The "sharing" economy is a booming part of modern culture… and likely to become more so as prices continue to rise. How can you get into this new rental market? Here are 5 rental ideas for any budget and any skill set.
Rent Your Home When You're Gone. If you're regularly gone from your home -- whether it's for business or personal reasons -- you could make some money by renting it out to vacationers while you're away. Vacation rentals are increasingly popular, so look for a home for sale in an area with significant tourist traffic or a popular local destination (such as a ski area, local lake, or theme park). Be sure you're properly covered with insurance first, and get involved with vacation rental communities to learn what you need to know.
Rent Part of Your Home. If you're not a world traveler and you still want to get in on the vacation home rental trend, why not make a section of your home available on a more year-round basis? If you're home shopping, work with a local real estate agent, like those at Marsee Wilhems Real Estate Team, to find a house for sale that features a section that could be divided off from the rest of the home -- preferably with an exterior entrance possibility -- to facilitate renting it out while you live there.
Rent Out Your Money. Peer-to-peer lending is an easy means to start becoming an investor by loaning other 'regular folk' some of your money. Unlike traditional investments, you're generally lending to individuals or small businesses on a person-to-person basis. You often can even get to know their goals and financial picture. You can rent out your money in small increments to limit your risk in each loan. There's little work needed to get into this rental business, but be aware that it carries some risk of losing money.
Rent Out Your Services. Hiring yourself out as a side business is a great way to become an entrepreneur with very little initial investment. Assess your skills -- anything from career expertise to musical knowledge or handyman skills -- and print up some inexpensive flyers from templates available on the internet.
Rent Your Equipment. If you don't have the time to rent your personal services to other folks, are there physical goods you can rent out instead? Today, many people prefer to rent tools or other large equipment for occasional use rather than purchasing their own. You may be able to rent out such things as trailers, cars and trucks, recreational vehicles, tools, gardening equipment, textbooks, party supplies, or sports and camping equipment.
Taking advantage of the opportunities in the sharing and renting economy can be easy or it may require a little work first. But, if you make a successful go of it, you may just find an income stream for the rest of your life.