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6 Reasons for Paying Off Debt With a Rental Business

When I started college it became quickly apparent that part-time school year jobs and entry-level summer internships were not going to cover the full cost of school, even at an in-state tuition level.

To help alleviate the college expenses my father and I started a party rental business called Picnic Table Rental to bring in some side income. This was an excellent idea and business model for six main reasons:

1. You Can Start Rental Companies Small and Grow

A rental business is something that you can start with a single item that you might already own. Maybe it’s a trailer or a lawn aerator or a sewing machine.

As you rent the item out you bring in income that you can use to add more products to your offering. You can start and keep the company small without a huge investment and still run it as a legitimate and profitable business, or grow it into an empire.

We started with an old pickup truck and five folding picnic tables that we stored in our garage, and we grew it into a massive full-time business with an inventory of hundred of items. You can even start by renting items you own, making the start-up costs very low.

2. You Can Run the Business On Your Free Time

A rental business run from your home can be arranged to work on your free time.

You can have customers leave messages and call them back on your lunch break. If you are renting out items for a party on a Friday afternoon, for example, it can be arranged so that your deliver the items on Thursday night.

You will find customers to be very flexible with this.

This is how we ran Picnic Table Rental, and it worked well. My father and i were still able to work our full-time jobs and operate the company on evenings and weekends.

3. The Company Can Be Local or Remote

Sure you can rent out items to the local community, and this is the model for most rental businesses, but there are also rental business models that can be run from a remote location.

Perhaps you rent text books to college students or electronics to large conventions and other events. Products that can be shipped at a reasonable cost can easily be rented out from a website.

In either case, this type of business can be managed from your home if you so choose. No need to have customers come to an expensive retail location if you can manage a delivery process.

4. Rental Business Does Not Require Burdensome Overhead

A smaller rental business that doesn’t require massive storage space can be run from your basement or garage, so you don’t need to be paying the rent or mortgage and other expenses on a retail or warehouse building.

Even if you do need extra storage space it isn’t difficult to find affordable storage units on a month-to-month contract in most locations. This is how we housed Picnic Table Rental when it grew beyond our garage’s capacity, and it worked very well.

5. Rental Items Can Be Sold Off At the End of Their Life

Rental items that are approaching the end of their serviceable life, whether they are wearing down or just don’t look nice enough to rent out any more, can usually be sold online to recoup at least some of their original cost.

Since the cost of the item should have been paid off many times over through rentals this is really an extra profit which can also be used toward purchasing new or replacement items.

6. The Company Can Be Sold When You Are Done With It

All of the hard work that you put into building your rental business can pay off a little extra when you no longer need the business. If you have paid off your loans, saved up some extra income, or paid your way through your (or your child’s) college education the company can be sold for profit.

You might sell off the company inventory piece-by-piece, or you might sell the company as a whole to somebody who would like to take over operations. This would include payment for the brand recognition that you have built up for the company.


These are just some of the great reasons to use a rental business model for extra income. What is you favorite thing about rental business?


Rental Startup Checklist Image

Getting In Front of Your Ideal Customer

Are you trying to get your business in front of interested customers?

How are you doing so? Hopefully you are not wasting money on mass media like TV ads or billboards.

Mass media is not very effective for small businesses that serve specific niches. A billboard might get your company in front of thousands of people every day, but if your target customers do not take the road past that specific billboard on a regular basis your money is squandered on useless impressions.

Before you spend money on advertising, ask yourself these three questions to make sure your ad will be in front of the ideal customers:

Where do my target customers spend their time?

Is my ideal customer typically a fitness nut that visits a gym every day, for example? If so, can I find a way to advertise my company at gyms around town?

The fact that your customers work out at a gym each day might not even relate specifically to your business, but it may be a common trait of your customers.

What do my target customers do that is related to my business?

A party rental business that often works with graduation parties might make an effort to advertise at school events. For example, they might buy ad space in the high school basketball game programs.

Many parents go to the games throughout the year and will hopefully remember your business at the end of the year when it comes time to plan a graduation party.

What other companies work with my ideal customer?

Let’s go back to the party rental example. When I was a senior in high school I remember receiving information about buying my class ring. At the same time I received a packet of information about buying senior pictures, graduation invites, and so on.

This packet would be a great place to advertise a party rental business. You can imagine the student bringing home all of the information and going through it with their parents. As they put together all of the plans for pictures, a ring, and a graduation party it will be convenient to have the information for a trusted party rental company that can help them with their party.

How can you apply each of these situations to your business to find unique, targeted advertising opportunities?