You’ve Got to be Kidding

Rent out my stuff.

Online marketplaces such as eBay have been offering savvy consumers a way to boost their income by selling unwanted items or setting up micro-businesses since the late Nineties.

But consumers are now finding that they can earn significantly more hiring out belongings such as cameras, musical instruments, tents and bicycles to other individuals using “peer-to-peer” rental platforms.

Mrs L has been getting spam emails from a website called Fat Llama. Now we know what it’s all about. But, no, I don’t think so. If I don’t want something anymore, then fine, I’ll sell it. But rent it? No, I don’t think so.

Telegraph Money found bicycles listed on Fat Lama for between £5 and £175 a day. Musical instruments can also be found the site – guitars are offered for between £5 and £75 a day.

Those with sports equipment, camping gear, tools or furniture gathering dust can also get in on the action. You can get at least £5 a day hiring out the tent that you use just once a year, £5 a day for your Henry Hoover or slow cooker, or £15 a day for your old table tennis table.

Fat Lama takes a 15pc cut from both the lender and borrower. Items are covered in case of loss or damage.

Those who don’t use their cars regularly can make them pay too.

There is no way on this planet am I going to hand over my tools to a complete stranger – likewise, my guitar. And you will have to prize the keys to my vehicles from my cold dead hands before I let someone I’ve never met and know nothing about, have them. Not going to happen. Ever.

Oh, and 30% is a pretty sizeable cut…


    • As I understand it, while under rental, the vehicle is covered by the website’s insurance. However, I suspect the owner’s insurance will be unimpressed.

  1. I occasionally hire tools* to unknown/untrusted, however I insist on cash deposit of new replacement cost.

    *eg ladders, petrol hedge trimmers, torque wrench, sockets, crow-foot, micrometer etc

    Works fine.

    • My attitude is probably inherited. My father was a carpenter and joiner. His tools were his trade and very personal. My own approach to them is the same. No one uses my tools. They can buy their own.

      • I’m also a carpenter and joiner, and my tools are worth tens of thousands of pounds. I’d never lend them to anyone. Quite apart from them being expensive professional kit (buy cheap, buy twice), they become very personal items. I know all their quirks, their strengths and weaknesses, and use them accordingly.

        Rent them out? Forget it.

      • I agree and some tools would not be hired/loaned as they have evolved to match how I use them eg wood planes; or personal eg tools my grandfather made at Short Bros. Others like Snap-On, Britool, Halfords Pro I will as double gaurantee – cash deposist and life-time warranty. Things like extending Alu ladders (work-grade) are mostly generic.

        Re: Buy cheap, buy twice: learnt that when a teen with first MC – add buy cheap and ruin screw, bolt…

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