For many, the idea of living off grid, and enjoying a life without the restrictions and ties that come with the many bills and pressures of such a life, is immensely attractive. That said, it is also a reality, that unless you’re independently wealthy from previous life’s experiences, investments, work or inheritance, it may not be a practical long term alternative. Regardless of how ‘off grid’ you intend to be, there will invariably be requirements to life that require some form of income, even if only from time-to-time, to supplement your off grid experience. The degree to which this will be necessary, will likely vary depending on different circumstances and individual ability. As an example, for those who have not mastered gardening and growing, or that live in climates where the growing season is short, there may be a direct need to supplement by buying groceries and other much needed items. In basic terms, it is unlikely that you will go ‘off grid’ entirely, and some income will be required to live successfully off grid. With this in mind, we’ve taken the time to highlight some options for how to make money while living off grid, in order to assist you in achieving your off grid goals, while maintaining sufficient funds to supplement your lifestyle when needed.
How to Make Money While Living Off Grid
To begin, there are a few things that need to be considered before embarking on the off-grid adventure. If you’ve already started, or have made the necessary changes in lifestyle, or are already living off grid, than that is amazing; however, for others, it is important to take a number of practical considerations into account before embarking on this journey. It would be wise to have a look at our article on some tips to going off grid, as you begin your journey.
With “eyes wide open”, the journey to an off-grid life is a fulfilling one, though how to make money while living off grid can often be less obvious for many. In fact, it is an often overlooked part of the off-grid lifestyle, and taking advantage of some of the opportunities available to create an income, can greatly enhance your off grid lifestyle.
It is recognized, that ‘off grid’ comes in a variety of forms, and it could be an anathema to some purists to even consider a reliance on money as a part of this lifestyle. We have a more pragmatic approach to the idea, and believe that ensuring you have some form of income can increase your quality of life, and provide you numerous opportunities to supplement your living experience when needs require.
1. Selling Produce or Home-made Items
This method of income generation is likely one of the more common that people think of when considering how to make money while living off grid. In simplest terms, it means creating a growing environment that is large enough to not only provide for yourself, but has sufficient capacity for you to sell to others (this can be garden produce, eggs, or any product you can create). Depending on your distance from communities and/or population centers, the practicality of this method will vary. If you are within a reasonable distance, you can participate in local farmer’s markets, community co-ops and other activities that permit you to sell your produce and/or handiwork to others. Additionally, if you are adept at brewing wines, baking, soap making, creating textiles or other crafts, there is likely to be a market for your products within the surrounding areas. Finally, and this idea will likely make some people shudder, is selling your handiwork online. If you’re near enough to have connectivity, or use satellite internet, you have a great opportunity to list and sell your products on any of the multitude of online platforms (eBay, Craigslist, etc.).
2. Trades & Hand Skills
It is likely that anyone who has managed to go ‘off grid’ possesses a wealth of skills that would be valuable to others. Whether this is skill at woodworking, carpentry, gardening, plumbing, electrical work, solar installations or others – these skills have value, and can be marketed in the area you are living in to provide a modest income. There is likely to be numerous locations in surrounding communities where you can post information about your skills and availability – local community centers, legions and other places that people gather will likely have notice boards where you can advertise your skills.
3. Publish an E-Book
Experience is one of your greatest assets, and writing and/or sharing those experiences can be enormously valuable. Modern platforms such as Amazon’s Kindle Direct provide would-be authors with an excellent springboard from which to publish materials, and make an income doing it. While this can be very lucrative for some, it is likely a good idea to be very realistic about your prospects, and see this as an option for a small passive income. Of course, there is great potential here to include this as part of your mix of techniques for how to make money while living off grid, though exactly how successful you are with any online endeavor will be tempered by your ability to market and promote your materials.
4. Set Up a Service/”Gig” Online
If you’re unfamiliar with what a “gig” is, then in simplest terms, it is a small job you do in exchange for money. There are many different options for this, from Fiverr to Upwork and other online marketplaces, you can list your services for others to purchase. If you have skills in graphic design, programming, business or just about anything, you can list your services and earn an income from those who work with you. These are great ways to earn an income, and depending on your skill level, and ability to deliver, you can do very well using this technique. Alternatively, there are even companies looking for support delivering goods (Amazon Flex etc.), and in more rural environments, you may find this to be lucrative option.
5. Start a Website or Blog
If you’ve heard of affiliate marketing, then you may already be familiar with the income potential from hosting a website, and writing a blog. This method requires some skill in getting things setup, though there are numerous options available, depending on your experience and skill level. For many, purchasing a domain and hosting is not a complicated task, though the writing may be a challenge, but certainly not unsurmountable. The basics of digital marketing are fairly straightforward, and with enough tenacity and effort, you can make a modest passive income. More importantly, it is an excellent way to share your journey with others, or to provide some knowledge and insight to others in a specific area of interest or expertise that you may have.
6. Teaching Online
One excellent source of income, again using online tools, is teaching online. If you have a specific expertise, that could be transferred into a course framework, then you can monetize this. Tools such as Udemy are available for just this type of scenario, and if you have a depth of skill that can translate into being taught, you can most certainly find some value in your skills. Whether it is teaching how to play an instrument, or a language, this is definitely something for you to consider as one of the ways of how to make money while living off grid.
While this list is by no means exhaustive, it provides a great start in your exploration for ways to develop your income, and in many cases very passively. Like most things in life, all of these methods of income generation will only be as successful as the effort and work you put into them, and of course, the depth of skill you have to apply to them. These techniques of how to make money while living off grid can most definitely help you along your way, and we hope they’ve provided some insight and inspiration to you in your exploration of opportunities.
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