Is anyone renting their machine out

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I did for awhile way back when. I decided not to any more. But this is just me. I didn't mind it at all, but you have to babysit your client. I always did with mine. I always found that nothing bad went wrong if I was around. If i wasn't, the s¥€t wound hit the fan. & that got smelly. They'd run over scissors, a pin, the side clip. You name it, it got run over. Time to retime the machine. More time spent fixing then quilting. It's your choice, choose it wisely. Zeke.

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I don't feel comfortable renting it out because in most cases it would be inexperienced quilters using it and too many things can go wrong.  Plus as long as someone else is using your machine it is not available for you to use. There is a place in town where you can rent time on a machine but you have to attend a two day class costing $130 and you have to buy a set of zippers before using the machines.

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Locally, there is an HQ rented for $15 per hour after a $150 orientation class. 


Pros of renting your machine--

$$$. If for whatever reason you can't use it, someone else will help pay for it and you'll be able to justify keeping it until you're ready to use it again.

You earn almost the same by the hour renting it as quilting with it, if you have a business.



Finding and training renters. Do you want your customers to quilt their own stuff? Is that wise? Do you want to train your potential competition? Will someone who's on the fence about buying a machine be swayed by using yours? Is that wise?

The anxiety of someone stitching who isn't familiar with it all. Having a required renter's class will ease some anxiety and make you both more comfortable.

Having to be in the room for instant help/rescue of the renter.


Some have been very successful renting machines, but usually they have more than one machine. That makes it a little industry! Coordinating, scheduling, and having renters in your studio may be daunting. It's all about what you want and what you can manage.


A friend has a retirement plan in place. She has a Gammill and a full-time demanding job. She's lucky to fit in one quilt a month but does great work. When she retires in a year she has plans to add a Millie with QP to do overalls and custom and rent the Gammill. She already has a list of renters ready when she is.

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I rented my machine out ONE time.  It was to an experienced long arm quilter.  I was there my time that day was taken up babysitting even though she was 'experienced' it was a machine she had not had any knowledge of.  I had to change the bobbins, re thread machine and advance the quilt for her.  After she was finished and I went to put a quilt on to quilt...I found out that she had done something to the machine and I ended up having to retime the machine, and go through everything to get it back to proper performance.  Even though she had been 'experienced' they do not treat your machine like it is one of their own, mentality of "I'm paying for using the machine and I don't care what happens to the machine as long as I get my quilt done" attitude.  

I will NEVER rent out my machine again.  Lesson learned  :angry:

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My theory is that it's possible if you are armed with the facts and go forward with an attitude that it will work. Only you know what will make you crazy.  :blink:

If you already have some interest, cultivate a few potential renters and work with them so you're comfortable and so are they. If you're concerned about the "trashers" who don't care about the machine, hover and remind them when they're getting out of hand. Then don't rent to them again. Another option is a $100 "damage deposit" that you can refund after they finish. That would be a reminder to use responsibly and treat the machine with respect. That will cover parts and your time if something goes wrong. You'll also need a signed waiver to cover renter injury or damage to their quilt. Check and see what the local renters use to protect themselves.

Wow--more negatives! But if you have no illusions and cover all the bases, your machine can still earn you money.

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I have been renting for a few years now and overall it’s a pain but profitable.


On the down side, you can give a beginners long arm class that lasts two hours or 20 hours and the results will be the same. Hand holding baby sitting and essentially doing everything but move the head for the renter. The reason is simple....lack of repitition and in alot of cases diminished mental capacity. It's a fact that the older we get the harder it is to push short term memory into long term.


On the up side…you can charge more per hour than you get for doing it yourself.  Yes charge more. When you charge more you weed out the bargain hunters looking for a deal and you don't undercut your self or other professionals. Remember you are the expert and they are paying for more than a machine rental. Think of it as another aspect of the service you already provide.



So, as others have said. Make a plan, execute it and don't sell your self short,

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I also think having people in your house and using your restroom would be a negative.  You'd have to ensure there were no medications in that restroom and there would be no access to the rest of your home.  It's sad that we have to think of these things however it's something we need to be careful about in todays world.

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