I never dreamed I’d be thinking about restoring an old homestead again.

But here we are staring all over again with new little farm, I can already imagine what it will look like a year from now.

If you haven’t gathered, we bought a new homestead, new to us, because there is nothing new about this 120-year-old farmhouse.  The house, the grounds, the barns, and sheds are in dire need of some much needed, tender loving care.

Through all the dust and overgrown grounds is 2 ½ beautiful homesteading acres that are just begging for someone to call them home.

restoring an old homestead

This small farm, in the upstate of South Carolina, sat vacant for twelve years. From the minute we pulled in the driveway, we had a vision and could see the potential of this long-forgotten cotton farmer’s home.

We can already see a place for chickens and gardens and a ready supply of pecans and figs.  Nestled under century-old pecan trees and a rusted tin roof, this new homestead will soon thrive as a backyard farm again.

You may be thinking that 2 ½ acres are not enough room for a homestead, but I’m here to say that it is more than enough. On our old homestead, we owned twenty acres, and we barely used three of them, so that’s why I say you don’t need much to enjoy farming and homesteading in your own backyard.

cost of backyard farming

We have lots of plans swirling around in our heads as to what we want to concentrate on first.

You will soon learn as you follow along on our progress; we are dedicated to reusing, recycling, and making do with things left in every crack and corner of this old homestead.

If you have been around Our Simple Homestead, you know I am pretty upfront and personal about the actual cost of homesteading, and I plan on doing the same again. You will see our budget and all the cost associated with starting and building a homestead from scratch.

So here we go…all upfront and out in the open for all to see.

This old homestead cost us $40,000. Since no bank would give us a loan for a house that was unliveable, we were able to make a deal with the owner.  After getting to know us and hearing our plans to bring it back to its 1900 glory days, he agreed to hold the mortgage for us for two years with a 5k down payment. Not a lot of time to pay a 40k loan, but with lots of hard work and pinching every penny imaginable, we are confident we can do it.

We are used to living below our means, especially if we are creating equity in a bigger picture.

There will not be a lot of house renovation in the first two years.  That will give us plenty of time to get the grounds, outbuildings, and garden areas built. There is lots of demo work that needs to be done inside the house, that we will be doing all ourselves.  All of those things just involved hard work and patience… both things we are not afraid of.

cost of restoring an old homestead

If you’re wondering how we can pay off a mortgage in two short years, I’ll tell you how.

To start with, we’ll be moving our RV onto the property and living in it while we renew this tiny farm. Next, we both picked up extra work for the time being, and like I said before, we will be pinching pennies like never before.

When I say we are starting from scratch, I literally mean from nothing.  When we sold our last homestead, we sold EVERYTHING.  We are starting with nothing but experience, desire, and a willingness to do all the work ourselves.

Not a shovel, rake, weed eater or even a in sight.  The only thing we are bringing into this project is a riding lawn mower and a utility trailer.  We had those two things stored at our daughters, but that is it.  We’ll have to buy everything or find it used and affordable and we’re looking forward to recycling things other people throw away or find useless.

Our goal is to show anyone interested in backyard farming or building a self-sufficient homestead that it can be done even on a limited budget like ours.

I invite you to bookmark this page and come back to it often.  I will be sharing the actual cost of restoring this old homestead for all to see.

January 2019 

  • Mortgage – $1000.00
  • Tools – $158.38
  • Building Supplies – $213.46

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