So you’ve been a homesteader for a while now and you’re really good at it. You probably have some of the best skills in your circle of friends, and people are often asking you for advice.
At some point, though, you found out about survival and preparedness. You weren’t that concerned in the beginning, because you know your land will keep you well-fed and self-sufficient for months or even years. But then you realized that disasters and catastrophes don’t just happen to other people… they could happen to you. You realized you aren’t prepared for a home invasion or if the water supply gets contaminated. The more you read, the more concerned you became, and started doubting whether you truly are prepared.
In this post we’re going to tackle these issues and make your homestead and family prepared for anything that life throws your way.
#1. Start Stockpiling
I don’t care if you have a huge garden, enough land to build 50 houses on it, or even if you have a permaculture garden that will yield crops for the next 500 years. In a grid-down situation, you’re going to need a food and water stockpile inside your home.
Some of the reasons you need one:
- there could be gangs of looters settling nearby, making it unsafe for you to go outside and work your garden or buy things
- hungry looters could come in at night and steal your crops
- a volcanic eruption could keep everyone inside for months on end
- …and many more.
If you’re on a homestead, space shouldn’t be a problem. You probably have a big pantry, but what you could really use (if you don’t have one already) is a basement. This would really prolong the shelf life of your perishable food.
And let’s not forget the non-perishable things (gear, tools, blankets, clothes, board games, books), that you can keep them inside your attic (where temperatures get too high for you to store anything else). If there’s a catastrophic event, you’re going to have a hard time finding new clothes, tools, and gear even if you have the money. At best, they will be severely overpriced, which is ironic because today they’re all dirt cheap.
#2. Turn Your Home into a Fortress
People who’ve already taken care of their home security will probably not find anything new here, but those who are unprepared for burglaries and home invasions should put this into practice ASAP:
- replace all exterior doors with solid metal doors
- use deadbolt locks on all exterior doors
- secure garage, basement and attic windows (yes, someone could come in through your attic if they really want to, which is why you should also secure the attic hatch that leads to your hallway)
…and so on. You can find plenty of eBooks and free articles on Google that give all sorts of advice to improve your home. The bigger your homestead, the more things you need to take care of (chicken coops, stables, tool sheds etc.).
#3. Have a Nearby Bug-Out Locatio
Why would you need to flee if you put so much time and effort into securing your home? Why would you leave your stockpile behind
Well, because your life is more important than your stockpile. Although bugging in is most prepper’s plan A, there are plenty of reasons you may want to bug out. A home invasion that you cannot withstand, flood, wildfire, war, a nuclear meltdown and on and on.
The thing you should be a little concerned about is that you might underestimate the disaster and stay too long. Train yourself to not care so much about your home, get used to the fact that you could lose it, and hope that you’ll make the right decision when faced with chaos.
#4. Consider a Survival Garden
A permaculture garden isn’t just a way to live in harmony with nature, it’s a way to conceal your crops from looters and nosy neighbors and relatives. Someone could be standing a few feet away from it and never realize that he has a bounty of fresh, delicious fruits and veggies within arm’s reach.
Permaculture gardening is also called survival gardening because it fits prepper homesteaders like a glove. The other great thing about it is that it takes a lot less effort to maintain, as the plants grow together and take care of each-other.
Downsides? Sure. Pests and disease are a more common but this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it. With proper research and care, it’s actually possible to yield more food than with traditional gardening methods. And let’s not forget the main benefit: the fact that this garden will be is hidden in plain sight.
#5. Have Several Escape Routes
When we talked about bugging out, we mentioned there could be quite a few reasons that would compel you to do it. Many critical events such as a home fire require that you not only have a quick way out but also that the route is not blocked by something such as a car.
This is why it’s good to make sure you have as many exit routes as possible, and that they stay free of obstacles at all times. Even better, you could mark them on your maps (and laminate them to keep them waterproof) and make sure everyone in your household knows where they are.
The more ways to get out you have the more you increase your chances of survival, but keep in mind not to sacrifice your home’s security doing this. You don’t want people to be able to get inside your home, all you want is for you to quickly get out if need be.
#6. Turn Your Homestead into a Small Business
Why? You could be earning an extra income right now by selling your surpluses and, post collapse, you could barter with your crops. There’s nothing wrong with a little more money that you can use to buy preps, improve your home security or invest it into your children’s or grandchildren’s education.
This is also a chance for you to become more committed to prepping and improve your survival skills. You’ll have no choice because others will rely on you to deliver… which means you’ll be extra-motivated to keep doing it and improve.