How to Avoid Getting Ripped Off: Lessons from Real-Life Examples

Waste hauling companies collusion

As with any product or service, it’s in the customer’s best interest to stay vigilant when it comes to pricing. A recent example of price fixing between two of the largest waste haulers in the Southern Tier area of New York state remind us that waste hauling can be a dirty business.

Competing waste haulers collude to inflate prices

Dumpster price increaseThe owners of Taylor Garbage Service and Bert Adams’ Disposal pleaded guilty to charges related to working together to illegally divide up their territories and inflate prices for their respective customers. Taylor Garbage and Bert Adams’ Disposal will pay fines of $500,000 and $850,000 respectively. The civil suit also fined ownership of each company.

These events took place between 2014 and 2016, according to the investigation. Text messages between the two companies showed evidence of the collusion.

Both companies are working to get past the incident. Each has a long history of providing waste collection services in the area. The companies have made changes to ensure compliance with local trade and fair business practices.

How to know if you’re getting a fair price?

The lesson of this story is to check with three or more waste haulers before signing up for waste collection service, renting a dumpster or hiring a junk removal company. Do your research to get the best dumpster priceBe an informed customer by researching your local market.

That’s not to say that situations similar to the one above are the customer’s fault for not properly vetting the company and its pricing. The fault in this example lies squarely on the shoulders of the waste haulers involved.

To keep situations like this from happening in your town, it’s important to recognize the red flags. Here are some tips to ensure you’re getting a fair price for waste hauling services:

  • Price shop. If there are only 1 - 2 haulers in your immediate area, expand your search to a wider radius to get a better picture of going rates for waste hauling services.
  • Hidden fees. Get the out-the-door price with all fees and charges included. Ask about other potential fees too, such as overages, late fees, etc.
  • Ask around. Talk to neighbors, family or friends in the area to see what they pay or have paid recently for similar services. A big discrepancy between their cost and your quoted price is a big red flag.
  • Due diligence. Read online reviews about the company, including reviews published here at You can also dig deeper and check the FTC website for history of complaints against the company, the Better Business Bureau, and other online reviews. Just don’t put too much stock in online reviews, as many are fake.

2018 dumpster rental market rates

The average cost to rent a dumpster for a week in the US is summed up in the following chart:

Dumpster Size

Average Cost

10 - 12 yard


20 yard


30 yard


40 yard


50 - 60 yard



To get an idea of dumpster rental costs in various cities around the country, see our article titled The Big List of Dumpster Rental Costs in All 50 States.

Hometown Dumpster Rental's dumpster cost resources will help give you a general idea of what to expect when calling a rental provider for a quote. Your cost may be higher or lower depending on your location, type of debris, ease of access to the drop-off location, and other factors.

  • Learn more about all aspects of renting a dumpster by checking out our latest blog posts.

There are A LOT of great waste hauling companies out there!

Best dumpster rental company

Collusion and shady pricing are not major problems in the waste collection or dumpster rental industries thanks to good old-fashioned competition amongst local waste haulers. Competition helps keep prices competitive and the level of service high.

The vast majority of waste collection companies across the country are trustworthy and work hard to provide quality service for its customers.

At Hometown Dumpster Rental, we work hard to reduce risk on the part of customers looking to rent a dumpster or hire a junk removal company. In addition to vetting each company listed on our pages, Hometown also publishes verified online reviews. We don’t publish any reviews until they are first verified by us, via phone call or email, that it is a true and accurate review from the customer giving it.

Whether searching for a new trash collection company or renting a dumpster for a renovation project, being a well-informed customer is the best way to avoid being a victim of shady pricing or poor service.

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