My experience with GetAround

A few friends have asked me how my experience has been with GetAround... so I thought I'd write about it.

GetAround: is it worth it?

The short answer is, as most things in life, it depends. We (my wife and I) decided to buy a car and put it on GetAround as we were active users in Avis when we lived in SoMa. Now that we live in Pacific Heights, it would take a considerable amount of time and money (Lyft/Uber) to go to and from Avis. So, why not buy a car, treat it like a rental with no emotional attachment, rent it out to people and use it when we need! Great idea? Right? No. Not perfect.

A little about our fleet

LM1

We currently own 2 cars on GetAround. Our first is a 2016 Hyundai Sonata SE. We bought it for ~$10k from Hertz Car Sales with just under 75k miles on it (this is the limit to which GetAround will have to do an inspection on your car).

LM1

This car quickly started to pay for itself. Here are some details:

  • Revenue: about $500-$700/month
  • Parking cost: ~$130/year for parking sticker. We live close to a park with plenty of street parking
  • Insurance: ~$80/month. GetAround insures during trips
  • Cleaning and maintenance: ~$0/month. We didn't do a good job here 🙈
  • Financing: $0/month. We bought it cash

DK1

We were so pleasantly surprised by the first car and couldn't even use it ourselves from how often it was being used, we thought why not buy another one! We were also so impressed with Hyundan Sonatas that we made it our target for the second. This is a 2015 Hyundai Sonata Eco, bought for $12k at around 40k miles.

DK1

This car ramped up slowly because it was Eco and the previous was SE, a lower trim. Regardless, the math:

  • Revenue: about $500-$700/month
  • Parking cost: ~$130/year for parking sticker. We live close to a park with plenty of street parking
  • Insurance: ~$80/month. GetAround insures during trips
  • Cleaning and maintenance: ~$0/month. We didn't do a good job here 🙈
  • Financing: ~$230/month. We bought it cash

The goods and bads

Well, the goods are pretty good. You have a car that is availabile when you need it and other folks are renting it, paying for your car. It's great capitalism! And best of all, the money is great! End of 2019, we are doing $1700/month 🔥

Well, not so great. While it sounds great, it's a high-touch investment. We often find ourselves having to fill gas after renters, clean up after renters, missing charging cables, parking tickets and more. As an investment, I think it's okay but not great. The convenience of having cars around when we need them is definitely a luxury and we have been so lucky with how things turned out. I cannot see myself having a fleet of 10+ cars where the moeny starts to come in nicely but with the added headache.

Find your sweet spot

If you'd like to be a GetAround owner, here are our recommendations:

  • Try to get street parking as much as possible
  • Renters are price sensitive. When we got the second car, it was ~$0.75/hr more. On the weekend, it's about $1.25-$1.50. We saw a difference in rentals between the two
  • Buy a car you have no emotional attachment to. Your Tesla Model 3 will get used up and you will be sad
  • Sedans are great. Especially if you can get a large mid-size or full-size. SUVs cost $$$ for both owners and renters
  • Have fun! It's an experience. We are still owners and using it as an experiment