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By May 11, 2012 Read More →

Getting Started – Preparedness Items $20 or Less

Prepping can seem so expensive at times, some of the more elaborate equipment like grain mills, solar ovens, ammo, and even freeze dried food can cost hundreds of dollars.  If you have hit a wall and can’t afford those items, here is a quick list of supplies you can get for under $20 with a quick trip to town.  These are inexpensive (but USEFUL) item ideas that you can slowly acquire on paydays or whenever you have extra cash.

These items have been priced out locally and therefore may vary by your location, also some are seasonal.   Therefore you may have to wait for winter or summer for the items to be offered again.  There are many more, these are just some ideas to get your brain going.  Have your own item ideas for under $20??  Add them to the comment section below!  If I get enough of them I will do another article with a new list and credit you for your idea!  I only ask that you stick to national chains which tend to be more accessible  than your locally owned mom and pop shop.

Costco (similar prices on similar items can found at most Cash and Carry stores that do not require a membership)

  • 25lb bag of rice from – $10.95
  • 3.5lb bag of vacuum packed yeast from – 4.95
  • Box of 90, 33 Gallon Trash Bags with coupon – 13.95
  • Giant pack of 4 huge rolls of duct tape – 16.95
  • Giant Roll of aluminum foil that will last you many years – 19.95
  • 3 pack of performance (hiking) merino wools socks – 11.95
  • 3 pack of 150 lumen LED flash lights (AAA batteries) – 19.95
  • Eneloop rechargeable  batteries 8-12 pack – 19.95

Walmart

  • Wide variety of seeds all under – $5 a pack
  • Triple antibiotic ointment – .88 on special
  • Pure witch hazel – 2.26
  • Bug spray – You can get 3 pack of the good stuff for 18.95 – (don’t buy aerosol cans they won’t last very long cause the lousy “environmentally friendly” propellant they have to use will crap out on you).
  • Dutch oven liners – 4 Pack 4.95
  • Generic brand double mantel propane lantern 19.95 (this was just on mark down).
  • Non-electric meat thermometer – 4.95 & up
  • Mosquito head nets – 2.95 each
  • Pack of 3 kerosene lantern replacement wicks – 1.98
  • Large kerosene hurricane lantern – 5.98
  • Assortment of mountain house freeze dried meals for under $8 each
  • Repair kits for pumps on Coleman lanterns – 4.00
  • Repair kits for pumps on Coleman stoves – 4.00
  • Lodge cast iron cookware – 12.95 – 22.95 (excluding the real dutch ovens with legs that you actually need to cook in campfire).
  • Coffee percolator – 12.95-18.95
  • Tarps (smaller ones but still handy) 10.95 – 14.95
  • Non-electric first-aid thermometer (the kind that you stick in your MOUTH) – 8.95
  • Non-electric outdoor temperature gauge (you know the kind you stick on the outside of your house) – 6.00 – 12.00
  • Non-electric indoor temperature gauge (you know, the kind you stick on the wall) – 4.95
  • Some Walmart Stores offer Augason Farms freeze dried and long term storage foods.  Individually priced very reasonably this may be an option for those who can’t afford to go in on a group buy but would like to pick up a can of the essentials here and there when can afford to do so.

WinCo Foods

  • Food grade 5 gallon bucket – $3 to $4
  • 50 pack of O2 absorbers – 4.95
  • Gasket lid – 2.98
  • Gama seal lids – 6.98
  • 6 Pack of paper towels – 3.96
  • 12 Pack of double rolls TP – 4.95
  • Some WinCo Food Stores also offer Augason Farms freeze dried and long term storage foods.  Individually priced very reasonably this may be an option for those who can’t afford to go in on a group buy but would like to pick up a can of the essentials here and there when can afford to do so.

My Dollar Store (Dollar Tree) where everything truly is a $1

  • Instant ice packs
  • 500 matches
  • Rather elaborate eye glasses repair kit
  • Band aids – dollar store
  • Elastic first aid wraps – dollar store
  • Tooth picks
  • Vaseline
  • Candles in jars (safer than pillar candles).
  • Super Glue – in a set of 3  (I like the small 3 packs cause then you don’t loose a bunch a glue when the cap doesn’t go back on right and the whole thing turns hard as a rock).
  • Glow sticks
  • Gauze pads
  • Large bandages
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Sewing travel kits with scissors, tape, pin, needles and thread
  • Sewing needle kits (assorted sizes, 75 needles).
  • 3 Pack of Ivory Soap
  • Large size tubes of AIM tooth paste
  • 4 Pack of ADA approved toothbrushes
  • 6 Pack of floss
  • Heavy duty kitchen shears (you can never have too many of these).
  • Hand turn can openers (you can’t have too many of these either – in EVERY LOCATION you are prepping).

Big R (sometimes Tractor Supply stores are the same)

  • 18 oz of Lye – $4.95
  • Big Packs of real wooden clothes pins (seasonal) 4.98
  • Real winter hats with ear flaps – 12.95
  • Brand new food grade 5 gallon buckets -3.98
  • Emergency blanket – 1.98
  • Flint/magnesium fire starter – 4.98
  • 5 pack of d-Con bait traps – 6.98
  • Single and double packs of rat traps – 4.98

 



Posted in: Uncategorized

About the Author:

Stephanie is a writer for the American Preppers Network, a small local paper and for her blog, The Home Front. She is also the credited writer of "Emergency Bag Essentials (Swatchbook): Everything You Need to Bug Out" to be released in August 2014. "I write articles based on my own experience about emergency preparedness, self-sufficiency, homesteading, food preservation and life around the farmstead. I grew up in a very rural area where I learned to garden, the art of canning, to hunt and fish, and to raise my own animals for food. Yes, families such as mine still do exist! I also spent 6 years volunteering for the local county Search and Rescue group where I learned a variety of survival skills and a little bit about law enforcement protocol. " "As a general rule of principle do not write articles about information that I have only read - if I am writing about something it's because of I have done it myself and gone to great lengths to provide you with the facts. I also have a full time job with an hour commute - my alter egos are as a Marketing Director, and an amateur photographer. " To connect with me --> click on one of the many little square social media buttons below!

12 Comments on "Getting Started – Preparedness Items $20 or Less"

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  1. mamahen says:

    Great article! Very informative for those of us on a budget, and those who are not.
    Thank you for pointing out the need for extra can openers. I never thought of that. We have an impressive stockpile of canned goods, and just 1 can opener! LOL! I’m off to the dollar store to buy $20.00 worth of them.
    Thanks

  2. Brett says:

    thanks so much for this list. I have been compiling a list for the last 2 months but yours is a lot better than mine I really appreciate it.

  3. AddOptions says:

    Walmart has a 4-pack of super glue for $.98.  Also, regularly check the discount areas of any store.  Places like Walmart will have one for each section of the store instead of one central location.  Another useful item is extra pocket knives.  Walmart sells a single blade for about a dollar and you can get a couple of Chinese made swiss style knives from the local dollar store for under $20

  4. camampure says:

    Just baught mag starter at Harbor freight for $2.99

  5. I need to be better at linking to other articles that go along with mine. I keep forgetting I can do that! Thanks for the link Millennium!

  6. Ric R says:

    WATER???………FOOD??? ………AMMO???

  7. Ric –
    This is a list of ideas – not a COMPLETE preparedness list, nor did I claim it to be – such a list would be ridiculous in size and not feasible for a short web article. If you have any specific items you’d like to see on the next list please feel free to include them in another comment – list item, price and place of purchase and I will get it in there. 

    To address one of your concerns “FOOD” I did include the following in the list above – maybe you missed it:
    -25lb bag of rice from Costco  $10.95
    -Some Walmart Stores offer Augason Farms freeze dried and long term storage foods.  Individually priced very reasonably this may be an option for those who can’t afford to go in on a group buy but would like to pick up a can of the essentials here and there when can afford to do so.
    -Some WinCo Food Stores also offer Augason Farms freeze dried and long term storage foods. Individually priced very reasonably this may be an option for those who can’t afford to go in on a group buy but would like to pick up a can of the essentials here and there when can afford to do so.

  8. Jeremy says:

    Spend money on your can openers. I have bought many of those lousey dollar store can openers and have ended up thowing them out. Dish out the 5-10 at Walmart and get a quality opener. You’ll thank yourself in the long run.

    • The only can openers we use in my house are dollar store can openers. They all work fine. I think it depends on where you buy them and what type they are selling. These are full size heavy openers that I get from the Dollar Tree – but I have bought dollar store items before that turned out to be garbage so caution and a test drive is necessary before depending on anything you buy like that.

  9. Kat says:

    I just bought 333 rounds of hollow point .22 ammo today at my local Wal-Mart for $14. We’re also looking at changing out the field (target) tips to hunting tips on our arrows, which can be done a few at a time to keep it under $20.

  10. Debbie says:

    Kitchenaid makes a very sturdy can opener in the price range of $8-$12 dollars. Dollar stores have a large selection of OTC meds- aspirin, nasal spray, antibiotic ointment, epsom salts to just name a few. The Dollar Tree also has some large plastic storage containers that hold 5 pounds of sugar or flour- very sturdy.



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