One thing that we should always consider while prepping is that we always must make the most of our limited finances.
One way of doing that is to purchase items that can be used for several different tasks. Items that are flexible and adaptable to several different uses. It can be easier and cheaper buying items that only perform one task but frequently for a little bit more you can get a more flexible multi tool. Put together the money for each item and you may have a multi tool for less. It just needs you to do a bit of thinking when you are looking for your purchases. Have a look at the multi tools available and consider if they would meet your needs. Bear in mind that sometime specialist tools are better being specifically designed for that job. Not all the time though and that is an opportunity for us.
Expand that across the rest of your preps. We look for vehicles that can be used for more than one use; It can carry several people, it can be used for load carrying and perhaps even as a mobile home.
Even simple things should be considered. Try and standardise on batteries, this means you have the capability of recovering batteries from other units for use in more important units. You can buy in bulk and standardise on rechargeable batteries. There is nothing worse than picking up something you want to use and it has flat batteries and they are non standard. What about gas canisters and their fittings? Think about what you can standardise on across your preps.
Even when you are looking at building items, try and standardise on the basic nuts, bolts and screws. How many times have you wrecked the thread or head on something because you have not had the correct tool available for use? Same with pipe work, washers and other standard items.
One item that will eventually be in every home, if we last that long, is a 3D printer. Store in it the plans for pipe fittings, attachments, mounts not forgetting nuts, bolts, washes etc. and then produce what you need without having to go to the shops. The nearest you can get to a Star trek type replicator for a long time if ever. Buy a 3D printer, a pile of plastic and you can produce a large amount of items for home repair. As it uses plastic it doesn’t even use that much power so is a viable option for putting in as a prep. As they are relatively new they will only improve over the next few years.
It isn’t just your kit either, if you have a local group or friends who are involved, even if they don’t live next door looking to standardise is a good idea. As well as the obvious benefits such as bulk discounts, there is the other benefits involved with having the options of gaining spares from someone else. Think of the problems you can have repairing kit and then consider that a third party could have a spare part that will just be a drop in replacement for you. Then it is just down to what you can trade. The alternative is a trade for something that isn’t quite right but close and then modifying it to fit where it won’t last as long as the proper one would. Obviously a second choice.
It makes sense to standardise where you can but don’t transfer this philosophy to food and items like seeds. In those cases go for variety from a multitude of sources and if you get a bad batch of any, or all, of your items then all is not lost. A sensible risk reduction strategy.