ARA survey shows most independent rental companies expect to spend more in 2021

Mar. 07, 2021

After an unprecedented year of dealing with the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, equipment rental companies in 2021 are ready to start buying more equipment again, according to a new American Rental Association (ARA) member survey.
Of those responding to the survey, 71 percent plan to increase total new equipment purchasing compared to 2020 while 29 percent expect to spend less.
The survey is part of a new ARA 2021 Construction Equipment Purchasing Forecast now available for purchase and indicates equipment rental companies expect to have overall fleet growth in 2021 for categories such as aerial work platforms, concrete equipment and earthmoving equipment. 
“ARA developed this forecast in response to our manufacturer and supplier members. This type of information has been their No. 1 request, especially after the last year, and now we are able to deliver this kind of rental-specific forecast,” says Tom Doyle, ARA vice president, association program development.
The report includes survey results related to 29 different products with those responding expecting double-digit growth in fleet for 14 of the products, with only two product categories showing negative fleet growth.
Products included in the report are air compressors, articulated trucks, articulating booms less than 80 ft., articulating booms greater than 80 ft., backhoe loaders, compact track loaders, compaction equipment ride-on and trench rollers, compaction equipment walk-behind and handheld, concrete saws, concrete mixers, concrete trailers, excavators less than 20,000 lbs., excavators larger than 20,000 lbs., forklifts, generators, HVAC, lighting equipment, pumps, scissor lifts, skid-steer loaders, sweepers and brooms, telehandlers and rough-terrain forklifts, telescopic booms less than 80 ft., telescopic booms greater than 80 ft., trenchers ride-on and attachments, trenchers walk-behind, water trucks and wheel loaders.
The cost is $6,000 for nonmembers and $1,200 for ARA members and can be purchased by clicking here. In addition, subscribers to ARA Rentalytics complete or basic package qualify for a discount on this report and should contact for more information.
The forecast provides details, including the percentage of respondents with an item in their fleet, the percentage of current owners who plan to purchase new, the percentage of new purchases related to fleet, the percentage of 2021 purchases already ordered, the percentage of planned fleet disposal and the percentage of fleet growth.
“The large publicly traded equipment rental companies were not included in this survey because they report their expected capital expenditures in their quarterly financial press releases, so ARA concentrated on surveying independent rental companies to better understand the buying intentions of those companies,” Doyle said.

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