The decision to buy or rent equipment for major yard projects can make or break your project. While you could skip renting or buying equipment altogether to save some money I bet you’ll lose a ton of time. On top of that you could potentially hurt yourself by trying to perform a task that you really should have equipment for.
If you don’t hurt yourself there is always the chance you’ll do what I do… You start the project and then never complete it because it takes way too long without the equipment! If you have a project that requires (or should require) equipment then you have a decision to make. Should I buy or rent the equipment for my major yard project?
Buy the Equipment
There are quite a few arguments for buying equipment. If the equipment is something you’ll use over and over it could potentially save you a ton of money to buy it. You’ll be able to use it whenever you want and you won’t have to travel to the rental equipment store every time you need to use it. Plus it will always be available, assuming you don’t loan it out to a friend.
When you buy equipment you don’t have to rush to try to get the job done. If a project is a week long project you might try to rush and get in done in three days to save some money on rental costs. This could lead to a substandard result and you’ll really be kicking yourself when you look at the finished project. Another possibility, if you underestimate the amount of time you actually need the equipment, is that you might end up paying more in rental costs than it would have cost to buy the equipment in the first place!
Rent the Equipment
Renting equipment has some upsides as well. If you’re only going to use the equipment once why on earth would you buy it? There are some companies, like construction companies, that need skid steers but if you’re going to only use it once it doesn’t make much sense to buy. I recently sodded my lawn and rented a sod roller because I’m only going to sod my yard once… hopefully!
Renting isn’t always cheap but at least you aren’t taking on the full cost of the piece of equipment. When you rent the equipment you don’t have to store it or maintain it either. Larger equipment can have expensive maintenance schedules that must be strictly adhered to in order to keep the equipment functional and safe.
The Decision Comes Down to the Indivdual Project and Equipment
If you are working on a one time only project it may make more sense to rent the equipment. However, if it is a task that must be repeated weekly it might be time to break down and just buy the equipment. Make sure you evaluate the frequency you will realistically use the equipment versus the price, storage and maintenance considerations of the piece of equipment. Hopefully that will give you a clear decision!
When was the last time you needed a piece of equipment for a major yard project? What piece of equipment did you need and did you rent it or buy it?