The travel industry has undergone a major shift over the past few years as consumers discover the advantages of peer-to-peer rentals. Online marketplaces like Airbnb.com and VRBO.com are connecting travelers with short-term vacation rentals, allowing owners to profit from properties they only use for part of the year. The trend has also moved into other travel sectors, including RV rentals. If you’re an RV owner, there are a multitude of reasons why you should consider renting your RV when you’re not using it.
The Booming RV Sharing Market
There’s no question that more people are taking vacations, including road trips. For many travelers, a rental RV is an attractive alternative to cookie-cutter hotels and motels. This is especially true for younger travelers who want the RV experience without investing in their own vehicle, or for anyone who wants to “test drive” an RV before buying.
Most privately-owned RVs are only used for about 10% of the year. RV owners who take advantage of their vacation downtime can earn up to $30,000 annually from short-term rental fees (more on expected earnings later). RV rental fees can be used to pay off the RV, finance future vacations or as supplemental income. Most owners and renters agree that private RV rental is a win-win transaction.
RV Rental Marketplace
If you’d like to make some money from your rig instead of letting it sit idle, the best place to start is at RVshare.com. Like Airbnb.com, this website provides a platform for an online community of RV owners and interested renters. It’s the largest peer-to-peer RV rental marketplace in the U.S., with thousands of vehicle listings from all 50 states, and has been featured on NBC, CNN and in the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times.
Here’s how it works. You create a free listing for your rental, upload pictures and set the rental fee and security deposit based on comparable rates in your area. You can also set a limit to the number of “free” miles per day, and the fee that will be charged for additional daily miles driven by the renter. Then you sit back and wait for visitors to see your listing. Interested renters will send rental requests to your inbox and you are free to interview as many prospective renters as you like via email or phone.
As an RV owner, you are in control of the rental process. You decide on a renter and work with them directly on the rental terms—RVShare provides the necessary documents and support. You give renters a quick demo when they pick up your RV, and that’s all there is to it. You can rest easy knowing that your renter will be covered by a 24/7 emergency roadside assistance program. At the end of the trip, the renter is responsible for dumping tanks and refilling the gas before returning your RV.
There is no charge for listing your RV on RVShare. Once you’ve decided on a renter and you both agree on the rental terms, you’ll pay a small rental commission (as low as 15%) for overhead. You only pay when your renter pays for your RV rental.
How Much Can I Earn Renting Out My RV?
The average RV owner earns more than $10,000 per year from rentals. Location, schedule, and type of RV are all factors that determine potential earnings, and some RV owners with the right combination are earning three or four times more than average.
If you’d like a ballpark estimate of your potential annual earnings, check out this helpful tool “How Much Can You Make Renting Your RV?” For example, you can expect to earn $15,080 to $30,160 for a Class A motorhome, or $4940 to $9880 for a truck camper. Of course, these are estimated earnings and your actual earnings may vary, but it helps to have a guideline for your vehicle.
The Trust Factor
Your RV is probably one of the biggest ticket items you own, so the thought of renting it out may give you pause. One of the biggest advantages of peer-to-peer renting is that most renters feel a personal connection to the RV owner and take good care of the vehicle. In the rare case that damage does occur, the renter’s security deposit will be used to cover any damages, with an additional $1 million liability insurance coverage available for qualified RVs.
Like other online marketplaces, RVShare has community features that help both parties feel good about their transactions. You can see how other RV owners rated potential renters before making your decision. All payments are made through the secure payment system, so there’s no need to worry about bounced checks for declined credit cards. Security deposits are also handled by RVShare.
RV Sharing Success Stories
It’s always helpful to hear some real-world success stories before embarking on a new endeavor like renting out your RV. RVShare provides owner testimonials that show just how easy it is to put your idle RV to work. Denton, an RV owner in Ohio, has earned about $68,000 from a dozen rentals of his motorhome. Although he was initially concerned about how renters would treat his vehicle, he reports nothing but positive experiences and has enjoyed getting to know the people who rent his RV.
Another RV owner, Rebecca, began renting out her camper when a change in financial circumstances meant she might lose it. She began receiving inquiries as soon as her listing was posted and appreciates the support she received from RVShare. “I was not really ready for my first rental, didn’t expect it to happen so fast,” she says. “They held my hand the whole time. Everything on the site and in their system is genius.”
If you’re an RV owner, isn’t it time to transform your vehicle into an asset that puts money in your bank account each month? Visit RVShare.com today to get started.