If you are considering starting your own urban farm or hobby farm in your (sizeable) yard there are a few things you need to do first to hopefully make it successful.
Research And Research Some More
The importance of research cannot be overstated. There are plenty of books on the subject in bookstores and resources online to help you. Too many people fall into the trap of wanting to live their dream of a hobby farm without knowing enough about it to start with. Some of them will give general tips, but others will be specific to the type of farming you are interested in.
Talk To Other Farmers
Although the research is very important there is nothing to replace experience. Take the time to connect with other farmers, as they will be able to pass on tips that could prove invaluable. Tell them of your plans, and they will be able to let you know what the pitfalls are.
Start With Stores
The definition of a hobby farmer is someone who runs a farm without looking for much profit. That makes it even more important that your tools and equipment have protection from the extremes of the weather, as you may not be able to afford to replace them. The same applies if you are going to store hay. Hay storage buildings like these Calhoun Super Structure hay storage buildings will provide the protection needed to stop your hay being ruined if the is a sudden change in climate. That’s pretty important!
Start And Grow Slowly
As you are not looking for profits, you need to start small and save for any purchases you need to make. That will probably mean growing at a slower rate, but the last thing you will need is debts because you have borrowed to buy an expensive piece of equipment. I mean, hobby farms are just that – they aren’t commercial although you can make a little money from them of course.
Become A DIY Expert
You can save a lot of money if you learn to fix things yourself. It can also be more satisfying if you can mend the fence yourself or hang a new door. When you are not looking to make much money, any bills you can save will help, and becoming an expert at DIY is a brilliant way to do that.
There will always be some things you need a tradesman for though, electrics being a typical example. No one that is untrained in electrics should ever try repairing them.
Don’t Have Expectations That Are Too High
Don’t put yourself under unnecessary pressure by having expectations that are too high. You will probably still be doing a ‘day job’ to pay your house hold bills, and hobby farming should be a pleasure that enriches your life, and not cause you stress.
Accept that it will be a lot of hard work for very little financial return, but if you are enjoying it, the extra effort is worthwhile. You will have responsibilities, particularly if you have livestock to care for, but if it all starts to become a burden you need to reconsider if it is really the hobby you want.
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