The Total Off-the-Grid-Living Guide

Are you an aspiring off the grid homesteader/rancher too? But you’re not sure where to begin? This handy guide has a little bit of everything to start you up!

-Laws and Regulations-

Collecting Rainwater

Did you know that, more than likely, collecting rainwater in your state is NOT illegal? Many places do not even require a permit, such as Kentucky, so long as you don’t hold more than 10,000 gallons at a time. To see the laws on your state, scroll down the the bottom of this link’s page.

Living Tiny

If you’re wanting to live in a small dwelling, know that there are a lot of restrictions that state and local governments have imposed, regarding the minimum legal size. There are loopholes though, that are completely legal. Here is the list of that. 

 

-Starting your Homestead-

Solar Panels

My dad was an electrician, but the thought of working with electricity or setting up solar panels TERRIFIES me. This guide really eased my mind though, and it’s so useful. Check it out here. 

Bike Generator

Feel like you’re just spinning your wheels with no results? Now you can at least have some results (look, crap puns are kind of my thing, sorry). Here is how to make a bicycle generator. 

Well Placement

Well, a Well, Well, what do we have here? It’s a guide to help you determine the placement of your well. 

Digging a Well

Back in the days of Laura Ingalls Wilder, there weren’t fancy well drilling machines. People had to dig wells by hand, which means, the water isn’t as far down as you may think. If you live on flat ground, without excessive rocks, here is how you can dig a well using PVC & a garden hose. 

DIY Wind Turbine

Electricity is nice to have! Luckily for us all though, we don’t need to be “on the grid” to access it. Here is how to build your own wind turbine.

Calculate Needed Land

If you’re serious about going off your he grid, you have to seriously consider how much land your household needs to survive. Here’s the guide to do that. It covers from gardening, to livestock, to pasture, to solar panels.

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Build a 12×20 Cabin on a Budget

Your home doesn’t have to be expensive to be a fair size AND built tough! Here is how to do that.      

Tools Needed

You don’t want to jump into homesteading like a caveman- a stick and a rock as tools will not be pleasant! Here are 45 tools that every off the gridder should have acces to at the minimum.

Homestead Layout

You have to have a plan of some sort! Here are 28 farm layouts to get you thinking.

-Hands on How-To-

Homemade Soap

Ever made your own soap? It’s a pretty neat process. Here is how to pull that off on your own. 

Hide Preservation

Although it seems daunting, preserving and tanning hides is an easier task than what you’re thinking. Here is the guide for how to do that, my husband and I tested this method, but with salt, and it was a success.

Cloth Diapers

I don’t have children, but Jaclyn Bree, a momma expert, does- and she cloth diapers. Here’s her all inclusive guide to cloth diapering.

 

-Livestock Rearing-

Trim Hooves

If you live in a non rocky area, your sheep and goats will definitely need their hooves trimmed. It’s easier than you think, even I could do without an issue. Here is how to do that. 

No Scale Hog Weight

If you’re anything like me, you’re terrible at guessing an animal’s weight. If you’re curious about the size of your hog, here is how to tell its weight, without a scale, using a simple formula.

Are pigs a good idea?

Not have any hogs yet, but you’re wanting to get some? Here’s a good resource to help you work through if pigs are a good fit for you, how to set up for them, and how to care for them.

Don’t Spill the Milk

Here are some tips and tricks from professionals, that will prevent you from getting kicked when milking your dairy cow.

Chick Sexing

Is your chick a dude? Haha, don’t hate me. Here is a neat guide to help you determine your young chicken’s gender. 

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Build a Henhouse

“Let’s build a chicken coop” sounds like a great idea- until you realize you have no idea what you’re doing or even how you want to design your coop. Fear not! This is what you need.   

Beekeep with a Mason Jar

Beekeeping doesn’t have to be expensive! Here’s how to use a jar as a hive.

How to Raise Beef Cattle

Here’s a great guided for cattle rearing.

How to Raise Meat Rabbits

Here’s a great guide to rabbit raising.

How to Raise Hogs for Meat

Here’s the guide with tips for raising pigs.

How to Raise Sheep for Wool

This guide also shows you how to raise sheep with 4-H showing as an end result.

-Gardening-

Balcony Potatoes

Gardening with limited homestead space? Here is how to grow 100 lbs of potatoes in 4 square feet. Amazing right? Check out this link to see how that’s possible.

Underground Greenhouse

Here is an awesome resource to build a year round, underground greenhouse. 

Ideal Veggies

This list shows you the veggies that will last for months after harvest, which means they’re ideal for the homesteader who relies heavily on gardening.

Soil Testing

Mason Jars are good for more than canning & Pinterest projects! Here is how you can test your soil with the aid of a mason jar. 

-Run your own ‘Pioneer Woman’ Kitchen-

Keep eggs fresh

Anyone who has ever had more than a dozen hens will agree- sometimes eggs go to waste. They’re so sporadic, some days they all lay eggs, and other days you’ll have nothing. Freezing your eggs is a great way to ride out this ridiculous roller coaster. And yes, I’ve tried this myself and you cannot tell the difference in the taste. See how, here. 

Dutch Oven Cooking

Small kitchen? Not enough solar power to operate an oven? No big deal! Here’s how to use your Dutch oven (cast iron) like a conventional oven. I love the pumpkin crisps that specifically call for the use of a Dutch oven. Using one is easy, and really fun.

Reuse Coffee Grounds

Homesteading means living a lot like your great grandparents did, which means conserving and reusing what you have as much as possible. Here are fifteen ways you can reuse coffee grounds. 

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Fridgeless Living

Refrigerators can be a burden on your off the grid solar system, so here is how to survive without one. 

Walmartless Shopping

Sick of handing your hard money over to Walmart for overpriced groceries? Here are 20 different options you have so that you never have to go back again. 

-Other-

Go Totally OTG

Some people are so fed up with the government, Big Brother watching, and social media’s nosiness in general. Here is the complete, terrifying, guide on how to completely disappear from the grid, and never be found.

Make Money

Just because you’re “off the grid” doesn’t mean that you don’t need (or want!) cash! Here’s how you can do that. 

How to Safely Cut a Tree

Logging is the second most dangerous job in America! Obviously, you need to take great precautions when cutting a tree down as an inexperienced logger. Here’s how.

 

Want more Resources?

Ammo.com

Check out this complete guide by ammo.com! It covers a little bit of everything. 

Doug & Stacy

Love falling down rabbit hole of YouTube? Check out Doug and Stacy on your next binge watch! They have an extremely useful off the grid style YouTube channel.

HowToSurviveIt.com

Interested more in SHTF rather than homesteading? Here is a really great, off the wall list of helpful survival tactics.

SurvivalistPrepper.com

Wonder what it’s going to really take to become self sustainable? We’re talking mentally, emotionally, physically and financially? This guide has the answers. 

PureLivingForLife.com

Check out this awesome couple, Jesse & Alyssa, as they build a homestead from scratch on five acres in Idaho! They also have a useful YouTube channel.

That’s all for today! What handy resources have you found for OTG’ing? Share those below! And if you found this article  helpful, be sure to share it (pretty please!), I even made a handy pin for you:

Thanks for stopping by!