Do you want to build a self-sufficient homestead property without moving to the countryside?
Apartment homesteading is the answer!
If you want to grow your own produce, sew your own clothes, and live independently, there are plenty of ways to start a homestead life in the city.
In this guide, we delve into the details of homesteading from your apartment and ways you can adopt this lifestyle.
Let’s get to it!
What to Know About Homesteading in an Apartment
Apartment homesteading involves a lot of activities that are not quite the norm in residential properties. Some of these might bump against your local or state laws, so take a look at relevant regulations regarding homesteading before you begin the transition.
For example, if you want to start an outdoor garden in your rented apartment, you must inform your landlord about your plans. Confirm that such a setup is within apartment regulations, so you will not run into trouble in the future.
You must also test your soil’s health. Urban soil contains high levels of lead, which can be unsuitable for cultivating homegrown produce. To make sure you can grow healthy plants, perform a basic soil test.
Depending on the results, you can fix the lead levels or grow vegetables that will not absorb lead, such as tomatoes, cucumbers, spinach, lettuce, and peppers.
What Is an Apartment Homesteading Mindset?
The apartment homesteading mindset centers on a self-sufficient mindset. It means using available resources to solve daily life problems and actively reducing one’s impact on the environment.
Urban homesteaders do not want to leave city life behind and go off the grid, so they adapt this lifestyle in their apartments.
Cultivating the Apartment Homesteading Mindset
Cultivating the mindset of an apartment homesteader involves adopting an independent lifestyle while living in an urban space. It means developing and maintaining healthy systems that promote the wellness of humans and their surroundings.
Some of the core ideas of homesteading include:
While there are plenty of ways to live as an apartment homesteader, you are free to forge your own path. You can choose the most practical and sensible methods to become more independent and rely less on on-the-grid life and amenities.
If you need more guidance, keep reading for a deep dive into the nitty-gritty details of homesteading in a bustling city.
Ways to Adopt Apartment Homesteading Lifestyle
Here are some apartment homesteading ideas to get you started:
By Cooking Your Own Food
Cooking your own food is an easy way to begin homesteading from your apartment. Ditch the unhealthy processed foods for fresh, homemade meals—you can boost your wellness and save a ton of extra money, too.
With more time and confidence, you can level up your skills—try baking your own bread instead of buying loaves from the supermarket. The less you depend on commercial resources, the better.
You can also try making your own kitchen staples such as butter, yogurt, cheese, and almond milk.
Learning how to preserve homegrown produce is another valuable skill to master. This will provide an adequate food supply for months and years, and will be especially valuable during power outages or food shortages.
You can begin pickling extra vegetables and have them as snacks or emergency supplies. Freezing is another viable option.
Fermenting or drying are two other methods of preserving food that retains nutrient levels.
Buying Meat From the Local Butcher
Many apartment homesteaders keep rabbits for meat in their apartments since it’s legal. But no matter how quickly meat rabbits reproduce, not everyone is up for the challenge of living with these pets.
While raising livestock is important for the homesteading community, you don’t have to force yourself to do it. Buying meat from your local butcher is a good option—you promote a local business and access high-quality meat.
Growing a Window/Balcony Garden
If you’re blessed with a balcony in the city, growing a vegetable garden is a bit easier. Purchase seeds or seedlings and learn how to care for them.
If you don’t have a balcony, you can make do with a windowsill. The limited space is enough to get an herb garden started. Some easy-to-grow varieties include cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, micro-greens, lettuce, etc.
If you don’t have a window or balcony, try to get access to a common outdoor space.
A Community Supported Agriculture program is another option for apartment dwellers. You can get a monthly supply of fresh produce in exchange for some garden volunteering.
Hydroponics is an attractive alternative to using soil. It is also mess-free.
And if your apartment complex lacks natural light, try adding artificial grow lights.
If you have no options to grow your own produce, your local farmer’s market is the next best choice. You can access fresh fruits and vegetables while supporting your local farming community.
Make Your Own Cleaning Products
Formulating your cleaning supplies can seem daunting at first, but it is one of the more manageable homesteading tasks to undertake. You don’t need to look too hard for the ingredients, either. Most household items like dish soap and laundry soap can be made using things you can find at home.
Commercial household products contain harmful chemicals that damage the environment. So you’re going green while apartment homesteading.
Try these natural cleaner recipes for your household chores.
Additional Ways to Follow Apartment Homesteading
Once you’ve mastered the basics of apartment homesteading, you can keep adding to your skill set:
Air Drying Clothes
Air and sunlight are the best natural resources you can take advantage of. Use them to dry your clothes and cut some of your utility bills.
If your apartment building allows it, install a clothesline on the balcony or a drying rack indoors. You can keep the room temperature low while adding some humidity to the space.
Composting reduces food waste and provides fertilizer for your container garden. All you need to get started is vegetable scraps and a bin.
Using Alternative Energy Sources to Generate Power
Harnessing solar energy is one of the more accessible option for apartment dwellers. All you need is a sunny spot on the apartment building roof, ample sunlight, and a few solar panels.
Learning Simple Old Fashioned Homesteading Skills
When you’re ready to take on the complete challenge, give these old-fashioned homesteading skills a try:
Hanging onto your clothes is much easier when you know how to repair them. Simple sewing skills can save you an entire wardrobe.
From curtains to pants and shirts, there are a lot of items to save by giving them a quick patching up.
Building and Fixing Objects Around the House
Another old-school apartment homesteader skill is fixing objects around the house. Whether you need to paint a wall or repair your backyard gate, some simple tools are all you need to get started.
With time, you can also learn a few tricks for the following DIY tasks:
- Making candles
- Creating soaps
- Preparing non-toxic bug repellants
- Knitting and crocheting
- Fixing broken electronics
- Making pottery
- Learning woodwork
Thanks to the internet, you can learn all these homesteading skills in a day or two!
Donate Your TV And Ditch the Cable
If you want to practice apartment homesteading, this one is a must-do. Getting rid of your television opens up many opportunities for homesteading hobbies. It helps save money and creates more time on your busy calendar.
No more binge-watching, late-night TV, or revenge bedtime procrastination.
Benefits of Apartment Homesteading
Promotes Health And Wellness
Getting rid of harmful products, growing your own produce, and cooking your own food promote health and wellness. Additionally, taking care of your home and apartment garden connects you with mother nature.
The more you embrace the apartment homesteading lifestyle, the more it pushes you towards better mental and physical health.
Spending less on household products and minor jobs around the house will reduce your expenses and increase your savings.
Promotes a Self-Sufficient Lifestyle
Transitioning into a homestead life will boost your independence. They further push you to understand your needs and provide for yourself, leading to a self-sufficient lifestyle.
Good for the Planet
Apartment homesteading is one of the best ways to reduce your carbon footprint and help save the planet.
Without playing a part in the money economy, you gain a holistic view of life while promoting balanced lifestyles that create value for everyone.
By undertaking environment-conscious practices, you connect to nature and make the most of its gifts.
Allows You to Escape the Mundanity of City Life
Getting out of the city every weekend or even once a month can seem impossible for the 9-to-5 worker. Apartment homesteading can be your form of escape.
Spending an hour each day caring for your vegetable garden can feel like a vacation from a hectic lifestyle.
Wrapping up Apartment Homesteading
I hope these tips help you kickstart your apartment homesteading journey. Keep at it through trial and error, and you shall soon reap the rewards of a fully self-sufficient lifestyle. Visit our everyday survival items page for more information on off-grid living.