What is Lend to Own℠ at GeerGarage?

Fancy some free outdoor adventure equipment? What about free equipment that makes you extra cash? No, it’s not too good to be true, it’s the GeerGarage Lend to Own℠ program (LTO), currently open for applications in Washington state.

Apply to Lend to Own today!

Fancy some free outdoor adventure equipment? What about free equipment that makes you extra cash? No, it’s not too good to be true, it’s the GeerGarage Lend to Own℠ program (LTO), currently open for applications in Washington state.

Yes, you read that right. You can become the happy owner of new outdoor equipment, just by sharing LTO gear with your local community. This isn’t some Insta-scam, and you don’t have to pay anything upfront, have a squillion followers or be a world-class Olympic athlete to be accepted. In fact, you can even earn money from the equipment we give you!

If accepted, all you have to do is take good care of the equipment we give you and lend it on the GeerGarage platform. Simple. You own it, so of course you’re welcome to use it for your adventures anytime! But with LTO, sharing and caring really does “pay off”…

How does it work?

As soon as you receive the gear, it’s yours to use and to lend through GeerGarage. Each time you lend a piece of equipment, your LTO account will be credited with a percentage of the fee the renter pays. It’s 20% until we recoup from your account our “program fee” fee for giving you the gear, which is 150% of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price.

Once our program fee is recouped, your ownership of the gear is fully “vested” and going forward you will earn 60% of the rental fee (the same percentage paid to owners of non-LTO gear). And that, my friend, is cash you get to keep.

Let’s say, we give you a tent with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $250, which carries a program fee of $375.

Your first rental request comes. Someone wants to rent the tent from you and they pay GeerGarage $150 for a week. You meet them, perhaps swap some adventure stories, and lend them the tent. 20% of $150 is $30. So you take home $30 in cash earnings from the rental. The remaining $120 in earnings gets deducted from your $375 program fee. This means you now have $255 left until your ownership of the tent is fully vested.

What is “vesting” and why do you want to do it?

Okay, so you’ve rented this tent all summer; you’ve kept it well-maintained and clean, and people love the adventures your gear has facilitated, how helpful you are and how convenient it is to rent from you.

Come autumn, you’ve rented the tent so many times that your ownership is fully vested. From here on out, when someone rents the tent for $150, you get 60% – so lending the tent earns you $90, not $30. As it’s already vested, that is fresh cash that goes into your pocket, not towards paying off the program fee.

Why would GeerGarage give away equipment & money?

At GeerGarage, we know that sharing is saving – saving money, saving the environment and ultimately saving the planet. It’s a vision we’ve been working to make real since 2020.

In these early days though, our community is still growing. We need to ensure there is enough equipment available for renters to get what they need, whenever adventure calls. Eventually, we are confident enough “lender-originated” gear will be in the market. Until then, we’re helping to get more outdoor gear out into the community, in an accessible way.

We encourage those who are part of LTO also to list any of their personal non-LTO gear – this is more convenient for our renters too. Perhaps when they borrow that tent we gave you, you can also rent them a great sleeping pad you already have! For that sleeping pad rental, you will earn 60% of the renter’s fee.

Lend to own backpacking

How to increase your chances of being accepted for Lend to Own℠

Yes it’s free, but this isn’t a case of take and take off. If that’s what you’re looking for, second-hand marketplaces might be a better bet!

As part of LTO, you must commit to lend and take good care of the gear we give you. You “pay us back” by renting it out on the GeerGarage platform. You will own your LTO gear from the outset, but we’ll be giving it to you on the condition that you will use it responsibly for the benefit of other GeerGaragers – not just yourself – and you must continue to do so at least until the item is fully vested, even if you don’t continue renting it once it is fully vested (though we strongly discourage this, and are unlikely to accept you if that is your intention!).

We like to see:

  • Members of existing nonprofit/outdoor community groups

  • Highly engaged, or knowledgeable outdoorspeople, who are willing to share their expertise with others

  • Individuals who connect with our mission; to prioritize the planet, and are not just out to get free loot.

  • People who might not be able to get equipment through other means, and who have the time, space and desire to be able to rent on a regular basis.

  • Enthusiasts who want to be Ambassadors for GeerGarage, and actively promote our mission and the gear they have to lend.

This list isn’t exhaustive, but it should give you an idea of what we’re looking for from LTO applications.

Get Free Adventure Gear by Sharing

100% free, owned by you from the moment you receive it!

We do this because we know firsthand that not everyone has $1000s of spare dollars to pay for shiny new outdoor equipment. Many of the GeerGarage team got their first taste of the outdoors from stuff they borrowed from friends. But what if your friends don’t have gear to lend you?

Unfortunately (and understandably), for many marginalized communities, outdoor equipment is not an “essential” item or easily affordable. And financing purchases or paying in installments are unattractive options that carry their own risks. We’ve created an alternative. Instead of credit checks, we do community checks. Your bank balance is not the measure of how sharing or caring of an outdoorsperson you are.

Does Lend to Own℠ resonate with you?

Apply today!