Page 4 of 6 FirstFirst 123456 LastLast
Results 31 to 40 of 59
  1. #31
    Platinum Member Reyer Farms's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    608
    Location
    Lena, ms
    Tractor
    Mahindra 5010

    Default

    I agree whole hearted, the extension service is a great help and can also get you other assistance. My wife was a county ag agent before she was promoted to momma and farm manager! She worked very close with all kinds of people on getting them pointed in the right direction and explaining options. 80 acres is a full time job but making it work for you is very challenging. I was in the same boat we have just about 100 acres and most of it in pines. Niches markets are working for us. I have some great hay land but I don't cut my hay( yet), I have let other people cut it for free. If they dont have to pay a lease they have $ to put $ into to manage it like we want, win-win. The hay is going to their livestock and they have kept it mowed and help make it the sorry pasture I bought into the great pasture I own. Small acreage can be profitable if you think outside the box. Your never too late to learn if you are willing to work for it. Just start anything and you will all kinds of folks telling you how to do it!!! : ) the only advice I have really is avoid debt like your life depends on it, cause the farmer's life does.

  2. #32
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    982
    Location
    Hartford, SD
    Tractor
    Kubota L3400F

    Default Re: Thinking of haying/farming for profit- many questions

    Too many people feel if they can't hold on to a certain property in the family they have failed...that is incorrect. Land that provided your parents a living was just land and worked for their time. It may not be practical or realistic to think somehow you can also make your living on the sdame piece of land. Farming today generally involves thousands of acres per family to make a living. The days of 80 acres and a mule are over. Land is land and is easily sellable and holds no magic. Let the property make your life better as it had for your parents but don't hold onto sentimental value. Money in the bank will grow during most economies far faster than land value will appreciate. This is nothing more than a financial decision and if you make it personal you risk your families well being.

  3. #33
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    430
    Location
    Oakdale, TN
    Tractor
    Kubota M8540HD ROPS

    Default Re: Thinking of haying/farming for profit- many questions

    Good info in post #31.

    The conventional wisdom will say you cannot make it farming. If you try conventional farming approaches I don't think you will succeed.

    Last summer I visited Polyface farm in Virginia and bought Joel's book "You Can Farm". The book describes how one really can farm and make a profit, and not just have a hobby farm that loses money. The book talks about marketing and various farm enterprises. During the lean times and the learning period it also talks about how you will have to seriously adjust your standard of living; for example getting clothes from Goodwill, making one trip to town every week or so, making things you need instead of buying, etc.

    It's not easy, but it is possible.
    Kubota M8540HD ROPS, LA1353 FEL

  4. #34
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    111
    Location
    Pulaski, TN
    Tractor
    JD 5300

    Default

    If the farm has been in operation, start with existing tax returns. They may be your best source for an estimate of the income that is possible.

    I'm trying to get 150 acres going and I can absolutely say hay will never pay for the farm, let alone produce replacement income for our current jobs. You have a different situation, given the land is free and equipment is there. I am paying for both so let's take it out of the estimates.

    My input costs for hay ground, about 40 acres, runs about $10 per 4x5 bale. That doesn't include machinery costs or repairs. I sell only hay stored dry, so I get at least $20 per roll during the season, but I usually get $30 if I hold till winter. Let's say you can hold all the hay till winter and fetch the best price. There are a lot of factors here but lets say you can produce 400 good bales a year, so you net $8000 after hundreds of hours of work. That might cover your taxes and insurance, but not your food and utilities. You said it has alfalfa, so it is most likely a small square operation, with higher prices than grass hay, but it also has higher maintenance costs and labor input. Bottom line, I doubt it will replace your current income but all the effort may, may let you keep the farm at no added cost to your existing income - except for the hundreds of hours of sweat and stress that you put in.

    Without specialty niche products and clever marketing, I doubt you will make 80 acres produce consistent income to replace off farm incomes. That being said, let me say this- what is a farmer?

    The way I see it is a farmer is really not a job title, it is a term to fit a conglomeration of work functions. A farmer is a biologist, mechanic, welder, machinist, lawyer, engineer, environmentalist, salesman, market trader, manager, horticulturalist, husbandry, accountant, weatherman, and probably a hundred more things.

    For all that, if the stars align perfectly, a farmers profit is usually measured in cents per unit produced. In my own case, negative at the moment until land is paid, fencing is bought and installed, and equipment is sufficient to move to maintain or replace mode. I am pretty good at the math side but I will not calculate it in dollars per hour worked for fear I might have a breakdown. I honestly don't know how a full time farmer does it. Someone once said the fastest way to lose a million dollars is to buy a farm. Oh, one other thing you will need is at least a years worth of operating capital to start.

    Basically, you will have to want to do it because you and your husband love it. If either of you have any ideas it will just be hard, you are wrong. It will be excruciatingly painful. The only way you will make it is because you love it, can't go to bed without falling asleep thinking about it, and dream it while doing anything else.

    I'm sure there are others here that will provide more guidance, but be sure both of you are in love with farming and not the idea of farming.

    I'm in no way trying to discourage you. I hope you find a way to keep and run the farm. I may be losing my shirt at the moment trying it myself, but maybe I'll be able to leave my kids something more valuable than a bank account or a house squeezed between two other houses. Besides, if you can't tell, I LOVE farming!

  5. #35
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    3,461
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Tractor
    JD cut

    Default Re: Thinking of haying/farming for profit- many questions

    Quote Originally Posted by CJMomo View Post
    ... The distance between the farm and where I live now, and operate my own business, is too far to live there and work here. The farm is too remote to move my business there. I am trying to figure out now if it is possible to live and work here as we are now for the first years getting things going and still have time to manage the farm and get things going quick enough....
    That's why you want to seek out and pay particular attention to what the agriculture economists at the Department of Agriculture have to say. It is their job to help you evaluate the return on your investment.

  6. #36
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Posts
    5,657
    Location
    Cedartown, Ga and N. Ga mountains
    Tractor
    1998 Kubota B21, 2005 Kubota L39

    Default Re: Thinking of haying/farming for profit- many questions

    I am curious if your relatives lived off of the farm income alone? If so it must be doable. Also if they farmed the area for 30 years as full time farmers I guaranty they had farmer friends in the area. Farming is a close knit community normally. I would try to seek some of them out and get their opinion. They are going to have the most realistic idea of local costs and what works best in the area. Good Luck.

    MarkV

  7. #37
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    2,920
    Location
    texas
    Tractor
    7040 HDC 1153 fel

    Default Re: Thinking of haying/farming for profit- many questions

    ok ive read this whole thread.an theres alot saying it cant be done but it can.it just takes work an planning.what i dont see is a list of equipment thats on the farm.before i can give advice its best to know whats there.

  8. #38
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    63
    Location
    Northern Ohio

    Default Re: Thinking of haying/farming for profit- many questions

    There are a ton of varuables that that don't know which would make it almost impossible to answer your question. I think the last few post have some very good info in them.

    In my opinion, no you can not make a living of 80ac. You should be able to get some income off of it, but not enough to live of of. Even if it's marginal ground & you rent it out your rental income should easily show a profit ($80ac x 100/ac = $8000/yr) That should easily pay your taxes, and put a little in your pocket. But, how much interest income would you make if you just sold it and but the money in the bank?

    Bottom line, if you want to farm then do it. But the only way you will be able to use that as your sole income is if you get very lucky and raise specialty crops/livestock, and plan on working 90-110 hours a week. The more realistic thing to do if you really do WANT to farm would be to move out there and at least one of you get a full time job somewhere. If you at least one of you have a steady paycheck and insurance that will take a lot of the burden off. Right now we raise livestock and hay. My wife works 40hrs a week and get a lot of vacation time, and I work 45-50hrs a week and get very little time off. If we had 80 ac to run the most I would do is cut back a little on my hours at work. I figured some math up and came up with a number of 600 ac minimum for me to farm full time, 800 would be better. If I wouldn't have my wifes insurance it would be more like 1000+ acres.

    If your young and energetic and want to build your acrage and farm for the next 40 years go for it. You only live once so follow your heart. If your close to retirement and want to farm as a retirement hobby I would also say go for it. If your mid-life and just want to quit your jobs and farm for a living, then think again (unless you have the $3-6 million you would need to get more land and equipment to run it)

  9. #39
    Platinum Member Reyer Farms's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    608
    Location
    Lena, ms
    Tractor
    Mahindra 5010

    Default

    The hours are very long! My wife is home and very capable. Her time is limited because of our daughter is two and she is the whole reason my wife is home. We have no social life. Don't eat out or go to the movies. Pizza and a redbox is our date and it is rare.

    I work nights and sleep on average 4-5 hours of broken sleep a 24 hr period. During peak season less sleep and no sleep Fridays and Saturday's. Up at dark work until 30 mins before I leave. I lose 2 hours in commute each day. I also weld anything that pays. I don't put all my eggs in one basket.

  10. #40
    Bronze Member Birch Hill Farm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    78
    Location
    Kentucky
    Tractor
    International 444

    Default Re: Thinking of haying/farming for profit- many questions

    If its what you want to do and its what makes you feel alive then do it, life is too short to spend your life drudging away at something you dont enjoy. You will have to redifine what you consider a good income and avoid debt like the plague. Also, be realistic in your expectations. Jumping into farming full time the day after you quit your job wont work. We are also trying to farm 80acres. We are just at the begining stages and are doing it a step at a time. We are attempting raising meat goats for the commercial meat goat market but, we are realistic for what the full potential of our operation can be. You have to remember the amount of livestock you produce cant exceed the amount of hay you can produce and it is not economicly feasible to have to buy your hay, the numbers are to tight. So in reality the most gross income with out buying more land would be in the 30k a year range. For a family of 7 that is a part time job that requires way more then full time hours. But, if you can still smile while up at 2am in a freezing barn, elbow deep in a goat trying to untangle twins then farming might be for you. So, for the time being my wife works part time and I have a full time job that is very flexible and alot of time im able to work from home but, its a heck of a commute 2 hrs round trip to both of our jobs. And when things begin to take off we plan to cut our day jobs back accordingly to whatever extent we can afford to. You just have to figure out whats important to you and do it.

Page 4 of 6 FirstFirst 123456 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Thinking about a LS G3038, have some questions
    By Vestry Farmer in forum LS Tractors
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 10-29-2012, 01:05 PM
  2. Replies: 123
    Last Post: 09-07-2012, 07:33 AM
  3. Farming for Beginners - equipment questions
    By Jsheds in forum Owning/Operating
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: 03-21-2012, 08:29 AM
  4. Questions on Hauling for profit
    By scoutcub in forum Trailers & Transportation
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 12-09-2010, 07:49 PM
  5. farming and taxes... questions.
    By Conservative1 in forum Rural Living
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 02-02-2004, 11:57 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
© 2013 TractorByNet.com. TractorByNet is a registered trademark of IMC Digital Universe, Inc. Other trademarks on this page are the property of their respective owners.