New automotive-related startups emerge every day so reporting on all of them would seem like a fool’s errand. That being said, this new one, Garage Time, in particular actually does seem noteworthy. Garage Time is a unique business that allows anyone to rent out unused garage space for anyone who needs to store tools or work on their cars for a bit. The founder, Andrew Koretz refers to it as “AirBnB for cars.”
The Inception of Garage Time
Andrew contacted Jalopnik to share his beginnings and how exactly Garage Time will work. According to him, this began back when he was working on his 2002 Porsche 996 in one of his friends’ garages in Chicago. He had just traded his Toyota 4Runner SR5 for the sports car and was keen to keep it well maintained. You see, Andrew lived in the city, but his apartment’s parking spaces made it all but impossible to perform day to day DIY maintenance, let alone during the infamous Chicago winters. So he called in favors with friends who had closed garages, and told Jalopnik that he’d actually pay them just out of courtesy. That whole deal is what clicked for Andrew to come up with the initial ideas for “Garage Time.”
The service just opened up in January 2018, their online marketplace allows users to rent out their garages for whatever rate they are comfortable with allowing strangers to do auto work there. Conversely, users can book time in said garages. Cars and motorcycles are welcome. The way Garage Time profits is by taking 10% of what the renter pays the owner.
Humble Beginnings for Garage Time
About a month since their launch, Garage Time doesn’t have very many listings yet. Andre reported to Jalopnik that they’ve only had a few dozen transactions. The key for them now is getting the word out. After all, he plans on expanding from Denver towards cities like San Francisco, Chicago and New York City by the end of 2018.
Before he expands this concept, there are still a few kinks to iron out. For one thing they need to come up with a way to manage liability. Vehicles are heavy machinery and even DIY maintenance comes with a certain accepted amount of risk. On Garage Time’s site, Andrew assures users that they are currently in negotiations with insurance carriers to establish policies similar to the ones AirBnB employs. The goal is for Garage Time to be able to pay any accidental damages to garage owners when a renter works on their cars.
How to Use Garage Time
The website interface is clean and easy to navigate. There aren’t a lot of options from which to choose from just yet, but that will change with time. A typical garage owner lists a two-car garage at a rate in the ballpark of $20-$35 per hour. On the sidebar, you’ll see a map where the location of the listing you are currently checking is marked. You’ll also see photos of the garages, a short description as well as any rules for working there. If the garage provides their own tools, you’ll see those listed as well.
Does Garage Time Have a Future?
There’s a novelty factor as well as an “I can’t believe no one thought of that before” quality to Garage time. However the startup is still very early in their development. Perhaps new users feel uncomfortable with the lack of an insurance policy as well as website security to reduce false reviews from burner accounts.
As of now, the Garage Time marketplace is exclusive to the US out of Denver. As Chicago natives here at Endurance, we can’t help but find this deal really appealing, especially if you’ve ever lived in the city. It would be so nice to be able to perform quick fixes to our cars without fearing frostbite or heat stroke. So we’ll definitely keep an eye on this site.