Five most important things to do before the SHTF?

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z's picture
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Joined: Jul 1 2010
Posts: 8
Five most important things to do before the SHTF?

 Hi All,

First of all, I'd like to thank the community here: following an earlier forum discussion with several of you, I pulled all of my pension funds (despite the 35% income tax) and converted them to gold. And not a moment too soon, as it is increasingly clear that pension funds here (I am not an American) are a sort of pyramid scheme that is quickly collapsing.

Anyway, I estimate that we have maybe a year before serious economic meltdown, and want to ask you what you think are the 5 most important things to do in that time in order to build resilience. We are renting a house in a rural community, but our lot is sort of suburban so we can't really grow anything except herbs. I could, however, grow stuff on my mom's lot, which is 15 minutes drive away - is it worth it?

Solar panels - I can't install serious, grid connected panels, but I was thinking about a small off-grid (250W ?) system for backup. What do you think?

chickens - I can probably raise 2 chickens in the back yard. Is it worth it?

So, what to do, what to do? (remember I have limited funds and time)

Many thanks!


txgirl69's picture
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 20 2009
Posts: 96
Is it worth it?!

Welcome to the community,

Yes, it is (will be) worth it - go to your Mother's house and start a garden, plant whatever you are able, Do you have window boxes? A few plants could fit in there.... install the solar panels, anything is better than nothing..... 2 chickens can provide you with eggs almost daily....

I wish more people were taking these steps!

Best of Luck, Rita



Wendy S. Delmater's picture
Wendy S. Delmater
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 13 2009
Posts: 1988
5 things

Dear z,

Welcome to the forums. There's a different answer to what each person needs to do to be prepared for emergencies or a severe economic decline (more severe than we'd have already - what fun.) This site is organized to help you identify what your answer is.

1. If you have not already done so, take  The Crash Course. It's that button on the upper left-hand side of this screen. Go ahead; I'll wait.

2. Take the quick self-assesment test. That's at the drop-down menu at the top of the page, under "Take Action."

3. Based on the weaknesses you identify in the self-assessment, choose topics within the "What Should I Do?" guide seciton of the site, also found at the drop-down menu at the top of the page, under "Take Action." Read those topics.

4. There is probably more info on topics where you want more in-depth information in the forums.  For futher information on topics--like storing food, urban prepping, choosing where to live, dealing with children or debt or illness during a SHTF crisis--try the Google "search this site" feature in the upper right hand corner of each page.

5. Stay a member of for the great feeling of community and mutal support.

I check in once a day, and read anything new in the "General Discussions and Questions" forum, then the "Current News and Events" Forum, then  "All Blogs" which are found under the "Stay Current" drop down menu - paying particular attention to the Daily Digest.

For me, the first steps were answered by the basic needs. Did I have food, clean water, shelter, heating & cooling and the ability to cook taken care of for emegencies? And there was no need to panic: I just chipped away at it every day. I started with bottled water set aside (2L old soda or milk containers of water with a drop of bleach roated once a year) and buying extra beans and rice, and worked my way up from there.

FAlley's picture
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Nov 2 2010
Posts: 90
3 things

Firearms, precious metals, and a community where you belong and contribute.

z's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Jul 1 2010
Posts: 8
A big "thank you"

 to all! 

What I'm getting from you is the following:

1. read, think, assess yourself. This I have pretty much done over the past 2 years I have been visiting (watched the CC twice...).

2. anything is better than nothing.  

Firearms, incidentally, are illegal to purchase in my country. Even air-guns are illegal (unless you have a special permit, which almost nobody gets).

The big issue we keep coming to is community. Our community is rural, but most of the people are "big farmers" with heavy tractors and stuff, and do not think very much of community gardens or preparedness in general. We try to approach them, but this has to be done very carefully so as to not become "those doomsday nuts". I this small town, once you get a reputation, it sticks for years :)


Saffron's picture
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 29 2009
Posts: 250
store food

Gardens take awhile to establish and sometimes they are hit-or-miss with some things, so I would put storing food (rice, beans, flour or wheat, oil, honey) at the top of the list. Chickens are a great idea - can you put up a coop at your mom's place too? Even just two will at least get you knowing the basics of raising them and learning what they need. So much of what we are doing now won't completely feed us, but at least gives us experience.

If you have room for an extra freezer, fill it and then get a generator if you can. 

~ s

dingalls's picture
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 21 2009
Posts: 28
use your intuition

One thing I would add as far as figuring out how to prioritize is using your own intuition.  I found myself just doing the things that spoke to me the loudest.  Eventually, the loudness is mellowing out, although I try to be open to it, and not frightened of it.  But your own sense of what is important to accomplish is worth looking at deeper, as well as making sure you retain a sense of humor about it all.


my two cents... 

earthwise's picture
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 10 2009
Posts: 848
z wrote:


Firearms, incidentally, are illegal to purchase in my country. Even air-guns are illegal (unless you have a special permit, which almost nobody gets).


In that case, one of "The Five Most Important Things To Do Before TSHTF"  would be to MOVE!

IMHO of course.

land2341's picture
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 20 2009
Posts: 402

 Growing things takes time,  learning how to harvest and store what you grow takes LOTS longer.  I have been gardening fairly seriously for 4 years now and I know for a fact I could not get through a winter on my own harvests.  

I have lost entire harvests to ill timed frosts or pests.  I managed to screw up an entire batch of mulberries in canning.  (Mulberry syrup is good once in a while but 16 jars of it is a bit much....   not to worry I gifted and trded it.)

Some crops do not produce well for several years.

So, yes, go to Mom's.  


Oh, and research what would be good tradables in your area.  Odd things that are easily stored work well - diapers (cloth) and feminine hygiene supplies,  chocolate and coffee,  alcohol and the ability to make alcohol and or cigarrettes are all good tradeables to have.  Medical supplies that can be stored are good too.

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