You’ve probably noticed by now, we’re quite keen on being prepared, here at Sarah’s House. Preparedness means a lot of different things to different people, but one common aspect tends to be making sure that you’ve got supplies of what you need to get through a few days at the very least. We find that there’s a common misconception when it comes to being ready, and that’s the assumption that you need to spend a lot of money to truly be prepared.
Prepper Skills Vs Survival Possessions
Last time on the survival blog, we talked about an extreme survival situation – becoming a castaway. It’s not the most likely time that you’ll need to rely on preparation or survival skills, but it does nicely highlight that you may not have the luxury of possessions to rely upon. That scenario was all about having the right skills, whether it’s being able to build a shelter, hunt for food, or simply use your instinct to prioritize the things that will keep you alive.
So, being on a budget should be no excuse for failing to prepare yourself, it’s just that the reliance upon developing survivalist skills may be higher than for someone who can afford to research and buy the latest hunting knives, for example. That’s no bad thing either. If I had to pick between only having great skills or only having material possessions, I’d choose the skills every time. Knowing how to be resourceful with what you find around you is inevitably going to more valuable in the long run.
Protecting family is usually high up on the priority list, especially for parents. There’s an inbuilt instinct to keep children safe, and you can harness that to extend it to other family members too. At times of crisis, the best place to start is to make sure you understand your situation. Depending on what has gone wrong, that may be harder than you would like, but you should always focus on what you’re sure you know. For example, during a financial crisis or societal meltdown, the chances are that government or other authorities might paint a picture to encourage you to behave how they want you to. It’s best to listen carefully to their message, but at the same time be mindful that it may be biased. In general, communication tends to be based in truth, even if you know very little more than the fact that an emergency situation is unfolding. So far, so good – there’s no financial outlay required, but the value of understanding your situation as best you can is building.
What To Buy For Survival
Moving on to things you need to buy, planning is key. Put together a list of your ideal kit inventory, and be as demanding as you like. The key here is to forget the budgetary restraints, and pretend you have all the money in the world. Don’t get silly, there’s no point in wishing for your own army or nuclear weapons, but there’s nothing wrong with including portable generators or water purification machines whether you can afford them or not – they’re genuinely useful.
Prioritizing What’s Essential
One you’ve got your list, the next step is to mark which items are essential, and which are things you’d ideally like to have. If in doubt, leave it off the essentials list. For now, we’re interested in the absolute survivalist essentials, so if you’re in doubt, it’s not essential. Now, the idea with this list of essentials is to build up your kit as soon as possible, but be mindful that we’re doing it on a budget. Obvious ways to do this are to check your list on every grocery store visit. See if things like canned food is on a special, or whether they have unusual items like multi tool knife sets in stock for example. Don’t just go out and buy everything in one go, as every bit you save by shopping wisely can go towards those nice-to-have items that didn’t make the essentials list. Whether the savings come from bulk buys, discounts or special lines is irrelevant, it all gets you to where you need to be for the least cost. It doesn’t all need to come from the grocery store either – that’s just a great place to start building up your kit and marking off your survival checklist.
Belt Tightening For The Future
If money is so tight that you can’t afford to get even the basics, you’ll need to take a closer look at your finances – there’s almost always something you can go without for a week or two, or a way to make things last longer or buy them cheaper. Don’t forget, the majority of survival items are going to either be one off buys, or be things like food with a long shelf life, and even then, when they near expiry, they can be consumed as part of your weekly meal plan and replaced. That’s a great way to squeeze extra from your household budget too – try to buy longer life items, and if they don’t get used, they can go into your kit.
Pay Less For The Same
Common ways to free up money to funds to pay for your preparedness gear include reducing the TV channels – most of us don’t watch that many anyway. Phone up your provider and say you want to cancel – all too often they’ll offer you an incentive to stay – and that usually means cheaper prices. We’ve heard of people slicing their TV, internet and telephone bills in half by using this technique, and that’s probably enough to get a lot of your items ticked off the checklist. Other techniques include reducing fuel costs by turning lights off when they’re not needed, not having the heat turned up too high, particularly when your home is empty, and not being afraid to use coupons to reduce the cost of food at the store. We know you’ve probably heard all of this before, but the savings really do add up if you’re committed.
Get Tech Savvy With Your Budget
Using the internet is another way to boost your spending power and help with that survivalist budget. It’s not just about finding coupons and the best prices – it can also be about finding websites just like this one. We’ve just shown you how to prioritize what you buy with your simple checklist, and this is just one page on a big website. There’s plenty of great ideas out there – and we also help you with ideas in our regular updates. Join our free member’s list to find out more.
Overall, the message is to build up your basics without getting into debt or spending more than you can afford. You might be surprised how quickly the essentials come together – then you can choose what’s next from the rest of the original list. Remember, you’ll get there is you maintain focus, can by can, it all mounts up!