Living off the grid requires you to shift to a whole new lifestyle. This mental shift is one of the most important preparations you can make. You never know when you need to live off the grid. It’s either things are taking a bad turn or you’re choosing to live away from urban chaos. One way or another, you have to prepare are few things so you can live off the grid in an efficient way.
Few Things You Need When Living Off the Grid
1. Truck and Cargo Trailer
Get a decent truck and a cargo trailer. In times of emergencies, you only need to dump your things in the cargo trailer. Then, hook it up to the back of your truck, hit the road, and go wherever your heart desires. Plus, if you decide to settle somewhere off the grid, you can convert it as a tiny house or an extension to your log cabin.
2. Large Tent
While you’re living off the grid, you need a tent. This can serve as your home for many months to come. It’s light and easy to pack—a simple, collapsible shelter that protects you from heat and cold. If you take good care of your tent, it can last a long time.
3. Sleeping Bags
You must also have a sleeping bag or a hammock. Sure it’s not as decent as an actual bed but you can’t be picky when you’re living off-grid. Take note there are more options for outdoor sleeping systems these days. You can find a hammock that is also a sleeping bag and tent at the same time.
Bring large water containers with you. So they won’t take too much space, opt for collapsible water containers instead. You need these to have an ample supply of water, of course. But you can also use them to store fuel, too.
Aside from water containers, you need food containers as well. An icebox keeps fresh ingredients longer, so be sure to have this. Sacks, wooden crates, and boxes are good options for storage, too.
Off-grid homes must have an extra power generator. It comes handy when other sources of energy run out or get broken for some reason. Generators may run on natural gas, propane, and even human power.
It also helps to have an ample battery bank. With an inverter, you can use a car battery, for example to power a few basic house appliances.
6. Renewable Energy Source
Having a renewable energy source is more convenient when you’re living off-grid. The thing with non-renewable energy sources is they are not sustainable. Once coal or oil runs out, you have to replace them, which is inconvenient.
Opt for solar power or wind power instead. By securing a renewable energy source, you can ensure you have a steady supply of electricity to power the things you need for comfort. You can install solar panels and off-grid inverter on your cargo trailer. This way you can optimize the solar energy while traveling across the country. Or, you install wind turbines in the area of your off-grid cabin.
7. Composting Toilet
When you’re just getting settled in an off-grid cabin, one of the issues you may encounter is hygiene. You simply can’t run off into the woods every time you need to use the bathroom. It’s unhygienic if you keep doing this. Plus there is the risk of contaminating your area, affecting your food and water sources. Address this by building a composting toilet. It basically composts and treats human dirt with organic matter. When done properly, the composted material can even be reused as fertilizers and soil conditioner.
8. Hunting and Farming Equipment
Always have the equipment you need to feed yourself. Storing a lot of food is the easiest option to go for, obviously. But if you’re truly living off-grid, especially in dire times, you would have to hunt, raise farm animals, or grow your own crops. This said you need a hunting gear and farming tools.
9. First Aid Kit
Always keep a supply of medicine and first aid tools. If you’re living off the grid, you can’t simply rely on doctors and 911. You would have to be self-sufficient. This said, your knowledge of applying first aid is as important as having a first aid kit. Expand what you know about herbal plants and old-school survival skills. Make sure you do this before you even think about living off-grid.
Watch this video by Living Big In A Tiny House and see how off the grid living works on a permaculture farm:
Aside from being prepared for a world without order, going off the grid can do wonders for your mental health. Cutting down to the bare essentials is shocking at first. But once you get used to it, you realize how fulfilling living off-grid is. When you live this way, you don’t have to think about living a highly structured urban life anymore. This is might be the greatest thing that off the grid living can offer. You go back to basics, get in touch with your natural self, and enjoy the freedom of nature around you.
What do you think about our list of off the grid necessities? Let us know in the comments section!
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on May 26, 2015 and has been updated for quality and relevancy.