Discover Rental guide

Sep 7, 2021

This ‘Discover Rental’ guide is for anyone interested in learning more about equipment rental. 

It is targeted primarily at contractors, industrial companies and other potential users of rental services, but it also serves as a rental ‘primer’ for government bodies and other institutions.

Why rent?

Rental helps companies reduce their fixed costs and minimises the financial risks of owning equipment fleets. By renting rather than owning, the user only pays for equipment when it is needed, and rental reduces the ongoing costs that come with equipment ownership, including maintenance, in-service inspections, repairs, transportation and storage.

Rental allows companies to cope with peak workloads without having to invest in extra equipment. It represents a low-risk way of obtaining equipment when market conditions are uncertain and allows companies to enter new markets or sectors without burdensome investments in machinery – capital that would otherwise be tied up in equipment can be channelled into a company’s core business.

Finally, rental provides peace of mind as rental companies provide equipment that complies with regulations and is properly tested and certified.

What can you rent?

Equipment available for rental is remarkably diverse, spanning earthmoving machines, hand-held power tools, generators, site cabins, aerial work platforms, mobile cranes, heating and cooling equipment, forklifts, site toilets, traffic safety equipment and falsework, formwork and shoring equipment.

How to choose a rental company?

Choosing a rental supplier that operates close to your site reduces transport costs. When renting small equipment, this proximity determines the choice of the rental company.

The fleet inventory should guarantee the immediate availability of equipment. Having relationships with a number of rental companies rather than a single supplier provides more guarantees.

The rental rate or price is the easiest thing to compare between suppliers. Rental companies will also offer particular pricing packages. Special offers for the weekend or long-term rentals can make a supplier more attractive.

Recently, online rental platforms have entered the market, acting as intermediaries between rental companies and their customers. Whether or not it is a good idea to rent equipment via an online platform depends on a number of factors, such as the type of equipment requested, a customer’s knowledge and the location of a job site.

A sustainable option

Rental is a fundamentally sustainable activity. By renting equipment, companies and individuals can contribute to a more sustainable world in various ways.

As an inherently circular model, rental satisfies the many principles of the shared economy, including shared usage, repairability, resource use, reusability and recyclability. It helps minimise the negative environmental impact of equipment, with the biggest reductions in carbon emissions coming from the utilisation rate, equipment adequacy (using the right equipment for the job), transportation and maintenance.

Many European rental companies put significant efforts into their own Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and actively work on their contribution to the sustainable development goals (SDGs). Rental companies also work with sustainable supply chains to ensure that equipment is manufactured in a sustainable and responsible manner.

Contribution of rental to the overall economy

For more and more customers, rental offers a useful and economic solution to flexibly cover their demand for construction machines and equipment. The trend towards rental is not surprising, considering that rental allows flexibility, project-related budgeting and cost control, and eradicates the need for expensive investments in new machines.

In 2019, equipment rental companies and other companies providing rental services generated a total rental turnover of more than EUR 27.7 billion in these countries (EU-EFTA-UK), with the most recent estimates putting the number of rental companies at 17,725 and people employed in the industry at 144,810.

Download the Discover Rental guide from the link below.


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