Smart SpendingSmart Spending

Charge a stranger $5 an hour to borrow your car

A new program could let you earn some money when you're not using your vehicle.

By MSN Money Partner Oct 7, 2011 2:22PM

This post comes from Des Toups at partner site on MSN MoneyCar sharing has always been a hippie version of car rental. You pay your money and you get access to a newish econobox, only it’s located in your neighborhood, not at the airport, and you’re not locked into that whole-day rental thing when all you want to do is load up at Costco.


Now, General Motors is helping to make car-sharing even more nutty and crunchy.


With “peer-to-peer car sharing,” you can rent your neighbor’s car, or he yours. And with the magic of OnStar and a company called RelayRides, you never even have to talk to each other.


The program allows car owners to rent out their cars during the 23 hours a day most people's cars sit idle. OnStar (or a similar RelayRides device) unlocks the doors via a renter’s mobile phone and allows him to start the car with a key left by the owner. The device tracks the car’s mileage and, if necessary, can locate the car if it somehow is lost.


For an hourly fee, the renter gets the car, a gas card, $1 million in soup-to-nuts insurance coverage (protecting the owner, too, because most personal auto insurance policies won’t cover any commercial use) and up to 160 miles a day.

RelayRides says car owners could earn anywhere from $2,400 to $3,700 a year if rentals average 10 hours a week. It’s the owner who sets the hourly price. From that amount, RelayRides deducts the cost of any gas charged on the gas card, 20% for the insurance policy and 15% for itself. Post continues after video.

RelayRides says it screens its members’ driving records for accidents and DUIs and deals with aggravations such as parking tickets. When a borrower is late or leaves a mess in the car, the service fines them and sends the money to the owner.


The program is available only in San Francisco and Boston. Starting in early 2012, a mobile-phone app will make all OnStar-equipped cars (mostly General Motors brands) RelayRides-ready.


More on and MSN Money:


Oct 7, 2011 5:57PM
Of course, the owner gets to pay all the repairs and maintenance required when some unknown person goes out and hot rods your car, burns rubber, etc.  Good deal for the company though.  They get it off the top and no real risk.
Oct 8, 2011 5:34PM
NO WAY, you have to be a complete moron to do this. can you personaly screen the people who get to use your vehicle? good god i wouldn't care anyway. i worked as a tech at a dealership for 13 years and i'll tell you what, i wouldn't want 80% of the people who's cars i worked on touch mine. thithy dirty steering wheels, snot rags, pet hair , spit up ,food garbage, feces on seats, really bad b.o. , bugs  etc. you name i've seen it. why in the world would you want a stranger with who knows with what health habits they have drive your car.i've worked on peoples cars who have really bad odorous b.o. and it gets imbedded into the interior. try replacing a seat belt on that car.some people have pets, thats all good even though the pet is not in your car they still have dander all over their clothes.i could go on but good luck to you renters of your vehicles. 
Oct 8, 2011 9:21AM

I don't  even let my son drive  my car, You think  I'm  going to let a

Stranger. Yeah right.

This has to be one of the stupidest ideas I've heard of. Look at the figures this company is quoting. $2400 to $3700 bucks a year is hardly worth my time, even if that's what you earned. The company takes 35% off the top for insurance and their fee. Even at $3700 you're now down to $2400 bucks. They don't give a figure for the gas charges so let's, for argument's sake assume $20 bucks a week.  That's another $1040 deducted. So, at best, you can expect to make around $1360 a year, and possibly even less. That's around $26 bucks a week. Of course, this doesn't even factor in the additional repair and maintenance costs on your car. So, why anyone would bother with this is beyond me.
Oct 8, 2011 2:25PM

I agree with the other posts.  This is the stupidest idea I have heard in a long time.  You can't trust strangers to driver your car responsibly let alone control where they go with it. What if they leave drug residue in it.  What about a wreck? Try explaining a wreck to an insurance company who would probably not only raise your insurance, but make you pay commercial rates.  I can think of many more problems but won't waste my time.


This idea has no redeeming value at all.

Oct 8, 2011 12:19PM
Oct 8, 2011 3:00PM
Heck yea, I want to rent out my vehicle to a total inconsiderate stranger, at my expense in the long haul. Where do I sign up? Better yet, let me have use of yours O.K? Idiots!!!!!!!!!!
Oct 7, 2011 8:34PM
Oct 8, 2011 10:09PM
This is most insane idea ive ever heard.What right minded person would even think of doing this.
Oct 8, 2011 11:21AM
Any expert will tell you never, ever buy a surplus car from a rental agency. People treat them like crap. So, of course GM wants in on this idiocy. Why? Because once whomever you rented your car to trashes it, you have to buy a new one, right? 
Oct 8, 2011 3:24PM
Actually I would love to borrow an RV for a weekend or a bit longer,  and not have to put 1000K up front .  I have never had a ticket or even been pulled over I can totally afford a 300 charge plus gas. But 1000k on a credit card not in the stars. Any takers? Or ideas?

Ok, yeah i would totally do this to the neighbors i know.. not to complete strangers. I mean it has onstar, need i say more? They can track it anyway. So theres really nothing to worry about.

Please help us to maintain a healthy and vibrant community by reporting any illegal or inappropriate behavior. If you believe a message violates theCode of Conductplease use this form to notify the moderators. They will investigate your report and take appropriate action. If necessary, they report all illegal activity to the proper authorities.
100 character limit
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?


Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.


Smart Spending brings you the best money-saving tips from MSN Money and the rest of the Web. Join the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.