productive homes. They earn money or they produce things money can buy, eliminating those items from your budget, leaving you with more money in your pocket. So if you want to be a homesteader all you need to do is make your home productive. It needs to start making you money or saving you money in some way rather than just being a money suck (ie mortgage, utilities, taxes).
See! It has nothing to do with having land, or cows, or any of the typical stuff that many homesteaders think they need to have to get started.
Start EARNING with an Urban Homestead
You can start your homesteading journey by picking one or two ways to make your home a productive asset.
- Grow some food, in the ground or in containers
- Grow some fruit trees or bushes
- Keep some bees
- Keep small game chickens, rabbits, or quail
- Ferment your own food and beverages (pickles, mead, kombucha)
- Collect rainwater in barrels
- Use your home’s greywater
- Generate solar energy with solar panels
- Grow fodder for your animals by sprouting indoors
- Make your own compost
- Identify weeds around your property and use them for food and medicine
All it takes is some creative thinking and you can find a few ways to make your home work for you. Being a homesteader is as easy as that. Good luck!