Best Practices for Checking Your RV Out and In

Whether you use GoCamp, Outdoorsy or RVshare to rent out your RV, you’ll want to be fastidious about properly checking your rig in and out. Each platform will have its own unique requirements and paperwork. The best practices below transcend specific protocols.

Supplemental Rental Agreements

Thoroughly review the check-in and check-out paperwork provided by the platform you use, as well as any generic rental agreements that may be employed. You and the renter will be bound to these agreements.

If you find them lacking in any respect, you could create a Supplemental Rental Agreement that is unique to your RV. For example, if the generic rental agreement does not explicitly state that renters will be responsible for tolls, you could add language about tolls to your supplemental agreement and have renters sign off on your specific terms in addition to the generic terms of the service you use.

Anticipate Renter Questions in Advance

It’s important to have a supply list and driver’s manual for your rental. When put time into these resources up front, there will be fewer questions to answer when renters pick up your rig.

We recommend sending the renter your supply list and driver’s manual at least two weeks before their reservation. This way, they can begin the process of familiarizing themselves with your rig.

Keep Helpful Information in the Rig

Be sure to store guidebooks, instructions on how to operate key features, and any necessary insurance information in your RV. When your renter is in the forest trying to remember how to deploy your awning, you’d rather they reference the information you thoughtfully stored in the RV than call you.

Give Yourself Ample Time Between Rentals

It is tempting to pack your calendar with one rental after another all summer long. If renting is your full-time focus, that could work. But if you have a life, or a day job, you might want to think twice about accepting same day or next day rentals. Having at least 48 hours between bookings allows adequate time for cleaning and inspection.

Get Help

Many successful RV owners have a local detailer on speed dial. Others hire a cleaning service to help get their RV ready for rentals. In the spirit of having help, other RV owners recruit a trusted friend or partner to assist with rentals.

You never know when you might be called out of town, or otherwise be unavailable. Having more than one person familiar with the RV and able to do renter check ins and check outs can often will handy.

The GoCamp van owner community is tightly knit. If you need help managing your van, GoCamp can introduce you to other owners in your area.

Two Sets of Supplies Can Cut Turn Time in Half

Cleaning out your RV after one rental and getting it ready for the next is often referred to as “turning the RV.” You can cut your turn time in half by investing in double sets of your signature supplies.

For example, if you have two sets of sheets and comforters, you can pull dirty linens out of the van and replace them with clean ones without waiting for a laundry cycle. This trick applies to pretty much anything you’d need to pull out of the van to clean.

Make Your Rig Rental Friendly

Choose bedding, kitchen items, and camping gear that are durable and easy to use. Just like you don’t want to wait for loads of laundry, you also don’t want to constantly be repairing things or running to the store to replace fragile or easily broken items.

Take Photos and Get Signatures

If you ever need to file an insurance claim, you’ll be asked to submit properly executed check-in and check-out paperwork. Before the renter picks up your RV, take pre-departure photos of all four sides plus the interior.

Have the renter sign the check-out paperwork acknowledging the state of the RV when they picked it up from you.

When the renter returns your RV, you’ll take post trip photos and collect another signature on any required forms. You’d be wise to take post trip photos even if you don’t see any obvious damage.

Pro Tip: Taking a 360-video of the van exterior and interior is a great way to document the condition of the van before and after a rental.

No Contact

In the height of COVID, in an attempt to minimize contact, many RV owners adopted a practice of doing contact free check-ins and check-outs. Often they’d sent the renter a video walk through of their rig, and employ one of many online electronic signature applications to capture the necessary renter signatures on forms.

When things go well this approach generally works. When there are disputes, the lack of face-to-face interaction can be problematic.

Video Walkthroughs

Whether you do or don’t meet your renters face-to-face, video walkthroughs sent to the renter in advance of pick up are fantastic. These videos can be shot and edited on your smart phone, and truly do not have to look or feel like professionally shot documentaries.

Find Success with these Best Practices for RV Owners

We’ve been helping van owners succeed in renting out their camper vans since 2017. Over the years we’ve facilitated 1,000’s of successful rentals and made it possible for van owners to earn tens of thousands of dollars. For more information specific to renting out your camper van, check out all the articles written for van owners. And if you are ready to list your camper van with GoCamp, head to the List Your Van page now.

Earn as much as $50,000+

Use your van when you want to; make good money renting it out when you aren’t using it.

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