August 8, 2011

Rent out Your Car

FreeMoneyFinance was discussing an article about some ways to make money and one of the ideas was to rent out your car.   Another article Need Cash? Rent out your car from Kiplinger discusses it a little more.   That sounded kinda interesting to me.  If your car sits idle then why not rent it out to someone and make some money?  

THe Kiplinger article talks about a couple companies that manage renting out your car.  They say that Spride is one such company that lets you rent your car.  But the Spride website has no information at all.  They work with City Carshare which is one of the companies lets people rent cars by the hour or day.    City Carshare operates in San Francisco only as far as I can tell.

RelayRides is another car sharing service and their website does talk more about how owners can rent out their cars.   They claim you can make up to $7,000 a year.    Average owners make more like $200 to $300 a month.   That service is only in Boston and San Francisco right now it seems.

I did some more searching on my own and found some other companies.   Getaround is also currently operating in San Francisco but there was mention of them expanding to Portland soon.    Whipcar appears to be in United Kingdom only.   There could be other services out there but I didn't find any.

Ok so quickly we see that the major draw back for this idea is that these services to rent your car seem to only exist in certain cities like San Francisco or Boston.   If you live in San Francisco or Boston then one of these car sharing deals might be a good way to make some spare money renting out your car.   For the other 99% of the country renting out your own car isn't an option unless you somehow manage the rental yourself and that doesn't seem very feasible.

If you do live in San Francisco or Boston then theres an obvious down sides to renting out your own car.   Chief among the cons is that you're allowing random strangers to drive your car and who knows how well they'll treat it.   You also have to deal with the hassle of scheduling when you do and don't use your own car and you have to do some work to manage it.    The services do handle insurance so you don't have to worry about insuring your car differently.

Bottom Line :  Renting your car is only handled by companies in a couple major cities so its not an option for the vast majority of Americans.

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