Expectations and surprises

6 posts

Member for

4 years 2 months
Last seen: 03/08/2018 - 21:05
Joined: 05/31/2015 - 10:27

Expectations and surprises

Hi all, Just thought I would start a thread for people to comment on how things are going in general on their farms, or in their search for a farm, is it everything you dreamed? Your lessons and wisdom could be helpful to others. I'll start...one year living on my farm. Biggest surprise: feeling lonely. Funny for me as I have always been a bit of a homebody. I am 2hrs East of Perth, don't miss the city in any way, I guess you can feel a bit vulnerable when you realise if anything happened to you and you couldn't call for help it could be days or weeks before someone found you. It makes you very cautious. Best moment: finishing my first fence. Not neat, but I can call myself a farmer now. Biggest mistake: It took every cent I had to buy my farm, I was so desperate to get it. No regrets, i always take the hard road, but I would suggest to others in the planning stages to include all the big purchases in your start up budget, eg tractor, water tanks, pumps, solar panels, house renovations...I thought I had, but it all ends up costing much more than you expect. Greatest lesson: how awesome country people are. It is humbling to mix with people so generous with their time and knowledge. In general: Most of the time I feel like I am making little progress, though the neighbours always comment on how much I have done. The physical work is no surprise as I was raised on a dairy farm, it is very different starting fresh. I am learning to stop striving for perfection and trying to complete one project at a time. The irony is I did more farming in the city than I have done out here! All my time so far has been fixing things, cleaning up and spraying weeds. My plan for now is to keep chipping away, one job at a time. There is no need to rush, things come together when they are meant to. Over to you...
Last seen: 03/08/2018 - 21:05
Joined: 10/22/2012 - 11:13
Now, this could be an interesting thread. We are looking to downsize and give the farm to the boys if they are crazy enough to take on a commercial farm. We are looking for a small place (100-300 acres) in the Mudgee area but its taking longer than we expected. We like Mudgee because its where the white utes meet the Audi cars and gives an interesting mix of people even if the land is over priced. Cheers Rob.
Last seen: 12/25/2018 - 10:36
Joined: 04/05/2015 - 09:51
We looked so long for property and saved for 7 years. We found that so many properties within 3hrs of Sydney would sell before we could make an enquiry. Now we have 130 acres that isnt our primary residence, and when we stay for the weekend in our shed, we seem to get more visitors from the locals than what we do at home in suburbia. We let a local farmer use the property to run sheep for free. He has fixed fences and gates for us in our absence. He has a shearing shed next door and my property has 5 different properties connected at the boundaries and has become a "stock route" saving local farmers 6km off their trip for shearing and transport. This is a very fortunate situation as our new neighbours bend over backwards for us to keep the stock route open. We don't ask them for anything but they we keep finding cartons of beer and offers of lamb kill when ever we get up there. We will one day live there but we aren't farmers, I will grow and orchard and veges for food and hopefully accept a lamb as offered. Biggest pitfall for us was buying a property that wasn't yet registered as its own holding. It took 10 months to settle with no date ever confirmed for settlement. We also weren't ready for the weed problem that came with spring! We only saw the property in Autumn. And we definitely weren't ready for the 100km/hr winds that gust through regularly! We have a FB page of our farm: World's End Wyangala
Last seen: 07/07/2019 - 08:55
Joined: 11/23/2011 - 09:38

Hi there,

The first 2 years I was here on the property was a time of adjustment for me. Lonely, not used to the peace and quiet after working in a busy office and knowing no one. all my friends and family 500 - 1,000 kl away- my husband who had just been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, my only company.


However, we started going to the cattle sales even though we had no cattle to sell. There we met local graziers, introduced ouselves and started to ask questions about what we would have to do to start buying and grazing cattle. Unlike the city, where folk are quite suspicious of strangers, we found that most people were only too happy to talk to us.


We had inherited a number of goats from the previous owners, who neglected to tell us about them. They asked if we would keep their daughter's pet goat on the property as they couldn't take it to the city, and said, as an afterthought, oh and so he won't be lonely, could we leave a couple of friends with him to keep him company. Being a softy with animals, we said yes. It turned out to be 47 goats and an enormous black buck. The 'Pet"was the biggest Anglo Nubian wether, we had ever seen. That was how it began for me. I started sudying all about goats, everything I could get my hands on. Now many years later, I am working on my second edition or Farming Meat Goats for CSIRO. Never in my wildest dreams, did I think that this was how my life would be. Breeding goats meant that I met a lot of other breeders and goat owners, the same with cattle breeding.


So get out, join the local P and C, Lions, Meals on Wheels or one of the community service groups. In my experience you will never look back.


Now, many years later, I am alone again as my darling husband has passed on, but I am not really alone as our friends make sure that I am not.


Kind regards,


Last seen: 03/08/2018 - 21:05
Joined: 05/31/2015 - 10:27
Hi Barb, I agree joining local groups is essential, or at least participating in the community in some way. That is the essence of a small town. Barb, you are officially one of my heroines. Running a farm is tough, doing it on your own is admirable. When I told my partner I was buying a farm, he made it very clear that he has no interest in farming, and does not wish to participate in any farming activities. When I am having one of those days where nothing seems to work, I just remind myself it has been my life ambition to be here, I am blessed to be living the dream.
Last seen: 03/08/2018 - 21:05
Joined: 03/13/2016 - 14:31

Our story is just beginning and on a much smaller scale.

We have just exchanged on a 1 acre property. It has taken a while with us finding out there is no building approval on the property nor septic approval. We have paid the council to do the inspections. We had a similar problem with a previous property and after spending about $1000 walked away. We are hanging in there this time as we believe this property is more suitable for us. 


We were looking for up to 5 acres so have really compromised on the land.


We really only want enough space for growing food and chooks. There is a dam and a large shed. The house will accomodate us comfortably and has potential space for the visitors we are expecting. It is only 10 minutes to the smallish town and another 10 to a larger town. I have already met some lovely people when I stayed there to check out the area. 


Neither of us have jobs although my partner knows people in the area who have offered him work. It is a bit scary but I don't want to get to the end of my life and regret not taking a risk on something I have always wanted to do.


Both of us have lived in Sydney all of our lives and we can't wait to leave!

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