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Setting up an Equipment Rental Business

All you need to know about starting and running your business

Business guides » Setting up an Equipment Rental Business

What is an Equipment Rental Business?

By the end of 2023, the equipment rental industry in the UK is expected to be worth more than £5.8 billion, showing a marked increase from previous years.

An equipment rental business, sometimes known as a plant hire business, operates within the service industry and provides machinery, equipment and tools of different types, shapes and sizes and with different uses. The equipment is rented to the customer for a set time period before being returned to the business.

Equipment rental can refer to tools, appliances, recreational items, machinery, furniture, office items, industrial equipment and vehicles. The rental business will purchase the equipment and then rent it to the customer for a set fee (usually a per day, per week or per month fee). The cost of the rental will be suitably high to allow the rental business to recuperate the initial cost of the equipment and then begin generating a profit.

Many different types of equipment can be rented out that target a wide range of customers and industries. You may choose to specialise in a particular type of equipment or a specific industry or provide a wide range of options.

The most frequently rented out equipment includes:

Construction machines and equipment

This type of equipment is primarily rented to construction firms, contractors and people working within the construction industry. Some of the equipment you could rent out includes excavators, earth-moving equipment, forklifts, working platforms and construction lifts. Construction equipment rental is the most popular and most lucrative of all equipment rentals.

Traffic safety equipment

Many local councils and construction companies choose to rent traffic control and safety equipment rather than purchase it. This ensures they always have access to the equipment they need. It can save significant storage space (think of how many traffic cones are required from one stretch of road) and it can save them money. Traffic equipment can include traffic signs, barriers, LED message boards and traffic cones.

Party and event supplies

People who are hosting or organising an event, such as a wedding, a party or a corporate event, will likely not want to purchase the equipment they require, particularly because the equipment can be expensive and the event is usually a one-off. Although some event venues supply equipment and accessories, many do not, particularly event spaces such as barns, hotels and outdoor events. Some of the equipment you could rent includes a dancefloor, chairs, tables, sound systems, decorations and staging.

DIY equipment

This usually encompasses smaller pieces of construction and DIY equipment that are typically rented out by individuals rather than businesses. For example, people who are renovating or decorating their home or garden and do not want to purchase equipment. Some of the equipment you can rent out includes power tools, jet washers, sanders, concrete mixers and small excavators.

Vehicles and transportation

As well as a regular car rental business, you could choose to offer transportation equipment such as luxury cars (e.g. for weddings), scooters, bicycles and ATVs (all-terrain vehicles). These could be used for recreational purposes, for transportation purposes and for special events.

Sports equipment

You could rent sports equipment, such as golfing equipment, scuba diving equipment and boating equipment. You could also rent out sports equipment to schools and colleges and for organised events. Depending on your location, you could also rent out sports equipment on a day-by-day basis, for example, renting out snorkelling equipment, paddle boards and fishing equipment if you are located near the coast.

Camera equipment

For people who are still learning about photography or don’t get many opportunities to pursue their hobby, renting camera and lens equipment can make more financial sense. By renting instead of purchasing, they will have access to the newest technology and the most updated lenses. Camera equipment may also be rented by people who need it for a one-off event, such as businesses that need to take photographs of their products or students who can’t afford to purchase their own equipment.

Sanitary facilities

Sanitary facilities such as portable toilets and sinks are essential on building sites. They are also frequently rented when renovation work is being completed in homes, businesses and public spaces and at outdoor events, such as festivals and fairs.

 

 

If you are thinking of starting up an equipment rental business, you will first need to decide the type of equipment you will specialise in and your target customer base. Consider why the customer would choose to rent the equipment rather than buy it and how you can encourage them to rent from your company.

There are many different reasons why companies and individuals choose to rent equipment rather than buy it, including:

Financial Reasons

Renting equipment rather than purchasing it helps to reduce a company’s start-up costs or fixed costs. It also helps to reduce the financial risks associated with running a business and reduces the costs associated with storing, maintaining, repairing and replacing equipment. For new businesses, growing businesses and companies operating in up-and-coming industries or in uncertain financial times, renting equipment represents a low-risk way of running a business.

Sanitary facilities

Sanitary facilities such as portable toilets and sinks are essential on building sites. They are also frequently rented when renovation work is being completed in homes, businesses and public spaces and at outdoor events, such as festivals and fairs.

Operational Reasons

With many types of equipment and technology constantly being updated and invented, renting equipment allows businesses and individuals to have access to new equipment and a comprehensive range of options without constantly needing to update their inventory and make new purchases. By renting the equipment instead of purchasing it, the responsibility of ensuring the equipment is maintained, safe to use and complies with regulations and health and safety requirements largely falls to the rental company. Renting equipment also gives operational flexibility, as the customer will have the option to rent on a short-term or long-term basis.

Environmental Reasons

With many people now being more environmentally conscious and many businesses wanting to operate more sustainably, renting equipment can be more environmentally friendly. The equipment not being solely owned by one person usually results in the equipment being used more efficiently. Efficient use can lead to significant reductions in the total carbon footprint. The rental company is also more likely to implement regular maintenance and inspection procedures and repair any faulty equipment, rather than replacing it.

 

 

There are many different responsibilities associated with running an equipment rental business. Although your responsibilities can vary, depending on the type of equipment business you set up and the equipment you offer, some of the typical responsibilities you can expect to be in control of include:

  • Communicating with customers to understand their equipment needs and making appropriate suggestions and recommendations based on their needs and your knowledge.
  • Negotiating the volume of the order and the price.
  • Obtaining all necessary customer information and creating detailed and accurate records.
  • Sourcing and ordering equipment.
  • Creating rental contracts, including rental dates, rental rates and equipment return information.
  • Arranging deliveries and collections.
  • Managing inventory and stock.
  • Loading and unloading equipment.
  • Performing equipment maintenance and safety checks.
  • Answering phone calls and dealing with customer enquiries.
  • Checking licences, training and qualifications (if necessary for a certain piece of equipment).
  • Cleaning, maintaining, repairing and replacing equipment as necessary.
  • Making a record of any existing damage or issues.
  • Defining business drivers and metrics and creating annual budget forecasts and customer profitability analysis.
  • Regularly evaluating the market and the industry to assess new requirements, keeping up to date with any changes or new equipment releases and identifying opportunities for growth.
  • Ensuring high levels of customer satisfaction.
  • Analysing the prospective financial return of purchasing new equipment.
  • Ensuring your business complies with all health and safety regulations and legal guidelines.
  • Marketing and advertising.
  • Completing business and administrative tasks.

 

Starting up an equipment rental business can be financially lucrative. As well as a strong business plan and a commitment to making your business succeed, certain personal qualities can be beneficial to running an equipment rental business, including detailed knowledge of the type of equipment and industry you specialise in, experience using, purchasing or renting the equipment, and a comprehensive knowledge of the needs of different businesses and individuals. You will also need strong communication skills and strong negotiation skills.

Types of Customers

The types of customers that rent equipment can be wide-ranging and can include individuals, small businesses and large companies.

Some examples of the types of customers you can expect include:

  • Individuals and families.
  • Party planners and hospitality businesses (e.g. wedding venues and hotels).
  • Businesses operating in the construction industry.
  • Local councils.
  • Schools, nurseries, colleges and universities.
  • People starting a new hobby or pursuing a passion.
  • Newly operating businesses.
  • Individuals and businesses operating in the technology industry.

 

Although the type of customers that rent equipment can be extremely varied, defining your target market more precisely makes it easier to focus on the specific customers who are most likely to use the services of your business and determine exactly where and how to market your business.

Some of the factors that can determine your typical customer base include:

The type of equipment you specialise in

This will be the most significant factor in determining your typical customer base. Because of the sheer amount of equipment available within each industry, you will likely specialise in a particular type of equipment (e.g. scuba diving equipment) or a particular industry (e.g. the construction industry). When trying to identify your typical customer base, consider the type of equipment rental you are specialising in and who is most likely to rent this type of equipment.

The locations you operate in and deliver to

To maximise your customer reach, you may choose to offer your equipment in a range of locations or offer a delivery service to different areas of the country. If you only operate in one specific area, consider the people who live, work and visit that area and the businesses that operate in the area to determine your typical customer base.

Your pricing

Although your pricing strategy will be heavily determined by the type and specification of the equipment you are renting, your pricing can still influence your typical customer base.

Customers can typically be separated into three different pricing tiers:

  • Budget: Price is the most important factor for this type of customer. They will look for the rental company with the lowest rates, regardless of reputation and experience.
  • Mid-range: This type of customer is looking for a combination of quality and affordability. Although price won’t be the most important factor, it will be a significant consideration.
  • High-end: This type of customer is willing to pay the highest prices for the highest specification equipment and the best possible service. They will likely want the newest and best equipment and will request a delivery and assembly service.

 

Your reputation and customer reviews

This is another important factor that many people will look at. They may look at your customer reviews or decide based on recommendations from others.

Your reputation and reviews will likely be based on multiple factors, such as:

  • The quality of the equipment.
  • How you interacted and communicated with clients.
  • Your pricing.
  • Whether you offered a delivery and drop-off service.
  • Whether the equipment was clean and well-maintained.
  • Whether you offered your customers additional help and support.
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Renting Equipment Cartoon

Equipment You Will Need

Equipment is an essential purchase, as without it you will not be able to run your business. The type and amount of equipment you require will depend on the type of equipment you specialise in, the size of your premises and your storage capabilities and whether you offer a delivery option.

Below is a list of equipment typically required by an equipment rental business:

General Equipment Requirements

Regardless of the type of equipment rental business you set up and the type of equipment you specialise in, you will likely require many of the items listed below to help you run your business more effectively.

Storage equipment

The type of storage equipment you need will depend on the size and weight of the equipment you rent out and the volume of equipment you will be storing.

You will likely require industrial storage equipment, such as:

  • Pallet racking.
  • Static shelving.
  • Mobile shelving.
  • Multi-tier racks.
  • Wire partitions.

 

A forklift

A forklift is a special motorised vehicle that is used for lifting and moving goods on pallets within a warehouse or another storage facility. They can carry heavy materials over long and short distances and can be used to properly store your equipment, move the equipment around your premises and transport the equipment to the delivery vehicle. The size of the forklift you require will depend on the size of your premises and the size and weight of the equipment you will be transporting. You will likely only require a forklift if you stock large, heavy equipment (such as construction equipment or furniture).

Delivery vehicles

If you offer a delivery option, your delivery vehicles will be an important purchase. Depending on the size of the equipment you offer, the volume of your orders, and the number of orders you want to fulfil at one time, you may require multiple delivery vehicles. You could opt for large delivery vans or lorries. To help your business gain exposure, you should also install adhesive door and body panels with your business name and logo, your contact information and the typical services you offer.

Satellite navigation systems

Satellite navigation may be installed in your vehicles or may be an independent piece of equipment. A navigation system is essential, as it ensures you always follow the best possible route and avoid any traffic or road incidents that could cause unnecessary delays. A satnav system is particularly recommended if you offer long-distance deliveries (e.g. out of your local area) as your drivers will likely not be familiar with the routes and the areas.

Dashboard cameras

Dash cams document driving and are the strongest and most efficient way of defending your company in the event of an accident or incident on the road. Dash cams can also help to deter theft and lower your car insurance premiums, helping to protect your business and maximise your profits. Dash cams can be installed on the front and back of your vehicles.

Moving dollies

Dollies are essential equipment when moving large or heavy loads from your warehouse or storage area to your delivery vehicles or your customers’ vehicles. Moving dollies feature a large, flat platform on wheels.

There are different types of dollies available:

  • Hand trucks.
  • Platform carts.
  • Furniture dollies.
  • Stair dollies.

 

Moving straps and ropes

These are essential items for your equipment business. You can use them to secure any items to your moving dolly or platform cart, as well as to secure the equipment in your delivery vehicle to prevent it from moving around when you are driving. You will likely need different straps and ropes for different tasks.

Some of the moving straps and ropes you could choose include:

  • Shoulder dollies.
  • Forearm moving straps.
  • Elastic straps.
  • Ratchet straps.
  • Ratchet straps with e-tracks.
  • Nylon ropes.
  • Twisted polypropylene ropes.

 

A CCTV system

Because you will be storing a lot of expensive stock and equipment, CCTV can protect your business from potential break-ins and theft. CCTV can also protect your business in the event of an injury or accident and can provide vital footage to the police if a theft or incident occurs in your business. You can choose the specification of the equipment and how many cameras you require.

Reception and admin equipment

If you allow customers to visit your premises to choose the equipment in person, make payments or collect the equipment, you may require a reception area.

Some of the equipment you may require for your reception are:

  • A cash register and Point of Sale (POS) system.
  • A phone – for customers to make appointments.
  • An appointment book or scheduling software – to keep track of appointments and cancellations.
  • A reception desk and chair.
  • Business cards and appointment cards.
  • Pricing signs and opening hours signs.
  • Shelving for displaying products.

 

A waiting area

If customers can visit your premises, you may also choose to incorporate a waiting area or seating area.

Some equipment you could purchase includes:

  • Comfortable chairs.
  • A table.
  • A coffee machine or water cooler.
  • Magazines and newspapers.

 

A website

A website is useful for advertising your business and will likely act as your primary advertising and ordering strategy. Your website should list the types of equipment you offer, the volume of equipment (e.g. how many of each item is available), descriptions and photographs of the equipment, the area you are located in and the areas you deliver to and your contact information. Design your website to include your business logo and to reflect your branding.

A computer or laptop

If you run your business online or plan to advertise your services online, a computer or laptop is essential. You can use your computer for managing rentals, advertising, creating appointments, ordering equipment, running your business website and handling any business and administrative tasks.

Business software

Software can have a variety of uses, including:

  • Scheduling rentals.
  • Organising and managing daily operations.
  • Creating, tracking and sending invoices.
  • Managing payments.
  • Accessing customer information.
  • As a payroll tool.
  • Scheduling appointments (e.g. when customers visit your premises).

 

Depending on the business software you opt for, you could also have tools for increasing your revenue, including booking tools and marketing tools. Many types of business software come with a mobile application for easy access on the go.

A business phone

A business phone will enable you to communicate with your customers and be contacted by potential clients. Your business phone number should be advertised on your website, your delivery vehicles and any leaflets or business cards you use.

A payment system

The type of payment system you require will depend on your primary payment strategy. For example, if you accept in-person sales, you will likely require a transportable Point of Sale (POS) system (e.g. a card machine) and a cash collecting system. If you accept online payments, you may require an online payment system or a way to track payments to your business bank account.

Business cards and appointment cards

Business cards can be used for advertisement purposes and handed out to customers and potential customers. The business cards should include your business name and logo, the services you offer, your location and your contact information. Your appointment cards should be designed in a similar way to your business cards but should feature a space for you to write the date and time of the appointment.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

The type of PPE required by you and your employees will depend on their role within your business. For example, when working in a warehouse or storage premises, your employees will likely need PPE such as hard hats, high-visibility jackets and safety goggles.

Protective gloves

Heavy-duty work gloves are necessary for anyone who handles the equipment or machinery. Gloves can protect your hands and fingers from cuts, scrapes and scratches and reduce the pressure on your hands. Protective gloves will also enhance your grip, making it less likely that you will drop any of the items you are carrying.

Packaging materials

Depending on the equipment you rent out, you may choose to package the equipment before it leaves your premises. Some of your equipment may already be stored in boxes, but for equipment that isn’t, some of the packaging materials you may need include:

  • Sturdy boxes.
  • Packaging tape.
  • Bubble wrap.
  • Packing peanuts.
  • Styrofoam inserts.
  • A label maker (to label what is in each box).

 

Cleaning equipment

Keeping all areas of your premises clean is imperative. You will likely need different cleaning materials for different areas of your premises. You may need to invest in cloths, sponges, antibacterial surface cleaners, bleach, sanitiser and a sweeping brush and mop. You may also need specific cleaning materials to clean the equipment between rentals.

Rental Equipment

As well as the equipment listed above that is required to help you operate your business successfully, you will also require a large inventory of equipment for rental. The type of equipment you choose can vary considerably, depending on the type of equipment rental business you set up. Some examples are listed below:

Construction Equipment

  • Aerial work platforms, e.g. scissor lifts and boom lifts.
  • Forklifts and telehandlers.
  • Earth-moving equipment, e.g. excavators, skid steer loaders and backhoes.
  • Air compressors.
  • Cranes.
  • Construction site service equipment, e.g. skips, storage containers and towable lights.
  • Compaction equipment.
  • Construction vehicles and trailers.
  • Floor care equipment, e.g. scrubbers and sweepers.
  • Portable light towers.
  • Portable generators.
  • Concrete equipment, e.g. mixers, concrete buggies, site dumpers and core drills.
  • HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning) equipment.
  • Landscaping equipment, e.g. forest machines, harvesters, grinders and trenchers.
  • Pump equipment.
  • Roading equipment, e.g. road reclaimers and wideners.

 

Parties, Weddings and Events Equipment

  • Tables and chairs.
  • Linens, e.g. table cloths, napkins and chair covers.
  • Decorations, e.g. lanterns, lights, letters, signs, arches and props.
  • Tents, marquees and gazebos.
  • Portable bars.
  • Staging, flooring and dance floors.
  • Catering equipment, e.g. serving equipment, china, cutlery and glassware.
  • Indoor and outdoor games, e.g. casino equipment, arcade games and carnival booths.
  • Children’s party equipment, e.g. bouncy castles, inflatables and toys.
  • Concession stands, e.g. chocolate fountains, popcorn machines and candyfloss machines.
  • Food and drink trucks and stands.

 

Sports Equipment

  • Golf clubs and other golfing equipment.
  • Scuba diving equipment.
  • Bikes.
  • Surfboards and paddleboards.
  • Skiing and snowboarding equipment.
  • Fitness equipment, e.g. treadmills, exercise bikes and rowing machines.
  • Racquet sports equipment, e.g. tennis and badminton racquets, shuttlecocks and tennis balls.
  • Snorkelling equipment.
  • Skateboards or roller skates.
  • Camping and climbing equipment.
  • Football equipment, e.g. football nets, footballs, football boots and gloves and cones.

 

Technology Equipment

  • Laptops and desktop computers.
  • Computer monitors.
  • Sound systems, audio response systems and audio recording equipment.
  • Microphones, speakers and digital audio recorders.
  • Podiums.
  • Projectors, screens and pointers.
  • Cameras and video cameras.
  • Accessories, e.g. press boxes, power strips, cables and keyboards.
  • Video conferencing systems.
  • Lighting.
  • Headphones.
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Typical Costs

When you are creating your business plan, an important consideration you will need to make is your expected start-up costs and running costs. Calculating your expected costs allows you to determine your initial investment requirements, your pricing strategy and your profit goals.

There are multiple costs associated with setting up and running an equipment rental business. Some of these costs will be one-off initial costs that you will need to pay when you are setting up your business. Other costs will be ongoing costs you will need to pay regularly – usually weekly, monthly, quarterly or annually.

Although the costs can vary depending on the type of equipment rental business you set up, some of the typical costs you can expect are:

Your premises

Your business premises will likely be your biggest expenditure. Depending on the type of equipment you are storing (e.g. the size and weight) and the volume of equipment, you will likely need large premises with significant storage space. For example, you may opt for a warehouse or similar premises. You will need to rent your premises on a monthly or annual basis. Rental prices can vary significantly, depending on the location and the size of the premises. City centres or busy locations usually have the highest rental costs. Rental costs are often calculated per square metre. They can range significantly, from £500 to £15,000 per square metre annually.

Refurbishment and installation costs

You will likely need to refurbish or convert your premises to install the equipment you need for your business and make the area fit for purpose. For example, you will need to install storage areas. Depending on the size and layout of your facility, you may need to make changes, such as taking down walls and reconfiguring the space. You will also want to refurbish and design your premises to fit the aesthetic of your business and make it attractive to customers (if they visit your premises). Renovation costs can vary, from £500 to £50,000 depending on the level and scale of work required. Renovation costs could also include installing water lines, pipes, a water tank and electrical systems.

Equipment

Your equipment is an important purchase. Consult the list above to determine the type of equipment you require. The cost of your equipment can vary significantly, depending on the specification of your equipment and how much equipment you need. Your equipment requirements may be higher if you have a large premises with more storage capabilities and you plan to offer a higher volume of equipment. You may opt to purchase less equipment initially and then expand your equipment as your business grows. Equipment for an equipment rental business can cost between £10,000 and £1,000,000, depending on the type of equipment you specialise in (e.g. construction equipment is typically more expensive).

Maintaining, repairing and replacing equipment

Repairs, maintenance and replacements are ongoing costs you will need to factor into your budget. Although some of your equipment will come with warranties, repairs and replacements are inevitable – particularly because you are responsible for ensuring all equipment is safe to use before it is rented out. Your equipment may also experience heavy usage. Regularly cleaning and maintaining equipment and ensuring it is used correctly can extend its lifespan, but potential repairs and replacements should still be factored into your budget. You may also need to upgrade and replace your equipment as changes and updates are released.

Delivery vehicles

If you offer a delivery option, your delivery vehicles will be a major expenditure when setting up your business. You can opt for a van or a lorry. The price of a van can vary significantly, depending on the make and model, the size and whether it is new or second-hand. The cost of a van can begin at £5,000 (for a second-hand vehicle). For a new van, expect to pay at least £30,000. Alternatively, you could opt to purchase lorries. Lorries can be advantageous for delivering large equipment or higher volumes of equipment (e.g. to large companies). Lorries typically cost between £30,000 and £100,000.

Vehicle running costs

Your vehicle running costs include your vehicle insurance, fuel, MOT, services and the costs of any repairs. These costs can vary significantly, depending on the age and condition of your vehicle, the level of insurance you choose and the amount of travel you need to do. Typically, you can expect to pay between £100 and £1,000 per month, depending on your mileage.

Running costs

These are the day-to-day costs associated with running your equipment rental business. Some running costs are paid monthly, and others are paid quarterly or annually. Your running costs can include electricity, gas, water, council tax and insurance. To maximise your profits, try to keep your running costs as low as possible.

Staff

You may need to hire staff, such as sales representatives, warehouse staff and delivery drivers. You will need to pay any staff you employ at least the national minimum wage and account for other expenses such as holiday pay, sick pay, maternity/paternity pay, National Insurance and any company pension contributions.

Your business website

Your business website will act as your primary advertising and marketing tool, allowing potential customers to find your business online. Your website may also feature an ordering system, where your customers can order or reserve the equipment. Your website should be functional, easy to use, attractive and search engine optimised, to ensure it ranks highly on search engines, such as Google. Your website will need regular monitoring, updating and upgrading. You also need to make sure your website is secure, particularly if you will be collecting any customer information. You may choose to set up and run your website yourself or hire someone to do this for you. You can expect to pay between £20 and £100 per hour for someone to set up and run your website.

Branding

When creating your brand identity, consider how you want your business to be perceived by potential customers. When creating your brand, consider the type of equipment you offer and your typical customer base. Branding can include creating your business’s visual identity, design and aesthetic, your business name and logo and your website. You could hire a professional to help you with branding or do some or all of the work yourself. Branding can cost between £500 and £10,000, depending on the level of work required.

Advertising and marketing

Advertising is an essential practice to ensure the success of your business. Advertising and marketing help your business to attract customers and can help you to maximise your profits. It is recommended that you spend between 1%-3% of your annual turnover on marketing. For example, if your annual turnover (or your desired annual turnover) is £200,000, you should spend between £2,000 and £6,000 on advertising and marketing. You may need to invest more money when you initially set up your equipment rental business or when you are trying to grow your business and reach new customers.

Business insurance

There are several types of coverage you could choose for your equipment rental business. Prices can vary depending on your insurance provider and the level of coverage you choose.

Business insurance typically chosen by equipment rental businesses includes:

  • Public Liability Insurance.
  • Professional Indemnity Insurance.
  • Employers’ Liability Insurance.
  • Business Travel Insurance.
  • Equipment Breakdown Cover.
  • Management Liability Insurance.
  • Accidental Damage.
  • Tools and Business Equipment Cover.
  • Storage Cover.
  • Personal Accident.
  • Legal Expenses.
  • Business Interruption Insurance.

 

Insurance costs can vary, depending on your insurance provider and the level of coverage you require. Prices typically start at £10 per month.

Typical Pricing for Customers

Once you have calculated the expected costs associated with setting up and running your equipment rental business, you can then determine your pricing. Different pieces of equipment will have different rental costs.

Multiple factors can impact your pricing strategy, including:

  • The type of equipment you are renting.
  • The value of the equipment (e.g. how much you purchased it for).
  • The age and condition of the equipment.
  • Whether newer or upgraded models are available.
  • The volume of the order (you may offer discounts for larger orders).
  • The rental term (you may offer discounts for long-term rentals).
  • Whether the customer is responsible for maintaining the equipment while it is in their possession.
  • Whether the customer has been charged a damage deposit fee.
  • The demand for your services.
  • Whether you offer a delivery and pick-up service.
  • The pricing of your competition.

 

If you are running a chef agency, you may receive payment based on the wage paid to the chef. On average, chef agencies are paid between 15% and 20% of the chef’s salary. For example, if a chef is hired on a month-long contract for £5,000 a month, the agency will be paid between £750 and £1,000.

Alternatively, agencies charge a set fee for finding the ideal candidate. This fee can vary depending on several factors, such as the length of the contract.

Safely Running an Equipment Rental Business

Safe practices in your equipment rental business can help to protect the health and safety of you, your employees and your customers, as well as protect your equipment.

Some ways you can safely run your business include:

Check licences, training and qualifications

Some of the equipment you offer for rental may require specific licences, training or qualifications to use it. For example, chainsaws, cranes, heavy machinery and plant machinery. To ensure the equipment is used safely and correctly and to protect the health, safety and well-being of your customers, you should request to see proof of your customer’s licensing or training before handing over possession of such equipment.

Manage safety on the road

If you offer a delivery or collection service and hire drivers or drive the delivery vehicles yourself, you are responsible for managing road safety hazards.

You must ensure safe driving at all times, for example:

  • Always adhere to speed limits.
  • Anticipate any hazards and be prepared for how to deal with them.
  • Don’t use your mobile phone while driving.
  • Don’t drive distracted.
  • Take the appropriate number of breaks.
  • Approach zebra crossings correctly.
  • Respect cyclists.

 

Obtain health and safety training

Health and safety training courses can teach you how to follow safe practices in your business.

Some training courses you could opt for include:

  • Manual Handling.
  • Warehouse Safety Course.
  • Workplace First Aid.
  • Assessing Risk.
  • Health and Safety Level 2.
  • PAT Testing Awareness.
  • Fire Safety Awareness.
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
  • LOLER.

 

Properly maintain and set up equipment

Any equipment you use must be properly maintained, correctly set up and safe to use. You must protect yourself and your employees from accidents or injuries caused by equipment. You should also perform regular equipment inspections to ensure your equipment’s safety and help extend the lifespan of your equipment. Maintenance includes regularly checking for faults, regular cleaning and ensuring equipment is functioning correctly.

Keep all areas clean and organised

This can help to reduce trips, slips and falls and can help to protect your employees and your equipment. Remove anything from the floor that could be a trip hazard, dispose of rubbish immediately, keep storage areas organised, clean up spills and make sure anything stored on shelves or high up is secure and isn’t at risk of falling.

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Create defined forklift paths

If you use a forklift on your premises, you will need to create defined forklift paths that are large enough for the forklifts to safely navigate and are free from obstacles. The paths must be clear at all times and any person walking on the pathways should be extra vigilant.

Check and maintain electricals

Not only can this save you money by avoiding damage, repairs and replacements, but checking and maintaining electricals can help to protect your equipment from faults and protect the health and safety of everyone who visits your business. Implement a system for regularly checking electricals and ensuring they are up to code.

Carry out risk assessments

Risk assessments are a legal requirement for businesses with more than five employees. However, even if your business has fewer than five employees, risk assessments are still recommended to ensure the safety of you, your staff and your customers. Risk assessments can help you to identify any potential hazards and risks in your business and how these can be reduced or eliminated.

As part of your risk assessment, you should:

  • Identify hazards.
  • Determine who could be at risk.
  • Evaluate any potential risks.
  • Implement relevant safety measures.
  • Record the results of the risk assessment.
  • Review the risk assessment regularly.

 

Use appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

PPE can help to protect you and your employees from obtaining an injury at work. Some of the PPE you may require includes heavy-duty gloves, goggles, hard hats, high-visibility vests or jackets, face masks (e.g. if working in dusty environments) and steel toe-capped boots.

Implement security measures

Because you will be storing expensive equipment on your premises, security measures should be implemented to protect your business from theft.

Some ways you can protect your equipment and stock include:

  • Installing a CCTV system.
  • Using secure and reliable locks.
  • Installing an alarm system.

 

Keep a fully stocked first aid kit

If someone has an accident or sustains a minor injury, it may not be serious enough to warrant medical intervention. Instead, you may be able to offer treatment yourself. Having a first aid kit that is checked and replenished regularly and is transportable and easily accessible is recommended.

Legal Requirements

Complying with legal requirements is essential when setting up and running an equipment rental business. Failure to comply with legal requirements could not only result in an accident or injury, but you could also face consequences such as a warning, a fine, the forced closure of your business or, in serious circumstances, prosecution.

The legal requirements you need to comply with will depend on the type of equipment you supply, how you deliver the equipment, your location and the location of your customers.

Some of the legal guidelines you should be aware of include:

Create legal equipment hire agreements

An equipment hire equipment is a legal contract between two parties whereby one party is renting equipment to the other party.

In your contracts, you should include information such as:

  • The type of equipment, the value and any important characteristics (e.g. the serial number).
  • Any restrictions on how the equipment can be used.
  • The intended purpose of the equipment.
  • Details of how the equipment will be delivered and returned.
  • The rental cost and how payment will be made.
  • The rental lease period.
  • The damage deposit (if relevant).
  • The insurance details (if relevant), e.g. whether the renter is required to insure the equipment).

 

You should also specify whether the hirer is responsible for maintaining and repairing the equipment or replacing any damaged or lost equipment.

Apply for authorisation from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) for long-term rentals

If you offer long-term equipment rentals (more than three months) you must be authorised by the FCA to offer credit. For some business-to-business lending, FCA approval is not required. However, it is recommended that you contact the FCA directly to determine whether your business is exempt.

Comply with equipment safety standards

Any tools or equipment that you hire out must comply with the appropriate safety standards.

To ensure compliance you must:

  • Confirm the supplier’s safety standards.
  • Check all tools and equipment before hirings to ensure they are safe.
  • Test electrical safety periodically.
  • Keep accurate records of all safety standards testing.

 

Comply with the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER) 1998

Under the PUWER regulations, you must ensure any equipment that you use in your business or rent out to customers is fit for purpose and is maintained and inspected regularly. You must also ensure that health and safety risks are minimised to an acceptable level, that you have the correct knowledge and training to use the equipment, and that protective measures are put into place. You must also ensure the equipment is used under appropriate conditions.

Comply with the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989

The Electricity at Work Regulations state that any workplaces that use electricals must construct electrical systems in a way that prevents danger, maintain electrical systems to ensure they are safe, ensure electrical equipment is checked by a competent person annually and conduct Portable Appliance Tests (PAT). This includes electrical equipment you use in your business and electrical equipment you rent to customers.

Comply with the Consumer Rights Act 2015

The Consumer Rights Act is designed to protect customers from substandard products and overpriced services. It covers the selling, terms and conditions and supply of products and services (including equipment rental) to ensure consumers are better informed and more well-protected.

Under this Act, any equipment you provide must:

  • Be fit for purpose.
  • Match any description given by you.
  • Be of satisfactory quality and not faulty or damaged.

 

Customers will also have the right to challenge any unfair small-print terms, conditions and costs.

Comply with the General Product Safety Regulations (GPSR) 2005

The GPSR ensures the safety of consumer goods and equipment and lays down a framework for assessing product safety under normal and reasonably foreseeable conditions. They ensure the safety of goods by stating specific controls. As part of these regulations, you should undertake and document a risk assessment that assesses the risks and risk categories associated with your products.

Comply with the Goods Vehicles (Licensing of Operators) Act 1995

If you offer a delivery or pick-up option and use a vehicle to complete deliveries and collections, this Act specifies that you will need to apply for the appropriate licence from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). You will need a licence if your vehicle has an unladen weight of 1,525 kg or more or a gross plated weight of more than 3,500 kg.

There are two different types of licences available:

  • Standard National Licence: To carry goods within the UK.
  • Standard International Licence: To carry goods in the UK and on international journeys.

 

When applying for your licence, you will need to advertise your application, advertise your proposed operating centre (where your vehicles are usually kept when not in use) and nominate a transport manager.

You will also need to pay:

  • A one-off application fee.
  • An issue of licence fee.
  • A fee for the continuation of your licence after 5 years.

 

Appoint a transport manager

As part of your licence regulations, you will need to appoint a transport manager.

A transport manager is responsible for:

  • Ensuring all drivers have a valid licence.
  • Ensuring all vehicles are taxed and insured.
  • Ensuring all vehicles have a valid MOT and are properly maintained.
  • Ensuring all vehicles are loaded safely and are not overloaded.
  • Ensuring drivers do not speed.
  • Ensuring drivers do not break the drivers’ hours rules.
  • Ensuring the vehicle operators do not break safety rules.

 

To become a transport manager, you will need to obtain a Transport Manager Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) qualification.

Comply with the drivers’ hours rules

The GB domestic drivers’ hours rules apply to anyone who drives a goods vehicle (including delivery vehicles).

You will need to comply with the guidelines regarding:

  • Daily driving limits: You cannot drive for more than 10 hours per day.
  • Daily duty limits: You cannot be on duty for more than 11 hours in a working day. You must also ensure you take appropriate breaks when driving and comply with fortnightly rest periods.

 

As the business owner, you are required to:

  • Keep accurate records of your drivers’ hours records for a minimum of one year.
  • Ensure all drivers are properly trained and understand regulations.
  • Organise your drivers’ time to enable them to follow the regulations.
  • Check your drivers’ hours records.
  • Monitor your drivers’ working times.

 

Ensure lorry drivers have a HGV licence

If you opt for lorries to transport your rental equipment, you will need to ensure your drivers hold a heavy goods vehicle (HGV) licence. To apply for this licence, they will need to obtain a Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC). Contact the Traffic Commissioner to determine whether you or your employees require this licence.

Comply with the Manual Handling Regulations (1992)

Manual handling is an inevitable part of this industry. You will be handling heavy equipment, bending down and reaching high and using repetitive movements, all of which could result in pain or injury. Following manual handling regulations can help to protect you and your employees from sustaining an injury or illness as a result of manual handling tasks. Much of the work you do in your business will involve manual handling (e.g. moving or lifting equipment and loading or unloading vehicles). It is therefore imperative that you follow manual handling regulations properly.

Comply with the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 2013

RIDDOR states that you must report all injuries, diseases and dangerous events that occur in your business. Reports must be made to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) using an appropriate recording document. As injuries may be more likely in your business, because you will be working with potentially dangerous equipment and large and heavy items, appropriate recording can help you to recognise any mistakes or patterns and prevent future injuries.

Comply with fire regulations

As the business owner, you are responsible for fire safety measures on your premises.

There are multiple fire regulations you must ensure you comply with, including:

  • Conducting a fire risk assessment.
  • Complying with the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.
  • Implementing any necessary fire safety measures.
  • Implementing emergency procedures and ensuring these are clearly displayed.

 

Prepare a health and safety policy

The law states that every business in the UK must have a specific policy for managing health and safety. Your policy should state exactly how you will manage health and safety in your business, who is responsible for specific tasks and how and when these tasks are completed.

Appoint a competent person

A competent person should be appointed to help your business meet your health and safety legal duties. You can act in this role yourself or appoint another person to fulfil this role. The competent person should have the skills, knowledge and experience to identify any hazards in your business and put controls in place to protect people from harm.

Comply with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and the Data Protection Act (DPA)

You must comply with both pieces of legislation when storing or sharing personal information, such as your customers’ personal information, contact details and banking information. You must also apply for a Notification to Process Personal Data Licence. If you process or store personal information such as personal details and banking information, you will need to apply for a licence with the Information Commissioner’s Office and renew your registration every year.

Comply with employment legislation

You must ensure you follow employment legislation, including the Employment Rights Act (1996) and the National Minimum Wage Act (1998). You must also comply with legislation relating to recruitment, working hours, sickness, discrimination, dismissals, and maternity or paternity pay.

Ensure your website complies with the guidelines

If you set up a business website, there are several guidelines you need to comply with, including:

  • Privacy policies.
  • Cookie legislation.
  • Service descriptions.

 

Under the Equality Act (2010) you must also make reasonable adjustments to your website to ensure it is accessible to people with disabilities.

Comply with the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations (1992)

Under these regulations, if your business has five or more employees you must ensure you conduct appropriate risk assessments, minimise any risks and maintain all equipment. You must also make sure high levels of cleanliness are maintained.

Register your business

You must register your business with HMRC before you begin operating. You can register as a sole trader or as a limited company. You will need to register your business name and any other relevant information.

Register for self-assessment tax

This allows you to calculate and pay your own taxes each year. You will need to track your finances every month and submit any expenses as part of your tax assessment.

As part of your tax responsibilities, you must:

  • Record all forms of income and expenses.
  • Complete an annual self-assessment tax return.
  • Register for VAT if you earn above the threshold (currently £85,000).
  • Pay National Insurance contributions.
  • Keep a record of your business accounts for the previous five years.
Camera Rental Business

Positives of Owning an Equipment Rental Business

Running an equipment rental business can be rewarding in many ways.

Some of the main pros associated with this type of business include:

Increased profit margins

Although you will be responsible for the initial purchase cost, constantly renting out your equipment to different customers allows you to earn back your initial payment and make a profit on your investment. Once the rental costs have covered the initial price, any additional rentals will be a profit. The equipment you purchase can have a good return on your investment, which can help you to maximise your profits.

Continuous customer relations

Renting equipment to your customers allows you to create long-lasting business relationships that can help to encourage repeat or continuous business. Your customers will receive continuous service and will have repeated interactions with your business while they are renting your equipment. If you provide them with excellent customer service and work hard to build positive business relationships, you are likely to see repeat business and recommendations to other customers, helping you to grow your customer base and your profits.

Choose the equipment and industry you specialise in

As the business owner, you will have complete control over the type of business you set up and the type of equipment you want to specialise in. You can also choose whether to offer additional services, such as delivery, collection and equipment assembly. You can make the best decisions for you and your business, based on what is most likely to be profitable, your industry knowledge and experience and your business preferences.

Varied work

Working in this industry, you will be working on a diverse range of tasks every day, from communicating with customers to managing inventory, advertising and managing your premises. Every day will be different, with different customers and contracts. This helps to keep your work interesting.

Opportunities for growth

An equipment rental business has high scalability, meaning that it has the opportunity and capacity to expand and grow easily. Once your original business plan succeeds, you can grow your business, for example, by purchasing more equipment, changing your premises and expanding your customer reach. You will already have positive relationships with your suppliers and customers and can utilise these relationships to help you grow your business with minimal stress.

Opportunities for small businesses

Unlike many other industries, the equipment rental industry is not dominated by major companies. The majority of rental businesses are independent businesses. This results in more opportunities for small businesses and opens up gaps in the market for new businesses to succeed.

Increased demand

The popularity of renting equipment is growing year on year, with the industry at an all-time high. With more businesses and individuals seeing the benefits of renting rather than purchasing equipment, the demand for your services is likely to be high. High demand makes it more likely that your business will succeed.

Unlimited income potential

The more experience and exposure you gain, the more successful your business will be. As your business grows and you develop a good reputation, you will see your profits grow. You can even charge higher prices and expand your business to increase your profits. An equipment rental business can have a high income and your profit margins are likely to be high. With a good business plan and strategy for growth, your business could have unlimited income potential.

Low entry barriers

Setting up an equipment rental business doesn’t require any specific qualifications or training. Instead, all you will need is the relevant knowledge and experience in your chosen industry. This makes it easier (and quicker) for you to set up your business, particularly compared to other industries that require months or years of specific training and formal qualifications.

Connect with other people in the industry

You can build connections with other people in your chosen industry and even your customers. Building both professional and personal relationships allows you to stay up-to-date with new trends, releases and designs and create useful business connections that can help you to grow your business.

Control your own workload

You can set your own working hours and decide how involved you want to be. You can choose whether to work weekdays or weekends and run your business around your personal life. As your business grows and you hire more employees, you could also choose to take a step back and hand over a lot of the day-to-day responsibilities.

Be your own boss

There are multiple ways you can run your business and maximise your profits. As the business owner you decide the type of equipment rental business you set up. You can choose your premises, the type and volume of equipment you purchase, the employees you hire, choose whether to expand your business and decide exactly how to run your business. You can make the best decisions for you and your business.

Car Transporter Rental

Negatives of Owning an Equipment Rental Business

Although owning an equipment rental business can be rewarding, there are some potentially negative aspects of this type of business that you should be aware of.

For example:

Maintenance and repairs

As the rental company, you will be responsible for maintaining the equipment and dealing with any damage or wear and tear. Even though you will likely have contracts in place to cover you if any equipment becomes damaged in your customer’s possession, there are many repairs and replacements you will be responsible for. Equipment that experiences heavy use or is more than a couple of years old can break or begin to work less efficiently. You will be responsible for maintaining the equipment, which can be time-consuming, and paying for repairs and replacements, which can be expensive.

Updating equipment

To keep your business competitive, you will need to update and upgrade your equipment to keep up to date with changing trends and new releases and technology. You will need to ensure your equipment fits the needs of your customers and ensures your business is competitive. Regularly updating and upgrading your equipment can be expensive.

High initial investment

The initial finances required to purchase equipment can be high, particularly if you are purchasing expensive equipment (such as construction equipment) or a high volume of equipment. To create a complete equipment inventory, you could potentially need to invest hundreds of thousands of pounds. You will also be responsible for the costs relating to your premises. High upfront costs may require you to seek outside investment, can make your business higher risk and can result in it taking longer until you begin turning a profit.

Depreciation costs

As time goes by, the value of your equipment will drastically decrease. If you cannot earn back the initial cost of the equipment in rental costs, if new equipment is released or if the resale value is too low, the depreciation costs can have a significant impact on your finances.

High running costs

As well as the costs of maintaining and replacing equipment, you will also be responsible for your premises’ costs, your delivery costs and the costs associated with hiring employees. High running costs can affect your profits and reduce your profit margin.

Complying with legislation

This industry is highly regulated, with a large number of laws and regulations you must be aware of. You need to ensure you follow all policies and procedures, particularly those relating to health and safety. Not only can it be time-consuming to ensure compliance, but failure to comply, even unintentionally, could have serious consequences. An equipment rental business can have high liability, particularly if you hire employees, which can be a lot of stress and pressure for the business owner.

High liability

No matter how careful you are, there is a multitude of potential hazards and dangers when working with potentially dangerous equipment and machinery. If an employee or customer becomes injured when using your equipment, your business may be held liable. If you are found to be at fault (e.g. if maintenance checks weren’t completed properly) this could have a detrimental effect on your business and even result in prosecution.

Physically demanding

Working in this industry can be extremely physically demanding, as you will be completing a lot of manual handling activities, for example, cleaning, maintaining and moving heavy equipment and machinery. This can be physically demanding on your body and result in pain, strain or injury.

Travelling long distances

If you offer long-distance deliveries or collections, you (or your employees) could be driving for hours regularly. Not only can this result in high fuel costs, but there are also some health concerns related to driving for much of the day, such as:

  • Back pain and strain.
  • Reduced cardiovascular fitness.
  • Muscle strain and joint stiffness.
  • Eye strain.
  • A rise in blood sugar.
  • A rise in cholesterol.
  • A rise in blood pressure.

 

It can be difficult to build a reputation

A good reputation is key in this industry, as many customers look at your reviews or ask for recommendations from others when searching for equipment rental. This can make it difficult for you to establish your business and grow your customer base. Difficulties in creating your client base will result in a reduced income and could affect your ability to continue pursuing your business.

Issues out of your control

This can be one of the most frustrating aspects of running a business, as things that are out of your control can delay rentals and have a negative impact on your profits. For example, a customer not returning the equipment on time or traffic issues can prevent you from having the equipment ready on time. These issues can cause you to miss a delivery deadline, which can result in unhappy customers and a loss of business.

Motivation of employees

If you hire employees, such as warehouse staff, sales representatives and delivery drivers, to work for your business, they may be less motivated than you to ensure your business is always represented highly. You could hire an employee who is unmotivated, disinterested or doesn’t operate to your standards. This can result in bad reviews or the loss of custom which can have a detrimental effect on your business.

It can be demanding

Not only can running an equipment rental business be mentally and physically demanding but as the business owner you will have a lot of additional responsibilities, such as maintaining the equipment, advertising and marketing, complying with health and safety requirements, liaising with customers and completing administrative tasks. You will also be solely responsible for ensuring your business succeeds.

It can be stressful

Not only will you have a lot of day-to-day responsibility, but you will also be responsible for ensuring each piece of equipment complies with health and safety regulations and that your clients are completely happy. You will also be responsible for managing your employees and creating contracts and managing your inventory. Running an equipment rental business and ensuring your business succeeds can be very stressful.

No benefits

As you are self-employed, you won’t receive benefits such as pension contributions. You will also be responsible for doing your own taxes and organising your National Insurance contributions. You will also have a lack of job security.

Your business could fail

Starting up your own business can be risky. Many new businesses fail which could result in you losing money or getting into debt. Your business could fail for several reasons, such as high local competition, an ineffective business plan or if there is another recession or a period of financial difficulty.

Planning Your Equipment Rental Business

If you are considering starting up an equipment rental business, an effective and well-designed business plan is essential. A business plan can help you to focus on the specific steps that will help your business succeed, plan your short-term and long-term goals, determine your financial needs and help your business to grow.

Your business plan should contain information such as:

  • Your company information.
  • Your company description.
  • The services you will provide.
  • Your branding, marketing and advertising plan.
  • The structure of your business.
  • The operational plan for your business.
  • The financial plan for your business.

 

When creating your business plan, some factors you will need to take into consideration include:

The type of equipment you want to specialise in

This is the first consideration you will need to make when planning your business. Because each industry (e.g. construction, party planning or sports equipment) has significant equipment requirements, you will likely choose to specialise in one industry or a specific type of equipment rental. Consider the market demand, the costs and projected profits of different types of equipment and your own knowledge, experience and interest.

The volume of equipment you require

This is another important consideration. The volume of equipment refers to how many individual pieces of equipment you stock (for example, if you hire out technology equipment, you may have 40 laptops). When deciding how much equipment to purchase, consider your typical customer base and how much equipment they are likely to require at one time, your storage capabilities and your available capital.

Your business premises

When considering your business premises, consider the size of the facility you require and the storage capabilities. For example, a business specialising in party and event décor will require less storage and a smaller premises compared to a business specialising in construction machinery. Your business location is another key factor you will need to consider.

Your staffing requirements

Your staffing is an important consideration you will need to make. The number of employees you require will depend on the size of your business. You may require warehouse staff, sales representatives, delivery drivers and cleaners. Consider the costs associated with hiring these employees and the potential increases in your profits. Keep in mind that your staffing requirements could change as your business grows and evolves.

Your target market

Determining your target market is a key step in helping your business succeed. Different types of equipment rental businesses and different services will attract different customers. Some other factors that can influence your target market are your location (and delivery locations), your reputation, your knowledge and your pricing strategy. Once you have identified your target market, you can then focus on how to attract these customers to your business.

Your competition

Being aware of your competition is an important step to ensuring the success of your business. Analysing your competition allows you to look at what they do well and what you think can be improved upon. Look at the equipment they specialise in, the services your competition offers, their pricing, their target market and the number of employees they have. Analysing your competition also identifies whether there is space in the market for your business; for example, if there is already a successful equipment business specialising in golfing equipment operating in your area, you may choose to focus on a different type of equipment or customer base instead.

Your brand and your unique selling point (USP)

Creating your brand is a key way to ensure you stand out from your competition. Branding can help you to focus your target customer base, attract customers and concentrate your marketing and advertising strategies. Some ways you can create your brand are by focusing on your business’s visual identity, considering the equipment you will specialise in and creating a brand story. Your USP can also be part of your brand and can help your business stand out from your competitors. Consider what makes your business special and how this fits into what defines your business.

Your marketing and advertising strategies

Marketing and advertising are especially important when you first begin operating your equipment rental business. Your marketing strategy needs to be effective and budget friendly. Consider your target customers and the best way to reach them.

Some ways you can market and advertise your business are:

  • Build a functional and attractive website.
  • Contact businesses that operate in your chosen industry.
  • Use paid advertising.
  • Partner with relevant businesses or websites.

 

Your start-up costs and running costs

Consult the list above to help you calculate the approximate costs of setting up and running your business. Determine what equipment you need and the amount of equipment, as well as the cost of setting up your business, to help you determine your start-up costs and what your initial investment requirements will be. You can then calculate whether you can finance your business yourself. Determining your start-up costs and running costs can also help you to create a budget and predict when you will begin to turn a profit.

Financing your business

Consult the list of start-up costs and running costs above to determine what capital you will require. Can you finance the business yourself or will you need to source outside investment? You will also need to calculate when you are likely to begin turning a profit. If you require outside investment, you could consider a bank or other financial institution, a business loan or an investment partner.

Your pricing policy

How will your price your equipment? What factors will influence your pricing? Will rental costs be per day, per week or per month? Will you offer additional services (e.g. delivery) and what will the associated cost be? Will you offer discounts for customers with a high order volume? Consider the pricing of your competitors when setting your prices. Keep in mind that your pricing could change as your business grows.

Your sales forecast

How many contracts can you manage at one time? Are there certain times of the year that are likely to be busier than others? What are your weekly, monthly and annual sales forecasts? You can also analyse the sales forecasts of similar businesses and look at how sales vary throughout the year to estimate demand. As your business grows, your sales forecast is likely to change.

Your strategy for growth

Your strategy for growth is the actions you will take to realise your goals for expansion and any potential challenges your business could face and how you will avoid or overcome them. This can help to make your business more successful.

Potential challenges could include:

  • A lack of long-term rentals.
  • A lack of returning customers or ongoing custom.
  • Difficulties connecting with new customers.

 

Some potential strategies for growth include:

  • Improve your marketing and advertising strategies.
  • Expand your equipment inventory.

 

Your business summary

Your business plan should include a detailed overview of your business, including the type of equipment rental business you are setting up, the equipment or industry you will focus on, the services you will offer, your typical customer base, your staffing requirements and your business goals.

Your business goals

Your business goals or objectives are an essential part of creating your business plan. Your business objectives highlight the targets and goals of your equipment rental business and help you to create a one-year, three-year and five-year business plan.

Your business objectives should be SMART:

  • S = Specific
  • M = Measurable
  • A = Achievable
  • R = Realistic
  • T = Time-bound

 

Check you have complied with all legal requirements

Consult the list of legal requirements above to check you have complied with all requirements and regulations and that all your paperwork is accurate. Failure to comply with legal requirements could have a detrimental effect on your business or could result in a fine, the forced closure of your business or, in serious cases, prosecution.

 

Download our business plan

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