I have recently invested a little money into some equipment for my business workstation at home. As I type this blog post I am walking on my new homemade walking treadmill desk! Homemade because it’s not a walking treadmill desk that’s in one piece, but instead I created my own version with an under desk walking treadmill and a rising laptop stand on my desk. I had been thinking of investing in a walking treadmill quite a long time ago after reading this article, but then sort of forgot about it. Oh, and I was put off because they are really expensive, like £1000+ expensive for a good model!
My memory was jogged recently and I remembered all about them when I came across a website that hires out business and fitness equipment. It was possible to hire a treadmill desk from just £22 per week. This seemed like a great way to trial a walking treadmill desk without committing to the huge upfront cost of purchasing one. I was really tempted and seriously considering it, but sadly lack the space for a one-piece treadmill desk and my usual desk which I would still need in my office. Luckily I was able to work a solution and found an under desk treadmill for £200 and a simple on desk laptop rising stand for only £13 which will do for now.
It did make me think though – I wonder what else I could hire out for either business or pleasure? I do quite like to own things when I can, but sometimes that comes at a cost. For example, we currently have two cars in our household and we’ll have spent in excess of £3000 maintaining them this year with car repair bills, breakdowns and services. Perhaps it would be more beneficial to lease cars and just take them back when they break down! I’m not entirely sure it works like that, but that would be brilliant to never have to worry about a broken car again.
As someone who is self-employed and interested in small businesses, I can see how it makes so much sense to hire equipment if you are a start-up or small business. No matter what trade you are in, you’re going to need some business equipment even if it’s only a laptop and printer! Your small business might need a dishwasher and refrigerator for the staff room too. There’s always some sort of equipment you’ll need whether you work from home or have your own business premises. Before hitting the purchase button on all this equipment, you should check out my reasons of why hiring commercial equipment from a company such as JLA might be a better option:
It’s more affordable upfront
If you need a very expensive piece of equipment, lots of equipment at once, or you’re simply a start-up with limited funds, then it can be more affordable upfront to hire what you need with an affordable weekly or monthly payment. This saves you having to borrow funds to buy equipment outright or having to spend your precious cash.
It’s easier to budget
You’ll have regular payments over a fixed time period which can make managing your accounts and cash flow easier as you’ll know exactly how much to budget for. If you’re not leasing then you’ll need some sort of emergency business fund to cover breakages and new equipment purchases as and when you need them.
You can get the latest model
Well not always, but if you are after something more upmarket or the latest model of something that you really can’t afford to buy, then you may be able to get it by renting it.
Inclusive breakdown cover
If you are hiring equipment then make sure it comes with breakdown cover. This is the main benefit of hiring something as you are able to call the company to send an engineer if something stops working. This will save having a separate breakdown cover or insurance policy if you bought it outright. It should all be included.
Or technical support
If you’re hiring IT equipment then you may get tech support to keep your business running smoothly.
No repair bills or call out charges
As you are paying monthly for leasing the item and for breakdown cover included, you won’t be lumbered with any costly repair bills or call out charges – it’s all part of the service.
If it breaks, it will be replaced
If it is totally broken and beyond repair then the leasing company will take away the defective item and install a replacement. You’ll not be without your equipment or having to fork out for a brand new one.
You’ll get upgrades
Some business equipment such as computers and printers will outdate very quickly. It could be more cost effective to lease these and then upgrade to the latest version after a couple of years instead of constantly buying brand new at the highest price.
It could be cheaper than buying
Usually it might be cheaper to buy an item outright, rather than pay monthly and never own it, but it all depends on how often it breaks or needs replacing. If something has heavy use and is regularly repaired then leasing could be more cost-effective. Also, if you only need to hire something in the short term for a time limited project then it can be much cheaper to hire the item short term than buy, for example hiring a digger for a landscaping project.
If you’re not sure that a piece of equipment will benefit your business, then hiring it is a great way to see without any large upfront investments. If you hire something and find you don’t use it, you can just return it at the end of the leasing period.
Whilst I do love to own personal and business equipment, I can totally appreciate the value in leasing equipment. If my business, or my husband’s, should ever expand then I think leasing certain things will be really beneficial from a financial point of view as well as the ease of being able to repair things.
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Great blog posts if you’re a parent who works from home:
How to deal with overwhelm as a work at home parent
How to survive the half term when you work from home
5 tips to stay healthy if you work from home
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5 ways to manage your time effectively when working from home
Managing life as a full time working parent