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Is homesteading for you?  Real estate for homesteading or prepping is a different world than that which most folks envision.  Very often I get a call from someone who recognizes the frailties of our society and sees its cracks getting wider.  They live in the suburbs and know that if the power went out, their peaceful neighborhood would turn to chaos pretty quickly.  Therefore, they decide “We need a bugout property.”   So far so good.

But they have no skills in rural homesteading or living.  Most of the properties on Retreat Realty are not designed as “lock and leave” vacation homes.  Yes, they can be used that way, and I encourage clients to consider using them as such when times are good and peaceful.  But if one is considering the purchase of ten, twenty or thirty acres with some pasture, a barn and house, that person should recognize this property almost requires a full time resident.  Things grow rapidly in our mountains, and if you’re not there to keep it in check, when you return after two months, you won’t be able to find the driveway.

Being handy with small engines is very helpful, especially a chainsaw.  (I carry a chainsaw in my SUV at all times and believe me, it has rescued me more than once while on old logging roads deep in the woods.)  A general working knowledge of electricity, plumbing and such are also a real plus, not to mention operating a table saw and jigsaw for the odd building projects.  Not that you have to know all these things, but my point being, if you’re not prepared to get your hands dirty, you may consider buying a vacation home in a gated community where you can hire someone to manage it for you.

Of course we don’t even need to discus livestock.  Caring for animals isn’t rocket science, but its a full time job, so if you don’t have the time, don’t even think about it.  After all, if you can’t grow tomatoes in a pot, how are you going to house, feed, secure, breed and keep a few goats healthy?

I share this in the hope of making your property search and my time most productive.  If you’re a serious farmer or handy man, then lets go look at farms.  But if you show up in sandals and shorts to look at this kind of property, perhaps we should be looking at something else.