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Why did our Family choose to live off grid?Why do we live off grid?

It seems that every person who drives up our driveway comments their amazement over the way we live off grid. It’s becoming a way of life for us now. But it was not always the case.

Almost everyone knows that if you live off grid, there are more challenges, compared to ordinary lifestyles. With everything involved, why would anyone even bother with the difficulties?Why do we live off grid?

In this Post

In this post, I can’t promise to answer that question for every off-gridder, but I can share the main reasons that our family decided to live off grid when we purchased our property.

If you enjoy video formats better than print, please watch the YouTube video on this topic. Why Do We Live Off Grid?|Off Grid Homestead|DIY Cabin Build

To catch you up to speed, you may also be interested in these posts, reflecting our off grid journey this far.

Lets dive in!

Off grid solar panels at sunset


Why did our family choose to live off grid?

  • First and foremost, we prayed, we discussed our property, and we believe God led us to purchase the land we live on. That was the first step, but we didn’t know it would lead us off grid (at least I didn’t).
  • Practicality. When we got to the point in building where we were ready for power, while possible, it seemed impractical. We desired some type of backup power already, and the cost to bury power lines was more than we thought practical. We opted to put the money toward off grid power instead of thousands for burying line.
  • For us, burying the line 4 feet down would not work well–we have layer upon layer of rock. Since we preferred not to cut a 30 foot swath of trees out of our front property for above-ground lines, it was settled.
  • Backup Power Let’s face it–the power goes out more often than we’d like. Winter storms, wind, and rain can all interrupt the power lines. It’s wise to have a backup source of power. If you’ve been through a storm that knocks out your electricity for days, you suddenly understand the need. That backup can actually become your primary source. There have been many times when we’ve had bad weather, especially during the Winter, where power has gotten knocked out, and we did not realize it.
  • I will say that our lifestyle just uses less electric, we use it more in spurts, and try to depend on it less and less. However, we have refrigeration and some appliances that use power, so we try to keep it uninterrupted.
  • Sustainability. We are not perfect in this area, but we see the wisdom in using resources wisely. Renewable energy just makes sense. It is a good feeling to know that the sun is bringing us power, and if we run low, all we need is another sunny day to charge back up!

What People May Think About Us, vs Reality as we Live Off GridWhy do we live off grid?

What We’re Not

  • We live in a camper, but we’re not camping. We’re living. Camping for us is going out somewhere and roughing it, sleeping in tents, and cooking over the fire. Here, we’re just doing life, and the camper life is temporary, more or less.
  • Not trying to prove anything. Sometimes those who live off grid get a reputation. Maybe they have an edge, and it does seem like they have something to prove. It’s possible that a hard life just creates that. Either way, that’s not our goal.
  • We aren’t recluses. My husband has a business in town, we’re in town more than we’d like to be, especially for building supplies. In fact, in some ways, it would be nice to have to go less often!
  • We aren’t looking for a hard life–it just comes with the territory! Hard work and off grid life just kind of go hand in hand. There’s so much to learn and do.
  • Not environmentalists per se, but we try to be careful with our resources. See Are We Environmentalists?
  • We aren’t “Living off the land, eating grubs, and rooting through the woods for food”. Except, on occasion, we do enjoy a little foraging in season. See •Foraging Wild Edibles, Foraging Huckleberries and Wild Blueberries Eat Your Weeds. Adventures with Wild Edibles. I draw a line at grubs. Hard no there.
  • We aren’t “living naked in the woods”. Yes, that’s kind of a thing, and it appears that many off grid people, especially women, advertise that aspect. Nope. Not here. We all like clothes.
  • Not die hard farmers. While we are trying to get to where we grow more of our own food, with the goal of self-sufficiency, we still have more to learn! We have our greenhouse, where we can start seeds, do winter gardening, and more, plus we garden. Little by little, we hope to gain more skill.

Why Would You Live Off Grid?

Sunflowers at sunset

Would you ever live off grid?

As you can see, most of our reasons for choosing this lifestyle have been practicality and necessity. While we did not set out to live off grid as our main goal, we have found that it is a rewarding way of living.

Currently, we are approaching five years of living off grid. The first years were definitely a learning curve. I will have to say that it was’t pretty. Tears were common. Frustration abounded, and we really struggled at times. I didn’t share many personal struggles, because they were truly personal.Greenhouse, solar panels, and sunset sky

If you read back through my blog, you’ll see progress and trials, the expectations and the cold, hard reality. We had a lot of learning to go through, and I’m sure we have no idea what education we still will experience.

Through it all, we thank God for being with us. We see a little more light now, and life is a little easier. We have fridges, we can take a hot shower (see That Day I Paid $25 for a Shower)

I’m Sure You Have QuestionsWhy do we live off grid?

I’ve touched on the highlights. I shared in a little more detail in the YouTube video on this topic.

YouTube Video. Why Do WE Live Off Grid?

Ask me anything!

I don’t promise that I will have all of the answers, but I can try.

Where we Find Answers

We have learned much through many sources–too many to remember, actually.

But, when I think about learning about Off Grid Life and Sustainability, I like the Sustainable Preparedness website. We have purchased some of their instructional materials, which are really helpful.

They actually have a blog, a podcast, and a store. I’m not affiliated with them, but have approached their work.

They also have a nice resource, entitled, Off Grid on a Budget, which is a free e-book with a subscription to their blog.

Another source Five Acres and Independence is a educational book on running a small property. We’ve found it helpful.

Alone in the Wilderness

If you have not seen the documentary films Alone in the Wilderness, parts 1 and 2, you might enjoy them. Featuring Dick Preonneke, who lived for over thirty years in a tiny hand hewn cabin in Twin Lakes, Alaska, you’ll be inspired to pursue a more simple life. While these films are not new, they are the kind that never grow old.

Thoughts?Sunflowers and sunlight

Please chime in and let me know if you could live off grid.

Could you?

Would you?

Should you?

Start where you are, and you may be surprised!


6 Replies

  1. I’m learning so much. Would I live off grid? If I see in my lifetime when one needs the mark of the beast to buy or sell. Then yes, I will without a doubt live off grid. I’ve actually been bookmarking posts and information about off grid living for such a time. I grew up on a small farm and my dad also had a greenhouse business later in life. Our meat, eggs and vegetables came from our own animals and land. You know the funny thing? I loved doing barn chores, I had horses in there too. But I had no interest in learning anything else. But as I age and read more on the subject I often find myself say “I remember that” or my mom and dad did or made that.” So I still must have been taking it in. You know what I miss? Fresh cows milk. We had beef cows, but fresh raw cows milk from the farm down the way was wonderful.
    Laurie, I’ve got to tell you I love visiting and learning with you sweet friend.

    1. That’s is one of the nicest things anyone has told me recently. Thank you so much.

      One of the reasons we live this way is because we do know that hard times are coming. Nothing will protect us apart from our connection with God, but we can make it a little easier in the meantime if we learn some basic skills.

      Please come back! I appreciate you sharing your experiences.

What is your experience? 💜 I read every comment, and so many times I find that I gain encouragement from what’s shared. ❤️