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Become self-employed with a trailer rental

Many business ideas arise from an everyday situation that calls for a functional solution: If larger objects such as furniture are to be transported, the trunk of the existing car is often insufficient. But if you want to cope with the transport flexibly and without significant investments, you will look around for a trailer rental. The starting position for a promising business idea has already been outlined, based on demand: Become self-employed with a trailer rental. Commercial trailer rental can be an attractive option for customers, as in the vast majority of cases purchasing a trailer is not an option due to infrequent use. This practice-oriented article will shed light on in compact form which aspects are particularly important when setting up a business with a trailer rental. Since this business idea undoubtedly also concerns safety aspects in road traffic, observance of the formal framework conditions (see chapter on requirements) plays an important role.

Setting up a business with trailer rental: start your own business with self-drive rental vehicles

  • Analysis of the initial situation

  • Starting a trailer rental: costs & investments

  • Win customers: unique selling points & marketing

  • Requirements to be able to operate trailer rental

  • Earning from a trailer rental?


Analysis of the initial situation

Basically, the business opportunities with a trailer rental are multifaceted, because different customer groups come into consideration for the strategic orientation. First and foremost move The focus is on private customers who move or want to transport a bulky item from A to B. Since a trailer costs only around 50 euros per day, depending on its size, most customers do not hesitate to use this flexible option. In principle, business customers can also be considered for the alignment: These can be transport companies who want to meet a short-term requirement without investing in a new trailer straight away. In general, however, the focus will be more on the private customer area. In large cities in particular, there are a number of moves every day and so many potential customers to ensure a high level of occupancy. This already shows that the location is of particular importance in the course of the initial analysis.

Location analysis and requirements

If you google a little about trailer rental, you will be presented with a view with which an initial competition analysis can be carried out. What offer is there already for a trailer rental at the chosen location? What is special about this offer? What prices and conditions can customers use there? Such an analysis quickly reveals the competitive environment in which your own offer must be placed. If it turns out that there are already a large number of competitors, the plan to start a business at the targeted location can be difficult. The official data to be used in relation to removals are: How many moves are there in the city? The potential order situation can be roughly derived from this. The more direct competition there is at the location, the more differentiated your own offer must be. This is the only way to ensure that your own offer is perceived as attractive from the customer's point of view with added value (more on this later).

Apart from the pure location analysis, of course, suitable rooms must be found, which are ideally located in a location that is advantageous in terms of traffic. Depending on the number and size of the trailers, a larger hall will be necessary to safely store the trailers. A spacious parking lot for assembly and maneuvering will be just as necessary as a repair and maintenance area where the trailers can be checked regularly. A small office is also recommended to be able to advise customers and to clarify all contractual details when handing over a rented trailer. The entrepreneur can also do so in the office space do all the accounting tasks that have to be done in day-to-day business operations. This important area of ​​responsibility should be implemented professionally and consistently right from the start, so as not to lose track of your own numbers at some point. When selecting rooms, the costs have to be kept in view, because this immense monthly factor becomes a challenge, especially in the start-up phase. Higher prices must be justified in the long term by an excellent location or infrastructure.

What do you have to consider specifically for this business idea?

The most important basic requirement is to buy trailers that are resilient in the truest sense of the word. In the initial phase, it can be an option in a small company to to fall back on used models. The start-up should be familiar with the matter in order to be able to make a well-founded and sustainable decision. Anyone who is familiar with trailers knows how to classify the quality and longevity of different models.

Assemble a fleet for business operations

The composition of a trailer fleet should be strictly demand-oriented: According to experience, which size is used most often? And which trailer types are compatible with the most common car models? It makes little sense to invest in a large number of large trailers that are then incompatible with a large number of cars. The aspect of quality will play an important role in order to keep follow-up and downtime costs in business operations as low as possible. It should also be asked right at the beginning whether all the work that has to be done can be carried out by yourself or whether at least one employee should be employed. If the installation is carried out directly for the customer and maintenance is to be carried out on site, a helping hand is certainly indispensable in the case of good utilization. And office work has to be done too. Therefore, it should be checked whether the help of an accountant should be used.

Does the location offer opportunities for specialization?

It should be checked whether the location makes a specialization for certain trailers appear sensible. Think of horse trailers, for example, if there are many horse stables within X kilometers. It would then be necessary to check whether owners have their own trailers or whether a rental solution for flexible transport purposes for this target group is an option.

Business plan: costs and investments

The total amount of investment required should be precisely quantified in the financial section of the business plan. If a double-digit number of trailers is to be bought, considerable sums can quickly arise. In order to be able to cover this with outside capital, the business plan must be convincing in its entirety. Otherwise banks or other business partners will not be enthusiastic about this business idea.

Importance of sustainable decisions

Anyone who wants to make sustainable investment decisions in every respect should attach great importance to the possibility of procuring spare parts. Experience has shown that there can be considerable differences depending on the manufacturer. The initial costs should be contrasted with income for the first fiscal years, so that profitability becomes apparent. Business start-ups have to show what capacity they are expecting and what profits can be made on the basis of the pricing policy presented. In general, all business areas in the business plan should show a clear strategic orientation and profile in the market. Furthermore, the founder in particular should shine with specialist knowledge and the most relevant experience possible.

USP: Why should customers choose this trailer rental?

The more intense the competitive situation at the targeted location, the more convincingly this question will have to be answered (in your own business interest!). The price-performance ratio will be the focus of the unique selling points and added value from the customer's point of view. Combat prices are definitely the wrong way to force your way into the market. Because this means that the profit margins will be so low that it can only be said that costs are covered. Rather, a holistic service can convince customers, for example by directly assembling the trailer professionally and giving safety instructions. When returning, everything should be quick and as uncomplicated as possible, including dismantling. When booking, customers are offered several options. Apart from the telephone inquiry, online bookings or the use of a corresponding app must be checked. One challenge will be to ensure short-term availability that is desirable for customers. Because it must be in the interest of the operator of a trailer rental company to rent all trailers whenever possible. However, this can lead to problems as new customers may no longer be served. In this case, a critical growth threshold may have been reached that requires further investments in your own vehicle fleet. Anyone who has these 'problems' as a business start-up can look forward to a flourishing business.

Strategic options for business expansion

If you want to start your own business with a trailer rental, you can develop your own business idea from it. But there is also a lot to be said for integrating this service as an extension into other business ideas. Petrol stations, tire dealers and car workshops could use this service to create added value and broaden the income base overall. In this respect, it can be worthwhile for start-ups to take a look at the list of business ideas in order to find possible integration potential.

Requirements to be able to set up trailer rental

If you want to rent trailers permanently and for profit, you will have to register a business. Receipt of the trade license is the formal authorization to officially operate a trailer rental. Anyone who wants to use trailers commercially must find an insurance solution. It should be noted that very few insurance companies offer tariffs for such rental trailers. To ensure a high level of safety, a general inspection must be carried out for the trailers every 12 months. By the way, in technical jargon a trailer is called 'Self-drive rental vehicle' designated. In this regard all trailers must also be registered with the relevant registration office. The explicit reference must be made that the vehicles are rented. This registration is only possible if a confirmation of insurance can be presented and the business registration has already been made.

The extent to which a certificate of competence has to be provided as part of the business registration for a trailer rental should be clarified at an early stage. It should be noted that there are different regulations in each federal state. In addition, the specific range of services may indicate an extended obligation to provide evidence or even a permit. From a formal point of view, the business activity must be recorded at the tax office, which means that all accounting obligations for operational business operations automatically apply. The aim must be to minimize risks and to ensure professionalism at all times.

Fix each rental contractually

In this respect, a contract should be drawn up for every trailer rental in which all the details are clarified. This applies in particular to the return modalities, the handling of possible claims and the documentation of the condition of the trailer upon delivery. In this way, it is clear for both sides what happens in which case. The question to be asked is whether and, if so, with what deductible customers can be charged in the event of damage and what deposit should be deposited?

Win customers for a trailer rental?

Ideally, the unique selling points mentioned above are so appealing that customers see this trailer rental as an attractive option. Nevertheless, it is important to show presence in order to be placed in the customer's perception as a problem solution. A search engine optimized homepage and local SEO measures should ensure that customers searching the Internet land on the homepage of your own trailer rental. Advertisements in regional newspapers, radio advertisements and flyers are other ways to attract customers' attention. It is also conceivable to place advertising in car repair shops or other 'thematically appropriate' companies within the scope of the possibilities. The great advertising potential of the trailers themselves should also be used right from the start. These are moved every day and can reach many potential customers along the way. In this respect, the name and contact details of the trailer rental company should be clearly visible in several places.

Satisfied customers are the best advertisement

Not to be forgotten in this area is customer satisfaction. Satisfied customers will give personal recommendations or write an image-enhancing rating on the Internet. The opposite, i.e. bad reviews, can of course have an image-damaging effect and a deterrent effect for potential customers. Therefore, entrepreneurs are well advised to attach great importance to a high quality of service and to keep track of how the company is presented on the Internet.

Earning with your own trailer rental?

No reliable values ​​can be given here, since most business operators do not like to look into the books. In the end it all depends on how many trailers the company has and how often they can be rented on the most favorable terms possible. In the business plan, founders have to do their imputed homework so that they can earn well with a trailer rental. Prices must be attractive from the customer's point of view and still allow an attractive profit margin after deducting all costs. If this can be quantified and if an assumed total occupancy rate for one month is expected, the earnings with a trailer rental can be forecast quite accurately. The question of the amount of profit from a trailer rental is directly related to the pricing and the cost structure. High rental costs for a location have a negative effect on the earnings with a trailer rental. On the other hand, a good location will ensure a better order situation.

Summary for the business idea 'start your own business with a trailer rental'

  1. This business idea solves an everyday problem that arises in connection with the transport of bulky items

  2. The location and competition analysis in the business plan must show to what extent the selected economic radius of action holds out the prospect of sustainable business development

  3. Depending on the competitive situation, it should be checked whether specializing in certain types of trailers makes sense

  4. In order to win customers for a trailer service, the new company has to show its presence: This applies to a search engine-optimized website as well as to advertising on the trailers themselves

  5. In order to be able to operate a trailer rental, a trade must be registered. The trailers must be insured and reported to the registration office

  6. The amount of profit from a trailer rental is directly related to the workload and the specific cost structure of the company.