Rent to own
Contractors can also buy the equipment they rent, often at a reduced price and with rental payments applied toward the purchase. You may also find rent-to-own deals on machines not typically available for lease.
E-Z Drill’s program is one example. Dealers and specialty rental centers usually carry the company’s single model drills, but the multi-gang drills generally aren’t available for rent. However, E-Z Drill periodically leases the multi-gang drills to a dealer that, in turn, rents them to customers with lease or purchase options. End-users can apply previous rental costs to the purchase of the drill.
IROCK dealers run a similar show with a rental purchase option program, in which 70% of rentals convert to purchases. After the equipment has worked for two or three years, it’s time to sell it, Donaghy says, noting that it usually sells before the end of its third working year.
Maintenance and training
Rental can be tough on equipment, so choose products built by reputable manufacturers who stand behind their brands. To ensure their products are properly maintained, most specialty equipment manufacturers also provide training to dealers that is passed on to customers.
For example, E-Z Drills are relatively easy to maintain just by tightening bolts, putting oil in the oiler, and keeping them clean. But certain operation can be tricky. It is essential that the controls be used in proper sequence, and operators must know how to set up the drilling level and depth and establish the right pressure. So the manufacturer offers onsite training for its multi-gang units and can offer training on the single drills upon request to demonstrate proper operation to dealers and their salespeople.
Other units require more frequent maintenance. Donaghy says rental is tough on IROCK machines if contractors don’t understand the rules of crushing or screening, or if they don’t perform the necessary daily maintenance.
“We have our dealers go over what their customers can and cannot put in the machine, and remind them that daily maintenance is the key to keeping the equipment going,” he says. “Our machines are tough and durable, and training can counterbalance any inexperience.”
IROCK sends a sales associate or service technician to set up the machine, and teach the personnel proper use. Newer clients get more frequent visits to be sure the equipment is well cared for during a rental job, which can last anywhere from a few weeks to more than a year.
As for Brokks, Bigwood says while they are unconventional machines, the controls are similar to traditional excavators and other construction equipment. With some simple training, operating one is straightforward.
“As with anything, if an operator doesn’t perform the basics correctly, there will be problems, but we make sure the rental centers know how to train the end users,” Bigwood says. “Our machines have a quick learning curve, and most operators take to them naturally. We love the rental concept because it allows more people to experience the unique capabilities of these machines.”