It’s very easy to get carried away in our farm spending. It seems that there’s always some handy tool or machine that would make life a little easier, and there’s always a steady stream of things needing to be repaired.
If you’re ready to rein in the spending a little bit, here are a few suggestions:
- Do it yourself. Build your own toolshed. Make your own fence posts. Fix your own tractor. Cure your own livestock. The possibilities are endless! Farming on a tight budget can really stretch your creativity. Before running out and buying a part or calling in an expert, try doing your own research. See if you can come up with a less expensive and equally effective alternative.
- Buy used. There are some things you will have to buy, such as tools, but many times you can get along just fine without the latest, greatest name-brand item. See if you can find a used part or machine that still has many years of working life left in it. Check eBay or Amazon. Or maybe a friend of yours is throwing away junk and has something he’ll sell you for a reasonable price. Lightly used equipment can be a great bargain.
- Be honest. Avoid falling into the trap of nickel-and-diming yourself to death. Ask yourself, “Do I really need this just now? Is there a better way to get the task done?” If you can do without it…by all means, do! There may come a time further down the road when your prospective purchase will more than pay for itself, but for now improvise. Avoid impulse buys. Instead, think through each decision carefully.
Saving money on the farm will often involve a little more time spent in research and in the farm workshop, but often the results are very satisfying.
Are you ready to think outside of the box?