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How is any young person supposed to be able to start a farm???

This world sure is a big joke.

Don't see many plausible ways for people to do things. Who would have thought that something so hard to be successful with would also be nearly impossible to begin?

Rant over temporarily. Mods feel free to move this is need be.
 

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I own a cattle farm myself but I've often thought the same thing. With the price of land, equipment, and livestock start up takes a small fortune. If you don't inherit a farm you need to win the lottery. Patience is the key. We had a few acres 10 years ago but not enough to raise cattle and there wasn't anything close available. Now I was 40 and had a little money and we both have fairly decent day jobs so it was a little easier but we found a small farm, 25 acres with a house 10 miles away so I took it. I let my neighbors know that I would like to have some more ground and a year or two later bought 80 adjoining acres and then three years later another 65 and before you know it you've got enough to drive yourself crazy. Started off with some pretty shaky old equipment but it did the job until I could get better. Bought old broken mouth cows that were p3 and would squeeze a calf or two more out of them until I built the herd up. Thing is if you want to farm find you a small place you can afford get to know your neighbors especially if there are some older guys. A lot of times a young guy can help out in return you might be able to borrow some equipment or maybe trade labor for a calf or old cow, etc. You got to start small work like a dog and just keep pluggin away.
 

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You start out with old equipment that you better know how to work on, and leased land. Any money you make, acquire land. Avoid debt. My great uncle bought an Iowa farm for back taxes while raising 4 kids, died a multi millionaire. He became wealthy from farming and a lot of it during the "farm crisis" years. He turned his farm around from barely breaking even on corn and soybeans by switching to popcorn. When the microwave popcorn snack craze got started, they needed popcorn so bad he didn't even have to pay freight, they would send trucks and pick it up out of his bins. So make sure and look for alternate opportunities, too.

Not saying it's easy, not by a long shot, but it can be done.
 

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I would have to say that NONE of us probably had a pot to piss in when we were young. But those of us that REALLY wanted the homestead way of life worked hard, saved and saved and saved and SLOWLY earned the life we looked forward to. We did without out all the "fun" toys that our friends and family had and looked towards the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. You can do it but it won't happen overnight unless you win the lottery - LOL!!! Just start the journey and keep going towards the goal!!!! I am 60 now and can say it was worth the effort. Listen to how all the "oldies" on HT did it and you can learn many things to help yourself along!!! Don't give up!!!!
 

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We started out with 10 acres that we rented from a farmer. We raised watermelons and cantaloupes and sold them. In a couple of years we bought 30 acres and raised watermelons and cantaloupes and Okra. In another few years we bought a Section (1 mile by 1 mile) of good land and started farming. We used older tractors and did most of the work on them at home.In a few years we rented 4000 acres and farmed that until My father got to old and sold it at break even prices.It doesn't need more than a few acres and a good idea to start farming. That idea is to keep up with the new idea and never stop improving.
 

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Get out of the forty hour workweek mentality. If you really want it you just may find that a 100 hour work week and some sacrificing will give it to you. I find it funny that people think land is expensive. I have been shopping and can buy 20 or more acres of land with a house in the mid-west for less than I paid for my pickup.

Find niche markets and sell up yourself. You cannot compete with factory farming so why try. Read about visionaries like Joel Salatin and then emulate them. Work harder, work smarter, find outside the box solutions, plant community in addition to crops, seek guidance and wisdom from a supreme being.

Use the vitality of youth to work while you can to purchase wisdom to work for you when you can't.

When you believe in yourself, someone else might, and those that have been through it before you, love to help those coming after. Try it you'll like it.

Before you try it you may want to consider a heart transplant, because if you are complaining of adversity before you have experienced it, you just aren't going to make it.
 

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This thread is very inspiring. Thank you all. We got a late start with homesteading. We are both 58, still work full time jobs, have side businesses and continue to pay off previous debt and save. We are far from being self sufficient, but we keep working at it on our little 15 acre farm. Sometimes I think we'll be too old to enjoy it once we are self sufficient, but then I have to remind myself that the journey is also fun, even though it can be tiring and frustrating at times. I look around at today's world, and I thank God that even though we set out on this path later than a lot of other people, at least we are on the path to self sufficiency. Once again, thanks for the inspiration.
 

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Row crop farming these days is really difficult to get into right now just due to costs for land in certain areas. I've heard tillable land in Iowa and other parts of the grain belt are going for upwards of 10k an acre at auctions. Personally I think this a little hyper inflated but if someone is willing to pay that who am I to say.

You really have to do some good hard research out there to find out what there is a market for. Doesn't make sense to do dairy if there's no truck making rounds in the area. Grain farming would be tough if if there is no local mill. Organic farming can be be profitable but as more and more people get into it the prices for them will lower due to competition.

If there is a livestock auction somewhere raising beef cattle or pork could be a safe bet. You can start small and build up a herd slowly. Beef and pork prices have gone up considerably over the past few years. Another option could be selling hay. If you can produce good hay horse people will pay good money for it.

Most likely before your farm can produce a steady income you'll need to have another job.
http://www.sare.org

They link listed above has some free Pdf's that are downloadable directed at people starting farming.
 

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A local lady died this past winter at age 99. Her family just sold her property a few days ago. Nice house, garage, small barn and 64 acres. It sold for $7900 acre, house included.
That's half MIL. Way too rich for my blood.
I have often wondered the same thing, how do people get started?
Then I got some good news. About half mile from me is a small pasture type field, roughly 2.5 acres. Land hadnt been used in several years, just gets chopped twice a year. The lady who owns it heard I was looking for land to plant a truck patch on. She told a mutual friend to have me get ahold of her this weekend.
It may only be a small spot, but, if we can work out agreeable terms, it may be enough to allow me to start making some $$ to save up towards buying more land.
Only time will tell. If all goes well, I plan on planting sweet corn and pumpkins on it. That frees up the half acre + that I have on my property for tomatoes, peppers and green beans.
If things go well, I might be able to buy a few more acres in a few years.

There's always a way, it just may not be the way we planned and in our desired time frame. Just stay focussed on your goal, and be open to take advantage of any opportunity that comes your way.
 

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How is any young person supposed to be able to start a farm???

This world sure is a big joke.

Don't see many plausible ways for people to do things. Who would have thought that something so hard to be successful with would also be nearly impossible to begin?

Rant over temporarily. Mods feel free to move this is need be.
Just like any businessman starts any business. Work, save money to invest, start small and build up your business (farm) over the course of you lifetime. Then when you get to old to run it, watch the kids sell it all off and blow the money. :)
 

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There's always a way, it just may not be the way we planned and in our desired time frame. Just stay focused on your goal, and be open to take advantage of any opportunity that comes your way.
Wise Words!!
 

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Start small.....

Everybody is familiar with the statement " where's there's a will there's a way" and it's the truth.

Realistic goals set apart the people that do and the people that want to do.

So you want to be a farmer? Great! Get to work....
You can't afford a farm, so what you don't need a farm to be a farmer. Meat chickens are a great way to start, they don't take a ton of money or space to raise. They also turnover rather fast, and don't take a ton of time.

Everyone wants to get rich, without the work. Not gonna happen. The real work is finding and keeping customers, this is the key to success.

Most people that want to start farming look at it backwards, they want to get a bunch of animals then think they can sell them and make some money, wrong! You need the customers first, this should determine how many animals you should start with. Demand should decide how and when you expand, not random numbers like I want x amount of cows or whatever.

The next part is only spending smart money. You can build almost anything cheaper that you can buy, just because something is not new does not make it any less effective. If you only spend the money you need to you will succeed. Use prior successes to expand into new areas, if you sell chickens to say 20 people, maybe one or two would be interested in fresh pork, again the interest should control the process.

We started with laying hens, then people started asking us if they could buy eggs. Next a friend of mine asked me if I could raise them a turkey for thanksgiving, I said yes and told a few egg customers about the idea and they also wanted a turkey. My brother and I decided to raise 2 pigs just for our family's, through casual conversation we have standing orders for 4 pigs next year. Same thing happened with beef. Now I'm a successful farmer. It didn't happen over night, and it cost some money along the way.

I don't have any debt because I let one thing pay for the next. I drive the truck I bought almost new in 2002 still runs great and it's paid off.

Funny thing is if I had bought a new truck 3 years ago I could not have afforded to start farming.
 

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I find it funny that people think land is expensive. I have been shopping and can buy 20 or more acres of land with a house in the mid-west for less than I paid for my pickup.
That statement is somewhat misleading though. First you have to find the land, smaller tracts tend to go for more. What did you have to put down to buy tht truck? Pretty minimial. 50% down on a farm isn't uncommon right now. I couldn't buy the 160 next to us because I needed a quarter million down, that's not chump change. If I wanted to buy a 400,000$ house I could get approved in no time, a 400,000 farm I'd have no shot. Then you need money to stock it, or plant or whatever.
 

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How is any young person supposed to be able to start a farm???

This world sure is a big joke.

Don't see many plausible ways for people to do things. Who would have thought that something so hard to be successful with would also be nearly impossible to begin?

Rant over temporarily. Mods feel free to move this is need be.
Same as folks started farms in every era before. With what they had maximized for productive yield or however much they wanted to go in debt to pay on time.

Young folks now actually have it easier today as with more recently engineered BISF techniques many can produce on one or two acres the yields former era small farmers needed 10 acres to produce.
 

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There are times when land is high and times when it's cheaoer. You need to be ready for the cheaper times.
Then there is always that exceptional situation where you get a great deal or find a jewel others have overlooked. You need to be ready everyday to take advantage of that too.
 
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