1. The Topic of the Month for October is "Make this the Perfect Bugout Location". Please join the discussion in the TOTM forum.


Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by dystopia, Sep 15, 2011.

  1. dystopia

    dystopia Monkey+

    Looking for feedback on the percentage of money to be spent on priorities for prepping. I could spend all of my energy and money at the local firearms store but that's not practical, i like food so that's easy for me and i'll drink water if i have to. Would the percentage of time and money be a fluctuating subject or should it be a constant? The reason i ask this is that sometimes i feel that i'm ignoring one priority for another, i wish i could approach prepping more uniformally.
  2. Falcon15

    Falcon15 Falco Peregrinus

    OK there, IMO, is no set hard and fast rule of percentages for prepping. My family does it out of habit, and it is just part of the budget. For example, when shopping, if we buy 5 cans of vegetables, we grab 3 more for the shelf. If we buy 50 pounds of rice, we buy another for the "shelf". Small steps make the biggest difference.

    Spread your big purchase, like guns and ammo, for example, to times when the bills are paid and you have extra cash in the bank not accounted for. Start with the basics, food/water/protection.

    I recently found, and did, a bulk food strategy for less than 300 FRN's under the less than glamorous name of Scotch Broth. The author claims, and I believe her, that this is enough food and nutrition for a family of 4 for a year. Basically food for 4 for 1 year is food for 2 for 2 years, and food for 1 for 4 years, all without breaking the bank.

    Caveat: I am a FRUGAL prepper, always have been. I shop the 99cent Only, and Dollar stores for preps. Not necessarily food either. Example on the medical side, you can buy, at the 99cent Only stores, 4 tubes of triple antibiotic ointment for the same cost of 1 tube from a "national" box store - whether that be grocery, drug, or other store. Another tool that works to your advantage is Warehouse stores like Sams Club or Costco. No, not on the per-prepared or boxed foods, but on hygiene supplies and bulk food items like rice, beans, powdered milk, vacuum sealing supplies, etc.

    In my area, Costco also has bulk Liquor - hard liquor - stores attached. Large containers of good quality grain alcohols, excellent for trade, or limited medicinal uses. Those same bulk stores are now carrying "survival" foods and some supplies. STAY AWAY FROM THESE. They are overpriced for what you get. You are better off, cost wise building your own "buckets, bags, and boxes" of survival foods, equipment, and materials.

    We as a family acknowledge that the inflation is hitting hard so we continually take baby steps. I have been unemployed for almost 6 months (in 6 days is 6 months), and we still manage to put away a little every time we go to the store.

    Another thing you may want to look at your budget for is gardening. Consider putting in a garden now, when you do not need to rely on it, so you can gain experience, if you have to. This allows mistakes to be made that will not cost you food you may desperately need. Also focus on developing skills and getting the basic equipment for things like canning.

    Within the past year I have gotten back into reloading ammunition and building hand loads because I acknowledge the fact that one day, perhaps very soon, ammunition will not be available in store or through "normal" venues, and replacing it would be problematic. I bought a little at a time and built my tooling and supplies up to where I can effectively load or reload my ammunition 1000 times per caliber I shoot. It took months, but was well worth it.

    As with anything dealing with prepping it is a personal thing. YMMV. This is what I suggest to lower the worry and impact on your time and budget. Build prepping hbits and skill sets, this is not a hobby, this is a mindset and lifestyle.

    Pray for the best, prepare for the worst. I hope this helped.
  3. dystopia

    dystopia Monkey+

    I appreciate the reply, i guess i was looking for a hard fast rule, something like if you have $100.00 you spend $10/ 10% on this item and so on. I agree with your comment about ammo. Thanks again
  4. Gray Wolf

    Gray Wolf Monkey+++

    It sounds like you need a plan. The first thing I would do is take a hard look at the firearms. Is your battery adequate for the tasks you anticipate? Got defense, hunting, practice & plinking covered? Common calibers with commonly found ammo? Enough ammo for the firearms?
    Then think about your water supply. How will you get water if the power is out?
    Do you have a means of treating the water if necessary? Food is next, If you like PBJ sandwiches, it won't be much fun if you have 97 jars of peanut butter and 5 jars of jelly. We buy a few extra cans of the stuff we use each time we shop, but most of the food storage is beans, rice, wheat, dry milk & honey, salt & sugar. You can stay alive with those basics.
    Next consider alternative means of heating, lighting, and cooking. For my family, that means firewood for heating, cooking with cast iron pans and dutch ovens.
    Coleman stoves and lanterns, oil lamps, candles and flashlights.
    You will want a good first aid kit, and a decent supply of any meds that you may be taking.
    That should be enough info to get you started on the right track!
  5. dystopia

    dystopia Monkey+

    your very right i do need a plan. For all you that have a spouse or signifigant other on board with your prepping be thankful, going it alone can be awkward at times. So far my plans consist of nothing. I know i need to get organized.
  6. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    dystopia likes this.
  7. nathan

    nathan Monkey+++

    My goal is 10% of my pay,and it could be soaps food or equipment, and any combination I need.
    chelloveck likes this.
  8. fedorthedog

    fedorthedog Monkey++

    When I started I went with minimum to max idea as money allowed. I started with weapons and ammo then some food, medical, ect and increased each as I met a time frame bench mark. After I was at about six months of preps I looked at things like cast iron pot and pans, grain mill, seed ect. Kind of like building an investment portfolio.

    You will always have times of more or less money depending on what breaks or the economy, you should be able to ajust for that.
  9. Gray Wolf

    Gray Wolf Monkey+++

    I look at it this way:
    Every day the dollar becomes worth less, and everything I buy with dollars costs more.
    So every extra dollar I have gets converted into food, or tools, or something that will retain it's value.
    bountyhunter, BTPost and Sapper John like this.
  10. grasshoppa

    grasshoppa Monkey+

    I believe most preppers never feel 100% satisfied with what they've done and what they're doing. It's a never ending project and more of a way of life. Just know that whatever you do, you'll be in a better place for doing it. Also, I would encourage you to not give up living for today in an effort to be able to live tomorrow. Being Prepared can become all consuming.
    dystopia likes this.
  11. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    You know, I was looking at my priorities in prepping and realized that firearms were not even on the list. I have weapons to defend myself with and enough reloading components to keep myself in squirrels for the rest of my life but don't really put them in the same category as I do the rest of my preparations. I hold no fantasies of standing off a horde of MZBs or the need for a "Main Battle Rifle" and load bearing gear to go into combat with. I do shoot a lot of competitions so probably have more guns and ammo than most folks and I have been a collector for most of my 55 years but don't imagine this would give me any advantage over my neighbors in the aftermath of a hurricane and it certainly does nothing during this economic crisis we seem to be going through. Serious preppers are damage control people. They plan, stockpile what is anticipated to meet the needs of their immediate community (this includes children, spouse, relatives, friends, neighbors, etc.), and train themselves to be useful and self reliant. Preppers have no desire to become part of the problem during a crisis; we intend to be at least a small part of the solution. Anyone that harbors "Mad-Max" fantasies with no design on rebuilding and restructuring our civilization, need not apply here, you will only be useful as fertilizer to help us grow what is needed for those that intend to live in a civilized manner.
    Gafarmboy, Gray Wolf and BTPost like this.
  12. RightHand

    RightHand Pioneer in a New World Moderator Founding Member

    Sometimes I think I'm too casual a prepper - I have stored goods that will carry me though at least two seasons but I've always concentrated on learning the skills needed to be self sufficient. I live simply without a great need for luxuries so I've prepared by learning to be competent. I can use a bow because I might not always have ammo to bring down a deer, I can fish, track and snare small game, grow and store fruits and vegetables, cook a pretty good meal over a fire that I can build under less than favorable conditions. My main goal is to pass those skills on to those I love who will survive this life long after I am dust. Sometimes just being an example is enough.
  13. snowbyrd

    snowbyrd Latet anguis in herba

    The greatest thing you can have in your 'survival kit' is knowledge. Libraries are cheap or free. Learn 'how to' and the rest will follow. I buy an extra can of Spaggeti O's or some Top Ramin every time I go to the store. 10% would work. Some times I think that people focus on firearms a little too much but then I have many that I have gotten over the years. Use your brain, the best weapon you have, store up knowledge and practice 'stuff'.
    beast likes this.
  14. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

    I'm in the same situation; people don't realize after 4 decades or so one gets a bunch and the MKI and pre-transfer bar Blackhawk were bought new and by me. ;)
    To me, shooting and firearms are hobby that I've enjoyed since I was a kid. About the last 10-12 years I've been into AKs, ARs, and FALs. Which seems to bug some people.

    If "SHTF" ever does happen and it includes civil unrest; sooner or later someone will want what you have and will be willing to take it by force if necessary.
    Sapper John, beast and BTPost like this.
  15. Gafarmboy

    Gafarmboy Monkey+++

    The Tri-month plan

    Sapper John likes this.
  16. CottageLife

    CottageLife Monkey+

    I purchased based on what we need / what is on sale. This time of year, hunting ammo may be on a great sale (as cheap as you can reload your own possibly) so time to put more money in to that. Silver took a dip - great time to buy some silver.

    If you search for some mormon blogs on preparedness many have lists of what is on sale at the grocery store each month of the year. For example sugar, flour, and other baking needs are just starting to go on sale. My store has a 5# bag of flour for 99¢. I want the most bang for my buck so I shop mainly the big sales.

    If you have a local LDS cannery near you, call them and ask if you can purchase items without being a member (if you aren't one). If they say yes, then find out when their shipments are. That's the best time to go in to can items (milk, dehydrated apples, carrots, wheat, etc) Last time we went they had a lot more stuff pre-canned for only pennies more a can! Well worth it to us to get more bang for our buck in one trip since it isn't close by. Aruond 7 of us go together and it works out great.

    My advice is to get to know your local sales for everything - reloading stuff, clothes, food, etc. Use your monthly budget based on that.
    chelloveck and dystopia like this.
survivalmonkey SSL seal        survivalmonkey.com warrant canary