Living in the country has many benefits -- fresh air, a slower pace of life and more room to spread out. But it can also be more work, especially if you own a large piece of property. For example, it could take you half a day to mow your "lawn," or you may have to waste a few days out of the year mending and painting fences. However, there are steps you can take that can significantly reduce the amount of labor you have to do around your property.
Use More Durable Materials
If it feels like you are constantly mending fences, you may want to consider replacing your current one with a more durable vinyl fencing version. Vinyl fencing is stronger than wood and will not warp, rot, chip or rust. It also does not require painting and is easy to clean. It is an especially good choice if you live in an area that experiences high heat or a lot of heavy rain -- both of which can be very hard on paint and wooden components. Durable vinyl can also be used to replace the:
- Siding on your house and your outbuildings. Because of its durability and ease of care, vinyl siding has become very popular. In fact, it is now being used on about 32 percent of new homes.
- Trim and molding on the exterior of your home, including porch railings
- Windows on your home.
If your decking requires constant upkeep or you're thinking of replacing or building a new one, you might want to consider using composite materials. Like vinyl, composite materials are durable and relatively stain-resistant.
Get a Goat or Two
Are you tired of mowing the grass on your large property? If so, you might want to buy or rent some goats. These creatures are eco-friendly and love to eat weeds. In addition:
- Goats are especially useful for clearing brush from steep hillsides or uneven ground.
- You can also use the goats for side businesses if you decide to buy your own. For example, you could sell their milk for cheese or sell them for meat. You can also rent your herd to other landowners in need of vegetation management. And in some areas of the United States, Muslims buy goats to sacrifice for Eid-al-Adha, also known as the Feast of Sacrifice.
Buy a Power Washer
Power washers can help you clean items around your house much faster than if you were to just use a standard hose. Some of the tasks that can be made much easier with a power washer include:
- Cleaning mold and mildew from the siding on your house.
- Washing tree sap, pollen and other layers of gunk from your deck and fences.
- Cleaning cars and other vehicles.
- Scrubbing your driveway free of stains.
It is, however, a very powerful tool, so remember to do the following when using a power washer:
- Always test a small inconspicuous section of the area you are planning to power wash to ensure that the surface can stand up to the powerful spray.
- Keep the wand moving so that the spray won't cut into the surface area you are attempting to clean.
Purchase a Small Farm Utility Vehicle
If you own a large piece of property, a small cargo all-terrain vehicle (CATV) is a must-have. They can be used to haul materials and supplies over long distances and over uneven terrain and even through small streams. In addition, some CATV's can perform multiple functions such as snow plowing and mowing. These vehicles are similar to an ATV, but look and operate like a small jeep.
Life in the country can be a real pleasure, especially if you can lessen the number of tasks you have to perform around your property.