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Renting your RV might be a tempting idea since it can provide extra income and share your RV lifestyle with other people. It also gives you a way to keep your motorhome rolling when you’re not using it. However, there are plenty of drawbacks to renting your RV, so let’s cover all of them today.
You should rent your RV if you want a reliable source of passive income, meet new people, and share the road trip experience with beginners. The primary cons of renting your RV include the fact that you might have to deal with damage caused by uncareful renters, frequent cleaning sessions, and more.
Throughout this post, we’ll cover the advantages and disadvantages of renting out an RV, including the financial benefits and why it’s important to share the lifestyle. We’ll also talk about how you can avoid insurance issues and other common rental problems along the way.
Renting Out Your RV Can Generate Passive Income
Perhaps the primary reason campers consider renting their RV to other people is that it can generate a long-term source of income. If you want to make money when you’re not on the road, why not rent your motorhome? It’s very similar to renting a home, but you can relax at your house while someone else pays you!
Here’s why people use RVs for passive income:
- According to RV Plus You, you can get over $6,000 per year renting your RV. The best times of the year include holidays, three-day weekends, and summer vacations. People often rent any RV that comes on the market since they go so quickly. You can use these times to book a vacation overseas!
- You can often make enough money to pay off the RV. For example, if your monthly payment is $400, all you have to do is rent out the RV one weekend a month to make enough to pay it off. Big, high-quality motorhomes rent for much more money, so you could make quite a profit.
- Some people rent their RVs to buy another one, rent it out, and build a small business. If this sounds like something you’re interested in, you could get a business license and rent several RVs monthly. While it might seem daunting at first, you’ll enjoy the passive income when you’re relaxing at home.
As you can see, there are plenty of reasons people stuff their pockets with RV rental income. Whether you have big business goals or want to make enough to pay the monthly bill, renting your RV has significant financial pros.
Renters Could Cause Long-Term Damage
Unfortunately, it’s not all perfect. The pipe dream of buying and renting out an RV without any consequences should be left in the dust. You’ll need a small portion of the income to set aside for inevitable repairs. Some people aren’t as careful with your property, so you should expect to fix things every now and then.
This list includes a handful of issues you might encounter:
- Torn, stained, or otherwise damaged fabric and bedding. People might spill something or accidentally rip the mattresses, couches, chairs, and other parts of the motorhome. While the contract should cover this type of damage, many people won’t report anything, and you’ll find out about it later.
- Overloading the camper with too much weight could wear down the engine. Many beginners don’t know that RVs aren’t supposed to be packed with too many items. They’ll toss everything inside without a care in the world. This damage won’t make itself known for a long time, and it’s your responsibility to pay for the repairs.
- Scratches and cracks are hard to see, but they’ll definitely be a part of the process. Consider the possibility of a renter bumping a chair into the side of the RV. If you don’t say anything about it because you didn’t notice it once they brought the vehicle back, they might get away with structural damage.
Other potential damage could include popped tires, roof problems, spills in hidden places that could lead to wood rot, improper gasoline grades, and more. Again, it’s best to set aside a nest egg of money to deal with anything that comes your way. Consider keeping 10% to 15% of your RV rental income for these occasions.
RV Renters Could Be Repeat Customers or Long-Term Friends
One of the best reasons to rent your RV is that you’ll meet plenty of amazing people. Most people who go camping are looking for a way to go on vacation while enjoying the beauty of nature. There’s no doubt that you’ll meet all sorts of like-minded people who are in a great mood.
Whether or not you befriend everyone who rents your RV, there’s room to spark up an interesting conversation, learn new camping tips, or enjoy repeat customers from those who’ve had an amazing experience renting your motorhome.
Note: You could lower the rate for repeat customers to keep them coming back or to fill in the gaps when most people aren’t renting RVs. This could boost your income and give them a reason to have a fun camping trip.
You’ll Have to Clean the RV Often
The most dreaded part of renting out a motorhome is the cleaning process. You’ll have to deal with everyone’s messes, even if they promised to leave it looking great. While you can place a fee for supplies and damages, it doesn’t negate the fact that someone has to scrub away the problems.
- Don’t forget to account for the cost of cleaning supplies and machines. If you rent out your motorhome every weekend, you’ll have to spend at least an hour cleaning everything each week. You’ll need car washing supplies, vacuums, chemicals, gloves, masks, and laundry detergent.
- Failure to clean the RV often enough will likely steer potential customers in a different direction. If you want to take a couple of weeks off the cleaning cycle, it’s best to take the rental off the market until you’re ready to fix it up. Nobody wants to rent a stinky, dirty RV!
- Gross renters might leave all sorts of messes for you to deal with. Whether they had a bit too much to drink or their pets peed on the rug, it’s safe to assume not all renters will be as clean as the last group. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best, even if the best takes a while to clean.
It Prevents Your RV From Stagnant Damage
People often don’t think about how bad it is to leave their RV covered and unused for a couple of seasons each year. While it might not be fun to camp in the pouring rain or dry heat, it’s much worse for your RV to sit around. When you rent out your RV to other people, they’ll keep it moving and prevent such issues.
Review these three examples of stagnant damage that renters will help you avoid:
- Stagnant damage can ruin your RV’s tires and rims. Constant weight sitting on the tires makes them flat. If you don’t rotate and fill them regularly, they can develop cracks and pops. By renting it to other campers, you can ensure your RV tires don’t go to waste throughout the year.
- If the fluids aren’t being used, they’ll coagulate and become useless. Transmission fluid, oil, and many other fluids can worsen simply by being unused. When this process happens, they’ll overheat the engine. Cycling your fluids is irreplaceable, but having someone drive the RV will keep them in good condition.
- Rust and corrosion develop from lack of movement. When the vehicle isn’t moved, moisture can pool in the cracks around the wheel well, engine, and so on. Rust eats away at the metal and causes severe structural damage. Unfortunately, it can also eat away at your wallet if nobody moves the RV often enough.
You’ve probably noticed old, beaten RVs riddled with rust, flat tires, and expensive repairs. These issues are common because most people don’t go camping every month of the year. Renting your RV keeps everything moving and prevents stagnant damage, which could save you quite a lot of money.
You Could Lose Your RV Insurance Policy
RV Lifestyle details how important it is to ensure both parties have motorhome insurance. People can get part-time motorist insurance policies that are very cheap, so there’s no reason for renters not to have everything ready to go.
Renting your RV runs the risk of someone lying about their insurance, which could make your company cut you from the plan if something happens.
So, what can you do to prevent insurance problems while renting an RV?
- Always contact your RV insurance company before renting out the vehicle. They’ll be able to answer all of your questions and let you know if you need to upgrade your policy to rent out the vehicle. Furthermore, they’ll undoubtedly ask you to increase your policy’s mileage (which could increase the monthly cost).
- Make sure the renter has the required insurance policies before accepting any form of payment. Run it by your insurance provider, and you should be good to go. Failure to make sure they have insurance could put any accidents in your hands; This includes if they get pulled over for speeding or reckless driving.
- RV business insurance policies could save you some cash. As mentioned earlier in the article, you could get a couple of motorhomes and rent them out as a business. Switching to a business license could grant a business insurance policy. It’s worth checking in case it could save you money.
While this issue could be a significant downside for some people, there are plenty of workarounds. As long as you talk with your insurance provider, you should be able to figure everything out. The most important part is to have a top-notch policy and make sure the renter does, too.
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Camping is all about having a fun, relaxing experience. Whether you’re dealing with people who’ve never spent a trip in a motorhome or someone who can’t afford to buy one, spreading the outdoor road trip adventure with others is a massive benefit.
A lot of people who rent RVs are considering whether or not they want to own one, what size they want, or which brand suits them best. You could play a significant role in their decision-making process, so why not give it a try?
Take your RV renting hospitality to the next level by leaving a note, food, drinks, or a game for them to play when they get to their destination. Small gestures like these will improve their experience, help them decide if they want to buy a motorhome, and potentially make them rent your RV again down the road.
More RV Trips Means More Repairs
The final downside of renting out your RV is that you’ll have to pay for all of the inevitable repairs. Whether you’re dealing with adding an extra spare tire, fixing the leveling system, or buying a new transmission, all vehicles will need repairs.
Renting the RV means people will drive it more often, which increases the mileage and decreases its value. RVs can quickly lose their value, especially if you bought yours brand-new. If you don’t fix small issues, they’ll ripple into much less manageable situations that cost quite a bit to repair.
As long as you stay on top of every issue that happens with a multi-point inspection monthly, you shouldn’t have to worry about the RV running into the ground. Motorhomes are built to last for many years, some of which stretch through the decades. Proper care and maintenance can help you get the most out of your RV rental experience.
Now that you know everything about renting your RV, it’s time to decide if it’s right for you. Do you want passive income and friendship, or is the possibility of getting a poor renter too much to handle? There are many things to consider, so take out a notepad and jot down your thoughts about each section in the post. Good luck!
Here are some of my favorite van life essentials:
Thank you for reading this article. I hope you found it helpful as you’re experiencing your life on the road. Here are some tools and gadgets I use on a daily basis that made my van life a lot easier. I hope you’ll also find them as useful as me. These are affiliate links, so if you do decide to purchase any of them, I’ll earn a commission.
But in all honesty, these are the exact tools that I use and recommend to everyone, even my closest friends and family.
Kitchen: I’m cooking a lot and I’ve finally found my perfect cookware set: The Magma Cookware 10 Pcs that you can nests and store in less than 1/2 cubic foot of cabinet space is really handy. Since I’m also spending a lot of time working at my desk, I use my favorite coffee mug from Yeti. For more, check my list of kitchen accessories I can’t live without.
Outdoor: Even though I’m spending a lot of time in my van working, I do enjoy getting out and explore my ever-changing neighborhood. This sometimes requires me to take my portable solar battery with me. And when I just want to chill outside and take a nap, I use the Winner Outfitters Hammock.
Clean/Tidy: Space is precious and therefore I used these heavy-duty storage bins from Homs to store my material. They’re robust and you can stack them together. Regarding showering, I like to use this portable solar shower from Advanced Elements when it’s hot outside.
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