Best way to make money off a lifestyle block?

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460923 by Aquila
30 acres..... Out dunsandel way? Its flat so no free water..... Rain is sparse so pumps it is. Have fun, put animals in the freezer, save money rather than spending it at the supermarket.

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460925 by muri
Mrt700 this forum is not a formula where you put in questions and everyone answers them in a way that you would like.
It is a place for people to put their forward ideas and opinions so if its advice you need , then perhaps a farm advisor would be the way for you to go
You would be very hard pressed to make a living off 30 acres in Chch, as already stated.
There have been many threads on making a living off small blocks so perhaps you could go back thru these threads and look at the general comments that were made in the past.
I make a living off my block but i had a background in horticulture before I moved here, I have a large plant house three times the size of my own house and I have been involved long enough in the industry to get professional advice should it be required.
Buying a piece of land is just that. It is not a pathway to income,s but about a lifestyle change
many farmers have trouble making ends meet on much larger blocks of land than 30 acres.
What you do will relate to the land you have bought, what it is useful for, how it is set up and what facilities it has, its soils, it climates and what it lends itself to. Your knowledge and background etc
We cant really offer you the formula you seem to be after, we are not advisers, we can only give opinions

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460926 by cowvet

Mrt007;462578 wrote: Ok then Cowvet i guess this whole exercise was a waste of time then. What I was hoping for was for people to tel me what they have tried, what was successfull and what wasn't, I love animals of all shapes and sizes and would be passionate and would research any decision I made that is why I started this thread. Research!!! I could just buy a block of land throw animals at it but that is not the way I do things. Yes I work full time, week on week off where I am away from home, but my partner and kids are at home. I will tell you what I am passionate about is my kids hence why I am trying to find a way to subsidise my income enough to move home and live with them full time. Subsidise my income enough so that my partner can work at home so if the kids are sick she can tend to them. I don't want this to be my sole source of income. I am a hard working thirty three year old trying to make something of my life and a brighter future for my kids. But the first response I got was a negative one. Why would I charge myself for my time. It is the one thing that is free and every hour that my 2,3 or four year old is with me while I am doing something on that block of land is worth far more than any money you could pay me.
There's the Passion!!!


Well you have told us more in this post than the original one.

I take it at the start of this endeavour you are going to be away from home week about ad your partner works.

Availability of water will be one of the biggest limitations in Canterbury - do you have water for irrigation...and if you don't then that crosses a lot of possibilities off the list.

How much money do you need to make in order to achieve your goals and how much money have you got to invest in the endeavour or setting it up.

what is the point of anyone telling you all about intensive horticulture if you have no water and no gear and no cash to get it up and running - its expensive, and you will not get water in the red zone.

Why would you charge for your time? - good grief if you slog your guts out every spare hour of the day to make $5000 over a year then it probably isn't worth it and there are easier ways to make $5000. Be realistic and tell me how much quality time you can expect with a young child if you are say working by yourself with machinery/chemicals/wet weather/large animals.
Your time is worth money and without money you can't achieve your goals


I love animals...they're delicious

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460927 by KaiapoiKen
Muri, you are right about the horticulture thing. It is hard work and a lifestyle block in Canterbury makes it doubly so. Some of my friends are into it and they are leasing other blocks to ensure they are viable. I think Mrt007 is a dreamer. Without a big investment in greenhouses and such horticulture can be damned hard and not always profitable. Other option are risky and the best advise I could give them is give the idea away or be prepared to just adopt the lifestyle and relax. Raise a few animals or something for your own pleasure.

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460928 by Mich
Hi Mrt007, and welcome. Your question is one that is often asked by people new to the forum. As Muri put it (good post, Muri...) a site search may give you the answers you're looking for.

However the advice you've been given so far by people is actually useful information - particularly about how much you can save living on a LSB. If you can provide most of your food needs, have time to cook from scratch and save money on processed food, can save on transport by not having to go into town all the time, can grow your own firewood and take time to enjoy the peace and quiet, then there is little better in life in my opinion. A good number of us don't make money off our blocks - in some cases we actually lose money if we have to buy in skills or equipment that we don't have ourselves.

I do agree with Cowvet though when she asks why you wouldn't include your time if you're actively looking to 'make money' out of your block. I'm not sure how you can assess whether you're making money or not if you don't factor your own time in.

Please don't get antsy at what you perceive to be unhelpful answers - I've been on LSB for a very, very long time and in my experience 99.9% of people are genuinely welcoming and offer advice willingly,based on their own experience. What you might think of as a smart answer is more than likely from someone who 'says it in a nutshell', not an attempt to be unhelpful. LSB is an amazing resource on all manner of things, and I look forward to hearing more about your block and your experiences on it over time.
Cheers, Mich.

Good exercise for the heart is to bend down and help someone up. Anon.

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460933 by Aria
We're a bit like swaggie - the forestry block on our block is the main potential profit earner when harvested. When we first purchased we also possum trapped it - nice little bonus there on fur. Probably need to do that again as it's three year down the track now.

Breeding animals for resale as live animals might be a way to go for you - and given your dairy background, perhaps you could raise and train house cows. A nice ready market for them with small block lifestylers and folks will pay a premium for a calm one already used to being hand milked. Same likely goes for milking goats.

One of our neighbours does a combination of firewood and feral goats - lots of hard work in firewood but it pays as you can't lose money.

Best of luck in what you eventually decide.

PS - I asked roughly the same thing when joining here - as had no idea what type of animal to purchase for our grazing land. My main point was I didn't want to lose money (i.e. I didn't want the block to eat into the savings we make in off farm income). Anyway, having read and thought alot about it - we leased our grazing paddocks to a neighbour. Again, guaranteed income, no possibility of losses. Income equal to what we pay in rates. Nice savings :-).

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460934 by Mrt007

Aquila;462586 wrote: 30 acres..... Out dunsandel way? Its flat so no free water..... Rain is sparse so pumps it is. Have fun, put animals in the freezer, save money rather than spending it at the supermarket.

Sent from my GT-I9300 using Tapatalk 2

Thank you. I will take that advice on board.

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460935 by Mrt007

KaiapoiKen;462585 wrote: I afraid I agree with Aquila. If you think you are going to make money from your block, especially here in Canterbury you're dreaming. All of us have tried various things but most would agree that we finish up supplementing our income through what we grow/raise on the property. Sure, sometimes something works but that's very much the exception, just sit back and enjoy the lifestyle, the freedom, the quietness and being able to watch your kids do the things that are available for them to do in the country and not have to worry about the things urban-bred kids get up. to.

Thanks for the advice. I guess I headed the question up wrong. I predominantly don't want to loose too much money on it.
Your probably correct in your next post when you say I am a dreamer. But I am not gunna sit around and let life pass me by then buy something when I am too old to enjoy it.
Cheers

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460938 by Mrt007

muri;462590 wrote: Mrt700 this forum is not a formula where you put in questions and everyone answers them in a way that you would like.
It is a place for people to put their forward ideas and opinions so if its advice you need , then perhaps a farm advisor would be the way for you to go
You would be very hard pressed to make a living off 30 acres in Chch, as already stated.
There have been many threads on making a living off small blocks so perhaps you could go back thru these threads and look at the general comments that were made in the past.
I make a living off my block but i had a background in horticulture before I moved here, I have a large plant house three times the size of my own house and I have been involved long enough in the industry to get professional advice should it be required.
Buying a piece of land is just that. It is not a pathway to income,s but about a lifestyle change
many farmers have trouble making ends meet on much larger blocks of land than 30 acres.
What you do will relate to the land you have bought, what it is useful for, how it is set up and what facilities it has, its soils, it climates and what it lends itself to. Your knowledge and background etc
We cant really offer you the formula you seem to be after, we are not advisers, we can only give opinions

Thank you Muri. Good post and you have answered a lot of questions for me. I have had enough experience with Horticulture to know that I don't have green fingers haha.
Ultimately I would like to set up a boarding kennel and cattery and train gun dogs for the international market as this is what I know inside out but don't want to land that on my partner while I still live away from home. I hadn't said this earlier as I didn't want to influence people's answers.

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460939 by Mrt007

Mich;462594 wrote: Hi Mrt007, and welcome. Your question is one that is often asked by people new to the forum. As Muri put it (good post, Muri...) a site search may give you the answers you're looking for.

However the advice you've been given so far by people is actually useful information - particularly about how much you can save living on a LSB. If you can provide most of your food needs, have time to cook from scratch and save money on processed food, can save on transport by not having to go into town all the time, can grow your own firewood and take time to enjoy the peace and quiet, then there is little better in life in my opinion. A good number of us don't make money off our blocks - in some cases we actually lose money if we have to buy in skills or equipment that we don't have ourselves.

I do agree with Cowvet though when she asks why you wouldn't include your time if you're actively looking to 'make money' out of your block. I'm not sure how you can assess whether you're making money or not if you don't factor your own time in.

Please don't get antsy at what you perceive to be unhelpful answers - I've been on LSB for a very, very long time and in my experience 99.9% of people are genuinely welcoming and offer advice willingly,based on their own experience. What you might think of as a smart answer is more than likely from someone who 'says it in a nutshell', not an attempt to be unhelpful. LSB is an amazing resource on all manner of things, and I look forward to hearing more about your block and your experiences on it over time.
Cheers, Mich.

Thanks mich
I tried searching through old posts but couldn't find what I was looking for, I do realise that if people ask the same thing often then people just try shut them down straight away and I have seen this a lot on another forum I am a part of.
Obviously the time spent is what makes the money but for me I don't like to look at time in a monetary sense as I could spend another day at work and earn in excess of $700 but the cost to my family of me not being there can't be measured in a monetary sense. I hope this makes sense.
There have been some great posts which I really appreciate and the downside to forums is that text can be taken out of context very easily. I am not here to make enemies, or money for that matter just trying to do my homework.

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460941 by Mrt007

Aria;462600 wrote: We're a bit like swaggie - the forestry block on our block is the main potential profit earner when harvested. When we first purchased we also possum trapped it - nice little bonus there on fur. Probably need to do that again as it's three year down the track now.

Breeding animals for resale as live animals might be a way to go for you - and given your dairy background, perhaps you could raise and train house cows. A nice ready market for them with small block lifestylers and folks will pay a premium for a calm one already used to being hand milked. Same likely goes for milking goats.

One of our neighbours does a combination of firewood and feral goats - lots of hard work in firewood but it pays as you can't lose money.

Best of luck in what you eventually decide.

PS - I asked roughly the same thing when joining here - as had no idea what type of animal to purchase for our grazing land. My main point was I didn't want to lose money (i.e. I didn't want the block to eat into the savings we make in off farm income). Anyway, having read and thought alot about it - we leased our grazing paddocks to a neighbour. Again, guaranteed income, no possibility of losses. Income equal to what we pay in rates. Nice savings :-).

Thank you. See this breaking in of house cows and goats is something I would never have envisaged therefore makes this process worth while. Firewood is definately something I could do if I looked a wee bit further afield at a block.
I am same as you just trying to avoid loosing money.

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460943 by muri
Mrt it sounds as tho you have a really good plan up your sleeve with the dogs as a potential there.
I would have put that on the table initially to get comments on that as then i think people would have been more focussed in their response.
Be aware also of council regulations regarding catteries etc as there are controls for these in the Town Plan for your area.
I think a cattery is an excellent completement to earning a living on a life style block and catering for the boutique end of the market could well provide many benefits. You need to find out how well catered for the market is in your area

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460956 by max2
I believe we could have made more money by not having the forestry on the properly and am pleased to see the back of it. Whilst the current monthly lump sums cheques have been nice, when we did the sums of grazing bigger (yearlings) beasties on the same property (but with pasture) we would have turned over more $$ than what the tree income is providing.

For example, one month we had 1165.59 tons removed from the property. After everyone else has been paid, we average $34.94 per ton ex gst. Cartage, weighbridge fees, logging fees etc all come out before ''our'' bit thats been in the ground for 28 years (could be semi grazed by sheep once the trees were established but not as much once they hit about 18 years old). So I don't think forestry (pre 1989) is an income answer, unless you are going to plant exotic woods such as walnut or oak for your superannuation.

****

I also believe whilst most of us can earn $$ per hour more off farm than on, when you take into account RUCS, cost of personal presentation in the workplace, the luxury and choice of buying lunch/that bottle of wine for dinner etc when you are out and about, all reduce how much we earn in that hourly figure. I cook more for my family now than I did 3 months ago (as in cakes and slices, always had a home cooked meal at the end of the day) my home is getting cleaner, I am interested again in quilting, something I used to do before moving to NZ. I feel like I have gone back to being ''me'' with my family and much happier for it.

Nothing wrong with dreams or dreaming, its how most of us got started and gave us the confidence to give anything a go. I am sure if we had all known the reality of what we were getting into before starting out on our own course, some of us may have well been put off for life.. :) :)

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460958 by Mrt007

muri;462612 wrote: Mrt it sounds as tho you have a really good plan up your sleeve with the dogs as a potential there.
I would have put that on the table initially to get comments on that as then i think people would have been more focussed in their response.
Be aware also of council regulations regarding catteries etc as there are controls for these in the Town Plan for your area.
I think a cattery is an excellent completement to earning a living on a life style block and catering for the boutique end of the market could well provide many benefits. You need to find out how well catered for the market is in your area

Yeah thanks. I kind of left it out in the hope of getting some other good ideas which I have, I haven't been able to find a kennel or cattery in the immediate vicinity and with the town growing (currently 200 odd houses in the planning and building phase) as the red zone expidites people from the red zone I think there will be a real demand for it but will definately check in with the council, would definately look at the boutique end of the market, less numbers and quality care.

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11 years 3 weeks ago #460962 by Aria

Mrt007;462610 wrote: Thank you. See this breaking in of house cows and goats is something I would never have envisaged therefore makes this process worth while. Firewood is definately something I could do if I looked a wee bit further afield at a block.
I am same as you just trying to avoid loosing money.


Glad it's another idea for you. Bear in mind with firewood - folks also want it delivered, so close in to your main market is pretty important as you have to be able to compete on cartage cost as well.

With boarding kennels and catteries - I see alot of them advertised for sale; so worth doing your market research there - as buying an existing se up might be worthwhile as well.

You also mentioned gun dogs. Some of the hounds out of the US are quite rare here - they are lovely dogs and so importing some breed stock from the US might be a good idea.

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