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Start an RV Rental Business

Why Starting an RV Rental Business is Your Road to Freedom and Success

By Business.How Team
| Updated
white and brown van on road during daytime
Camera Icon Roadpass / Unsplash


Has the open road been calling you? Why not answer with an RV Rental business? Primarily, your business will provide travellers with the freedom-wheel homes they need to explore the wonders of the world from the comfort of a motor home. As a new entrepreneur, you'll meet people from all walks of life, help orchestrate unforgettable road trips and earn a profit while doing so.

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Discover Your Perfect Domain

Unlock the door to your online success with our hand-picked selection of premium domain names. Whether you're starting a new venture or rebranding an existing one, the right domain can set the tone for your digital presence. Browse through our curated list, each with its unique potential to enhance your brand's visibility and credibility.


This a quick reality check to help you identify the strengths and weaknesses of your business concept before you dive in.

Business Idea: RV Rental Business

Expected Percent Margin:

  • Gross Margin: 35-45% (varies based on RV condition, age, and model)
  • Net Profit Margin: 20-28%

Earnings Expectations:

  • Daily Earnings: $100 - $300 (based on the number and type of RVs)
  • Weekly Earnings: $700 - $2,100
  • Monthly Earnings: $3,000 - $9,000
  • Annual Earnings: $36,000 - $108,000

**These estimates assume an average of 7-10 days per month rented out per RV. Earnings could vastly increase during peak holiday seasons.

Actions to Hit Those Numbers:

Inventory Management:
  • Initial Investment: Minimum $30,000 - $60,000 for each decent RV. To start, you might need 2-3 RVs.
  • Maintenance & Up-keeping: Regular maintenance and cleaning after every rental is crucial.
Marketing and Customer Acquisition:
  • Digital Platforms: Enroll your RVs on online platforms like RVshare or Outdoorsy.
  • Social Media: A regular presence on platforms like Instagram and Facebook could help attract potential customers.
Quality Customer Service:
  • Transparent Rental Terms: Clearly outline terms and conditions, including costs associated with damages or late returns.
  • Prompt Response: Customers will appreciate prompt and friendly responses to inquiries.
  • Insurance: Ensure each RV has comprehensive insurance coverage.
  • Understanding Seasons: Understand that spring and summer are typically peak seasons for RV use.

These are generalized estimations; specific figures may vary depending on several factors including location, RV models, and overall business management. Always consult with a business advisor for personalized advice.

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Grab Your Business Website Name

Before you get caught up in the whirlwind of setting up your business, invest in a domain name. It's a small but significant step that lays the foundation for your brand and makes it easier for customers to find and trust you. Just like you wouldn't build a house without securing the land first, don't build a business without securing your domain name.

"Why? Can't that wait?" Here's why it shouldn't

Step 1: Determine if the Business is Right for You

Breakdown of Startup Expenses

Before starting an RV rental business, it is important to understand the startup costs associated with the venture. These costs can include the purchase of the RV, insurance, licensing, and registration fees, as well as any necessary repairs or maintenance. Additionally, it is important to consider the cost of marketing and advertising, as well as any necessary equipment such as a tow vehicle, hitching and towing supplies, and any other necessary tools or supplies.

Breakdown of Ongoing Expenses

Once the business is up and running, there are ongoing expenses to consider. These can include the cost of fuel, maintenance and repairs, insurance, and any necessary supplies or equipment. Additionally, it is important to consider the cost of marketing and advertising, as well as any fees associated with listing the RV on rental sites.

Examples of Ways to Make Money

There are a variety of ways to make money with an RV rental business. These can include renting the RV out for short-term trips, long-term rentals, or even offering special packages for unique experiences. Additionally, it is possible to offer additional services such as delivery, setup, and cleaning, which can be an additional source of income. It is also possible to offer discounts or special packages to attract more customers.

Step 2: Name the Business

When it comes to naming a business, it is important to choose a name that is memorable and reflects the type of business. It should also be easy to pronounce and spell. Consider using words that are associated with the RV rental business, such as “road”, “travel”, “adventure”, or “journey”. Additionally, consider using a name that is unique and stands out from other businesses in the area. It is also important to make sure the name is not already being used by another business. Research the name to make sure it is not trademarked or copyrighted. Additionally, make sure the domain name is available for the website.

When deciding on a name, it is also important to consider the target audience. Think about what type of customers the business will be targeting and what type of name would appeal to them. Consider using a name that is catchy and easy to remember. Additionally, consider using a name that reflects the values and mission of the business.

Finally, it is important to consider the future of the business. Think about how the business may expand in the future and if the name will still be relevant. Consider using a name that can be used for other services or products in the future. Additionally, consider using a name that is not too specific to the current business model. This will allow the business to remain flexible and adaptable to changes in the future.

Step 3: Obtain Necessary Licenses and Permits

In order to legally operate an RV rental business, you will need to obtain the necessary licenses and permits. Depending on the state you are operating in, you may need to obtain a business license, a sales tax permit, and any other permits that may be required. You will also need to obtain a valid driver’s license and a commercial driver’s license if you plan to drive the RVs yourself. Additionally, you may need to obtain a certificate of insurance, which will protect you in the event of an accident or injury. Finally, you may need to obtain a zoning permit if you plan to operate your business from a specific location.

Step 4: Find a Suitable Location

Once you have obtained the necessary licenses and permits, you will need to find a suitable location for your RV rental business. This could be a physical storefront, a parking lot, or even a website. If you plan to operate from a physical location, you will need to consider factors such as accessibility, visibility, and parking. Additionally, you will need to make sure that the location meets all local zoning regulations. If you plan to operate online, you will need to create a website and register with online rental platforms. You will also need to consider the cost of renting or purchasing the space.

Step 5: Purchase RVs

The next step is to purchase the RVs that you will be renting out. You will need to decide on the type of RVs that you want to offer and the features that they will have. You will also need to consider the size, age, and condition of the RVs. Additionally, you will need to consider the cost of purchasing and maintaining the RVs. You may also want to consider purchasing used RVs, as they can be more cost-effective. Finally, you will need to make sure that the RVs meet all safety regulations and are properly insured.

Step 4: Find a Suitable Location

Finding a suitable location for your RV rental business is essential. You should consider the types of customers you want to attract and the types of RVs you will be renting. For example, if you plan to rent luxury RVs, you may want to locate your business in a high-end area. If you plan to rent budget RVs, you may want to locate your business in a more affordable area. Additionally, you should consider the local laws and regulations that may affect your business. For example, you may need to obtain a business license or permit to operate in the area. You should also research the local zoning laws to ensure that your business is allowed in the area. Finally, you should consider the cost of renting or purchasing a space for your business. You should factor in the cost of utilities, taxes, and insurance when determining the cost of the space.

Step 5: Purchase an RV

Once you have determined the type of RV rental business you want to run, you will need to purchase an RV. This can be a costly endeavor, so it is important to do your research and find the best deal. Consider the size and type of RV that will best suit your needs. You should also consider the age of the RV, as older models may require more maintenance. Additionally, consider the cost of insurance, as this can be a significant expense. Make sure to factor in the cost of any necessary repairs or upgrades, as these can add up quickly. Finally, if you are purchasing a used RV, make sure to have it inspected by a professional to ensure it is in good condition.

Step 6: Establish an Online Presence

Creating an online presence for your RV rental business is essential for success. You should create a website that showcases your business, its services, and the types of RVs you offer. Additionally, you should create social media accounts on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to increase your visibility and reach potential customers. You should also consider creating a blog to share helpful information about RVing and your business. This will help you build a loyal following and establish yourself as an expert in the industry. Additionally, you should consider investing in online advertising to reach more customers. This could include sponsored posts, pay-per-click ads, and other forms of digital marketing. Finally, you should also consider creating an email list to keep in touch with your customers and share updates about your business.

Step 7: Market the Business

Now that the business is up and running, it is time to get the word out. Marketing the business is an important step to ensure success. There are several ways to market an RV rental business.

One way to market the business is to create a website. A website should include information about the business, such as the types of RVs available, the rental rates, and contact information. It is also important to include photos of the RVs and any amenities that are included. Additionally, the website should include a blog to keep customers updated on the business and any promotions or discounts.

Social media is another great way to market the business. Creating accounts on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter can help to reach a larger audience. Posting photos of the RVs, as well as any discounts or promotions, can help to draw in potential customers. Additionally, creating a presence on review sites such as Yelp and TripAdvisor can help to build trust with potential customers.

Networking is also an important part of marketing the business. Joining local business groups and attending events can help to spread the word about the business. Additionally, forming relationships with other businesses in the area can help to generate referrals.

Finally, advertising in local publications and on radio or television can also help to get the word out about the business. Advertising can be expensive, but it can be a great way to reach a large audience.

Step 8: Set Up a Booking System

Setting up a booking system is an important part of running an RV rental business. It should be easy to use and allow customers to book and pay for their rental online. Consider using a platform like RVshare or Outdoorsy, which are both designed specifically for RV rental businesses. These platforms provide features like automated payments, customer reviews, and an online calendar to keep track of bookings. Additionally, you can use a platform like Airbnb to list your RV and manage bookings. This will allow you to reach a larger audience and provide more options for customers. You should also consider setting up a website for your business, which will allow customers to learn more about your services and contact you directly. Finally, make sure you have a system in place to collect payment and manage deposits. This could be done through a payment processor or through a secure online payment system.

Step 9: Hire Employees

The ninth and final step in starting an RV rental business is to hire employees. Depending on the size of the business, you may need to hire additional staff to help with the day-to-day operations. When hiring employees, it is important to consider the skills and experience they bring to the table. Additionally, you should consider the cost of hiring and training new employees. It is also important to ensure that you have a clear job description and expectations for each employee. Additionally, you should make sure that you are providing competitive wages and benefits for your employees. Finally, you should ensure that you have a system in place to monitor employee performance and provide feedback. By taking the time to hire the right employees, you can ensure that your business runs smoothly and efficiently.


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