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Make money renting your car; ICBC removes roadblocks
If you're trying to make money off of your vehicle but couldn't afford the insurance from ICBC, you're in luck. Recent insurance rate changes at ICBC have now cleared the road for peer to peer renting.
That’s created new opportunities for vehicle share platforms like Outdoorsy and Turo.
Outdoorsy connects RV owners with others looking to rent an RV for short periods of time and Turo is an app connecting personal vehicle owners with folks looking for a vehicle to rent.
Until recently, if you wanted to rent your personal vehicle, you’d have to purchase U-Drive insurance. And for some the price was too high to make it worthwhile. For instance, U-Drive insurance for a 2015 Toyota Prius would cost about $6,000.
In B.C., Outdoorsy was mainly renting campers, trailers and fifth wheels because the insurance for driveable RVs was a roadblock for owners looking to make a buck to help offset their recreational vehicle costs.
“Some people were spending between two to four thousand dollars extra a year on their insurance,” said Evan Hopkins of Outdoorsy.
In September ICBC made new basic blanket insurance products available to peer-to-peer companies like Outdoorsy. Now, insurance rates follow the driver and not the vehicle. ICBC has worked with Outdoorsy to allow the company to charge a daily insurance rate to those wanting to rent their RV.
Hopkins says it’s 20 per cent of the daily rate.
“Now, for the first time, we can offer insurance to our owners who have driveable vehicles,” he said. “I think our business here in B.C. is going to double next year, just because of this alone.”
Dawn and Paddy Moore are encouraged by the news. They own a 24-foot Leprechaun by Coachmen and had been renting it through Outdoorsy. Fortunately, the luck of the Irish had been smiling on them because they have had no incidents or claims involving renters.
“As we understand it, it’s going to take the risk off of us and put it onto our guests a little more directly, which is the way it should be,” said Paddy Moore.
Turo, which was introduced to the B.C. market a couple of years ago, had very few personal vehicle owners putting their vehicles up for rent because of the enormous insurance costs. While it’s not offering daily insurance yet, it’s something that is now being seriously considered.
“Clearly, from a regulatory standpoint most of the obstacles have been lifted and we're excited, really excited to work actively on our expansion to B.C.," said Cedric Mathieu, Turo Canada director.
That would clear the road for personal vehicle owners to make some extra cash and give car share companies like Evo and Share Now some competition.