Renting Out Merchandise – Form Download

clothing-rentalThere are definitely pro’s and con’s to renting out merchandise. Some vintage shops make a lot of money out renting out outfits for parties and events while others do not want anything to with it. I suppose how often you rent out product, or whether you do not do it all will really depend on the type of store you have.

If you have more of a costume shop, or a shop that caters more towards period pieces, you may want to get into the renting business. If you are more of a boutique, with one off pieces and styles then you may find that it is too much work to rent out outfits for individual customers. Day to day rentals may not be your thing, but you shouldn’t let that get in the way of renting out items to photographers or designers for free publicity.

Often when you have a vintage store you will get solicited by different photographers, stylists, and production crews who want to use your merchandise. They do not always have a budget to purchase the merchandise, as a matter of fact I would pretty much expect them not to. They do have a way of getting you free publicity by mentioning your store as a provider of the shoot. In most cases their models end up purchasing items when they are done. This means you get a sale, and get you product and store in a magazine, fashion show or movie.

Whether you are a vintage costume shop or a vintage boutique you should always have a rental policy in place to protect you and the renter just in-case something goes wrong. The following link is an example form that is a good template to work of off.

Product Lease Form

Things to consider when renting out clothing for an event:

  • List of items
  • Price of Items
  • Quantity of items
  • Deposit on Items
  • Terms of Rental

List of items
You should always have a list of what items are being rented out. For example 4 T-shirts, 3 Button-Downs, 2 Boots. Sometimes the list can get rather extensive. Having a good detailed breakdown is important.

Price of Items
You always want to have the retail price of the items. Often the person renting the items or the stylist will remove the tag for the shoot or show. You want to make sure that you have the accurate price of each item being rented.

Quantity of items
You want to know exactly how many items are leaving your store and being used for the production. Makes sure to mark down the quantity of each item that is being rented.

Deposit on Items
Makes sure to have the renter leave a deposit for the items. They may not be paying for the product, but you want to make sure that they bring it back. A good deposit amount is 10% of the retail price.

Terms of Rental
You also want to make sure that you have Terms to the Agreement. Some wording towards how long the renter has to return the goods, the condition the goods are to be in etc.

There are always more things to consider. For example some shops have a price limit on how much can be rented out. For example $1k to a photographer and $5k to an event. The choice is really up to you. I would recommend getting a Credit Card Number for a deposit, and for security just in case their is damage or your merchandise does not get returned for some reason.