With so many likely disasters that could occur at a moment’s notice, a lot of people are taking the step of buying a survival property where they could retreat to, or a “Bug Out Location.” There are even lots of websites which specialize in selling survival properties, such as www.strategicrelocation.com and www.survivalrealty.com. While I also would love to have the peace of mind which comes with owning a survival property, this is why I am NOT going to buy one.
Ownership Won’t Mean Anything When SHTF
You invest a lot of money, time and effort into your survival property, but get the satisfaction that comes with it being yours. Hate to break it to you, but ownership won’t mean anything in a true disaster situation. The moment a gang of starving people sees your property, they are going to raid it and take it for themselves. I am a realist. Even with a good stash of ammunition and installing defensive structures, I know that I wouldn’t be able to defend the property for long (it’s just me, my wife, and small child – how long could we realistically last?).
There Aren’t Any Truly Secluded Survival Properties Near Me
Take a look at this population density map. You will see that most people, including myself, live in pretty dense areas.
One of the requirements for choosing a Bug Out location is that it must be remote. Another requirement of a Bug Out location is that it must be accessible (ideally within 1 tank of gas).
Even if you find a “remote” area near you, chances are that it will be overrun by people when a disaster strikes (you won’t be the only one with the idea of fleeing into the wilderness!).
Unless you live in the Dakotas, Montana, or Wyoming, chances are there aren’t any suitable Bug Out properties for sale near you.
I could go ahead and buy a seemingly remote survival property near me, but if SHTF, I really wouldn’t be able to rely on that location.
Image credit:Population Density Map by JimIrwin CC-BY-SA-3.0, Found at Wiki Commons
We Can’t Predict What Disaster Will Strike
Survivalists and preppers spend a lot of time predicting what disasters are more likely, and what would happen in the aftermath. But the truth is that we don’t know.
Even if I spent a lot of time calculating which survival properties are on “safe zones” away from likely risks like hurricanes, nuclear power plants, and earthquake fault lines, I still could end up near ground zero.
I’d rather have a few good Bug Out locations scouted out rather than relying on one survival property which might not even be there when SHTF.
Your Survival Chickens Will Make You a Target
The one benefit of buying a survival property (as opposed to bugging out in the wilderness) is that you will be able to stockpile the property with survival supplies, and can even get off-grid technologies going, make a survival garden, and get some backyard chickens.
But all of these things will make you a target to anyone who comes by.
Yes, there are all sorts of ways to camouflage your survival property, but someone is eventually going to find you.
Thieves and looters always pick the easiest target in relationship to the reward. In a survival situation, those chickens (or your solar panels, water well, etc.) are going to be a BIG reward. No matter how many defenses you have up, thieves are going to go for you.
Staying Mobile Will Help You Survive
Again, we don’t know what would happen in a disaster situation, but I predict that staying mobile is going to be a lot more beneficial to your immediate survival than staying put at one survival property.
When you are mobile, you:
- Can change locations when resources run out or whether conditions change
- Can easily flee or hide if you encounter a potentially-dangerous group
- Are better prepared mentally to respond to new disasters or changes to the situation
- Less of a target (bands that you encounter will think you have nothing/little to steal)
Of course, this will require that you know wilderness survival skills like how to build a survival shelter, how to find water, how to purify water, edible plant identification, first aid, and self-defense.
Survival Properties Are Expensive
Finally, I’ve got to point out that buying a survival property requires a large investment. Yes, this is an investment in your survival and security – but I’d rather spend my money on supplies and learning survival techniques than putting all my eggs in one basket.
When I Would Consider Buying a Survival Property
I haven’t completely excluded the idea of buying a survival property. I just don’t think it is the right decision for my family right now. These are some of the cases during which I would think it is a good idea to invest in a survival property:
You have the money to spare.
If you’ve got the money, then invest it in your survival and security!
There are truly remote, safe areas located near you.
Do the research. What is the population density of the areas around you? What is the likelihood of a natural disaster hitting these areas? How accessible is the property to other people? Are there natural defenses in place (like it is located at the top of a hill where you could see intruders coming)? If you find a survival property nearby which meets these requirements, then buy it!
You or your family wouldn’t survive in the wilderness.
If anyone in your group has medical problems, is elderly, or is very young, then they probably wouldn’t fare well in a wilderness survival situation where you’ve got to walk a lot every day and may need to go long periods of time without food or basic resources. Even if the survival property isn’t 100% secure, it is still better than having no survival retreat or trying to bug out in the wilderness.
You will be able to use the property, even in non-disaster situations.
I’m saving up to buy a cabin in the woods – but not to use it as our “survival retreat” or “bug out location.” I just want a nice place to take my family and friends to on weekends so we can get some fresh air. Because of the population density of the area, I know that this cabin won’t be suitable as a SHTF survival property. But it is still a good investment because we will enjoy the property, and it will make a good temporary retreat for short-term and small disasters.
Are you considering a survival property? Let us know in the comments below or join the conversation on Facebook!