If you are in the beginning stages of your journey as a homesteader, you may be a bit overwhelmed by all the stuff you need to get. There are lists galore of basic tools and supplies for a well-stocked homestead.
However, while you endeavor to purchase the best kitchen mixer or power saw at the best price, you may be overlooking some key things that will help make your life easier. Here is a list of sometimes forgotten homestead items you need to add to your shopping list (in alphabetical order).
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1. Air Compressor
If you have several big and small vehicles at your homestead, a portable air compressor can be a real lifesaver. You’ll be able to repair and pump up flat tires to save the trouble and expense of towing your car to a garage.
2. Aluminum Screen Wire
You can use aluminum screen wire for many purposes, including keeping insects out of your home or barn, sifting materials, and constructing animal cages. You’ll be glad you have a roll on hand.
3. Animal Crate
If an animal is hurt or sick, it’s important that you separate it from the rest of the flock so it doesn’t get injured worse or infect the other animals. For that, you need a crate to keep it in until you can take it to the vet.
You will find many uses for barrels around the homestead – harvesting rainwater, making your own gray water system, and creating your own compost are just a few ideas. You can find wooden ones you can re-purpose.
5. C-clamp (or G-clamp)
This handy tool helps you complete many tasks around the homestead. Use a C-clamp when you don’t have another pair of hands to help you hold pipes, wood beams, or iron bars steady in place while you work on them.
This isn’t absolutely essential because you can make a compost pile just about anywhere. However, you need to stir up your compost pile every few days to add oxygen, and you need to cover it when it gets too cold outside.
A composter is so much more convenient. Just crank the handle 5-6 times every 2-3 days. It also works better because there are two chambers so one side can finish cooking while you add fresh scraps to the other side. Then you just have to swap the sides occasionally.
7. Digital Scale
This is very useful if you do a lot of baking. You can get a regular scale, but a digital scale is far more accurate.
8. Extension Cords
Most homeowners have a few extension cords on hand, but the homesteader needs a supply of quality cords for many indoor and outdoor tasks. Consider heavy-duty extension cords and rollers to help make your life easier.
9. First-Aid Kit
You may already have a supply of first aid items, but you will need to up your game if you are going to live a self-sufficient homestead lifestyle. Your medical supplies will grow over time with your knowledge and experience.
Consider these items as basic necessities: band-aids, antibiotic ointment, rolled gauze, gauze pads, tape, trauma pads, various ace bandages and butterfly closures, splint, tourniquet, pain reliever, cotton balls, thermometer, razor blades, rubbing alcohol, alcohol pads, Epson salts, hydrogen peroxide, and apple cider vinegar.
10. French Press
11. Hand-Operated Radio
You may have your internet access and your phone chargers all figured out, but in the case of a power failure, you will want the security of a hand-crank radio. Most models have solar battery options as well as the hand-crank recharging feature.
12. Hand-Operated Tools and Appliances
In addition to the radio, other non-electric small machines are valuable on the homestead. Not only will they get you through power failures, but they will help save you money on energy usage on a regular basis.
Hand-operated washing machines are one example. But also keep in mind “old-school” can openers and hand mixers as well to lessen your reliance on electricity.
Don’t be a redneck! If you’re going to be spending a lot of time working outdoors, especially in the garden where your neck will be exposed to the sun from looking down at plants, be sure to wear a large hat so you don’t get a sunburn.
Hoses aren’t just necessary for watering the garden. You will need a bunch for your livestock and cleaning purposes. Keep an extra one handy for siphoning needs as well.
You will rely on extension ladders for all kinds of building and repair projects in and around the homestead. You simply can’t do without them.
Whether you’re building a house or just hanging pictures, make sure it’s perfectly straight. And the best way to do that is with a level.
18. Oil Lamps
Flashlights are probably already on your list. However, when the power is out for a long time or you just want to conserve what power you do have, oil lamps are a must. Many options, ranging from the very basic to the more decorative, are available.
19. Pipe Wrench
You definitely need a good set of wrenches on the homestead. Don’t overlook a pipe wrench, which is designed to turn threaded pipe and pipe fittings for plumbing and other mechanical projects.
20. Plant Markers
Seeds and seedlings are uppermost on the homestead gardener’s mind. What you might forget until you are ready to plant are plant markers. Purchase (or create) a supply of durable plant markers so you know exactly what is growing where.
21. PVC Cutter
You may already have a stash of PVC pipe, and for good reason. PVC pipes come in handy for watering purposes for both your plants and your animals. However, you’ll need a PVC cutter to make those projects happen. It’s a simple and affordable tool that you will use again and again.
22. Reference library
We all are accustomed to using the internet to look up facts and information. However, a prepared homesteader also should build a supply of reference books.
Examples of topics for the books you should collect for your home library include emergency medical information, gardening, veterinary skills, herbal remedies, carpentry, construction techniques, sewing and mending instructions, hunting, butchering and preserving meat and other foods.
23. Reusable Canning Lids
If you are looking to preserve foods from your garden, you know about canning supplies. Also consider the long-term investment of a supply of reusable canning lids and extra gaskets. You’ll be glad you did.
24. Wheelbarrow or Utility Wagon
You will be hauling a lot of heavy bags and materials around the homestead, so a heavy-duty wheelbarrow will definitely come in handy.
25. Wood Chisel
You can use a sturdy wood chisel to shape, carve and repair many items around the home and property.
This list is certainly not an exhaustive one. As you’ve read through the items, hopefully, you’ve come up with a few of your own ideas to add. Also, sure to ask more experienced homesteaders what things they learned (perhaps the hard way) that they cannot live without.