Rent out your RV for some extra bucks?

Rent out your RV for some extra bucks?

 

By Russ and Tiña De Maris

Joe W. has a nice motorhome but, sad to say, his family lives a busy life so they don’t get out in the rig as much as they’d like to. But still, they have those pesky payments on the purchase, the insurance, licensing fees, and storage. One day, one of Joe’s friends approached and asked if he could rent Joe’s motorhome for a few days – he and some buddies wanted a motorhome to take to a NASCAR race. Joe wants to know, is this a good idea, and what all is entailed?

What would you tell Joe?

We’ve heard some comments from a few RVers, and a bit of information from a firm that acts as a go-between for RVers who’d like to rent out their rigs and potential renters. Here’s a round-up of thoughts from both sides of the issue.

“My motorhome is just that: Mine. I bought it because I don’t like sleeping in strange beds, sitting on strange toilets, and cooking in strange kitchens. Why would I ever let strangers come into my ‘home’ and do all of that?”

“Ever loaned out your lawn mower, and then had to go and try and get it back?”

“If you say ‘no,’ you may hurt some feelings. But if you say ‘yes,’ and it comes back in pieces, will your feelings be hurt more or less?’

“Check the fine print in your insurance contract.”

“How many friends and relatives do you have? Loan (or rent) to one, watch the others all get in line.”

Of course, there’s always “on the other hand.”

One private motorhome rental referral agency touts how RV owners can recoup a bit of their expenses by using the “screening” program to attract customers. You post your rig’s photos and description on the company website, the company helps you determine a suitable rental rate, “pre-screens” the customers, takes credit card payments. They also help the RV owner to get a handle on commercial insurance, a definite requirement, as your standard RV insurance won’t cover renting out your rig. You keep your RV in your yard, and the customers pick up and deliver to you.

So how does it all shake out? We found reading between the lines on the owner’s “testimonial” page to be a bit eye-opening. Here’s a sample:

“We have had a very good response from visitors to your site. So far, we have had around 10 vacation bookings, with really great people (for the most part).”

“The only problem I have run into so far was the insurance. [My] state won’t allow the partnering arrangement that the renter pays the insurance at daily rate while the owner owns a commercial policy at a discounted rate.

“We resolved the issue by increasing my daily rental to include the insurance. It helps, but I have to pay the total cost whether or not it is rented.”

We’d love to hear your thinking on the issue. Ever rented (loaned) out your RV? What happened? Would you even think of such an undertaking?

##RVT807

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7 thoughts on “Rent out your RV for some extra bucks?

  1. Laura Schulman

    I got an email from “RV Share,” offering to tell me how much I could rent my motorhome for, if I just provided a few details like year, make, and model. I’ve been thinking about buying a couple of teardrop trailers to rent out as a business, so for kicks and chuckles I sent in my details for just the query, mind you. To my surprise and horror, without my permission they created an account and a listing for my motorhome! I started getting several inquiries a day. I tried to log in to the account they’d created, but since I hadn’t created it, I couldn’t! It took several weeks to get the damn thing shut down. Beware!

    1. Chuck Woodbury

      Laura, that is not right. I will contact the company to see what is going on.

  2. G. Lee

    When thinking about renting out your motor home, think of the movie “RV” with the late, GREAT, Robin Williams.

  3. Popeye

    We own a 2007 42 foot Monaco. Dynasty. It takes a lot of know-how to operate this class of RV safely and without screwing something up. After 95,000 plus miles we still make mistakes that cost $$$. A $1,000 per day would not be enough money to let a want-a-be RVer go off down the road with my RV.

  4. EmRoy

    The Motor Home is a complex item with many moving parts. My fears are that it can be damaged, via the innocence of a novice with the repairs costing many dollars. So I am going to suggest that the person that desires to rent the Motor Home go to an agency who rents the RV as a business.

  5. Lee Ensminger

    We have two RVs. A DP and a TT. And since we aren’t full-timers, they spend some time in our toy barn not being used. And that’s where they will stay. There is not a chance in you-know-where we will EVER rent them out. Charles, you have a great attitude towards what you’re doing, but a 40% damage experience? I’m not even considering it.

  6. Charles

    I took delivery of my Roadtrek in May this year and have rented it out, through an online rental site, five times. I’ve earned several thousand dollars. As was pointed out in your article, if you are going to loan or rent your RV to others, you do need to be ready to accept the notion that other folks have lived in your space. That has been okay for us. But you also need to accept that RV renters are just about like everyone else– they are not always smart or reliable.. We’ve experienced damage in two of the rentals so far. The first renter broke the plastic control panel cover on the refrigerator and acted surprised when I pointed it out. The second time my renters returned the vehicle with the propane and CO alarms removed. He said he did that because they kept going off. Turned out that he hit a tree stump, disconnecting the gen exhaust. Security deposits covered everything. If you are going to rent successfully, you need to view this for what it is– a business transaction–and you need to leave your emotions aside.

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