Learning how to start a golf cart rental business is not a difficult task. You’ve come to the right place if you want to mainstream your passion for golf into a home-based rental business. The best part about starting a golf cart rental business is that you don’t have to be available on a set schedule to run it because, aside from customer phone calls and golf cart deliveries and pickups, you don’t have to be available all of the time. Furthermore, the initial investment required to start a golf cart rental business is significantly low. This step-by-step guide will assist you in learning more about this business venture and determining whether it is the right step for you as an entrepreneur.
1. Familiarize yourself with Golf Cart Rental Industry
Since golf is always in demand, golf cart rental businesses provide vital services to a specific demographic. The golf cart rental businesses typically rent out a variety of golf carts. Golfers or other individuals, who do not want to spend a fortune on golf carts, rent the carts for short-term use. If someone only needs a golf cart for just a single day, this service completely makes sense. When a golf cart is rented, the rental company delivers it to the specified location and then returns it at the end of the rental period.
People don’t have to worry about purchasing a golf cart that they’ll only need temporarily. Golf cart rental businesses benefit from rental fees on their golf carts on a regular basis, allowing them to profit from their one-time cart purchase and possibly scale the business by purchasing more golf carts in the inevitable future.
Most golf cart rental businesses cater to residential, commercial, and industrial clients. Their typical target market consists of anyone with a significant interest in golfing, retirement communities, hauling feed around your farm, or simply riding around your neighborhood.
With such a multitude of uses, a golf cart rental business can be so beneficial to you if you target the right audience. A golf cart can truly make life sweet, and this business can cater well to anyone looking for a golf cart temporarily. Golf carts, new or used, are very affordable all around. Therefore, if you want to get into a rental business, starting a golf cart rental business is a great choice.
How much does it cost to buy a golf cart?
You can buy used golf carts for as low as $1200. However, if you want to start a golf cart rental business you should buy at least a couple of 4 seater golf carts which will cost you around $8000 each.
How much does it cost to start a golf cart rental business?
You could start a golf cart rental business at a basic level for around $18,000 (assuming you buy two new 4 seater golf carts). An extra $5000 could get you off to a great start. That being said, if you want to operate on a bigger scale and want to provide a variety of golf cart choices, you will also need to buy at least 10 golf carts to start with, which alone costs around $80,000. Therefore, it will cost you around $85,000(golf-cart plus marketing-related costs) to start a golf cart rental business on a big scale.
Keep in mind, if you want to go really cheap, you can either buy used golf carts or you could buy as you grow. If you don’t mind a little hard work, golf cart rental is one of the best businesses to start and scale.
Is golf cart rental business profitable?
A golf cart rental business is incredibly profitable if you do your market research properly. The success of your golf cart rental business will be determined by the number of clients you find. Buying a single 4 seater golf cart will cost you around $8000. And you can rent the same golf cart for around $500 per week to other businesses. That means you will only need to find a renter of your golf cart for just 16 weeks to make all your money back. After that everything is your profit. Furthermore, unlike car rental businesses, the maintenance cost for a golf cart is next to nothing.
Is golf cart rental business worth it?
Absolutely, starting a golf cart rental business is surely worth it. You can realistically buy just one golf cart and start your business journey from there. The best thing is you can even start a golf cart rental business by buying used golf carts. A single 4 seater golf cart can generate anywhere from $450 to $500 per week. Furthermore, this business is highly scalable and you can reinvest a portion of profit back into the business and scale it to a million-dollar rental business in no time.
2. Plan your Golf Cart Rental Business
The planning phase is critical for the success of any business. The same applies to the golf cart rental business too. Let’s get into some of the key steps you will need to understand while planning your golf cart rental business.
Choose a name for your golf cart rental business
Whether you want to start a golf cart rental business or a utility trailer rental business, you must choose a name that reflects your values and beliefs.
Keep in mind that the legal business name must comply with state naming rules in the states where you intend to operate your business; otherwise, a state may refuse to accept the documents filed to form or qualify the company.
Prior to deciding on a business name, it is also a good idea to talk about branding and how it will affect your company. The main question here is whether your legal business name will also be your brand name, or whether your brand name will be distinct from your legal name.
To be honest, it is preferable to use your legal business name as your brand name when first starting out. Why? You may inquire. The reason for this is that it simplifies things, is extremely simple, and is significantly less expensive.
However, if you operate an informal business (sole proprietorship, limited liability partnership, or general partnership), some states require you to use your surname as the legal name of your company.
Would you mind if your surname served as your legal business name? If the answer is YES, you can proceed to the next step. On the other hand, if your answer is NO, please stick with me.
If you do not want to use your surname as your legal business name, you must file a Fictitious Business Name Statement with the county in which your golf cart rental business’s head office is located.
Shopify’s Business Name Generator is super useful while brainstorming brandable names for your golf cart rental business. Once you decide the name of your golf cart rental business, you need to perform three final checks.
- First, check your State’s business name database to see if your desired business name is available.
- Second, do a domain name search to check if your business name is available as yourbusinessname.com. If it is available go ahead and register the domain before anyone else gets it. BlueHost offers domain names free of cost if your purchase 1-year hosting package with them. You can use the tool below to see if the domain name is available.
- And lastly, do a federal search on the US Trademark Electronic Search System and make sure nobody has already trademarked your name.
If the name for your golf cart rental business is available you can choose to trademark it, but honestly – don’t bother about it right now. It is a lengthy process and will cost you around $600. I would rather spend the money and time on the marketing channels.
Golf cart rental business plan
If you want to start a successful golf cart rental business, you will need a compelling business plan at a bare minimum. A well-written business plan should explain the business’s core objectives and how it plans to achieve them. One of the other purposes of a golf cart rental business plan is that it makes your business look professional and appealing to prospective lenders and investors.
All in all, a well-written actionable golf cart rental business plan is a crucial document for your golf cart rental business. Without it, you’d be running around like a headless chicken.
A compelling business plan has many sections, some of the must-includes are:
- Executive Summary
- Business Description
- Market Analysis
- Competitor Analysis
- Services to Offer
- Competitive Pricing Strategy
- Marketing Strategy
- Financial Projections
You can use business plan software like BizPlan and Enloop to compose a professional-looking business plan. However, don’t get lazy and pay someone 5 bucks to write a business plan for your golf cart rental business. You will need professional high-quality work.
3. Register your Golf Cart Rental Business
To operate your golf cart rental business as a legal entity, you must first register it. However, before you register the company, you must first understand and select a business structure for your golf cart rental business. You’ll want to make an informed decision because how you set up your golf cart rental business will affect your taxes and legal obligations.
Consider one of the most frequent business structures:
a. Sole Proprietorship
A single person or a married couple owns this type of unincorporated business.
Your company will not be required to register, and your taxes will be reported on your personal tax return.
b. General Partnership
An unincorporated business with multiple owners that operates similarly to a sole proprietorship in terms of registration and taxes.
c. Limited liability company (LLC)
A registered company that offers personal liability protection to all of its members in the event that your company gets sued. You can choose whether to be taxed as a partnership or a corporation.
Incfile offers one of the best services when it comes to forming an LLC. Their pricing starts from just $0 + filing fees. And these costs are often tax-deductible.
This is a type of corporation, with S-corporations and C-corporations being the most common. The taxes you pay will vary depending on the type of corporation you form.
4. Register for Taxes and Obtain an EIN
As a personally liable business owner, you must always follow the law. That is, you must adhere to all tax, licensing, and labor regulations. Putting forth the effort to learn about any legal regulations that may apply to your golf cart rental business could save you a lot of time, money, and stress in the long run. The business entity you choose, as well as other aspects of your golf cart rental business, will determine what business taxes you must pay and how you must file. It’s a good idea to contact a tax professional right away to ensure you’re on the right track.
If your golf cart rental business employs other individuals, you’ll need an employer identification number. This is also known as an EIN or a tax ID number for a business. You can obtain your EIN from the IRS online for free and use it when filing taxes for your golf cart rental business. It is also required if you want to open a business bank account, get a business credit card, or apply for a business loan. Even if you do not intend to hire employees, obtaining an EIN has numerous advantages.
5. Get Funding for your Golf Cart Rental Business
Even if you have the best golf cart rental business service that can win the hearts of golfers from miles away, your business will fail if you don’t have enough money. It may sound absurd, but in order to make money, you must first have money. There is no getting around the fact that purchasing a golf cart is costly. If it weren’t so expensive, everyone would buy one, and the scope of the golf cart rental business would not exist. Not to mention paying high rent, marketing your service, and hiring employees with salaries and benefits.
Small businesses like golf cart rental businesses can take advantage of numerous incentives, subsidies, loans, and equity investments. However, regardless of the funding source you choose, you will need to have (at a minimum) the following documents:
- A Golf Cart Rental Business Plan
- Projected Financial Statements
- Tax returns of both the business owner and the business itself (when available)
- An explanatory document on how the money will be used
- A description of services offered by your golf cart rental business
After you’ve done the number crunching and figured out how much money you’ll need for your golf cart rental business, you may look into the following choices.
- Obtain funds through SBA-backed lenders (Wells Fargo, US Bank, MidFirst Bank, etc.)
- Get funding through Banks
- Obtain funds through P2P lenders (Prosper, Peerform, Lending Club, Funding Circle)
6. Promote your Golf Cart Rental Business
Most business owners, for some reason, do not include marketing in their business strategy. This is likely one of the most serious mistakes you can make, and you should avoid it at all costs. For a service-oriented business like a golf cart rental business, marketing, and advertising make or break your business. Furthermore, if you do not have a large sum of money to invest right away, you must understand what it takes to successfully promote a golf cart rental business. You’ll also need a solid marketing strategy and communication strategies in place.
Let’s go over some of the traditional and modern marketing strategies you can use to promote your golf cart rental business.
Build a website
I can’t stress this point enough. You will NEED a website in order to operate your golf cart rental business. There is no way around it. The world has become digital and you must create a digital presence for your golf cart rental business.
Make sure to utilize the power of the internet. Additionally, you must customize your golf cart rental website and make it align with your brand. You can put pictures of your golf carts plus testimonials and make an excellent impression on your visitors. After all, actions speak louder than words.
Don’t forget to include your mission statement on your golf cart rental website. Additionally, let your customers know why they should rent from you. Having a website creates a digital presence for your golf cart rental business so your potential customers can search and find you on the web.
You can read my guide on how to make a basic website for your small business if you want to do it yourself. However, if you want someone else to work on the technicalities while you focus on acquiring more customers for your golf cart rental business, we are ready to help you. Our $499 digital package comes with a professionally designed website, custom email, 24/7 support and maintenance, SEO, and digital marketing services. You wouldn’t want to miss the deal. Contact us today before the deal runs out.
Establish social media accounts
Create a digital presence for your golf cart rental business by establishing social media accounts. You must be strategic in this regard, as you do not want to waste your time appearing on all social networks, particularly those that do not align well with your target audience.
You want your golf cart rental business to be on, depending on the size of your operation:
Nowadays, almost everyone uses social media not only to communicate with friends and family but also to shop for goods and services. Getting your golf cart rental business in front of your target audience can result in more leads and sales. Moreover, it can also be used to keep current customers informed and to attract new customers.
Run Paid Ads
Paid Ads have the ability to target prospective customers within a specific demographic and region, making them an excellent tool for your golf cart rental business. Consider running paid ads through services like Facebook Ads, Yelp, or Google AdWords. Furthermore, the best thing about paid advertisements is that they produce results quickly, allowing you to scale your golf cart rental business both vertically and horizontally.
If you need any professional help to run paid ads for your golf cart rental business, please contact us. We will be more than happy to provide you with help and resources for absolutely free.