Last year, I was launching my HR Consulting company, A Slice of HR. While advisory services typically have fairly low-start up costs, I needed cash for things like marketing materials, business cards and website design. My family was already making sacrifices with my forgone salary.
I pondered what on earth I could do to make a few thousand dollars fairly quickly - that didn't take a lot of my time and effort that was focused on running the business (and a family).
Then, it hit me - I didn't need my car to go to the office anymore and the kids take the school bus. So, after vacuuming out the cheerios and removing the car-seats, I started renting out our family car through Turo, a shared market space for renting cars.
My car was rented within 24 hours and I made $600 in the first month. It is a little scary handing the car over to a complete stranger and the journey hasn't been perfect, but it got us through those critical first months!
It should be noted that we have a 2008 Chevy Equinox (nothing fancy) named 'The Big Whoop' that literally has been abused by three small boys for the entirety of it's life! It's Blue Book Value is less than 5K.
Between the months of July 2017 - December 2017, I earned $972 for my business - and we got to keep our car.
We loved our little side-business. I outsourced the prep work to my boys (ages 8 and 6) who received $10 to clean the inside and outside of the car - Big Money for a Kindergartner. If a reservation was extended, I would give them $10 more dollars. I was teaching them a bit about business - the first sale is the hardest but when you provide excellent customer service, it can lead to more and more business opportunities! When we would get that extension notification on the app, we would all cheer!
I love the people we met. There is something about a shared-economy, that shows the very best of humanity. We helped a woman whose car had been wrecked in an accident, took a renter to the bus stop who had borrowed it to do door-to-door sales for an energy company (who returned it with a new air freshener) and listen to the story of a man who didn't own his own car but got to use ours to meet a friend at a BBQ in a city an hour away.
In return, we received 5 star reviews from all of our customers and we are being featured on their commercial!