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BigBattery opened our new Headquarters in California! |  Located @  21314 Lassen St Chatsworth CA 91311

The Ultimate Checklist for Living Off the Grid


If you’ve had enough of living in the city and are seeking even greater independence, it might be time for you to go off the grid. Moving away, living amongst nature or in a more remote spot can be a godsend, offering solitude, no interruptions, and a true test of your skills as an independent and self-reliant individual. But moving away and off the grid is no easy feat, and preparedness is sometimes literally the only thing standing between life and death. But living off the beaten track doesn’t need to be so bleak. If you go into the process with both eyes open (and a fully stocked place to live), living totally on your own can be a delight. To help you get started, here’s the ultimate checklist for living off the grid.

Find a Place Off the Grid

The first and most obvious thing you’ll have to do is find a piece of land somewhere unconnected with a major (or even minor) city or town, well away from all the amenities.

There’s almost always land to be had somewhere, and you can find it through multitudinous places. Some of these channels include real estate agents, of course, but also auctions, eBay and Craig’s List, and, of course, private sales. Sometimes you can find land for a song, but always ask yourself, what’s the catch? Visit the library and history to see the history of the area and whether a low price might indicate severe drawbacks to living there. Whatever the case, make sure you have full title to the land and everything on it, leaving no loose strings.

Water, Water, Everywhere?

Not always! Before you buy your land, ensure you have access to a clean water source. Drilling your own well is a classic solution, but doing so can be costly and can be even costlier of you have to drill below the standard 150 feet. Nagural springs are another option, but you can’t become too dependent on these since the weather can make some year dryer than others. Natural bodies of water can provide water, but be sure to check your state’s laws about rights to use the water near your home. Rainwater is another source, but again you’re dependent on the weather, so water is scarce during dry season. It’s better to think of rainwater as supplemental rather than a main source of water. Finally, if you have the means, you can buy and have water delivered and pumped into a holding tank or another reservoir. Just remember that water is a deal breaker—it there’s no water, there’s no living off the plumbing grid. And ensure that your water stays clean by investing in a high-grade water purifier as well. Water inundated with all sorts of unpleasant microbes, chemicals, and impurities is sure to diminish your quality of life, if not your life.

Home Sweet Home

Now that you have your land and water where will you hang your hat, as the saying
goes, you have several options for living facilities. If you have the finances to do so, you can build a home yourself, which allows you to rig it up with whatever you need for off- the-grid living. A pre-existing home or cabin on your land can also be an opportunity to update it. A currently popular technique for off-the-grid living is the tiny home movement. Tiny homes provide a space that’s small—usually just enough room to sleep, eat, work, and do other everyday tasks, but more than enough to live
comfortably. Finally, don’t discount the comfort and convenience of living in a mobile home, recreational vehicle, or camper. Your plot of land can serve as home base while still allowing you to travel elsewhere.


How do you plan to power everything? Truly going off the grid and relying on hand tools and no appliances is admirable, but is it the best course of action? While eliminating electricity is ecologically sound and saves a lot of money, there will be times when you’ll wish you had access to an outlet. Consider rigging up your living quarters with a solar –power system. Cells on your rooftop can collect all that sunlight-provided energy and store it in an off-grid lithium battery bank that you can use daily or save for a literal rainy day. And don’t overlook wind power. Setting up a windmill or three near your house can keep you in power without relying on the utility companies.

Grow Your Green Thumb

Living off the grid requires an ability to live off the land. When you purchase your land, make sure there’s enough acreage to grow plenty of fruits and vegetables, as well as provide for any animals (a cow, a goat, and a handful of chickens, for starters). This is one of the tougher aspects of self-sufficient living, because growing and tending crops is a full-time job in itself. Begin by ensuring you have enough food to survive for at least two years while you prepare the surrounding earth for crops. You’ll need to till the soil, fertilize it, and keep it watered long enough to become fertile for future plantings. Study up on raising produce and take into account that, at minimum, it takes two acres of land to feed a family of four. Animal management is also a good skill set to acquire; otherwise, you may find your off-the-grid adventure ending too soon.

A Set of Tools

Here’s one more thing for the ultimate checklist for living off the grid: a set of tools and the know-how to use them properly. Being off the grid means being in charge of everything that goes wrong. Depending on how far-removed you are from civilization, you won’t be able to call for help with anything and everything that goes wrong with your domicile (not that you’ll have a telephone). Pick up and fill your toolbox with a hammer, a wrench set, a screwdriver set, a tape measure, a set of pliers, shears, a wire cutter, a level, and anything else that might come in handy should you find yourself patching a roof, fixing a water tank, setting up a fence, or what have you. Before you head for the hills, consider taking a course in home repair from a respected professional as well, and invest in a set of “How to” books specializing in repairs for the off-the-grid lifestyle.

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