How to start a car hire company

Written by roy sylvan
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How to start a car hire company
Renting out cars can be a profitable business. (car dealership 1 image by Alexey Stiop from

You can create a profitable business by starting a car hire company. Often called car rental companies, competitors exist from international corporations renting the latest car models to local speciality firms that rent exotic sports cars or vehicles a few miles from the scrap heap. You need a business plan that identifies the needed vehicles and services for your chosen geographic area, realistic marketing strategy and adequate financing to compete profitably.

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  1. 1

    Research the market in the geographic area you intend to serve. Determine who rents vehicles, for what purposes and what cars, vans or trucks they prefer. Visitors or business people at an airport or train station ordinarily seek to rent a sedan because they do not have their own autos available. A wedding party may want to rent a stretch limousine and a visitor to a desert area may want an all-terrain vehicle.

    Study information available from trade magazines and other sources about how companies obtain vehicles and customers, control costs and avoid lawsuits.

  2. 2

    Write a business plan that incorporates the finding from your research and states the vehicles and services you intend to provide. Describe how many and what type of vehicles you need to start, if you will operate from a facility, where you will store your vehicles and if you expect to maintain and repair them with your own employees or outsource those functions.

  3. 3

    List the various insurance policies and the amounts of overage you need, including accident damage, liability, fire and theft and umbrella coverage. Choose a company whose short-term coverage is available to your vehicle renters. Learn what vehicle licenses and permits you need. Your employees who drive the cars between rentals must be insured, also.

  4. 4

    Detail the equipment and procedures your business requires to keep your own records and those required by local and state laws. Indicate the training your employees need and how you expect to provide it.

  5. 5

    Describe your marketing strategy. Based on the potential customer base, indicate how you intend to appeal to them. Describe advertising and sales techniques you can use. You can compete for customers on price, the type or quality of vehicles and services, such as picking up customers at their homes. List the methods you can use to distinguish your company from your competitors.

  6. 6

    Explore fully the financial needs of your business model. If you are willing to share profits, seek investors. If you agree to take on debt, try to arrange bank loans. Consider applying to the Small Business Administration to guarantee your loans.

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