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The Benefits And Pitfalls To Renting Out Your RV

Published on December 31st, 2021 by Kendall Jennings
This post was updated on July 26th, 2023

Class C RV in front of Rocky Mountains - cover photo for The Pitfalls Of Renting Out Your RV

The Benefits And Pitfalls To Renting Out Your RV

RV rentals have become a very popular business and for good reason. There are more people than ever RVing and the demand for RVs is increasing along with it.

Lots of RVs unfortunately spend many days and months sitting in storage unused. So renting it out and making a few bucks seems like a no-brainer, right?

Well, there are benefits and pitfalls to renting out your RV. If you are deciding whether you are going to rent out your RV, here are some things to consider.

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Pitfall – You aren’t able to use it

You likely bought an RV to travel, enjoy the outdoors, and have time away with friends and family. There are a variety of reasons why in your situation you are not able to use it, and so renting it out works.

If, however, you just aren’t making time or putting off RVing for a better time, I suggest taking the time and enjoy your RV.

When renting your RV, you commit to the people you are renting to. This means if you have taken a reservation for a weekend rental, and all of a sudden a group of friends is going to the lake, you may be sharing a bunk.

Benefit – Extra income

This is the reason most people will consider renting out their RV. If you have an RV that you are not using or it only gets used for the long weekend, this might make sense to you.

Many RVs are financed and making monthly payments on something that only gets used for short periods of time often doesn’t make sense.

RV rentals can be a great money maker with nightly rates averaging $125. You can easily make your monthly payments and possibly some extra to pay for any trips you do take.

Depending on where you advertise, there may be some costs involved, but in the end, there will be money in your pocket.

Pitfall – Wear and tear

One of the biggest pitfalls of renting out your RV is the wear and tear. When considering the price to charge for an RV rental, you have to consider the maintenance and repair to your RV. More use will add wear and tear to your rig.

Tires, bearings, brakes, and all the appliances in your RV will endure wear and need to be maintained and repaired. A worst-case scenario would be significant damage that you can’t recover from the renter.

Deposits and contracts are a safety net, but there is always a chance you end up with a big bill. Besides the mechanical issues, there is the wear on the cosmetics like flooring and furniture.

Man working on an RV air conditioner - pitfalls of renting out your RV

Benefit – Someone is making memories

This is a benefit for your soul more than your wallet. If you have an RV you’re not using, why not allow someone else to enjoy it?

For all of us fortunate enough to own an RV, we know the feeling of a weekend away. Some people aren’t in a position to purchase an RV, and having the option to rent allows them to experience it.

Another large portion of the people renting RVs are people considering buying an RV. Renting your RV to potential buyers gives them the chance to see if RV life is for them.

Pitfall – Inconvenience

For anyone who has been a landlord or even rented a room, they understand the time involved.

Renting your RV isn’t just collecting the money when they pick up the RV. You have to deal with the person renting, scheduling the rentals, and turning over the RV between rentals.

Another reality is when someone calls you with a problem with your RV, you have to accommodate them. Whether it’s driving out to a campground to fix something, or towing your RV home when their tow vehicle has issues.

Many people who don’t own an RV also don’t own a vehicle to tow one. Although it comes with an added cost attached to the rental, it is your time being spent on hooking up and towing both ways.

Renting out your RV, like renting out your house, is a great way to make some extra money or help pay for your camper. The decision to do so, however, should be considered carefully.

If you’re ready to make some additional income by renting out your RV, check out RVShare or Outdoorsy to get started.

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7 thoughts on “The Benefits And Pitfalls To Renting Out Your RV”

  1. Driving a class A diesel pusher requires different driving skills than front engine motorhomes. Making turns requires more thought that you are sitting forward of the front wheels and requires different thinking about turns. I learned that the hard way when we upgraded from a 26 foot class C to our 35 foot class A. There’s more than just driving, one needs to be aware of up and down hill speeds, tire pressure, air brakes air pressure, how to pump fuel at truck stops, etc.

    I am sure my insurance company would not approve anything like renting out our motorhome.

    When we bought our class C, my wife and I agreed that, “If we buy this, we aren’t going to let it sit, we’re going to USE it.”. In 6+ years of traveling in a motorhome, we’ve averaged 7 trips per year, from 1 to 4 weeks per trip.

    Uhh, no I’m not renting out my motorhome.

  2. At the price it cost to maintain an RV, it’s not worth it to rent it out to people who have never owned or used an RV. Like letting food debris going down the kitchen sink that can stop up a dump valve and create a constant leak because the dump valve can’t completely close.
    Like plugging into a shore power pole without checking if it’s wired properly which can fry all the electronics in the RV. There are a lot more mistakes that can be made that can cause major expense, and since renters don’t own the RV they don’t typically care what happens to it.
    Personally, I wouldn’t even think about renting mine out. I pay a $100 a month for storage and that’s cheap compared to damage that a renter can cause. Like driving 70 mph while towing a 5th a heavy 5th wheel, causing the tires to heat up and blow out causing thousands of dollars in damages.

  3. I live and work at a campground in Colorado six months out of the year, with a residence provided. The owners graciously gave me a spot for my travel trailer, which I rent out on Air BnB. The benefit is, it remains stationary and I make a great income from it. The downside is the effort involved in cleaning, laundry, etc., especially with one-night stays. And during COVID it is a lot of extra work to meet sanitary requirements. The other six months of the year, I travel to warmer climates and live in it, which works for me.

  4. After having rented a class C previously with some repair issues that I voluntarily, and some involuntarily, repaired out of necessity while on vacation; and, after having purchased my own travel trailer two years ago and seeing the effort and money required to keep one in tip-top and useable condition I can no longer imagine turning loose of my RV asset to anyone for their use at current prevailing rental rates.

    I suppose if I were retired and didn’t mind the thought of maintenance in my spare time I might consider purchasing a couple of B’s or C’s as a sideline – but it would be a stretch. And forget renting a trailer! There are far too many potential renters out there asking far too many elementary towing, braking, hitching and black tank questions for me to lose sleep renting trailers.

    That’s my two cents worth!

  5. One item not mentioned in most articles about renting your RV out is your insurance. Not all insurance covers the RV when it is rented out. Need to do good research first.

  6. Sounds like just the thing. For some people. But I will not be renting my camper, for multiple reasons. It will be a second, backup, vehicle. I do not trust strangers with my personal property. But, I think the main reason is, if nothing else, it will be used for weekend activities – fishing, camping overnight, getting a curbside pickup meal from a nice restaurant then find a quiet place to park and have a nice meal out of the house, and whatever else we can think up. Which means it will be pretty much used weekly, all year around.


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