Consumers Can Pay off Auto Loans through the “Airbnb of Cars”

By the end of 2016, the U.S. had accumulated $1.2 trillion of outstanding auto loan debt, a significant rise in consumer debt. According to statistics from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, over 6 million American consumers are currently late on car loan payments by at least 90 days. Could there be a hidden resolution to consumers’ auto loan blues? Now, thanks to car-sharing sites and apps, look no further than your car itself for the answer.

Formerly known as the startup RelayRides, Turo has revolutionized the online and mobile peer-to-peer ride-sharing business. As RelayRides initially permitted users to rent on an hourly basis, Turo became revolutionary for allowing owners across the country to advertise on the website and rent their cars on a daily basis. Car owners who participate in the service “can recoup hundreds of dollars a month to offset car payments, insurance and other costs of ownership,” reports Ken Belson in an article for The New York Times.

The company’s model is simple: rent or list your car online and on a mobile device for 24 hours or longer, as frequently as you desire. Turo does not require monthly fees to register a car, and sign up is free. Turo uses Liberty Mutual to insure car owners, protecting them with $1 million in liability insurance, and protecting their vehicles from damage and theft. This protection method does not affect an owner’s personal car insurance. Owners deliver to a custom location, often to nearby airports or other accessible points of destinations. Turo members who are U.S. and Canadian citizens must be the age of 21 or older, and those who do not hold citizenship must be at least 25 years old.

How much could the average consumer earn from Turo? Say the market value of your car is $16,000 and you decide to rent out your car for 2 weeks each month – Turo estimates that you could earn at least $4,667 per year. Turo bases its pricing off of market value, time of year, and location, with the intent of boosting the user’s income from of the rental. The business provides the option to consumers to set their daily price as well.

Getaround, launching in 2015 in Washington, D.C., operates in the same fashion. It currently serves Washington, D.C., Chicago, Austin, San Diego, and the San Francisco Bay Area. Vehicles are available to rent at hourly or daily rates. Getaround takes a 40 percent cut from the income made on the rental. Owners can also rent their car out on a monthly basis but must pay additional installation and network fees. Getaround makes it easier for users who are under the age of 25 to rent a car, the age required by federal law to rent a car at a car rental agency, and 21, as compared to Turo’s age restriction.

Getaround and Turo are leaders in the peer-to-peer car rental sector and function similarly, with the exception of a few minor operational differences. The two businesses market to different preferences for car sharing: Getaround is more suitable for consumers for short-term sharing and Turo makes the longer term activity more economically feasible. Both have the potential for owners to make money off of their car and alleviate stressful auto loans, as well as providing travelers and others looking to rent a car with economical, interesting alternatives to the airport rental counter.

Read more here – “Turo’s ‘Airbnb For Car Owners’ Helps Consumers Pay Off Auto Loans Faster,” (Diana Hembree, Forbes)

Image Copyright: PhotographerStock Photo, License Summary.

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