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Make Your RV Earn It’s Keep: How to Rent Out Your Camper

Have you ever considered renting out your RV? It’s not for everyone, as there are pitfalls to renting out your RV. However, it can be a lucrative business depending on the condition of your RV and its location. Today, we’ll show you how to rent out your RV and provide tips to help make it worthwhile. Let’s dive in!

Can You Rent Out Your RV?

Renting out your RV is a way to bring in extra monthly income. Many outdoor enthusiasts want to rent a unit for a weekend getaway. Some people want to try out RVing before they buy one. There’s a market for RV rentals.

However, knowing how to correctly rent out your RV can make all the difference. Today, we’ll give you some tips to make this process smooth, protect your RV from damage, and provide confidence to your renters.

1 year of renting out our RV with Outdoorsy and RV Share | Is it worth it?

How Much Money Can You Make Renting Out Your RV?

Renting out your RV can be a lucrative business. However, you shouldn’t go into it with the assumption that you’ll become rich or quit your job because of this new endeavor. Can it be a good investment? Yes, but have realistic expectations at the beginning. How much you make depends on what you pay for your RV, your nightly rate, and how often you rent your rig.

For example, if you have a monthly payment of $500 and your goal is to cover it, consider what it will take for that to happen. Do you want to charge $100/night and aim for five nights a month? Or do you want to charge $80/night and aim for seven nights a month?

Also, consider your location. If you’re in an RVing hotspot like Arizona, southern California, or Florida, renting out your RV can be lucrative especially during peak tourism seasons. If you’re in more remote areas, getting the bookings might be more difficult due to lower demand. The type of RV you own is also vital. A Class A owner can earn up to $60,000 a year, while a travel trailer owner may earn up to $20,000 yearly. 

Once you start, you’ll understand how well or how poorly your rental business is going. It could take off and be far more than what you expected. Or it could struggle and have you considering whether it’s worth the time and effort.

Mortons with RV rental
Renting out a rig you aren’t using can be a great way to make some extra income.

What Are the Pitfalls Of Renting Out Your RV?

Renting out your RV isn’t the right decision for everyone. The pitfalls of renting your RV out include the wear and tear on the vehicle and the time commitment to answer questions and prepare your RV.

Although you may not use your RV consistently, others will. So, the systems run more often. You’ll likely have more repairs and higher maintenance costs. The floors will get more foot traffic, the drawers will go in and out more often, and the appliances will operate more frequently.

Plus, you must provide excellent customer service to run a successful rental. When potential renters have questions, you should answer them quickly. Before and after a rental, you’ll be cleaning and repairing. Renting out your RV is a time commitment that not everyone is prepared to undertake.

Pro Tip: Want to rent a rig? We uncovered Are There One-Way RV Rentals?

Relaxing by RV
Renting out your RV is not always the right choice depending on your RV setup.

Tips for Renting Out Your RV

If you’ve decided that renting out your RV is right for you, we have a few tips to make the process run smoothly. You’ll need help getting the word out about the rental, but you’ll also want to help renters understand how to properly use your RV to ensure they don’t damage any systems. 

Decide On the Rental Price

One of the first things you must do is decide on the rental price. Search other RVs of similar age and size to understand the going rate. Additionally, consider your location and research comparable RVs that are getting bookings. An RV rental in California will be more expensive than in South Carolina. Finally, keep in mind the condition. If you have an older, run-down RV, you shouldn’t charge the same as someone with a brand-new, spotless one.

Advertise On Rental Services Sites

Use the rental services sites to your advantage. Even though it might cut your profit margin, these sites reach thousands of people looking for RV rentals. RVnGO, Outdoorsy, and RVShare are the most popular and reputable sites. Outdoorsy and RVShare take a percentage of the rental fee, but RVnGO doesn’t charge a transaction fee. None of these three sites charge a listing fee.

You can consider renting out your RV on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist, but scams make people more wary of those sites. Sticking with professional rental service sites ensures scammers don’t rip you off. It also shows that you’re a real person with a real RV for rent.

Prepare Your RV for Each Rental

Before your first rental, you’ll need to ensure that all repair work is completed and everything is in working condition. Get it cleaned out and looking as cozy and welcoming as possible. After each rental, you’ll want to inspect everything again and resolve any problems before the next rental.

Each time someone rents your RV, you should clean it thoroughly. Put out clean towels and clean sheets. Fill soap dispensers. Ensure dishes are clean and tidy. As a touch of hospitality, you might even set up a Keurig with K-cups or a basket of goodies.

Preparing RV interior to avoid the pitfalls of renting out your rv
Do any necessary repair work and thoroughly prepare the interior of your RV before renting it out.

Create a Checklist for Renters

You’ll want to educate renters before leaving your rig in their hands. By creating checklists, renters don’t have to remember everything you tell them. It’s best to create a nighttime checklist and one for when they leave the RV for a few hours. Things like locking the outdoor storage bays and bringing the awning in are good reminders for when renters go to bed or head to the trailhead.

You’ll also want a checklist for when the renters leave. You don’t want a mess to clean up. Create bullet points with actions you’d like them to take to make your job easier. Maybe ask them to take the sheets off the bed or wash all the dirty dishes. These items can also be part of the rental agreement.

Pro Tip: We created a checklist of the most missed items in the pre-departure process. Check it out!

Create How-to Sheets for Renters

How-to sheets are different from the checklists. However, they’re just as crucial to help renters remember how the systems in your RV operate. All RVs have similarities, but you don’t want to assume the renters know how to operate things like the furnace, air conditioner, or water heater. Motorhome owners will also want to cover driving instructions.

You don’t want to encounter damage because the renters didn’t know how to work the RV. Some people even record instructional videos and email them to renters. That way, they can refer to them if necessary and feel more confident in properly caring for your RV.

Check Safety Systems

Finally, always check safety systems before every rental. You shouldn’t rent out your RV if the smoke, CO, or propane detector isn’t working. If you have a propane/electric refrigerator, always ensure the back is clean, and it’s cooling correctly. Motorhome owners should check fluids and ensure they’re up-to-date on maintenance tasks like oil changes. Keep your renters and your RV safe.

propane detector to avoid the pitfalls of renting out your rv
Check your smoke, CO, or propane detector to keep your renters safe.

Do You Need Special Insurance to Rent Out Your RV?

As the owner of an RV, you should have RV insurance. However, if you want to rent out your RV, you must add a special insurance policy to cover the time when someone is renting. The rental services sites we mentioned include RV rental insurance in their packages. Having insurance can help you combat the pitfalls of renting out your RV.

Pro Tip: If you want to go RVing with your furry friends, find out How to Find Pet-Friendly RV Rentals.

Considering Renting Your RV Out for Extra Income? After Over 120 Nights of Rentals I Share My Advice

Is Renting Your RV Right for You?

To avoid the pitfalls of renting out your RV, take a hard look at your finances and commitment level. It’s not for everyone. But if you’d like to give it a shot, remember that knowing how to rent out your RV is just as crucial as having a polished exterior and cozy interior that attracts renters. We hope this article gives you some tips for starting your rental business and bringing in some extra cash!

Are you planning to rent out your RV? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!

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About Tom and Caitlin Morton

Tom & Caitlin Morton of Mortons on the Move gave up the stationary life for one where they are constantly on the move. They are full-time travelers, television hosts, and digital media producers.
They left their jobs, sold their house and possessions, and hit the road in September 2015 in their full-time “home on wheels”. Since then they have traveled the US, Canada, and even internationally by RV.
Now, they are Discovery Channel & PBS TV Co-stars of “Go North” on Amazon Prime Video, co-founders and instructors of RV Masterclass, and contributing authors for Hwy.co and an Arizona travel guide.

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