145+ Homestead Income Ideas for the Small Farm

Looking for some income ideas for your small farm? Ready to grow your homestead into a self-sufficient business? Need a creative spark to help you figure out how to earn some side income and add infrastructure or livestock to your homestead? We have put together the ULTIMATE Homestead Income Ideas Guide! Learn ways to make a profit from your small farm while being a service to your community. 

Ready to dive in even deeper and set your farm business on a trajectory for success?

Join some of the homesteading community’s leading entrepreneurs for one-on-one learning about how to make your farm and homestead a monetary success during The Homestead Business Weekend Seminar, January 21 & 22! In fact, Joel Salatin will be speaking on this very topic! His talk is entitled “Earning Money on the Homestead: Unlimited Opportunities.”

There are only a few in-person spots left for this event to be held in Columbia, Tennessee but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out! Virtual tickets are unlimited and available for purchase today! Be sure to grab your pass today so you don’t miss out on the valuable wisdom & inspiration our speakers will be sharing to help you get your homestead business off to a great start!

Cautions Before Starting a Homestead Business

Don’t Lose Your Homestead Vision

While it’s easy to get excited about branching out on your farm & starting to earn income from your hard work on the land, it’s important to make sure that you keep your priorities in focus with a clear vision.

No matter what prompted you to start this lifestyle, whether health goals, financial goals, to have greater self-sufficiency, etc. you must be careful not to fall into the trap of shifting your focus and getting swallowed up in the business to the neglect of your homestead. Be vigilant and constantly evaluate if your farm’s needs are being met and scale your business accordingly.

Become a Cottage Economist

Cottage Economy is a small book written by William Cobbett in the early 19th century. In it the author said, “The man who, by his own and his family’s labour, can provide a sufficiency of food and raiment, and a comfortable dwelling-place, is not a poor man.”

He has also said, “It is not the greatness of a man’s means that makes him independent, so much as the smallness of his wants.”

Two mindsets can be gleaned from his work and are fundamental for the homesteader wanting to earn primary or supplemental income from their farm:

1.) Adjust your expectations. Most of us have grown up in a consumer economy and many of our needs are actually wants. Learn to discern the difference. Perhaps you’ll find you can just enjoy your life without the hustle of keeping up to folks who are charging it all anyway.

2.) The truth in the maxim “A penny saved is a penny earned.” We recommend starting a journal for one year of all the money you can save. Add savings from sales & coupons. Even better, add money saved when you refrained from making a purchase altogether (100% savings!) Challenge yourself to save as much as possible.

Use The Homestead Journal or Homestead Management Printables to track your homestead expenses (something you should get in the habit of doing anyway if you’ll be starting a business). Record your yields & calculate your price per pound on the various areas of homestead production. Find out the average cost per pound for a comparable product and add that to your savings.

For example, this year we raised 489 pounds of pastured poultry at a cost of $2.22 per pound. Pastured poultry from a local farmer is $4.90 per pound (for whole chickens). That’s a savings of $1,310.52. Why should these numbers not be considered in the cottage economy of the homestead? When these factors are considered, perhaps you’ll find that the cash income from a homestead business isn’t as valuable as being a prudent cottage economist.

With those caveats behind us, let’s jump into the exciting part and discover all of the ways you can start earning income on your homestead!

Homestead Income Ideas

145+ Homestead Income Ideas for the Small Farm

Ways to Make Money in the Garden

  • Sell Extra Garden Seeds
  • Grow & Sell Extra Seedlings
  • Start a Market Garden & Sell Vegetables 
  • Start a Medicinal or Culinary Herb Garden & Sell Plants
  • Grow an Extra Row of Garlic & Sell Seed
  • Grow Microgreens for Restaurants & Market
  • Start a Worm Farm
  • Sell Perennial Herbs & Flowers
  • Make & Sell Great Compost
  • Grow Mums for Fall Decorations
  • Grow Cut Flowers for Market
  • Grow Culinary Herbs & Spices for Market
  • Grow Cannabis/Hemp

Sources of Income from Livestock

  • Offer Breeding Services
  • Raise Extra Meat & Sell It
  • Start a Herdshare
  • Raise Bottle Babies & Sell Tame Livestock
  • Rent Out Your Goats for Land Management
  • Rent Out Your Pasture
  • Raise Heifers to Sell as Halter Trained Family Milk Cows
  • Raise Others Livestock to Butcher (Butcher your own meat, have your customers join you and help on butcher day. If “customers” butcher their livestock that were raised on your farm, certified processing facilities aren’t necessary. This allows you to offer custom cuts, specialty products, render fat, etc.)
Make Money Selling Rainbow Eggs

Earn Income from the Poultry Flock

  • Sell Surplus Rainbow Colored Chicken Eggs
  • Market Premium Duck Eggs
  • Sell Hatching Eggs
  • Hatch Chicks to Sell 
  • Sell Started Pullets, Ready to Lay
  • Raise Pheasant, Grouse, or Quail for Hunters
  • Raise Mealworms to Sell for Snacks
  • Raise Ducks for Restaurants
  • Raise Thanksgiving Turkeys

Make Money Raising Sheep

  • Raise Lambs for Market
  • Sell Wool for Fiber
  • Sell Pelts & Skins for Home Decor
  • Sell Parasite-Resistant Healthy Breeding Stock

Raise Rabbits & Make Money

Homestead Income Ideas

Beekeeping Income Ideas

  • Offer Hive Rental to Farms & Orchards
  • Sell Surplus Honey
  • Sell Your Extra Beeswax
  • Market Healthcare Products with Propolis
  • Offer Swarm Removal Services
  • Sell Beeswax Candles
  • Formulate Herbal Salves

Farm & Land Services Income Ideas

  • Shear Alapacas & Sheep
  • Offer Stud Services
  • Horse Boarding 
  • Pet Training
  • Horse Riding Lessons
  • Farm Sitting
  • Board Pets
  • Start a Petting Zoo
  • Rototill Gardens
  • Offer Stump Removal Services
  • Woodlot Clean Up
  • Snow Removal 
  • Leaf Removal
  • Tree Pruning & Trimming Services
  • Apple Cider Pressing
  • Start a Mobile Butchery
  • Deer Processing
  • Taxidermy
  • Engine Repair
  • Mill Grains for Your Community
  • Floral Arranging
  • Rent Out Equipment
  • Make & Sell Hay
  • Offer Tractor Services
  • Lease Hunting Rights
  • Rent Out Your Land RV & Campsite Parking
  • Run an Outdoor Yoga Studio
  • Build a Shooting Range
  • Offer Taxi Services (Especially in Amish Communities)
  • Rent Out Your Stock Trailer
Earn Money Building Services

Put Your Skills to Work: Offer Building Services

  • Offer Handyman Services
  • Build Fences
  • Build Raised Beds for Gardeners
  • Build Chicken Coops
  • Saw Mill
  • Reclaim Old Barns
  • Build Tiny Houses
  • Custom Furniture Making
  • Repurpose Antique Furniture (Furniture Flipping)

Earn Money from a Woodlot

  • Sell Extra Firewood
  • Sell Surplus Maple Syrup
  • Grow Nursery Trees
  • Grow & Sell Bamboo Products
  • Start a Tree Farm for Timber
  • Start a Christmas Tree Farm
  • Grow Ramps
  • Grow Mushrooms
  • Grow Ginseng

Agrotourism Income Ideas

  • Plant a Corn Maze
  • Start a U-Pick Orchard or Garden
  • Start a Bed & Breakfast
  • Create a Vacation Rental Property
  • Start a Pumpkin Patch
  • Offer Your Farm as a Wedding & Event Venue

Use Your Homestead Skills & Sell Crafts

  • Sell Your Handcrafted Creations on Etsy
  • Take Your Old Canning Jar & Make Home Decor
  • Sell Homemade Soap
  • Make & Sell Candles
  • Grow Gourds in Your Garden & Make Crafts
  • Woodworking, Woodturning, Woodcarving
  • Create Barnwood Home Decor
  • Make Feather Crafts
  • Grow Job’s Tears Grain & Make Jewelry
  • Naturally Dye Fiber
  • Sell Your Handmade Quilts
  • Weave Baskets
  • Make Handmade Pottery
  • Become a Leathersmith
  • Become a Blacksmith
Homestead Income Ideas

Cottage Foods

  • Sell Homemade Bread at Market
  • Sell Baked Goods
  • Sell Starter Cultures
  • Start a Micro Brewery
  • Sell Artisan Cheeses
  • Create Herbal Tea Blends
  • Sell Raw Pet Food
  • Sell Tallow & Lard

Online Income Ideas

  • Sell Your Photography 
  • Join Affiliate Marketing Programs
  • Social Media Manager
  • Graphic Designer
  • Write Books
  • Print on Demand Design (Such as T-shirts & Mugs)
  • Offer Consulting or Coaching Services
  • Virtual Assistant
  • Start a Website & Blog
  • Start a Podcast
  • Start a YouTube Channel

Home-Based Businesses

  • Permaculture Design Consultant
  • Teach Your Skills & Host Classes or Workshops
  • Rent Your Fields to Photographers
  • Fish Farming
  • Responsible Dog Breeding
  • Become an Herbalist
  • In-Home Child Care
  • Pet Groomer
  • Offer Music Lessons
  • Become a Homeschool Teacher or Tutor
  • Snail Farmer for Restaurants
  • Niche Product Supplier (This is common in the Amish community. Many families have a side business selling niche products to their community such as beekeeping supplies, gardening tools, furniture, etc.)
  • Product Distribution (Think Mary Kay, Avon, Essential Oils, Chalk Paint, etc.)
  • Resell Antiques from Estate Sales
  • Become a Doula

Do you have any homestead income ideas to add to this list? Share them below in the comments!

145+ Homestead Income Ideas: Ways to Earn Money on a Small Farm | Homesteaders of America
145+ Homestead Income Ideas: Ways to Earn Money on a Small Farm | Homesteaders of America