10 Technology Trends for Modern Homesteading
Are you looking for a lifestyle of self-sufficiency? Then homesteading may be for you. You may be thinking, “I have to move away from everything, and go far, far away to do that.” But that’s not quite true. People all over the U.S. have been buying land and moving to a more self-sufficient lifestyle. Taking full advantage of a homestead may be difficult to undergo, but it’s not impossible. New advances in technology can help you have a cost and energy-efficient life.
If you and your family are debating whether or not a homestead is for you, keep reading to learn how the clean air, the quiet nights and the calmness of the outdoors can be more than just a beautiful place to live, but it can be an independent and world-changing lifestyle.
Tools for Self-Sufficiency
These technology trends for homesteading will not only help you feel confident and secure with your decision but will help you see how you can be saving the planet and your wallet, at the same time!
1. Solar Panels
You may have heard a lot about solar panels over the years but they may not all make sense. They are one of the most accessible options you can buy to save energy and to make money in the long run.
That’s right — make money! After you’ve had solar panels long enough that clean energy can then be sold to energy companies, neighbors, and etc. The upfront cost of solar panels may be scary, but you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the return on your investment. The nice part is, there isn’t just one type of solar panel anymore, they vary by size and strength. The factors to consider before going solar will take some time to learn and research but will have a long-term impact on the world around us and your bank account. Research shows that you can get a full return on your investment (through lower energy bills) in two to seven years!
2. Wind Turbines
With wind energy being in the top 2 with solar energy it’s anticipated that by 2020, 3.8 million homes will have solar power and 10% of the US’s electricity will be supplied by wind energy. Although neither of these factors can be measured ahead of time, they aren’t going anywhere and they can’t run out! Wind turbines can be built or bought depending on your wants and the quantity and direction of the wind in your area.
3. Solar or Geothermal Heating
Both solar and geothermal energy are “green” options. They have drawbacks and advantages to them both. Whether with their cost or with their consistency, solar or geothermal energy can power your home’s heat.
Wind, solar and geothermal energy all have some minor drawbacks when providing renewable energy. However, the impact of investing in these renewable power sources offer the opportunity to adapt and improve the world around us by reducing emissions from non-renewable resources.
4. Electric Powered Bikes
This tool can not only save you money on car payments, insurance, gas, etc., but it can also get you in better shape!
5. Solar Powered Home Appliances
Like solar panels but smaller! If you’re not sold on buying and installing solar electric systems, these solar-powered home appliances can still make an impact on energy costs. Appliances such as cameras, lights and water heaters can be made or bought with smaller solar panels to retrieve energy from the sun and even store it for not-so-sunny days.
6. Micro Hydro Power Generators
This type of power is more consistent and reliable as a sustainable energy source – it can continuously produce energy even if the sun doesn’t shine or the wind doesn’t blow because it is generated by the natural flow of water. So if your homestead has any moving water on the property, you can buy this device to generate and store sustainable energy.
7. Energy-Saving Appliances
While shopping for new appliances check for the Energy Star label. This label is a federal guarantee that it will use less energy while running and while on standby. Compared to commonly found home appliances, these energy-saving appliances can save you anywhere from 9 to 25% in operating costs.
8. Motion Sensors
Installing motion sensors on your homestead can not only keep you safe from injuries at night but it can keep unwanted guests (people or animals) away from your land.
9. A Smart Thermostat
The Department of Energy reported that turning the thermostat back 7-10 degrees can save as much as 10% a year on heating and cooling. With a programmable thermostat that regulates itself, homestead owners can take advantage of smart technology for both their comfort and their finances.
10. Monitors & Controls
Smart security through devices like security cameras can ensure a safer life for your family and your land. These easy-install cameras can help you be in three or four places at once. Check on your crops, your livestock or even your kids from the comfort of your couch.
Working from Homestead
With the use of these tools, you and your family can not only run your lives but you could also run your own business. With this modern-day technology, you can stay organized, have the means for great communication and can produce less waste.
Advancing Every Minute
With technology getting better, stronger and more common every day, these tools have started becoming a bigger part of everyone’s life. Get a jump start on these practices to help the world reduce its carbon footprint and to increase productivity and efficiency on your land.
About the author
Jane Marsh is the Editor-in-Chief of Environment.co. She covers topics related to climate policy, sustainability, renewable energy and more.