5 Urban Preps For Those On A Budget

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urban1The trouble with being a young prepper just getting out on your own is getting the money together to get started. This can be even more daunting in an urban setting like an apartment building. Not to worry, you’re not doomed. You can still start prepping and it doesn’t have to break the bank either. Below we put together a list of must have items for the urban prepper.


Food is a top priority, you’re not going to last long hungry and planning to just kick in your neighbors door isn’t exactly recommended. A reasonable stock pile can be put together fairly affordably. Depending on your means, if you can scrape together $50-$100 bucks, you can eat for a month or more.

A simple trick to build a stock pile over time is every week you go food shopping, grab an extra can or two. Anything will work so long as it doesn’t require water to prepare. You don’t need to be eating 5 star meals, a few cans of beef stew will work just fine.

For an all in one solution, there are plenty of survival food packs that will get you three months for under $150. Dollar for dollar, it ends up running a bit cheaper and it’s far more space efficient. Below are a few of our picks.





Next on the list is water. Even with all the food in the world, without water, you won’t last three days. The trouble with water isn’t the cost in an urban setting, it’s storing it. This is a pretty simple to overcome though and you don’t have to break the bank on a fancy water storage system either.

a few five-gallon buckets will suffice, just make sure they’re food grade. Don’t mess around with construction grade buckets otherwise you risk contamination. Food grade buckets will store water for 6 months at a time. Look for #2 HDPE Plastic containers. Be sure to store them in a cool place out of the sun to avoid microbes as well.

The rule of thumb to go by is a gallon per person, per day. So if you go with five gallon buckets, you will need six of them to last you a month. Make sure you are refreshing your stock every six months. Also, be sure to keep a water filter on hand also for the worst case scenario.



Surprisingly, the simplest item on this list. A small first aid kit is going to run you about $15 bucks online and will cover just about any basic needs. Another great investment is to take a first aid class or two. Knowledge doesn’t get broken, or take up space (which is a really killer in urban survival).

Here are a few of our picks for first aid kits you can check out but just about any corner store is going to have what you need.



defense-1Home defense is critical in an urban setting. In a SHTF scenario, people get desperate, and in the city, there’s a lot of people. Here you are going to want to invest in a home defense weapon. A shot-gun is going to be the most cost effective weapon out there. They’re readily accessible and, depending on where you live, typically don’t require licensing or classes. Check into your local laws just to be safe.

Ammo can be stocked up on at any major retailer such as Wal-Mart. You can also get bulk ammo online. Storage is simple, just keep it dry and don’t store it near heat. Keeping it out of reach of children should go with out saying as well.

Some passive methods are also a good idea. Keep a few 2×4’s handy to bar the door in a hurry if needed. In a pinch, interior doors, such as a bathroom or closet door, can be used to seal windows also. Just make sure you have a some nails or screws around strong enough to secure them. For more on hardening your home, check out our guide.


Whether it’s a week long power-outage or TEOTWAWKI, it’s always a good idea to have an alternative source of power. In the city, a generator might be impractical, but the sun is always there. It’s probably not feasible to power your entire apartment, but keeping small devices powered for communication or information is always good.

There’s plenty of options out there from solar window panels to solar-powered cell-phone cases, but our personal favorite is the solar back-pack from Ener-Plex (link below). It’s multi purpose, which is a huge space saver, whether bugging in or bugging out. The bag is also compatible with all manner of devices and coupled with a power bank, will last you as long as you need. It’s flexible, water-proof design also makes it durable.

Lastly, affordability! It’s not going to kill your budget, and what college student doesn’t need a back-pack. The only difference is this one charges your devices whether your fighting the mid-term madness or hoards of zombies!



Not all catastrophes are the end of the world. Don’t ignore other common sense preps to prepare for the apocalypse. For example, if the power goes out for a week or two, the landlord is still expecting his money on the first. Prepare financially too, the point of this article is to give those aspiring preppers a fighting chance in an urban apartment without killing their budget.

Word to the wise, if mom and dad haven’t told you already, make sure you have at least a month’s worth of bills stashed away. You aren’t going to stand a chance in the Zombie apocalypse after you get evicted…

Hope this helped, check out our other guides and how to’s for more info.

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Brandon is a survivalist from the U.S.’s North-east. He’s been an active camper and survival enthusiast since a young age and began TheSurvivalist.net with the hopes of sharing knowledge and bringing preppers together.

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