How do you make a living while you’re living off the grid?
Easy. The old-fashioned way. You WORK!
No matter if you already live off the grid, live in the city, or if you live in suburbia, you need to be able to make a living to provide for yourself and your family. There will be bills. You will need money. Unless you can figure a way to live without money, you’ll still have to have an income.
The whole idea of being off grid (aside from actually being disconnected from the power grid) is about self-sustainability. It won’t do you much good moving to your ‘perfect’ off grid homestead if you can’t pay the bills on your land and home. Figure out a way to purchase or trade for it outright, or build it yourself for free or nearly free, so you own it free and clear.
Don’t Quit Your Day Job!
If you don’t have a job, get one!
Some people might be asking themselves, “Isn’t the reason for living off grid so that you don’t have bills?” Sure. For some folks.
For me personally, it’s to live a simpler life and become debt-free.
Debt-free does not mean I won’t have to have money though for things like tools and equipment, more solar panels, a better wind turbine, seed for my farm (initially during startup), and many other little things like gasoline for my vehicle.
The point is, living off grid still requires money.
A financial foundation for your off grid homestead
Just like a home needs a stable foundation to support the weight of the building above, so too do you need a stable financial foundation on which to build your off grid homestead.
Have a plan and be prepared to change it to fit your needs
It takes time to plan and money to buy the tools and equipment you’ll need to make your move off grid.
Make your plan, modify it if needed, don’t rush it, and don’t try to cut corners unless you’re talking about saving money. With that said, don’t try to save money by sacrificing safety or security. Good tools and equipment cost money and are hard to come by.
The off grid community follows the same rules as any other community.
“What if I’m disabled and can’t work?”
There are legal stipulations that you must consider if you receive a disability check or Social Security (SSI) or any other form of disability/retirement. You must make sure you will not endanger your disability legal status by starting a home-based business.
It is up to you to do your homework BEFORE starting anything that could endanger your disability income. If you’ll lose your disability income if you work or start a business, then ask your social worker, case manager, or whoever is helping you what you can do on the side to make a little extra income. NOTE: Do not do anything that will endanger your safety, security, income, or livelihood.
“OK, all that is fine. But, what can I do to make a living off grid?”
You can still make a good living working from home by selling products or services on the internet. There are as many ways to make money off grid as you can imagine. Humans did it for thousands of years before modern civilization.
Here are some ideas for making money off grid:
- Sell items online on eBay or on Etsy
You can make a good living selling items on eBay or Etsy. Etsy is more of a handcrafted homemade item marketplace for those who create their own arts and crafts and offer handcrafting and freelance services.
eBay is a free-for-all marketplace auction site (in case you haven’t heard) and it’s another good way to make some extra cash. If you’re business savvy you could run a pretty sizable business on eBay from home.
- Buy and sell items at your local swap meet or flea market.
Sell old items you don’t use anymore. Buy items at wholesale in bulk and resell them.
Every penny helps get you closer to your goal.
People won’t like this statement, but it’s realistic. There is no SECRET formula. There is no “Get Off Grid Quick” scheme or plan. Unless you win the lottery or have a rich family member or friends willing to front you the money, you’ll have to have a job at least temporarily while you make the transition.
- Gardening & farming
Agriculture will probably play a part in your income while living off the grid. You’ll hopefully be growing your own organic food, so maybe you could sell some extra fruits and veggies at the local farmers market, or start your own farm stand. Either way is a good way to bring in some extra income.
Arts, crafts, and baked goods
You could make arts and crafts. You could build furniture, weave baskets, or bake artisan bread, cakes, and cookies. The point is it’s only limited by your ability, and your ability is only limited to what you think you can’t do.
More ways to earn a living off grid
Here is a short list of more possible ways to make an income off grid:
- Organic farming & gardening
- Cabin rental
- Hiking & camping (tourism)
- Hunting & fishing (tourism)
- Educational workshops – organic growing, primitive survival skills, off grid lifestyle, natural building
- Hosting events – expo/fair, weddings, reunions, parties
- ATV/snowmobiling (tourism)
- Horseback riding
- Arts & crafts – selling and teaching
- Organic soaps & cleaning products
- Blacksmithing (yes this is still an art form)
- Art – drawing, sculpting, painting, pottery, music
Home-based ONLINE business
Don’t limit yourself to your LOCAL area. Sure, you can sell products and services to your local community, but don’t forget there are 7 billion people on this planet, and you are connected to about 4 billion of them through the internet. You can find something that a tiny fraction of a percentage of them will want or need.
Pick something, do something. Work hard at it. Starting an online business is easier than you might think, but never forget it takes hard work and dedication. There are loads of places and ways to make money online.
Freelance services & consulting business
If you’re a business professional or have lots of experience in an area of study, consulting is a good way to make money off grid.
“Wait. Isn’t living off the grid about being disconnected from technology like the internet, phone etc?”
READ THIS!!! —>>> Living Off The Grid Doesn’t Mean Primitive Living
AND THIS: Living Off Grid: “If You’re Using Technology, You’re NOT Truly Off Grid!”
Raise livestock for food and sale
Another great way to provide food for you and your family while also creating a revenue stream is by raising livestock. This can include cattle, goats, chickens, and rabbits. I’m sure you can think of a few more. If not here’s a list:
- – Chickens
- – Turkeys
- – Ducks
- – Geese
- – Pheasant
- – Cows
- – Pigs
- – Rabbits
- – Fish (aquaponics)
“But I don’t want to start a business.”
Cool. Then get a job, or have enough money put away to live the rest of your life off grid.
You can do it. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t. It’s possible. It’s right there in front of you. All you have to do is reach out and grab it. It will take some hard work and dedication, but you can do it.
Want to read more about making money off grid? Read,