Since starting this website, I notice income possibilities more than I used to. When I was outside Safeway earlier this year, I was totally amazed at the large–and dwindling–pile of firewood bundles for sale. At $4.99 each, I could imagine how much a full cord would bring. What was most surprising is how the stack dwindled over the season.
Selling firewood bundles is a nice income addition if you already have a steady supply of wood. We buy our firewood in bulk, 4 cords at a time, from a guy who has access to logging slash piles and cuts the leftovers into firewood. It’s a good business for him and a great time saver for us.
If you live near a town, there is a great market for campfire wood in the summer camping season and even during the winter season for more urban locations. Let’s dig deeper into the market and profit potential for firewood bundles.
Initial Investment Cost
Selling firewood bundles is more labor intensive than cost intensive, especially if you already have land to cut on. Your main cost is a chainsaw, which you likely already have in this scenario but if not, a good saw will run you around $500-$700. I wouldn’t invest in a chainsaw simply to sell $5 firewood bundles, and you probably won’t either, so this cost will not be factored for this income idea.
One item you may need and don’t already have is a quality splitting axe. After seeing rave reviews about this one on Facebook, I’ve got it on my Imminent Purchase list.
You don’t need to own your own land for this. Contact local forestry companies, sawmills, private landowners, your state DNR or Forest Service agencies and you will find unlimited sources for all of your wood cutting needs. If you happen to have your own land, you’ll save on travel and gas expenses, as well as travel time.
Firewood Cutting: Turnaround Time
There is a demand for firewood bundles year round, so you can begin seeing sales immediately. You will have a surge in demand over late winter, into summer and through to fall. For firewood bundles in particular, you will probably see the most sales in late winter and summer.
Daily Time Requirements
You’ll probably spend time in spurts for this venture. The nice thing about selling firewood bundles is that you can incorporate your cutting time in where you have downtime, such as at the end of the busy summer season or even in winter if roads are passable. Firewood keeps under cover indefinitely, so you have flexibility to store up large quantities whenever you have time.
In general, you could plan on spending a week or so in days spread out throughout the year, or a daily average of 20 minutes per day.
In order to make this venture profitable, you need to either sell larger quantities or double up your time – cutting firewood when you’re in the woods camping or foraging, for example, unless you have your own land and can cut as needed. Since labor is the main cost, find ways to cut labor and you’ll find ways to increase profits.
Overall, selling firewood bundles is not going to make you rich but it can be a welcome addition to a well balanced income plan.
Potential Markets for Firewood Cutting
There are a surprising number of people searching for retail firewood. This screenshot shows you the average searches per month (generalized) for these keywords, showing us that people want to buy their firewood from big box stores. These would be potential markets, along with small, locally owned shops where you might be able to work out a commission deal instead of a lower priced wholesale contract.
Through online sources like Craigslist and Facebook, you can market directly to retail buyers for a higher price. Firewood bundles make an excellent add-on for a farm stand or other roadside application.
In our small town, a business owner put a rack out front and filled it up with firewood, selling the whole works for about $35. It was constantly empty, indicating a demand for affordable, small quantity firewood bundles.
- National Forest Firewood Cutting
- DNR.(yourstateabbreviation).gov for DNR firewood information
Though not a method for getting rich, selling firewood bundles can help add income and is a perfect companion for other business ventures that get you out in the woods, such as wild foraging.