Running a farm can be something of a mixed blessing. If you get it up and running and off to a good start, it can be exciting. It could even be profitable within your first year. However, many farmers often find that the reality does not live up to the dream.
Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how much work or effort you put into it - it just isn’t financially viable. In those circumstances, it can be more than a little frustrating. A lot of people might give up at this point - but that might not be necessary. If you are struggling to make ends meet, there could be some interesting ways to make more money out of your farm. Similarly, if your farm is doing fine, and you just want to make the most of it, then some of these methods will prove useful. Let’s take a look at some interesting ways to make some extra profit from your land.
Host A Campsite
This first option is a great choice for the farmer who has some land to spare. If one of your fields is just unused most of the year, then you might be able to turn it into a campsite. Doing so could prove to be a surprisingly profitable venture. This can work best on fields where you only need its use for certain times of the year. Once it is time to bring the cattle indoors, then that field essentially becomes wasted land. You can’t guarantee the popularity of a campsite, however, so you will need to think carefully about this. Think about your location and whether people will want to stay there. If you are completely in the middle of nowhere, it might be more difficult to attract interest. Even in that situation, however, you can probably still drum up some interest. Alternatively, you could even allow your field to be used as the site of a small festival. The charge of renting out the space alone can make a dramatic difference to your finances. What’s more, you hardly have to do anything yourself. If you do go for this option, make sure you install showers, toilets and running water at the very least. You might also be able to set up a small farm shop, which could help you even further.
Run A Restaurant Or Cafe
Something which more and more farmers are turning to is the idea of starting a restaurant or cafe in their farm. This is a fantastic option for almost any farm, as it does not require much space. What’s more, it is easily done, and will soon turn a profit. The initial cost of setting it up does not even have to be that great.
The main cost for most businesses of this kind is the space itself - and that is the one thing you already have. If you decide to open a restaurant or cafe, you might want to hire someone specifically to work in the customer-facing position there. However, even that depends hugely on how busy you are as a farm. Depending on your location, this might prove to be a lucrative way of making the most of your business.
A good tip to ensure a successful restaurant is to offer as wide a variety of food as possible. Hopefully, you can source most of the ingredients locally - possibly even from your own farm. For example, if you have a private fishing lake (more on that later), you might be able to offer a wide range of seafood. If not, simply buying fish online might prove to be a better option. If you farm beef, then you could offer your own homemade burgers. People tend to love that rustic, local feel.
Start A Bed & Breakfast
In a similar vein to running a restaurant, you might also decide to start a bed and breakfast. For larger farms, a full-blown hotel might be more in order. However, for the majority, this is much more suitable for everyday purposes.
Despite its humble nature, a bed and breakfast can be a surprisingly good earner. The trick to making it as successful as possible is to make sure that you have something to offer which others in the local area don’t. It might even be worth going to stay in those rooms of your competitors. That way, you can get a feel both for what works and what doesn’t.
Again, it might be easier if you hire someone to help you out here, as it can be a surprising amount of work. But it all depends on how busy you are, and that in turn depends on how much marketing you do. There is no sure way of telling you will get guests. Fortunately, even if nobody is staying, it is hardly a waste of time or money.
Get Registered For Weddings
Increasingly, people are turning to more rustic venues for their most special occasions. If you can manage to get your farm registered as a wedding venue, then this can quickly become your biggest earner of all. People will pay through the nose for a decent wedding venue, and you might be surprised at how effectively a farm can become just that. This might be best if you have something in the way of a large, unused farmhouse. Such a building can quickly and easily be made into a stunning venue for a wedding.
Allow Metal Detection
You never know what is sitting underneath the ground on your farm - so why not find out? If you open up your farm to metal detectors, you might be pleasantly surprised at what they find. The good news here is that you are legally entitled to at least fifty percent of whatever they find. It might be that they turn up with nothing at all. Or perhaps they will uncover the find of the century. There is only one way to find out, and it might turn out to be the best decision you ever made.