8 Good Reasons for Homesteading

There are some good reasons to think that real-world homesteading is for you. Here are 8 of the top ones in my book:

Good Homesteading Reason#1: You’re good at working with your hands.

homesteading hands
Homesteading success comes from a unique blend of hands-on work, get-it-down attitude, energy and creative intelligence.

If you’re the kind of person who’d rather be dirty and sore at the end of the day than clean and well-rested, then homesteading might be for you. Do you really like physical work? Are you good at it? If so, then that’s a good sign. There’s a lot more to think about than this, though . . .

Good Homesteading Reason#2: You’re an entrepreneur at heart.

Every homestead is a small, multi-part business. Most of what you do won’t be for money, of course, but behind every successful homesteading venture are people who can think creatively, then meet a constant flow of challenges with a positive attitude. They also understand how to get lots done in a day. Homesteaders are grassroots entrepreneurs.

Good Homesteading Reason#3: You want to raise “free-range” children .

joseph homesteading beach
Our Joseph back in 2005 at a little used beach near our homestead. The chance to run, play and get dirty is a big part of the memories he has.

We’ve found that children grow up really well in the fresh air and sunshine, surrounded by beauty. They also need experiences that teach them how to stick with distasteful jobs big and small. The lives of kids should include a daily routine that offers lots of time for parents to teach kids right from wrong, beautiful from ugly, wise from foolish, all while having fun. A fully functioning homesteading situation allows kids to grow up with two parents at home almost all the time. The luxury of eating two or three meals together each day makes for really close family bonds and lots of teaching time.

Good Homesteading Reason#4: You believe in homesteading self-reliance.

There are two very different attitudes in the world when it comes to building a society. Some believe that central organizations are the best way to meet the needs of people. This is the dependency model, and it’s growing in popularity. At the other end of the spectrum you have those of us who believe that a community can only be strong if its residents are strong and capable as individuals. The weaker members are cared for from the heart of the stronger, not by some central authority. Homestead success depends on taking care of yourself directly as much as possible, then sharing your success out of love for those who need help.

Good Homesteading Reason#5: You’re energized by beauty and simple pleasures.

homestead masonry heater
The open doors of the masonry heater that kept us warm for 20 years before we installed an outdoor wood boiler to heat all the buildings on our homestead.

A rural homestead trades away the social busyness and opportunities that are typical of modern life for the beauty that comes from fewer, simpler and quieter choices.  This is not a trade that everyone likes, so give it some thought. If you can honestly say you’d rather sit by a glowing fireplace than go out to see a movie, or would rather listen to whippoorwills while you sit on the porch than travel to a concert, then you may be a homestead person.

Good Homesteading Reason#6: You want to actively partner with nature.

homesteading raised beds
Homesteading is about actively partnering with nature, not just sitting back and watching it. Successful gardening is about more than meets the eye at first, so give yourself years to learn it properly.

The natural world is a great thing, but it always makes me a little sad when I see nature separated from people so it’s on display and untouchable. If you’re excited by the idea of managing your forest instead of just looking at one, or tilling the soil and making it produce food instead of just a lawn, then that’s a good sign. One of the essentials of homesteading is having an active relationship with nature.

Good Homesteading Reason#7: You’re concerned about collapse.

bad homestead foundation
Homesteading is not about a fortress mentality, but it is about developing the skills, situation and personal infrastructure to feed and shelter yourself directly.

There are reasons to be concerned that financial and social upheaval could happen in a way that we haven’t seen before in the western world. And living in a city is one of the most vulnerable places you can be in the event of a societal collapse. I don’t know if anything will happen, and I certainly hope it won’t, but hope can be a dangerous emotion sometimes. Is it really wise to remain completely dependent upon large systems to keep you fed and warm?

Good Homesteading Reason#8: Rural life energizes you.

homstead tunnel trees
A good homestead offers generous and constant options to take in beauty with your eyes, your ears and your nose. The “maple” tunnel is something we talk through most days.

If you like the idea of living in a place where everybody knows your name, and where you can still complete a full shopping trip into town when you forgot your wallet because every shop owner knows you’re good for the money and will pay next time, then you’ll probably like rural life a lot. The homestead life isn’t for everyone, but it is for more people than realize it now. Perhaps you’re one of them.



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Do you know the warning signs that homesteading might not be for you? Check out the Five Bad Reasons to Homestead right here.


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