eRenting boom in France as economy declines

The renting out of personal possessions has taken off in France, with websites such as e-loue (which means e-hire), and Co-recyclage leading the way in private transactions.

As economies across Europe face ever-declining growth rates, unemployment levels have risen sharply and the average consumer’s spending power has taken a nosedive.

The sudden popularity of websites like e-loue and Dannon can be seen as part of a new found acceptance toward pre-owned goods by consumers affected by the economic downturn.

When French stock plummeted at the beginning of the month, the number of new and returning users to sites such as e-loue rose sharply, as did the number of people who were willing to hire out their goods, this is according to site founder, Alexandre Woog.

Examples of items up for rent include a Macbook Air for EU€60 per day, a Peugeot 206 and even a goat at an affordable EU€10 per day.

Such transactions benefit both parties, with the renter being able to make back their initial spend on a high-end purchase. With items such as the Macbook Air retailing at almost a thousand Euro, it could take under a month for the renter to see a return on their initial investment.

French eRenting sites are not limited to cash transactions either. Donnons (which translates to “Let’s give”), allows for users to give away items on the basis that the new owner come and pick it up. The founder of the site has said that over half a million items in a three-year period have been successfully reapportioned. Site owner, Olivier Nass says, “It’s been a lifesaver for a large number of people who don’t have enough money to buy tools or gadgets or clothing, leaving them the means to focus on essentials such as rent.”

The goal of these websites is to decrease the levels of consumer purchases and increase the capacity for recycling unwanted objects.



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