Doing my research for this article, a theme developed. While so much around us seems to be in a real state of disarray, the general tool market segment shares something unique in that nearly everyone I’ve spoken to is having either a good or great year. To borrow from nautical terms, we are experiencing intact stability.
One conversation with a good friend and peer talked to the speed at which things are changing, meaning that by the time this article comes out, much will have changed again. To be certain, we do need to keep an eye on things like production interruptions. This affects our ability to purchase and maintain the tools and equipment we rent and sell to our customers.
What I have realized though, in this recession just like in the most recent past recession, the general tool and equipment market was not impacted nearly as strongly as most other construction-related industries. Similar to the floating vessels with properly engineered intact stability, our market seems to have a built-in stable equilibrium. Even with all the turmoil in and around us and with our market moving to and fro, side to side or up and down, general tool and equipment rental maintains its balance and remains viable.
Our customers always will need to rent drain snakes, clear drainage ditches, trim back and prune trees, plant gardens and more. In our business, we are trying to laser focus on ways to make sure our equipment lasts.
Looking forward, if we allow ourselves to look past sourcing replacement parts and equipment, things look really promising. With the recent passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021, we very likely will see an even larger revenue projection increase in the construction equipment rental market. With that movement, general tool equipment also will be in even higher demand as the larger players pursue the larger contracts. Some in our market may even have the opportunity to participate directly in providing equipment that will be needed for infrastructure activity.
We are fortunate to be participating in the market we are in. We still will have our legal battles, local issues to deal with and worker shortages, but our market remains strong. At the end of the day, I feel that is the most important piece. The intact stability of our market means there always is opportunity around us. For that we can all be grateful.
Tim Allen is the owner of Allen Rental, Roseburg, Ore., and the American Rental Association (ARA) Equipment Rental Shared Interest Group co-chair.
Read what industry leaders are saying about recovery in their region.