Ewald Kubota, an 8-store dealership based in Seguin, Texas, recently added a rental-only location. The dealership earned the 2017 Rural Lifestyle Dealer Dealership of the Year award for multi-store dealerships. 

Unlike the rest of Ewald’s stores selling homeowner and small ag equipment, the rental store only offers construction equipment, such as Kubota skid loaders and mini excavators, plus other equipment such as scissor lifts, forklifts and light towers.

“Although we’ve been offering rental equipment out of our existing stores, we never really put a big focus on it,” John Ewald, dealership owner, says. “The standalone rental store helps us give it more focus and diversify, so we’re not quite as dependent on the weather.”

Rainfall in southern Texas can be unreliable. In 2017, from March through August, the San Antonio area received less than an inch of rain per month for the entire summer selling season, which isn’t unusual, Ewald says.

“And that, regardless of selling construction equipment and utility vehicles, still puts a big strain on your business,” he says. “From September 2007 to September 2009, we had a total of 24 inches of rain in 24 months. It was just terribly dry. We have to be able to adapt quickly because we never know when the turn with the weather is going to happen.”

He goes on to say, “We have to adapt and adjust hours and days — and sometimes we send people home. But then we had Hurricane Harvey come up and dump a lot of rain on us. Now we’re busy again and we’re all hands on deck and working long hours again. It’s just unpredictable.”

Read more about Ewald Kubota.