Homesteading in the 21st century is a lot different than it was when it first began in 1852. These days, juggling a job and a small side business is the norm. Add in running a farm while raising a family and you’ve got what it’s like to live on a homestead. But do homesteaders have jobs?
Some homesteaders work a full-time job or a part-time job to make ends meet while still maintaining all the homesteading responsibilities. While others use their homesteading activities to provide enough income to support their families.
There are a lot of reasons why people choose to homestead, but most of it tends to revolve around self-sustainability or being self-sufficient. In this article, we will be going over some of the various examples of what managing a homestead with or without a job would look like.
Homestead and Work Life Balance
Just like with any major life choice, there are a few factors to consider when deciding how best to build your homestead.
Can You Homestead and Have a Career?
Choosing to homestead and have a successful career aren’t mutually exclusives, luckily. A lot of homesteaders these days have a 9-5 job, and then manage the homesteading chores before and after their workday is done. It won’t be easy, and will make for a long day, but will be worth it in the end.
Can You Work a Part-Time Job and Homestead?
Working part-time on the homestead with a part-time job is a popular choice these days. If you have a job that you love that allows you to work part-time, and still have a good amount of time in your day to accomplish your homesteading goals, that’s a win-win.
There are a lot of great at-home part-time jobs available these days, especially with how heavily we rely on the web. You could write your own blog, or run an eCommerce website, or be a freelance writer, all from the comfort of your homestead.
What Are Your Homesteading Goals?
Are you wanting to be a hobby homesteader? Or build your life and career around homesteading? Determining your overall goals for your homestead will make a difference in how you will allocate your time.
Growing your own produce does require a good amount of time to cultivate. You’ll most likely be planting starts or starting from seed in the spring and summer, and harvesting in the fall. If you live in climates that allow for fall and winter planting, then you could be gardening year-round.
Farm animals rely on a feeding schedule, and depending on the time of year, those feeding times will fluctuate depending on the daylight cycle. Same goes if you have dairy cows or goats, they will need to be milked daily. Factors like this can make getting a day job more difficult.
How Can You Manage Work and Family Life on a Homestead?
Juggling the homestead chores, a full-time job and family time can be one of the hardest things to manage. To accommodate, a lot of homesteaders rely on partners or spouses to manage the homestead, while the other works.
Working part-time or running a home-based business are great ways to make sure that you are able to spend as much time with your family and still bring in some income.
How Large of a Homestead Can You Have if You Work a Full-Time Job?
Urban or backyard homesteading is a great way to start your homesteading adventure, especially if you are wanting to juggle a full-time job. Starting small allows you to learn and build on as go.
There are no size requirements for you to achieve your homesteading dreams. However, you shouldn’t expect to own any animals that require daily work if you have a full-time job—you’ll just burn yourself out trying to keep up with them all.
A small, partial homestead is a great option while you save money working full time. Rome wasn’t built in a day! Wait to make the transition to a large homestead until you can be self-sufficient.
How to Manage a Homestead with a Full-Time Job
Working a full-time job while running a homestead means that you will have early mornings, long evenings, and project filled weekends. Balancing all that can seem like a lot. Your keys to success are starting small, building as you go, and sharing the responsibilities.
Having a spouse or partner to handle the chores throughout the day while you are at work is going to greatly reduce the overall stress that homesteading can create. If you don’t have a partner but have extra money, then hiring a helping hand for a couple hours a day is a feasible option.
Can You Homestead Without a Job?
In one way or another you will have some sort of job running a homestead. Merely running it is a full-time job. If you want to have any amenities that we’re used to in our society, then you will need to have an income of some sort.
How to Become Self Sufficient on a Homestead (So You Don’t Need a Job)
If you are an urban homesteader, there really is no way to become completely self-sufficient and to not have some source of income. Even if you grow all your own veggies and raise animals for eggs, dairy, and meat, you will still need simple things like electricity, running water, and functioning vehicles.
Off-grid energy sources take a large initial investment, but can provide you with the ability to become self sufficient in the long run. Plan accordingly, and work hard now to save money for those costs to pave your way to a self-sufficient future!
Can You Make Money Homesteading?
There are a lot of fun ways to earn money from your homestead, some conventional and others not so much.
Conventional Ways to Earn Income on a Homestead
The most common way to earn additional income homesteading is to develop sellable product, like veggies, eggs, meats, dairy products, maple syrup, wool products, candles, etc. You can sell on Etsy or at a local farmers market.
If you’re only producing in small batches, you’re looking at more of a part-time small business kind of income. A lot of homesteaders do this to help offset the cost of feed, but won’t necessarily provide enough money to not need another source income.
To make the most money selling goods from your homestead, you have to produce on a large scale. Which takes a lot of long hours and hard work, and will undoubtably become your full-time job.
Unconventional Ways to Earn Income on a Homestead
In today’s internet-based society, a lot of homesteaders are turning to social media platforms like YouTube or blogging to increase their revenue.
Videos blogging (vlogging) and blogging can be a great source of income, and if you can create content that gains followers, the possibilities are endless.
Successful homesteading YouTube channels are able to bring in upwards of a six-figure income, all from uploading good-quality edited content once or twice a week. If you want to learn more about how we do this to earn a part-time or even a full-time income, check out Income School.
Other Ways to Earn Income on a Homestead
Some other ways homesteaders are earning an income is by teaching courses, online seminars, or writing eBooks about all the different skills you learn while homesteading, i.e., canning, gardening tip, making homemade cheeses, or fermentation of fresh garden veggies.
These can be fun little side projects and can bring in a good amount of money but do require a good amount of time and additional skills to create.
Are All Homesteaders Self-Employed?
By no means do you have to be self-employed to have a successful homestead. There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to homesteading. If you can achieve your homesteading goals while having a successful career that you love, then you are winning.
But having an entrepreneur mindset, with your homesteading goals in mind, is going to help push you toward bigger and better homesteading dreams.
Do Homesteaders Have Jobs?
In the end, all homesteaders have jobs. Some work full-time, while the partner homesteads full-time. And some work part-time small business and homestead full time. It all comes down to what you want to achieve and how you want to achieve it.