Renting a dumpster is a convenient and affordable way to get rid of large amounts of junk, but why pay more than you have to?
If you're a first-time renter (or even if you're not), we can help ensure you get the best price possible when renting a roll-off container. Read on to learn about seven simple tips to save on your dumpster rental.
1. Rent local, and avoid large haulers and brokers.
It may seem like the easiest solution—calling the same company who picks up your weekly trash to rent a dumpster—but that’s not always the best idea.
Generally speaking, the bigger well-known companies, like Waste Management and Republic Services, are almost always more expensive than local companies...and their customer service isn't usually as good either.
Another culprit for increasing your total cost is by renting from a broker, or a middleman. Oftentimes, these companies pose as local, when in fact, they hire out the work to an actual local contractor.
Here's how dumpster brokers operate:
- The broker gets a call or a website request for a dumpster. (Beware of 800 numbers—these are almost always a dead giveaway for brokers.)
- The broker then calls around to legitimate local contractors to see how much they charge to rent.
- If they like the price, the broker pays the local company, tells them to drop it off at your place, and then increases your costs by 10% on average. Some people have even reported paying $200 more by renting from a broker than they would have if they'd rented directly from the local company.
Another thing to look out for: If you’re like most people, you use Google to find pretty much everything, and dumpster rental is no different. The search results page often display ads at the top -- They’re clearly labeled with a small ‘Ad’ symbol.
Don’t necessarily choose these advertised companies. They’re not necessarily bad companies by any means, but they are paying a decent amount of money to be placed at the top of a search results page. Typically, this means they’re overhead costs are higher than most local rental providers, or they are a dumpster broker. Either way, these additional expenses usually lead to steeper rental costs in the end. Be wary of this.
More helpful links:
- Hiring the Right Dumpster Service: Everything You Need to Know
- Waste Management Dumpster Rental Prices Compared to Locally Owned Haulers
- Bagster vs. Dumpster: Buy a Dumpster Bag or Rent a Small Dumpster
2. Price shop to avoid overpaying.
Spending a few extra minutes to shop around could save you upwards of $100 in some cases.
At Hometown, we advise getting a quote from a minimum of 2 - 3 companies to make sure you don’t overpay. On the same note, each rental agreement includes a number of different factors you should consider, too.
Take the following situation for example:
Company A tells you that they'll rent you a 10 yard dumpster for $150 with an included weight of one ton. Then you call Company B, and they tell you they'll rent you a 10 yarder for $200 with an included weight of two tons.
You may be eager to jump at the price tag that's $50 cheaper, but paying a little extra for double the weight is the best deal. Most people end up throwing away a lot more junk than they anticipated when the dumpster is just sitting there, so it's best to play it safe and go with the option with the greater weight allowance.
Learn more about dumpster pricing:
3. Return the dumpster sooner for a lower rate.
Most of the time, companies don’t offer discounts for short-term rentals. However, if it’s the busy season and container stocks are running low, then a company would likely be willing to offer you a discount to get the dumpster back sooner than later.
If you plan on needing the dumpster for just a day or two, ask the dumpster provider if they'd be willing to offer a lowered rate for a short-term rental.
4. Sharing the costs with a neighbor makes a lot of 'cents'
Share one dumpster, or team up with a neighbor or two and rent multiple.
If your neighbor has some stuff they’d be interested in getting rid of too, then consider going in on a dumpster with them.
Let them know you’re planning on renting a dumpster, and see if they’d be interested in splitting the cost. If they have just one or two items, like a couple pieces of furniture, they could pay $50 of your $250 rental; or if they've got a little bit more to get rid of, you could split it down the middle and pay $125 each. Either way, you save on costs and your neighbor benefits as well!
Similarly, some companies are willing to give you a discount for renting more than one bin at a time. So if you and a couple of neighbors have been meaning to do some serious clean-up, make a plan to rent together, and you could save some serious change.
5. Clean load your dumpster if you can.
A key factor in dumpster rental pricing is the type of debris going into the dumpster.
If you’re renting a dumpster for a roofing project and you only plan on disposing of asphalt shingles, chances are the dumpster company will offer a more reasonable price than they would for mixed material. The same usually goes for yard waste and concrete.
6. Donate (or sell) first. Dump it secondly.
Before renting a dumpster, consider having a yard sale or donating to your local charities, especially any bulky items, like furniture or rugs, you may have. That will eliminate weight that would otherwise be going into your dumpster.
A few other great places to consider selling, trading, or donating your gently used goods:
7. Go online to keep up-to-date on existing deals and promotions.
Most companies nowadays have a social media or similar company profile somewhere—the most common of which being Facebook or Angie's List—and many companies use their online presence to post any special discounts or current promotions.
Some common examples include getting an extra 10% discount for being a senior citizen or veteran, or saving 5% off your first rental. Some companies offer a number of various discounts, but you won't know until you check! Don't be afraid to ask them directly when receiving a quote, too.