If there is one sure thing about hunting, is it that you are going to spend money. It is best to acknowledge that from the beginning, to count the cost, and to plan for the expense, and then stick to that budget. On this episode I talk about how to set a realistic yearly hunting budget no matter what your income. This is for new hunters, lifelong hunters, and everyone in between.

When I first started hunting, I had no idea what I was getting into financially. It took me years to begin to even think about the annual costs, let alone start to budget for them. But of course, there is more to the cost of hunting than just that. There are two primary types of expenses when it comes to hunting, the fixed costs needed just to go into the woods and take game every year, and then the discretionary costs of everything else we buy.

Lots of things contribute to the cost of hunting, depending on the game we are after. If you are hunting deer, you will likely use a tree stand or a hunting blind of some sort, those have costs and don’t last forever. Maybe you need to replace them every 3-5 years, maybe every 5-10 years, but you will need new ones at some point. When it comes to waterfowl hunting, waders and decoys are the same way, when it comes to turkey hunting you have calls and vest that wear out.

No matter what you hunt, you will have clothing and other standard gear that will wear out and need replaced eventually. Many of these things you can plan for, accrue for, so you are not caught off guard. And there all the new shiny things that you must have, this is where costs can quickly multiply. So how do you budget for the necessities and the nice to haves in a way that makes sense for your level of hunting devotion and your income?

In this podcast episode I get into the nitty gritty details of how to take all of these things into account and build a smart sustainable annual hunting budget that will enable you to pay for the things needed to hunt, set aside funds for things that need replaced, and put some money away so you can buy upgrades and new fun things from time to time. The biggest trick to all of it is counting the costs, being realistic, and sticking to your budget without steeling from other areas of your life to buy more and more stuff.

It took me a few years to even begin to realize how much money I was pouring into hunting. I did not understand all of the costs or all of the things I chose to add on because I was not paying attention to the expenses, or where the funds came from that I used for hunting equipment. 

If you’ve never had a hunting budget, you may be surprised to learn that you can end up spending a lot less money by setting aside money for hunting. How can this be? Listen to the whole podcast episode to find out!

Let me also say, I am not an accountant or a financial planner. I am just a regular guy who has learned some simple financial principles over the years that anyone can put into practice to help set and keep to a reasonable budget that can cover all of your hunting costs and expenses from the must haves to the nice to haves. All it takes is a little bit of focus and discipline and you can both save money and be relieved to never need to think about where you’ll pull the money for your general hunting expenses again.