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If you own an RV of some type, whether it’s a camper van, class C, Class A, or a trailer, you may be able to earn money from renting it to others. It can be similar to owning a vacation home that you use as a rental and use yourself throughout the year. Oftentimes, an RV will sit in a person’s driveway for extended periods of time and only get used a few times a year. During these times, it might be a good idea to have other people helping to float the cost of ownership.
Renting out your RV can be a good way to earn money on something that might otherwise be sitting around. If you do not live in your van or RV full-time then it is probably sitting in your driveway during certain times of the year. It could be in the hands of someone else potentially earning you a passive income rather than collecting dust and just being an expensive item that is depreciating out in your driveway.
It can be a great way to recoup some of the costs associated with owning the RV. The RV rental market is booming and you can often find rental units traveling along the highways and in RV parks. How many of the RVs you see on the road are rented from a private party? There is no way to know but one thing is for sure: RVing is as popular as ever and it only makes sense for those wanting to try it out to rent one instead of purchasing one.
Private rentals have become more popular in recent years thanks to services that Outdoorsy, RVezy, and RVShare offer. These companies are the pioneers in the private RV rental market and anyone with an RV can list theirs for rent. Likewise, anyone wanting to use one without the costs of ownership can borrow one for a weekend excursion.
These companies provide a great platform for anyone wanting to rent out their RV. It’s also a great way for renters to find an RV in their area. Not everyone wants to buy an RV so having options available to be able to rent one from someone else is a great opportunity for both the renter and the RV owner.
Of course, you can rent RVs of all sizes from other places such as Cruise America but these are large companies and it might be a better idea to get it from a private party.
Depending on what type of RV you have, you may be able to make some serious cash! It will also depend on the area you live in as the market for this service will be greater in some areas than it will in others. If you live in a larger metropolitan area near an outdoorsy crowd where the weather is pleasant most of the year, you may be able to earn great money by doing this.
Why not rent yours out when you aren’t using it as a way to earn some additional income? It’s a good idea but there are certainly some pros and cons to doing so. If you are planning on listing yours on the market, there are some things you should consider before doing it. Let’s look at some of the pros and cons of doing this.
The best reason for renting out your RV is the extra income you will earn. Rather than having a motorized vehicle sitting in your driveway collecting dust and depreciating, you can turn it into something that puts money into your pockets.
You may be able to earn a lot of money depending on the type of RV you have. The following numbers are what you might expect from renting different RV types.
|RV Type||Daily Rental Price|
|Class A||$175 – $300|
|Class B||$100 – $250|
|Class B+||$150 – $250|
|Class C||$150 – $250|
|Large Travel Trailer||$100 – $150|
|Small Travel Trailer||$75 – $100|
|Fifth Wheel||$125 – $175|
|Pop-Up Camper||$50 – $85|
This chart represents the average prices that were found using the Outdoorsy and RVezy rental marketplace. These numbers will vary depending on the condition of your vehicle, features, location, and other factors.
If you do not own your RV free and clear and have it financed, renting it to others will help you to pay for it. This leads us to the next pro about renting your RV.
Helps Pay for Your RV
If you are like many people, financing your RV is the way that you chose to pay for it. These costs can be a burden and may seem absurd if you rarely use it. Many people work full-time jobs and get their few weeks of vacation each year. It’s usually during these weeks that they plan vacations. This may be the only time your RV gets used so paying a monthly payment for something that gets so little use might not be a great idea.
However, if you list it as a rental on online marketplaces and allow it to be rented and used by others throughout the year, you can recoup some of those costs and help pay those monthly payments. You might even end up earning more than what you are paying for the RV, making it a great deal.
It may even help you to keep your RV. Some people who rarely use their RV end up selling it. However, selling an RV is almost always a losing battle since depreciation will cause you to lose money in the process. If you own an expensive RV, it may be difficult to sell on the market, especially in bad times such as during a pandemic (which we currently happen to be in around the world with Covid-19).
RV Gets Usage
As mentioned above, many people only use their RVs a few times per year. The rest of the year, it may be sitting under a cover or out in the weather collecting dust and algae. Renting your RV to other people can ensure that it is getting used. RVs were designed to be driven and lived in so having others using your RV will ensure that this is happening. Of course, there is also a downside to this which will be discussed below.
Wear and Tear on Your RV
Perhaps the worst part of renting your RV to other people is that you leave your valuable possession in the hands of someone else. This is often a turn off for people who decide not to go this route because they do not want someone else driving and using their van or RV. It’s well known that when something is not yours, you are probably not going to take care of it as you would your own.
This can be found in the rental car marketplace as rental cars get beaten to death by renters who couldn’t care less what happens to the car. They use and abuse it while they have it and once they are finished with it, it goes on to the next person who does the same. Everyone is not like this but rental cars are known to be some of the most used and abused cars in the used car industry.
Putting your valued RV in the hands of someone else who won’t care for it the way you will can be a scary thing to do. Excessive wear and tear on your RV can bring the value down even more than it would go with normal depreciation. You’ll go through more oil changes, tire rotations and changes, mechanical issues, and other unexpected problems when you begin renting your RV to others. It’s just a fact of the matter and is bound to happen.
Even when people do take great care of it, in the end, it is still a vehicle that has moving parts. Parts wear out and the more it is getting used, the faster these parts will wear out.
There is a fine line between renting your RV for the extra money and having it used and abused by others. Will the cost of the wear and tear be worth the price you charge to rent it to someone?
Other People Using Your RV
One of the things I like best about traveling in my camper van is that I get to sleep in my own bed. I like knowing that no one else has slept in my bed and everything is clean. To me, it’s better than staying in a hotel where others stay regularly and do things you probably wouldn’t want to know about. It’s a great feeling to be able to park for the night and use your own bed, shower, and cooking utensils.
When you allow others to use your RV, you will inevitably have many different people sleeping in your bed, using your pillows, sitting on chairs, couches, and doing things that you won’t even know about. You can clean it but it still might have a gross factor that you might not want to deal with.
Owning an RV can be very expensive. It can be very stressful when you have let that expensive motorhome drive away in someone else’s hands. No one wants to deal with the potential problems that might occur such as wrecks, or vandalism. It might cause some sleepless nights if you are the type to worry. Of course, as you get more experienced with renting it to others, you will learn to relax a bit.
5 Things to Consider
This list brings up a few questions or concerns that you might want to consider before deciding to rent out your RV.
1) How Much Can You Really Earn?
The first order of business is to determine how much you can actually earn with this. You will need to get real about it rather than looking at it with dreamy eyes. Not everyone is going to list their RV and immediately become an RV rental mogul making a full-time income.
There is a chance that you could list your RV and it will not even pique the interest of anyone. This will all depend on your area, your offering, and your price. You’ll have to first research how much RVs go for in your area or as close to your area as you can find. Then you’ll need to determine whether or not you think that price is going to be worth the wear and tear on your vehicle.
Also, you are not likely going to know how well it will rent so if you are considering it and have determined that the price is good enough, you should consider opening an account at one of the online marketplaces and get it listed. From there, you’ll be able to see what happens and you can determine whether or not to continue or if it’s just a waste of time for your specific offering.
2) Are You Really Okay With Others Using Your RV?
Do you really want others to take your RV on trips? Not everyone is happy to hand the keys over to strangers even when it has been done using a trusted rental marketplace. There are protections in place but it can still be risky if you let the wrong person drive off with your RV.
As a test, you might want to loan your RV to a friend or family member for a weekend getaway. This will give you a taste of what it feels like to have someone else using it. If you stress about it and worry the entire time, then perhaps renting it out to strangers would be even worse and you should choose against it. On the other hand, if you have no issues with it, put it on the marketplace and take it one renter at a time until you are more comfortable with the process.
3) Be Prepared for Potential Problems
Problems are likely to arise when you have people using your RV. There may be mechanical problems or appliance failures within your rig that may hinder the trip of a renter. As mentioned earlier, people don’t always take care of things so you may be left with problem after problem to deal with. Are you up for this challenge and do you have a plan in place to protect yourself?
There could also be wrecks or other mishaps that might put you in a bad situation. Insurance is usually provided for the renter so damages will be paid but that doesn’t mean it won’t be a headache for you to deal with. Dealing with insurance is never fun and the loss of value and other lingering problems may haunt you long after the damages have been paid for and “fixed.”
4) Consider Using Your RV More Yourself
If you have a personal RV that you are considering renting to others because it doesn’t get used as much as you’d like, perhaps this is a sign that you need more time off. You probably purchased the RV because of the lifestyle and relaxation that it could provide. Why not plan more trips for yourself, even if they are local? Get away from the hustle and bustle and enjoy the relaxing environment of your RV to destress and enjoy nature.
5) Just Give It a Try
If you think there is a good chance that you can earn some money by renting out your RV, just give it a try! If you have decided that you are okay with handing your keys over to others then what do you have to lose? The online marketplaces will take care of the details, rules, and insurances. The only thing you have to do is give it a try and provide your RV. You will never know if you don’t go for it.
Renting out your RV can be rewarding financially if you have a compelling offering that others are interested in. However, just know that it does come with some drawbacks. Anyone who has ever been a landlord or loaned other expensive items to someone else can attest to the fact that putting valuable possessions into someone else’s hands isn’t for the faint of heart.
However, once you get over the pain associated with seeing your prized RV driven off by someone else, it can be nice to see the extra income that it can provide.
The choice comes down to whether or not you want to earn extra money with it or not and how much you can earn. It also depends on how much you use it. If it sits in your driveway for the majority of the year and only gets taken out once or twice then it might make sense for you to start looking to get some use out of it and earn some money at the same time.