If you have a bunch of power tools, electronic equipment or camping gear collecting dust in your house, why not make some money by hiring it out for the weekend? That's the idea behind Open Shed, a crowdsourced rental site that lets you loan bric-a-brac to neighbours for cash.
Tools picture from Shutterstock
The concept behind Open Shed is similar to the peer-to-peer accommodation platform AirBnB — but instead of houses and apartments, the site concentrates on equipment hire. The process is pretty straightforward: the hirer simply lists the items they're willing to loan along with the price. It's then just a matter of waiting for interested parties to make a connection.
All rental bookings require funds to be authorised through PayPal and are transferred during the face-to-face pickup. The site also has a donate-to-charity feature via a partnership with OzHarvest which allows users to donate a percentage of their rental fee to charity. Hirees can search for available items in a distance radius of their choosing (the standard is 20km).
If you're looking to make a bit of money on the side, it's hard to look past this model. Unlike most peer-to-peer retail sites such as eBay, Open Shed allows you to "sell" your equipment over and over again as the buyer is required to return it to you on the agreed date. According to the website, it also encourages people to meet their neighbours, but who would want to do that?