Preparing for a Better Quality of Life: The Question


As we continue to PREP AND WATCH what is happening around us, one topic that seems to always get my attention is the economy.  I know that many have been watching it too…and quite frankly, many are surprised that the PTB continue to find ways for the economy to limp along.

Eventually, things will have to come to some sort of reset.  If that means a complete crash which includes Mutant Zombie Biker Mice from Mars or just a hiccup as “they” force everyone to go to e-currency, who knows.  I’ll keep watching and prepping and paying attention as I live my life to the fullest.

That last statement leads me to ask the Prepper Website Community a question….

What tangible items do you invest in to help ensure a better quality of life?

The reason I ask this question is three fold…

  1. Keeping your money in the bank is kind of dangerous.  Surely you’ve read that banks are starting to talk about or even go to negative interest rates.  You also have the possibility of not being able to access your money if there was ever a bank run or limits were imposed to how much you could withdraw.  As a result, some advocate pulling your money out of your bank and leaving only what you need to pay bills, etc…
  2. Second, there has been a lot of talk that physical cash will be replaced with electronic currency.  If that happens, physical cash will be worthless.
  3. Third, if a crash happens and money is worthless (physical and e-currency), those who have tangible items that are desired or able to help with a better quality of life will be better off.

So, while you have access to all your money AND you can make all the decisions regarding your own money, what would you invest in to better your quality of life?  Guns, equipment of some type, tools, solar, livestock, land?????

I would like to compile a list for the Prepper Website Community of tangible items that are more than just items bought at the store because they might be considered a prep item, but instead, items that add to your overall quality of life.  For example, a few years back I added to my garden beds.  I looked at putting more garden beds in my backyard as an investment.

I’m asking those who have some good ideas to contribute using the form below.  Using this form helps me to sort through all the information in an easy manner.  I then will share the information with the Prepper Website Community.

You can share your answers below or visit this link – click here.


This article first appeared on Ed That Matters.

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Todd Sepulveda

I’m the owner/editor of Prepper Website, a DAILY preparedness aggregator that links to the best preparedness articles on the internet. I’m also a public school administrator and a pastor.

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6 thoughts on “Preparing for a Better Quality of Life: The Question

  1. Thomas Xavier

    I am glad you are back to posting again Todd, keep it going!

    As to the the question at hand, I wish I had the sort of disposable income to be able to lay down concrete plans with regards to quality of life. For Elise & I the priority is to be debt free (property + land with no one to answer to), that to me is true quality of life.

    Until then I shan’t be investing (not that I trust the markets in any shape or form) nor hoarding items of value. Having a roof over your head that can’t be taken away is priceless to me.

    Wish I had items/preps to submit on your form- perhaps I will revisit the question later after I have given it some more thought!

    Take care

    1. Todd Sepulveda Post author

      Thanks Thomas! I’ll post as I can. Right now I seem to be so busy. If I could find a good voice to text program, that might make a big difference…. 😉

      Thanks for linking to my articles.


  2. Chuck Findlay

    I have a home repair / handyman business, it’s a one-man operation. I work for a lot of people that have rental property (renters are very hard on homes as it’s not their home) I also have a referral-machine that keeps referring new people to me. He’s the used car salesman that I bought my truck off of a few years ago. He likes me, and I him. (we target shoot every few weeks) He loves to talk and it seems he tells everyone about me. I also work for a local lumber yard on any work that it’s customers want done in their home as the yard only does work in the yard.

    I fix just about everything in a home from the roof to the basement floor. I rebuild used furniture I find along the road and sell it. I repair home appliances and electronic items (went to school for this 30-years ago) I build wood outdoor furniture and sell it. I buy broken / not working small electronic things at garage sales and fix them to sell. I bought a MIG welder to build something for myself and found that when I mentioned I had a welder to people it started getting me jobs building and repairing things.

    I buy a lot of tools to support my handyman skills. A few years ago I bought the tools to do PEX plumbing, the tools were $150.00, I made that back on the first job and have been using the PEX tools a few times a month.

    I buy a lot of old (and better then most new tools) tools at garage sales as they cost a lot less. I also clean up old tools and sell them on Craig’s List. A Rigid 18-inch pipe wrench cost $65.00 new, I buy them for $3.00 looking all rusty) at garage sales. I wire brush and sandblast them and repaint them. They look NEW when I’m done. They sell for $20.00 easily as everyone wants the name brand. I must have 15 of them in the garage waiting for clean up. Every Thursday I go to garage sales as this is the first day of them and I get the pick of the stuff.

    I’m always buying tools and supplies to support my skills. I’m fairly busy now and I figure post SHTF things will still break and need to be fixed. I think (hope) that I will still be able to eak-out a living.

    I just started blacksmithing as a hobby with my 25-year old son last year. We built a forge (videos on U-Tube about how to make one) made 1/2 doz knifes and sold 4 of them at at the first flea market we took them to. Right now we are on the lookout for steel to make more. It’s really enjoyable to spend time with my son building things and learning new things. We both really enjoy it. If you can bring family into your ventures it makes it much nicer and builds the relationship.

    One thing about being self employed is that you are directly in charge of your income. Buy a new tool, learn a new skill you get paid for using it from the first time on and every time after that (like the PEX tool example above) But when you work for someone and you learn a new skill you have to hope your boss (master?) sees fit to pay you more. But most times you do the extra work and the paycheck looks the same as it did before the new skill was learned. Usually the best you can hope for is that when layoffs come (and they always come) you have proven yourself enough that your boss doesn’t cast you aside. But your direct boss usually not the one that decides your fate, someone much higher on the ladder decides. And this top-dog probably knows nothing about you other then you are an expense that needs to be cut loose. Sounds like a scary to live if you ask me…

    Everyone should develop a side business that generates income outside your job. We all (at least most of us) know how to do something (or can learn new skills) that someone will pay us to do. Have your boss train you to do this. Every time there is a chance to get training ask yourself if it can be applied to a home / side income generator, if so volunteer for the training. He may think you are brown-nosing, but who cares, the end-game is what you want. And that end-game is more money in your pocket from a side income.

    It may be that you have some skills others will pay you to learn. I went to a herb class that was 80-miles (one way) away and paid $25.00 for it. There were a lot of people there. The woman teaching it made a good income (about $600.00) on a Saturday morning. Do you know how to can food? If so you can do a class on it. $$$

    Skills are important, but you usually need tools to support the skills. I would suggest you buy tools now while you can find them and practice with them. Once you can do the job at hand in your sleep it’s time to market yourself (flyers are a good inexpensive way) to people.

    But one thing you need to understand is self employment is not like a job. You can do work and not get paid for months, there is no regular paycheck. The electronic items I repair, the furniture I fix this week may not sell for 2-months. You need to live a frugal and debt-free life to survive these times. The up-side is that I have a backlog of things to sell and with time it all sells. During the slow times (that I actually enjoy) I work in the garage fixing or building stuff that I know will sell later. My father was a journeyman mechanic for Ford and worked on autos nights and weekends in his home garage. I learned about fixing autos the same time I learned to walk. I still do it as cars are always breaking. 40 of them together will do it. A plumbing job today, build a shed next weekend, remodel a kitchen next week, a welding repair job, a leak in a roof last week. It’s a good bet that none of these will give you enough money to live on, but
    they all add up.

    You must figure out how to live a frugal (but still very happy) life as if it hits the fan you can bet the frugel life will find you and it’s going to be ugly if you didn’t plan for it. I can live like this because I live a debt-free pay-as-you-go lifestyle. Debt is nothing short of slavery that limits your options and ties you down every bit as much as a chain.

    As far as actually making an income it takes years to build a customer base to the point that you have enough work to live on.

    My personal story as to how I got to where I am right now.

    I was married (happily I thought, little did I know…) working at a local nuke plant. I had a motorcycle accident and broke every limb I had. I couldn’t work for almost a year, the guy that hit me had minimal ins. and it barely covered the medical cost so I had nothing to live on. Being I could not work I lost the job. And having no job my wife started playing around, got pregnant (I got fixed a year before so it wasn’t my kid) left me to move in with the new guy taking everything I cared about including a 3-year old boy. I lost the home we lived in. I moved in with my parents for a year, finally got a local trailer park to let me move into one of their abandoned mobile homes. I fixed it up, sold it and bought a run-down home and slowly fixed it up.. I also made a deal with the trailer park to fix up 2 other mobile homes. They paid for the parts, I did the work and we split the profit. These homes are called handy-man-specials and every city has them for free if you sign a one-year lease. I also got paid to do repair work on other peoples home in the park.

    This is how I got into home repair / handyman work, I always did work like his for myself, family and friends.

    I started doing it for others and it slowly (and I mean slowly, can you say Ramen noodles) built into a real income. But there was 10-years of lean times. It’s unlikely you will be able to make a living being self employed the week after you loose your job. So you need to start now and build a base of customers that will pay you. If we do get a sudden economic or SHTF event everyone that gets unemployed (and it will be a lot of people) will suddenly try to work for themselves. The competition will be extreme as everyone needs money and will do anything to get it. But if you worked on this ahead of time, do good work most of your customers will stay with you as they trust you to do good work, trust you to not rob them. Expect to have a few go away as there is always people that value price above everything else, but enough should stay with you.

    Trust is very important as it’s your currency, and if you do a good honest job that currency will be gold.

    A full supply of food (at least 6-months) is a must as it could be you won’t have much income and we all must have food. that pantry full of it could save your family.

    As far as what to do to make money, do you sew, do you repair autos, can you build a web site, do you have something to say, if so start a blog. Can you fix things (autos, plumbing, wood work) to make extra money? If you can’t think of a skill you now have come up with a new one and learn it. start doing it now as now is always better then later. It needs to be a skill that another person can’t easily do themselves. Painting homes works right now, but anyone can hold a paint brush and I question it being a viable income post SHTF as people will just paint their own home to save the money. But they will shy away from a multimeter and the fuse box as it scares them. So they will pay someone to do repairs, why not you?

    You should learn barter skills as they could be important. I barter a bit now (been doing it for years) and get some interesting trades doing it.

  3. Chuck Findlay

    As far as books there are so many that are important to the lifestyle we likely will see. That lifestyle being one of do-it-yourself / homesteading. The money just won’t (and for many of us isn’t there now) be there to throw at problems like it is now. Right now we can buy everything we need, food, gasoline, home heat, everything. But when we think about not being able to buy what you want and need it becomes clear we need to find a way to still live life without money to pay others to do them.

    This is where skills, tools and a willingness to tackle problems that come up. Books are wonderful in that they allow us to benefit from others abilities through reading them. With books we can tackle problems that otherwise would not get done from lack of knowledge.

    Over the last several years I have bought a few hundred books on subjects I wanted to learn.

    By no means a complete list, but here are a few of the better ones by category.


    Anything by Rosemary Gladstar, Medical Herbs, A beginners Guide and Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health being the best ones

    The Green Pharmacy by James Duke

    Herbally Yours by Penny C. Royal

    For fighting bacterial and viral infections Stephen Harrod Buhner’s Herbal Antivirals and Herbal Antibiotics These 2 books really are must-have books.


    All New Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew

    Secret Garden Of Survival, How To Grow A Camouflaged Food Forest by Rick Austin

    Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable Gardeners by Suzanne Ashworth

    The complete Guide to Saving Seeds by Robert and Cheryl Gough


    The Foragers Harvest and Nature’s Gardening by Samuel Thayer (Both Must-have books)

    Abundantly Wild by Teresa Marrone

    The Back-Country Kitchen (Camp Cooking for Canoeist, Hikers and Anglers by Teresa Marrone

    The Complete Guide To Edible Wild Plants, Mushrooms, Fruits and Nuts by Katie Letcher Lyle
    The Essential Wild Food Survival Guide by Lindia Runyon

    Survival Poaching by Ragnar Benson (At first this seems to be a strange book, but post economic collapse government “and game wardens” will still be there and we all need to eat. This books talks about minimizing the risk of incarnation for just trying to feed your family.)


    Cooking With Home Storage by Peggy Layton

    How To Live On Wheat by John Hill

    Putting Food By by Janet Greene, Ruth Hertzberg and Beatrice Vaughan

    The Preppers Cookbook, 300 Recipes To Turn Your Emergency Food Into Nutritious, Delicious, Life-Saving Meals by Tess Pennington

    The Self-Sufficient Life And How To Live It by John Seymour

    The Urban Homestead by Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen

    Country Property Dirt Cheep by Ralph C. Turner

    Public Works, A handbook of Self-Reliant Living by Walter Szykitka (A how to do just about everything book, from 1974 and as thick as a big-city phone book. You want to do it, whatever it is, this book likely has it in it.) Another very good book.


    Making The Best Of Basics by James Talmage Stevens (Covers how to save food and how much to store)

    Freezer Bag Cooking by Sarah Svien Kirkconnell (A backpacking book on how to prepare homemade meals for backpacking the Application Trail that keep for a long time without the grid. ) Lots of good ideas that can be used for bug-out or get-home bags.

    Finding Your Way Without Map Or Compass by Harold Getty (He trained Jimmy Doolittle “ WWII Doolittle raid on Japan guy” , and Lindbergh.) He was a pioneer in aviation, A good book

    The Modern Manual : Surviving The Economic Collapse by Fernando “Ferfall” Aguirer (First hand experience of the 2001 economic collapse in Argentina (Another must-have book)

    You & The Police by Boston T. Party (Economic Collapse is still going to have a somewhat form of government in place and cops are going to be more thug-like then now, It’s a good idea how to interact with them.)

    Heating your home is going to be harder as money is going to be hard to come by. These next 2-books show you how to keep more heat in your home and how to get it for free. Both are ho to do-it-yourself books.

    Movable Insulation by William K. Langdon.

    Solar Air Heating Systems by Steve Kornher and Andy Zaugg

    Back To Basics, How To Learn and Enjoy Traditional American Skills by Readers Digest

    Sunshine To Dollars by Steven Harris (A book about capturing free solar energy at little or no cost, it’s for the solar experimenter more then a how-to book. But it does have good and easy ideas in it. Steve is a genius.)

    I would also invest in yourself as far as skills that may be marketable, get any book you need for hobbies or a side income you may get into so you have them now. While books are not inexpensive, neither are they all that expensive if bought over time.

    There is a lot of good info on U-Tube and there are web sites that allow you to download and save videos for off-line viewing. I must have several hundred U-Tube videos saved on my computer. All computers die as do hard drives, make sure you back up (burn) them to DVD’s so you have a hard copy of them.

  4. Chuck Findlay

    Here are some free On-Line PDF format books you can download. I have them on my Nook E-Reader, both computers and a backup on DVD’s. Once loaded, just right-click and save the file to your computer.

    Where There Is No doctor

    LDS Preparedness Manual

    Where There Is No Dentist

    American Red Cross First Aid/CPR/AED Manuel

    Pioneering 1962

    The Encyclopedia of Country Living (9th edition, I have a paper copy of the 10th edition)

    Ships Medicine Chest and Medical aid, a book that is made for ship medical issues where a doctor is not available

    Wilderness Survival – Basic Survival Skills

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