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Successful Homesteading, Issue # 52, Debt Free and Food Security the Homesteading Way
September 06, 2016

Issue #52, September 6, 2016

Debt Free and Food Security the Homesteading Way

Do you dream of living the simple life but are hindered by debt? Are you worried about how you're going to make your payments, let alone come up with the money for an acreage somewhere so you can grow your own food and live a cleaner, healthier lifestyle? There are some simple ways to live debt free while having food security the homesteading way:

Stop Eating Out

This may be the hardest initially, but it is also the healthiest and tastiest. Plus, with a little planning, it won't be the all-consuming chore you think it is. Plan to make two or three casseroles and a pot of soup on the weekend, and then divide the cooked food into individual-sized portions. Wrap them in wax paper and then in aluminum foil, label them and put them in your freezer.

In the morning, pick out the casserole you have a hankering for and take it with you to work. This will save you a bundle of money, especially if you are in the habit of eating out. A fast food meal will typically cost about $8 to $10 per person. Bring your own healthy meal from home, and you save anywhere from $30 to $40 per week. That means in one month's time you'll have an extra $120 to $160 each month. Use half of this money to pay off your debt and the other half to build your food pantry.

Start Paying Off Your Smallest Debt

For most people that's a credit card. Use half of that savings on food and make extra payments on your smallest credit card. Continue doing this each month until your get your smallest credit card paid off. (And then cut that credit card up, if you have others.) Then apply the money you were paying on that credit card to your next largest bill, making extra payments until you get that card paid off.

Continue making credit card payments this way, and eventually a snowball effect occurs, where you pay off one card after another and make larger and larger payments on your debt, until you are completely debt free. Ideally, your goal is to have only one credit card with a reasonable balance that you pay off in full each month. Then save all the money you used to pay on debt for your dream land.

Build a Food Pantry

By a food pantry, I don't mean an actual closet, but instead a store of food you like to eat, and preferably not of the processed kind. Take that $60 to $80 a month you were spending on fast food and stock up on whatever items you like that are on sale. Or stock up on canned goods that are on sale, such as canned tomatoes, corn, bean or peas.

Squirrel this food away anywhere...under your bed, in a closet, or wherever it fits. The more pantry items you have stored up, the less often you will have to pay full price for anything. Once you have at least three months worth of food stored up, only buy items when they are on sale, and invest in at least a three month supply. This leads to even greater savings and greater financial freedom.

Here's to joyful homesteading!

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