How To Start Homesteading in Oregon: A Beginner’s Guide

home by the lake

For those who want to get away and build something from scratch, explore this guide on how to start homesteading in Oregon.

Have you ever stepped back and wondered what it would be like to be more sufficient? You have everything you need at your fingertips, but it’s different from growing your own food and meat and eating it from the source.

People who feel this way often turn to homesteading as the answer. Instead of living in a big city, these individuals move to small areas and build small farms.

Doing so gives them freedom, self-sufficiency, and fulfilling work. But it will take some planning and hard work to make a homestead your primary residence. Let’s look at what you need to know about how to start homesteading.

Pick the Right Location

Having the right homesteading location is one of the most essential parts of starting the homestead lifestyle. You need suitable land for growing crops, raising animals, collecting water, and anything else you want to do at your homestead.

The problem is that only some rural locations will provide those things. Some have deficient soil, the inability to run utilities, and a lack of space for everything you need.

Make a list of everything you want to do before buying a homestead location. You can use that list to narrow down your choices and find the perfect plot of land for your homesteading adventures.

Budget for the Lifestyle

Being free from debt, high taxes, and other expenses is great after you adapt to homesteading. The problem is that you must build up to that point before seeing a return.

Some homesteaders may find how much they must buy to get started surprising. There are fencing, tools, machinery, animals, and many other purchases.

Make sure you understand your initial goals with your homestead and create a budget to account for it. It will help you avoid surprises and ensure you have everything necessary for sufficiency and independent living.

Understand Land Use

Unfortunately, you can’t build whatever you want in every location. Different regions have different laws that restrict usage.

For example, there may be deed restrictions on a property. These restrictions limit what changes you can make to the property’s architecture.

Homestead law can change based on the state, so investigate Oregon’s unique laws. Once done, you can look at any federal homestead laws that apply to your situation. Other laws include zoning laws, building codes, right-of-access restrictions, and livestock laws for raising animals.

Connect With Other Homesteaders

If you’re headsteading for the first time, you may find yourself overwhelmed with all there is to learn. You have an enormous amount of information to process and may not know what to look for when beginning.

The good news is that there are many resources available to help. You can get started online to learn the basics, but it pays to meet the neighbors to learn more about Oregon and what to look for there.

Look for homesteading groups in Oregon to connect with the locals there. There are often networking groups and events for local homesteaders to meet and connect. You can learn first-hand from people who have been in your position before and can give advice specific to the regions you’re considering moving to.

Pick the Right Crops

If you’re like many homesteaders, one of your primary goals is to start growing food on a homestead. You may have an idea of the crops you want to grow there. Unfortunately, you may not be able to grow everything you want.

You must take Oregon’s climate into account before deciding what to plant. Many plants won’t grow in Oregon’s climate, and the ones that do will grow for a limited time.

Ideally, find crops suited to the climate and fit Oregon’s weather patterns. You can use that information to plan your farm and lay it out for the most ideal crops.

You can still do experiments now and again, but be sure to stick mostly with what’s known to work to start to build a foundation.

Choose Meat Sources Well

Just like you should be careful about what crops to grow, the same is true for meat sources. Buying a bunch of livestock may be tempting as soon as you make it to your new home. The problem is that many people underestimate how much work it takes to care for animals.

Start small when you start raising animals. You can start with simple options like chickens to get a feel for what it’s like.

After you successfully raise chickens for some time, you can start exploring other livestock options that work well for Oregon. Doing this will help you slowly gain experience and minimize the risk of starting too large in the beginning.

Consider Alternative Energy

It’s possible to homestead while still living on the grid. Not every homesteader wants to disconnect and be completely energy-independent.

However, that doesn’t mean that it’s not a good idea to invest in alternative energy. If something happens to the grid and you lose power, it’s a good backup plan. You can still work during the day with powered tools in those situations.

Explore sustainable energy options in Oregon to see what works best there. Renewable energy, such as solar power, can continue to power your home during the day and store excess power in a battery.

How to Start Homesteading Today

Homesteading is a rewarding life for people who want to make it on their own, become self-sufficient, and get away from busy city life. But at the same time, it’s hard work and not a decision to take lightly if you don’t prepare.

But now that you’ve read the guide above, you should understand how to start homesteading in Oregon and if you believe it’s right for you. You’ll need to find the right land, make building plans, and much more. It will take a lot of work to make plans, so get started as soon as possible if you believe the homesteading process is right for you.

You’ll need to learn many more skills to be successful at homesteading, and our website has all the information you need to start. Check out more articles to learn everything you need about self-sufficiency and independent living.

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