An old act used to define homesteading as land cultivated by the farmer and the family. It could not be used to pay off debts incurred after the registration. Today, the word is synonymous to self-sufficiency or even living off the grid, both of which may mean you have to do most of the things by yourself.
The big questions is: How do you homestead in New Zealand?
1. Building Your Home
New Zealand insists only a professional builder can create a house, so you need to get an owner-builder exemption if you’re not one. Even then, certain tasks like gas fitting, electrical work, and plumbing would need licenced building professionals. The rules differ among councils, but you still need to get consent and follow building codes.
2. Drilling a Well
Self-sufficiency doesn’t mean cutting your water supply, although you can drill your well. Again, only a council can tell you if you can do this action. For example, in Taranaki, you can draw water from the rivers or streams up to 50 cubic metres per day without consent.
If you receive a go signal, Carlyle Drilling says that you’ll need a reliable well driller to provide you the right equipment and get the job done quickly and conveniently. You may also have to get a water sample for testing to determine if it’s suitable for drinking.
3. Growing Food
For some strange reason, there’s a rumour that New Zealand bans gardening or growing your own food. No such law exists, which means you can have a pretty garden with fruits and vegetables on your space. Selling them is a different matter, however, since you need to follow the country’s Food Safety Act.
With large acres of land, vegetation, cattle, and nature, New Zealand is a prime place for homesteading. Becoming one, however, doesn’t happen overnight. It also means following strict rules and regulations. Being committed to your vision, while adhering to the codes should make you successful soon.