Prepping is about so much more than just preparing for a natural or man-made disaster. Ever since I got into prepping, I have found that I have become more financially savvy as well. For the first time in my life, I am actually working out how much I am spending on food, fuel, and water. Prepping doesn’t have to be expensive -these 12 things you can do on a budget might surprise you more than you think.
Tip One: Your Bug Out Bag on a Budget
There is no need to buy a brand new bug out bag. Check out places like a second-hand store or consignment stores. You will be able to find some great bargains. And I will let you in on a secret, the stuff made a few years ago, was better made than anything you can buy today.
Tip Two: Bulk Buying
Yes, it can be tempting to pop down to your local supermarket and start to bulk buy, but think twice before you do so. It is better to save up and have a bit more cash to spend. Start to check out companies that are wholesalers to the restaurant trade, or other general wholesalers. You will find that you can save a lot of money on essential pantry items when you have a bit more cash in your pocket.
Tip Three: Become a hoarder
Yes, it is true, we have all become hoarders in our family. Even the 13-year-old has joined in and is beginning to hoard stuff. People throw out some good stuff, and even pieces of timber might come in handy. One day you may find that your DIY store is not there anymore, and there will be something that you need. My daughter has taken it a step further and become a dumpster diver. She is really proud of some of the things that she has found and restored. My chicken shed was built from recovered wood, and I even got the roof covering from somebody who was going to throw it away. It was stored for a year but finally came in handy.
Tip Four: Become self-sufficient
Our family never used to be very self-sufficient, but now we pride ourselves in our new found state of independence. Our chickens are laying eggs, and we are enjoying using the garden for profit and our own purposes. We used to struggle for money sometimes, but since getting into prepping, we have learned so much. Our priorities have changed, and it is amazing what you can do when you try.
Tip Five: Learn DIY
I know that many preppers spend a fortune on hiring people to build stuff for them like food storage sheds. Learning how to do it yourself is really important. You never know when your new found skills will come in handy. I recently built my own chicken shed, and I had never done it before! I learned so much along the way, and now I have other projects lined up.
Tip Six: Get Canning
Lots of people go out and buy ready canned foods. It is a complete waste of money and will cost you at least three times as much. Start canning yourself. Not only will your food taste better, but you can control what goes into the process as well.
Tip Seven: Plan ahead
If you want to buy lots of fruit and vegetables to can or freeze dry, get prepared first of all. Buy everything that you need, and then hit the farmer’s market. Once you are back home, you are ready to go and get canning. None of the food that you invested in will spoil, and you will save time as well.
Tip Eight: Don’t buy seeds
This may not be a huge cost saver, but every little bit helps. Over the last few years, I have not bought a single fruit or vegetable seeds. Instead, I have learned how to harvest seeds from all of the vegetables and fruits that I grow. As a matter of fact, we haven’t bought celery either; it is surprisingly easy to grow your own from supermarket celery. That alone has saved me a couple of bucks every week!
Tip Nine: Grow Your Own
I grow my own fruit and vegetables, and that saves me a fortune. Not only can I use the fruit and vegetables for canning, but we can enjoy eating them as well. I have just invested in a freeze drier, and this year, I will focus on learning how to freeze dry fruit. Our garden produces it in excess so that it will make an ideal first-time project.
Tip Ten: Recycle, reuse, and rethink
We throw away too much stuff. I have taught myself to look twice at everything that I feel like throwing away. A lot of what we are tempted to throw away can be used in one way or the other. Now, a lot of the supermarket packaging in our home gets reused. It is just a matter of figuring out what it can be used for. To tell you the truth, thanks to supermarket packaging, I have a very well organized pantry.
Tip Eleven: Water
Do you actually need to buy mineral water for your prepping? A lot of preppers do buy mineral water to store, but I am not so sure that you need to. In most Western parts of the world, the tap water is perfectly safe to drink, so why not store that instead? Mylar bags are great for storing water, and water from your tap is a lot cheaper.
Tip Twelve: Bartering, or swapping services
Learning how to barter is another way of saving money. We have started to do a lot of that, and are saving a fortune on our grocery bill. There are many ways to save money when you become a prepper, and you will be surprised how positively it will effect the rest of your life.