Texas Homestead Management: How to Make Self-Sufficiency Easier

Vegetable and flower garden in raised beds

What is homesteading in Texas? It turns out many people are confused by this for one reason: the word can mean two different things.

In law, homesteading refers to a person’s residence, including the land and the outbuildings. In Texas, certain homes can qualify for a tax exemption, which can reduce the property tax. Some homeowners can also request for protection. It means creditors cannot sell off the property to pay the debt.

The homesteading you will learn today is about self-sufficiency. While it doesn’t immediately imply living off the grid, it indicates producing their needs such as food by themselves.

To start and manage a homestead as easily as possible, here are two tips to keep in mind:

Manage your water,

Since homesteading means growing your own food supply, it may increase the demand for water for irrigation and agriculture. You also need it to feed the animals or clean their sheds.

There are many ways to be efficient with your water management. For collection, you can use either an above ground tank or an underground tank. The advantage of the former is you can monitor the condition conveniently. It is also much cheaper than burying the tank.

But it is also not immune to freeze. Make sure to buy tanks that allow water to expand to avoid splits or cracks in the tank. You can also invest in steel tanks.

Plan your land.

Many homesteaders start small, but eventually, as you become self-sufficient, you need to have more land for farming, irrigation, and animal sheds, to name a few.

In the 2016 Texas Small Land Sales Report, the number of small tract lands sold rose almost 19 percent in 2015 compared to the previous year. An upward trend was consistent across all the regions except for one, region 5 (Gulf Coast-Brazos Bottom). The prices had also gone up almost 10.5 percent within the same period, bringing the average to more than $5,600.

Managing a homestead does have its challenges, especially for beginners, but being able to spend less on necessities, produce something by hand, and be less dependent on others can be rewarding.