Top Tips for Maintaining a Home on a Large Acreage

A rural home on large acreage.

Residing in a house on a large piece of land is the dream for anyone who yearns for privacy, nature, and peace. Shopping for rural properties instead of urban or suburban homes lets you buy more real estate with the same resources. Living in the country gives you room to be more self-sufficient, pursuing agriculture for consumption and profit.

However, upkeep is one of the downsides to owning a property on a large acreage. It is hard to fully grasp the difficulty of keeping such an estate in pristine condition until you face overwhelming maintenance tasks. Follow these 10 tips to make your life easier.

1.   Develop a Master Plan

Determine what you want to do with your property. Your vision will guide your actions toward improving it.

What activities do you wish to pursue? How much of your yard do you want to remain vacant? Consider what structures you intend to build and any prevailing threats you should keep in mind.

Amenities change a property’s maintenance needs. Answer these questions to take appropriate steps toward realizing your vision.

2. Fence Your Property

Build a fence around your land. It accomplishes more than just delineating your property. An enclosure helps keep wildlife at bay, protecting your crops and livestock from wandering critters.

An electric fence is reliable enough to scare away powerful and aggressive predators like black bears. Moreover, a secure barrier keeps your farm animals in and prevents them from inconveniencing your neighbors.

A fence — with or without a sign — is a universal reminder of when a piece of land is private property. Most passersby will respect it and leave. Fewer inadvertent trespassers mean a reduced chance of accidental damage to your estate, reducing your maintenance duties.

3. Invest in Proper Gear

Buy essential tools to handle lawn care yourself. Living in a sparsely populated area means outsourcing yardwork is less feasible, affordable, and convenient. If you have the necessary equipment, you can prune plants, mow, edge, and aerate your vast land properly and safely.

4. Declutter Your Yard

Remove all junk from your property. Litter, jalopies, dilapidated sheds, and construction debris are eyesores and health hazards. They may provide shelter to pests, such as rodents and snakes.

Decluttering your property has psychological benefits, too. It helps clear your mind and imagine the possibilities you can do with your land.

5. Plant Native Greenery

Grow native trees to beautify your landscape, enjoy outdoor shade, and attract desirable fauna like pollinating insects and birds. Trees have their maintenance needs, but native ones are a net positive. They are low maintenance because the local climate and soil suit them, reducing water usage. Native trees are more resilient to vermin, too.

6. Water at Night

Irrigate your yard when the sun is down. Daytime irrigation accelerates evaporation. Watering your trees and shrubs during the hottest months when it is cooler helps keep them from getting thirsty more quickly.

Water conservation matters more when your property does not have a municipal water service line. Climate change threatens the integrity of various water sources, including groundwater. Extended droughts and rising sea levels cause saltwater to move upstream and inland, intruding natural freshwater reservoirs, including aquifers. If you want your life as a country dweller to be comfortable, observe water-saving practices and be self-sufficient.

7. Prepare for Storm Cleanup

Have contacts that can quickly come to your rescue when you need to remove hazards from your yard after a natural disaster. The scattered building materials and fallen trees you may find in your outdoor space after a catastrophe can endanger yourself and your loved ones.

Establish relationships with local storm cleanup and tree removal companies to take care of the job. These businesses are up to the task, for they have heavy machinery with attachments, like buckets that easily clean up debris and quickly remove roadblocks to access ways.

8. Create Buffer Areas

Do not mow the land adjacent to any nearby body of water or marshland. The unkempt areas can filter out pollutants — such as trash, chemicals and sediment — from stormwater runoff from your property, keeping accessible water sources clean and safe.

Letting these buffer zones grow long requires no effort, but the result can be unsightly. Alternatively, plant evergreen shrubs, ornamental grasses, and perennial flowers to keep your yard as aesthetically pleasing as it is functional.

9. Cover Problem Areas

Hide dark patches in your yard with mulch, groundcovers, or raised gardens. High-traffic areas, compacted soil, and shady sections can stick out like a sore thumb in a green lawn, so explore every avenue to keep them out of sight.

10. Recycle Dead Leaves

Make compost, mulch, or leaf mold out of excess fallen leaves. Giving them a new lease on life can give you a sense of direction when you do spring and fall cleanups.

There is no avoiding demanding property maintenance when living in a house on expansive land. These tips should keep you from doing more work than necessary to keep your home beautiful and safe.

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