There is a logic behind equipment hirefor both sides of a transaction. The person owning the equipment charges a fee that will cover the cost of capital required to buy, maintain and insure it as well as yielding a profit over a specific time period. He is in a business that might provide quite a large capital outlay but his return on that outlay can be quite accurately gauged provided that he owns equipment for which there is a sustained need.
For the person hiring equipment there is also a clear logic. He may have a short term need for some specific equipment and it will not be worth his while to pay the large capital amount for something that will be useful for a day or month and then stand idle for the rest of the year or even longer. It does not take long to calculate the relative merits of buying or hiring in a particular situation.
Perhaps the most dramatic example of the business model is the car hire market. This has become a very large international industry with major players investing in fleets of cars and attractive receptionists dressed in natty uniforms. A person arriving at an airport in some quite remote part of the world may be surprised to find several international companies all vying for business. Despite the presence of taxis, shuttle coaches and railways he might still feel the need to hire a car and drive himself to his own destination.
Though car hire may be the most common form of equipment hire there are many other types of the business that perform important roles in any healthy economy. They range from project engineers engaged in large road building operations to young socialite mothers wanting to outdo their friends with a child's birthday party.
Heavy engineering projects are awarded by tender and if the process is honest expenses will be carefully calculated. At this initial stage the expense of equipment is crucial. It many instances it can be more reliable to use hiring expenses rather than the massive costs of buying new and very expensive machinery. Hired vehicles are often in evidence on road building and large building sites.
Farmers may find that the purchase of a tractor is onerous but worthwhile since it can be used for a diversity of tasks around the yard. However, when it comes to seasonal tasks such as harvesting a crop that might never be planted again they will welcome the opportunity to rent a harvester. It may prove expensive, but it could obviate yet another request to a beady eyed electronic bank manager for an overdraft.
Simple rural people often celebrate events such as weddings and funerals but may lack sufficient facilities. In these cases a large tent might suddenly arise amongst humble hut. Inside there may be trestle tables, plastic chairs an electricity generator and even elaborate table settings may be hired from firms that specialize on parties.
A jumping castle can be as important to the very young as a large crane is to a road engineer. Firms cater to many different needs and in social events attended by families it can be extremely convenient to have toddlers occupied, screaming in delight as adults get on with their own affairs. A jumping castle is often the solution to this problem and as children bound about on it it might seem that equipment hire to heavy engineering projects might suffer less wear and tear than jumping castles.