You might have heard the phrase frequently tossed around. People around you or people you know, articles online, and more and more are talking about going "off the grid. Whether for personal reasons, financial, safety, or simply the urge to get away from it all, there are so many reasons why living off the grid is becoming a more tempting prospect to so many. Perhaps, even you have been giving it some serious thought.
There are probably quite a few of you who may already be experienced with doing so, thanks to deployment, special operations, and military experience when it comes to off-the-grid living. However, as a civilian or even just a beginner to all things survival, tactical, and outdoors, you might be unsure or overwhelmed with where to start.
Let's help you learn how with some of our best preparing to live off the grid tips and tricks shared with you.Do I Want to Go Off the Grid?
You might still be on the fence about whether or not you want to go off the grid at all. If you're a tenacious problem-solver not afraid to get your hands dirty and work hard, you may already be suited to the lifestyle. If you find yourself happiest when outside, skilled in wilderness survival, and already chop your own wood, then going off the grid may not even be much of a transition.
There are several reasons why you might be considering ditching the grid. Still, you can only take full advantage of this kind of lifestyle if you are mentally and physically prepared and willing to commit. Before starting your preparation, consider a few of these pros and cons seriously. They will help you make the right decision best for you.Pros:
- The greatest lesson of self-reliance and self-sufficiency. You'll be living off the land, meaning you'll be growing and hunting for your food and harvesting your energy from the natural sources around you. Should the worst come to pass and society collapses, you'll already be well educated on how to survive without electricity, city water, and grocery stores.
- Off the grid leaves a tiny carbon footprint and is eco-friendly using renewable energy. You also contribute to the environment by significantly reducing waste.
- Though much higher in initial cost, having to build an off-the-grid home, setting up power sources, clean water, investing in supplies, and so on—you do end up saving a lot of money in the long term—fewer bills such as electricity, water, fewer costs associated with food, too.
- Living close with nature, safely with all-season gear and apparel.
- It can be lonely. The vast majority of humanity lives in a conversational society where human interaction is part of their lives. Unless you have the opportunity to live in a communal off-grid environment or have a partner and friends live with or near you, you should be prepared to go for days, weeks, and even months without speaking or seeing another soul.
- The initial costs of going off-grid are not cheap. It may seem counterintuitive, but the truth is that during the transition, you may end up spending several hundred or thousands of dollars getting set up. Going off-grid takes a considerable investment of time, energy, and money at first before seeing any return. Construction, land purchase, a water system and purification system, ways in which to harness natural power sources (wind, sun), and ensuring you have high-quality supplies and equipment all add up. Cutting corners is an almost guaranteed way to create life or death situations in the great outdoors, so making intelligent investments the entire course is vital.
- Little to no convenience. You probably already know this, but there's probably going to be no pizza delivery in the middle of the wilderness. Jokes aside, there will be many compromises to make when it comes to living off the grid. There are no close emergency rooms, doctors, probably little to no ambulance access, far away from grocery stores, no delivery, possibly no mail delivery, no pharmacies, and possibly out of reach for professional services. Services such as construction, auto repairs, plumbing, power, land management, internet, and so on may be a very long trip or not available at all.
You've weighed the pros and cons and have decided that the pros far outweigh the inconveniences, then you're ready to start the process of preparing. Here's how you prepare:1. Set goals.
Create a dream sheet with goals. To get yourself started on the right path, sit down for an hour or two and dream out loud with anyone coming with you, or jot everything you want to achieve. Things like:
• Where your food will come from: what will you grow? How will you grow it? What will be bought instead of grown?
- Will you have livestock, pets, or wild animals on the property?
- Will you/who will be having to work off property?
- Where and how you will learn wilderness and survival skills and first aid before you begin.
- Who will chop wood/manage the garden/make repairs/hunt or gather?
- Get Finances in Place.
If you are in debt, have unpaid credit cards, student loans, and so on, clear those debts that need to be paid monthly before heading out.2. Identify the Skills You'll Need, Then Practice and Develop Them
If you have never grown any plants or have no experience with gardening, how will you grow food? If you plan on hunting for meat, you'll need to know gun safety, how to properly clean and skin what you hunt, how to preserve and store meat. When you're fair from any doctors or hospital, you must know how to give first aid treatment. If you know how to garden, do you also know how to preserve your food stores? Learn these skills and practice them until you are confident in the comfort of your current home.3. Don't Rush. Take it step by step.
You've made your decision. You listed all your dreams and goals. You've paid off your outstanding bills and debt, and you've taken several survival courses, first aid, hunting safety, and know how to can and preserve your food. It's time to start! But slowly!
The first step is finding the perfect piece of land. Research the land in your area and make a list. Prioritize the assets and liabilities of each property. Take your time before deciding on the land, and don't rush. Rushing can lead to ill-informed decisions. Every step below should be thoroughly considered and researched:
- Off-grid solar cost and which system is best for your needs.
- Off-grid water and well-digging costs
- Off-grid sewage handling and treatment
Going ultimately off the grid may not be entirely possible, but being able to live independently with minimal inputs and as self-sufficiently as possible can be within your reach with careful thought, planning, and preparation.