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What should I be asking myself when buying a Lifestyle Block?

Before you buy a rural Lifestyle Block, ask yourself the following questions:
  • Is your property within reasonable travelling distance from a town and services?
  • How much time and effort can you devote to learning about your chosen farming or food growing activity?
  • Do you have sufficient disposable income to adequately support the wellbeing of livestock - including any feeding and medical treatment?
  • Are there any other successful lifestyle blocks or hobby farmers nearby who you could learn from and share ideas with?
  • Are your family willing to support your lifestyle block farming activities?  Even a small hobby farm can be hard work and time consuming.
  • What level of income, if any, do you expect from your property?
  • Weather is a factor to consider when farming.  Good farmers prepare for bad weather by storing foodstuffs in summer to use in winter, storing water in winter to be used in summer, and so on.  Are you prepared for a crisis?
  • Do you have the right training and skills in mechanics and farm safety to operate and maintain small farm equipment, or will you need to upskill yourself?  Contact your local farmers co-operative for advice.
  • Is your chosen farm activity well suited to the landscape and capability of the land you’re looking at?
  • Is there enough water available at your prospective lifestyle block to carry out the farm activity you have in mind?  Is the water supply of suitable quality?
  • Are all the public services (electricity, gas, water, sewage, phone, and Internet) you require already provided to the lifestyle block property? If not, how much will it cost you to connect the property up? Or is it an area that will always have limited services?
  • Are there any soil erosion issues on the property?  Can they be fixed?  Soil problems can be expensive to rectify. To protect yourself from this risk, you could ask a soil engineer to carry out soil testing, prior to your purchase.
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