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Ways To Make Money From: Hot Hire Products

Hot Hire Products

HIRING HAS MANY advantages over straightforward selling. Once you’ve bought a small stock of goods to hire out you can set your rental fees in order to recoup your investment costs very quickly, and eventually get back anywhere between ten a hundred times what you paid.

Of course, part of the fee paid by customers must go towards your overheads, promotional costs, maintenance costs, equipment insurance and so on, but you can easily make a profit on every item you rent out and earn enough to renew your stock from time to time. These are the 20 hottest hire products around:

  1. Video games machines

Why not cater for the restaurant demand in pinball machines and computer arcade games like Space Invaders by buying up old machines and hiring them to private households?

Cheap secondhand machines are advertised in the Exchange and Mart and similar publications. Many people are fans and will hire them on an ongoing basis – your service will allow them to play at home and swap their machine every few months. People will also hire them for a weekend to liven up a party. In addition to the local paper it’s  worth placing ads in local ‘What On’ magazines read by trendy / well-off 20-40 year-olds, as this is your main target market.

Don’t forget you’ll need to service your machines, or get a friend to do it. An alternative is to place machines in popular public locations, such as train / bus / taxi / car ferry waiting rooms, cafes, pubs, bars, hotels, chip shops, amusement arcades, staff rest rooms, student unions, bowling alleys, shops and supermarkets.

Either buy old machines yourself or purchase a franchise or distributorship (you’ll find these advertised in business-related publications – it will cost more than buying your own stock of old machines, but maintenance is usually included as part of the deal).

Getting customers is easy. You don’t need any big marketing campaign – just travel from place to place, see where there may be a demand, and speak to the manager of the establishment about the potential profits, which will be split between you and them.

Just one machine in a prime site can earn you over $1000 a year.

  1. Snooker Tables

Table football, table tennis and snooker tables can be bought, marketed and hired out in much the same way as video games machines.

Purchase secondhand tables and rent them out to private households, company staff rooms and canteens, working men’s clubs, college bars – places where they might be in demand, but (unlike pubs) where the big rental companies haven’t already sewn up the rental trade.

You could buy and rent coin operated tables and split the proceeds, or you could install standard non coin operated items and simply charge a set weekly / monthly fee. (Note: when you’re renting out an item and ongoing basis it’s best to set up a direct debit or standing order arrangement so that your customer’s account is debited automatically.)

Use small ads and personal visits to get customers.

  1. Sunbeds

Tanning equipment is immensely popular with British sun seekers and health freaks, so hiring sunbeds out to private individuals can be a good money maker.

To attract customers, put up A4-sized posters in shop windows. Inside supermarkets, and in leisure centers and sports clubs. Small photocopied flyers handed to people in the street, dropped through letterboxes and handled to people in sports club canteens are another cost-effective form of promotion.

The majority of people will only want a sunbed for one or two months a year. So to encourage long term custom make your weekly hire rates drop after two months, four months, and six months and so on.

Set a minimum hire period (at your maximum rate) of two months, but with the first fortnight free. This will attract customers thinking they are getting a good deal, while maximizing your profits.

  1. Gym equipment

The nation’s obsession with being fit and slim means that hiring out multi-gym equipment to private householders, businesses, schools and clubs will be profitable. Use similar sales and promotional methods to the above.

  1. Musical instruments

A child given and expensive instrument by their parents often becomes bored and abandons it after couple of lessons. The parents usually cut their losses and sell off the instruments cheaply.

You can profit from this situation and provide a much-needed service at the same time by buying up secondhand instruments – violins, pianos, guitars, electronic organs, flutes, trumpets, horns and so on – and hiring them out.

This gives children to chance to try out an instrument for an extended period without the hefty expenditure involved in buying it outright. Offer renters the option to buy, less the rental paid before purchase. Auctions, junk shops and markets are good sources of stock, along with small ads.

One way to promote the services is to get specialist music teachers to mention it to their pupils, offering them a commission on each sale in return.

Alternatively, you could hire out ‘band’ gear such as guitars, basses, drums, microphones and amplification equipment. Get music shops to promote the service in exchange for commissions on sales.

  1. Washing machines

Washing machines make excellent hire goods. Many people can’t afford to buy one, but will find the monthly rental fee affordable and competitive when compared with the alternative of visiting a launderette.

Buying a fleet of reconditioned machines needn’t be expensive if you find a reputable low-cost dealer. Hire them out for around $10 to $20 a month on 12 month contracts. Attracts customers using a poster and door-to-door leaflet campaign in local neighbor hoods.

  1. Other household appliances

As with washing machines, fridges, freezers, clothes dryers and cookers can all be purchased for relatively little if you know where to go, and then hired out for a decent fee. It may be worth offering a composite household appliance rental service.

  1. Furniture

Furnishing a home requires a huge capital outlay. To buy a new wardrobe, dresser, chest of drawers, dinner, table, settee and a couple of armchairs would cost well over $1000, even at the cheapest outlets.

A furniture rental service would offer people a cost-effective solution to this problem, and might be popular in any area where there are lots of new home owners, or families strapped for cash.

The fact that your customers could change their furniture every year might be attractive to them. Again you could save on your initial investment by purchasing stock from inexpensive furniture wholesalers.

  1. Medical products

These days you can’t rely on the NHS for free wheelchairs, crutches, walking frames, cots, sterilizers, commodes and other medical equipment.

Even if someone is eligible for them, many people can’t be bothered with all the bureaucracy and form filling involved. Another problem is that the hospital may be 20 or 30 miles away. You could cash in by providing a medical hire service, hiring out and delivering in-demand medical items.

Scan small ads for stock – people who’ve bought medical items for relatives who no longer need them often sell them this way. Also try auctions and charity, shops, and look out for closures of hospitals and old people’s homes.

Promote the service by contacting local clinics, hospitals, sheltered homes, day centers and informing health visitors, community nurses and care assistants. Tell them  what you have available, your rates, and that you’ll deliver with a 20 mile radius –  it may be worth giving them leaflets which they can hand out to people. Word will spread and you’ll eventually build up a regular clientele.

  1. Office equipment and furniture

While new enterprises are springing up all the time, many auction houses hold regular sales of goods from companies that have folded or relocated – desks, chairs, filling cabinets, fax and answering machines, typewriters, intercoms and the like.

Why not turn this into profit by buying it up and hiring it out to new businesses? There are three reasons why you’ll get customers: firms may only require equipment on a short-term basis (such as Port cabin operators and construction companies setting up temporary offices); a new business might not initially be able to afford to buy all the furniture / equipment they need; or they might want to try it out before actually buying it.

A direct mail campaign to firms, followed up by persuasive calls to business managers, is the best way to promote yourself, backed up with small ads in the local paper.

  1. Outfits

Buying an outfit for a function, dinner party or job interview that might only be worn once is expensive. An affordable alternative is to go to a dress hire shop, which could be profitable for anyone good with clothes and people.

You’ll require a supply of stylish and fashionable outfits to suit various occasions. Some shops concentrate solely on weddings. Spread the word by placing ads in shop windows, on staff notice boards, in ‘society’ magazines and in the local press.

A brilliant variation is to set up a wedding dress agency. By renting out wedding gowns and accessories loaned from local women you can make money without costly investment in clothing stock.

Another option for anyone who loves to sew and create their own garments is to hire out fancy dress outfits. Visit jumble sales and thrift shops for the basic gear and modify is to create original ensembles. Use local press ads and flyers to attract partygoers and promote your service to theaters, drama groups and production companies.

  1. Books

If you have a particular interest – fly fishing, cricket, war games and vintage cars are just a few examples – it’s possible you’ll have collected many books on that subject. If your collection is extensive enough you can make money setting up a specialist book library, lending out rare and valuable titles to collectors.

Allow your books to be borrowed for a fixed period, or purchased outright at prices reflecting their rarity and worth. Place ads listing certain titles (especially rare and well sought-after ones) in the specialist hobby press, and visit jumble sales and second hand book shops to supplement your stock.

When you have enough working capital you could start selling new specialist titles by mail order.

  1. Toys

Operating from a market stall, part of a shop of your own home, you can make money by hiring out popular toys – anything from computer games to more basic and inexpensive items.

Even better, visit neighborhoods in a car or van and set up a weekly round whereby customers can hand in last week’s toys and pick up new ones.

This enterprise doesn’t just give parents a cost effective way to keep their kids happy. It will also be used by grandparents, for example, who only see their grandchildren occasionally and want to give them a treat. You could drop in on kids’ parties too.

  1. Old cars

Popular in the USA, hiring out used cars is a low-cost alternative to standard auto rental and has great potential over here.

Small operators buy a few old cars and rent them out cheaply. The ‘rent-a-wreck’ service is generally used by businessman, workers, holidaymakers and students who need a vehicle for an extended period, but can’t afford a standard hire car. It is marketed using ads in the Yellow Pages / local newspaper / tourist publications, signs on bulletin boards, plus a bright sign near the rental depot.

Renting just a few ‘wrecks’ on a regular basis can earn you in excess of $25,000 a year, but don’t forget the legal, insurance and maintenance aspects.

  1. Mopeds

If you travel to work by car in the rush hour you’ll know about the frustration and annoyance of road congestion, along with the air pollution and the ever increasing expense of motoring.

By hiring out mopeds you could cash in by providing a much cheaper and quicker way to travel to work, helping to reduce pollution and congestion. As well as ‘nine to five’-ers you’ll attract shoppers and weekend users.

Market the enterprise to large companies – get managers to pin up posters on staff notice boards and to council offices and colleges using a combination of direct mail and phone calls. Inform local newspapers, radio and TV too, as the idea is novel and practical enough to generate much media interest.

  1. Boats

Motorboat, sailboat and dinghy rental might be a lucrative operation for anyone living close to a river, lake, or the sea.

At one end of the spectrum is renting out yachts and cruises, which requires a background in sailing. At the other is hiring small oar-powered dinghy  to tourists, day trippers and fishermen which, given the relatively low cost to buy small boats and the lack of expertise required, might be a far more practical enterprise.

Boat rental will make big money in popular tourist areas, but you may need to apply for a license to use part of the river / lakeside for such a business.

  1. Caravans

Caravanning is extremely popular with British holidaymakers, so why there so few caravan and motor home hire companies?

Purchase a couple of secondhand tourers and market your hire service through Yellow Pages  and classified ads, leaflets / posters placed in caravanning and camping shops, plus letters / leaflets sent to caravan clubs and sites. Just a few bookings a year will put you in profit, so long as you keep overheads low by running the business from home.

A good way to get started is by renting your own caravan to friends and associates.

  1. Tools

Most people keep a hammer and screwdriver handy for those important household tasks, and perhaps also, say, an adjustable spanner and electric drill. But DIY-ers and tradesmen occasionally require equipment that is too expensive to buy so must be hired instead –things like jigsaws, routers, circuit testers, tools sharpeners, rotavators, concrete mixers, scaffolding and generators.

Renting out tools is ideal opportunity for the home handyman with a reasonable selection at their disposal, which could be added to by purchasing items from auctions and bankruptcy sales. Use your garage or shed as an ‘office’ and storage area and provide free delivery.

  1. Audio visual equipment

Hiring out TVs, video cassette recorders, camcorders and Hi-Fi’s can be extraordinarily lucrative.

The newer they are the better, although you can purchase discount new and secondhand models from wholesale warehouse and factory shops. Expensive premises won’t be needed – you can run the business from home.

Use leaflets handed out in the street and dropped through letterboxes, along with posters, press ads and even billboards ads, to promote the service. Once you’ve established a handful of regular paying customers you can begin expanding and improving your stock.

  1. Computers

The popularity of computers is at an all-time high, so a service renting out PCs, games consoles and games is bound to do well. If you can’t afford premises, get other shops to promote your service and pay them a small commission on sales.

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