Rental Industry Expects Rebound in 2011

A large majority of rental store owners and managers expect 2011 to be a much better year than 2010, according to the latest quarterly American Rental Association (ARA) Economic Survey of members.

More than 34 percent of ARA general members responding to the survey expect rental revenues to show double-digit increases in 2011 versus 2010, and another 46 percent expect at least single-digit increases this year. The results show a growing optimism for a significant rebound in 2011. Only about half of the respondents said revenues increased in 2010 compared to 2009. Nearly 30 percent of the respondents had revenue declines in 2010, but only 4 percent expect a drop in revenue in 2011. Nearly 70 percent of the respondents also expect to spend more on new rental equipment purchases in 2011 compared to 2010, a significant increase over last year.

The spending expectations of general members also match up with the sales forecasts of ARA associate member equipment suppliers. More than 83 percent of the associate member survey respondents expect increased sales into the rental channel, including 52 percent that expect double-digit sales increases. Less than 20 percent of the associate member respondents said sales into the rental channel decreased in 2010 while only 1 percent of the respondents expect a decrease in 2011.

“Clearly ARA members are more optimistic about 2011 and have a positive mindset,” says ARA executive vice president and CEO Christine Wehrma. “This underscores the importance of The Rental Show in Las Vegas. The timing is right for solidifying the buyer and seller connections, learning how to further promote the rental concept and taking advantage of tax benefits.”

The Rental Show is scheduled for Feb. 27-March 2, 2011, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nev.