How To Start Homebrewing On The Cheap: Brewing Beer On A Budget

Jan 2022 | Last modified: November 14, 2023 | 6 min read | By David Scott

piggy bank with stacks of coins

Learning how to brew your own beer at home is a enjoyable and very addicting hobby that a true beer lover can do.

But it doesn’t have to be expensive.

After you get some very basic and inexpensive home brewing equipment and supplies, some you may already have in your kitchen, you can brew many types of beer for years to come, all while brewing on a budget.

Once you begin brewing, you will certainly take pride in sharing your craft beer with all your family and friends, knowing that YOU created your own craft beer.

Beer Brewing on a Budget

If you have ever gone on a tour of a brewery and saw the complete brewing process from start to finish, you would see massive amounts of equipment. You would see millions of dollars of huge stainless-steel storage tanks and high-speed bottling and packages machines.

It might seem impossible, but yes you can easily make your own beer in your own kitchen for less than $100. And your home brew will taste just as good as a beer brewed in a commercial brewery.

There is an entire home brewing subculture that has risen up based entirely on being able to make beer yourself at relatively low costs.

How To Start Homebrewing on the Cheap

When you factor in the costs of a brew kettle, fermenters, bottling or kegging supplies, and other specialized equipment that can range from several hundred to several thousands of dollars, the startup cost might seen a bit intimidating.

It’s never a wise decision to sink that kind of money into any new hobby before you know if it is something you will enjoy doing, and that includes homebrewing too.

While there are people who begin brewing their first batch of beer every day, there are also those who decided to give up homebrewing for one reason or another.

Here are a few ideas where you can find some brewing equipment at a discounted price.

1) Find Used Brewing Equipment on Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist

You can find some great deals on all kinds of brewing supplies by checking out a few Facebook home brewing groups or on the Facebook marketplace.

And of course you can always look for brewing stuff on Craigslist too. From what we have seen, most of the equipment listed on Craigslist is quite a bit cheaper than on Facebook.

Both of these sources are filled with people who are not brewing anymore, or they are buying new or advanced equipment, and are willing to sell their used equipment for next to nothing.

There is a large used brewing equipment market, where you can find all kinds of discounted equipment in new or “like new” condition all the time. You will just need to shop around.

homebrewing equipment on facebook

2) Split the Costs with a Friend

Another great way to save money on your brewing equipment is to find a brew buddy or two and buy the everything together and split up the costs.

Having friends who are interested in the same hobby makes brewing beer more fun and social. Each of you can hang onto the equipment and supplies at different times to get to know it.  You can learn to make good beer by yourself, so you will also make great beer together as a team.

Who knows, you may get so good at it that you enter your beer in a local homebrew competition and win a little money. And when a few bucks come rolling in from that, you can reinvest your winnings into your home brewery.

3) Learn From Other Homebrewers

It might seem odd, but one solution is to get your first exposure and training in making beer with someone else’s equipment.

You can also check out your local homebrew shops in your area where everything you need to make your own beer can be found.

You can look for clubs and home brewing societies that are full of people who are serious about making beer, just like you are wanting to do.

These beer crafters not only love home brewing industry, but they can also be real evangelists for their hobby. And many would be happy to take you under their wing, and teach you how to get started.

When you are learning from someone who already knows how to brew, you will quickly learn what to look for in equipment and what is NEEDED and what is completely OPTIONAL.

You can go through the entire brewing process and learn how to brew great craft beer, and what mistakes to avoid. Doing it this way means you have learned about the home brewing industry before you spend any money.  But that doesn’t mean you won’t have to bring the snacks or buy lunch.

4) Get a Homebrew Starter Kit For Beginners

While buying used equipment is an economical way to start adding to your brewing toolbox, it is still somebody’s used equipment. When you are buying used, you don’t always know exactly what kind of condition everything is in.

There are many homebrewers who will always try to buy used equipment to keep their brewing costs as low possible. But then there are those who just prefer to buy new.

But you can also buy new, even if you are on a tight budget. There are many home brew starter kits available that come with everything you need to start brewing, and some will cost you less than $100.

Check out our review guide of the best home brewing starter kits, and see which one will work the best for you.

Final Say

When you are ready to get started, the before hand knowledge of what you really need will pay off big time.

You absolutely don’t have to pay anything close to top dollar for the equipment you need to brew your first batch of beer. There are just too many great deals on both used and new brewing equipment to keep you from getting started.

Happy Brewing!

level up all grain

Ready To Improve Your All-Grain Brewing Process, and Take It To The Next Level?

This course includes 29 indivdual videos that cover techniques and processes for water chemistry, yeast health, mashing, fermentation, dry-hopping, zero-oxygen packaging, and more!

Scroll to Top