You’re probably renting more of your life than you realise 

You’re probably renting more of your life than you realise 

by Jonathan Hurvitz. Request the ordinary human being on the street how much they hire on a working day-to-day basis and they’ll almost certainly notify you, “not much”. They could possibly pay out hire for the dwelling or condominium they reside in, or the moment in a though rent a automobile while on holiday break. A couple several years in the past, they may well have routinely rented videos or video games, but that is about it, correct? Wrong.

We rent far much more of our life than we realise – with everything from the entertainment we consume to the electronics we rely on, and even the computer software we use for work is successfully currently being rented to some degree or other. All those are just a several illustrations of the dozens of factors we rely on day by day and which we hire. And if international tendencies are anything to go by, the role renting performs in our life will only preserve escalating.

Rentals by an additional name 

The motive we do not typically believe of quite a few of these points as leasing is that we normally refer to them as subscriptions. But in many respects, subscriptions are a form of renting. Feel about it. If you use a high quality music membership provider like Spotify or YouTube Songs, you are correctly leasing entry to their songs and podcast library. The exact same is true for online video-streaming expert services this kind of as Netflix or Disney Additionally. And when you use subscription-centered parts of application such as Microsoft’s Place of work 365 or the compensated variation of Google Workspace, you are effectively renting access to the program.

But it is not just subscription solutions that are driving new sorts of rental. It is also turn into so straightforward to make frequent, a single-off rentals that we do not actually think of them as rentals. Right after all, what is Airbnb if not the getaway rental taken to its sensible extreme? And when you Uber somewhere, are you not renting a driver (and their car) for a set length?

The phenomenon whereby rentals have grow to be so common has been ascribed to people remaining “willing to pay back excellent income for the privilege of not obtaining to personal something”. And that is obviously a powerful motivator for several of the illustrations I have outlined above. Imagine how quite a few CDs you’d have to very own to equal the selection of songs in your Spotify library? Or how substantially clutter you’d have to deal with if you had to physically acquire all the software program you use?

True-earth renting 

The privilege of not owning anything is more and more locating its way into the actual world way too. Of program, we have constantly been able to hire factors like clothing (think match rentals for Matric dances or weddings) and South Africans have been able to hire furniture and appliances for decades. The variance now is that it’s ever more turning into much less and fewer extraordinary. Even Apple desires you to be ready to hire your Iphone by paying a membership rate – and what is a cell phone agreement, if not a rental?

Analysis introduced earlier this calendar year demonstrates that the world-wide apparel rental marketplace is set to be worth US$1.96 billion by 2023, up from US$1.18 billion in 2018. The international furniture rental industry, in the meantime, is expected to achieve US$139.05 billion by 2029, up from US$73.19 billion in 2022. This change in momentum is comprehensible much too. Millennials and Gen Zs, who now make up extra than 50 % of the world’s workforce, are considerably less interested in accumulating “things” and more on expending their time, electricity and sources on pursuits that align with their values.

Which is even much more pertinent when you think about the advancement in ideas like electronic nomadism. If you’re travelling the earth and working remotely, then the very last detail you want is to be weighed down by a bunch of possessions.

The finish of possession? 

So, does this suggest that the era of ownership is coming to an conclude? That’s not likely. There will generally be the motivation to have issues that are ours and that we have. Rather, the increase of rentals across numerous sectors reveals the hunger for a a lot more dynamic, versatile and consumer-initially product. Shops want to realize this and embrace the mental change about our being familiar with of ownership vs . obtain. It moreover calls for stores to fully grasp the pattern and to want to reply to purchaser preferences as the 1st port of get in touch with for manufacturers.

The point that we have presently embraced renting so a lot in our daily life as people, without having essentially even remaining knowledgeable of it, shows how much of a change there is been. The significant matter now is for suppliers to embrace that change and give buyers the adaptability they so evidently want.


Main picture credit rating:



 Jonathan Hurvitz is the Team CEO of online retailer Teljoy and a registered Chartered Accountant in South Africa.




– Obtain the Retailing Africa newsletter every Wednesday • Subscribe listed here.

Leave a Reply