By Benjamin St. Jacques
If you’ve got a lot of junk you want to get rid of, renting a dumpster is often the best way to make it all go away as quickly as possible. However, there are several pitfalls to renting a dumpster that you should know about if you want to save time and money.
With warmer weather just a few weeks away, many homeowners start thinking about spring cleaning. Spring is the perfect time to clean out your garage, attic, basement, shed, closets, or whatever other large space you have that’s been collecting junk for years.
But what do you do with it all? Your local garbage collectors will often refuse to take big bulky items or too much trash at once. You certainly don’t want to haul the stuff to the dump yourself. Who wants to waste their weekend holding a garage sale? You’re stuck haggling with strangers, sitting around all day, and you’ll still only get rid of a fraction of your stuff.
A Solution for Your Trash Troubles
Renting a dumpster can be the solution you’re looking for. A dumpster rental company will drop a dumpster on your property for any length of time. You simply fill it up and then they’ll haul it away. Voila! Your junk is gone.
Ask Questions to Pinpoint a Price
Admittedly, dumpster rental prices can be difficult to gauge. Your final price depends on many factors, like the size of the dumpster you need, the length of time you need it, and what type of stuff you’re throwing away. If your junk needs to be hauled to a landfill, then that cost will be passed on to you. If you’re throwing away hazardous or recyclable materials they require special handling, which will increase the price.
Since several factors affect the price, it’s usually best to compare rates by calling junk removal companies directly. When you call, they’ll ask you lots of questions, so be prepared to answer:
- What size dumpster do you need?
- What will you be putting in the dumpster?
- Where are you located?
- What date do you need delivery?
- How long do you need the dumpster?
You should also be prepared to ask questions of your own, including:
- Can I get a written estimate?
- How much weight is included in the price?
- What are the fees if I go over the anticipated weight?
- How many days are included in my rental period?
- What’s the charge if I need to rent the dumpster for a longer period than I originally anticipated?
With these questions asked and answered, your hauler should be able to give you a fairly accurate estimate.
Go Local for the Best Deals
If you decide that dumpster rental is the way to go, then it’s best to start by calling locally-owned dumpster services. They typically have the lowest overhead and very competitive prices. Many of these are small family-run operations that survive on repeat business and referrals, so they work hard to please their customers.
Beware of dumpster brokers that often try to pass themselves off as local haulers. These brokers are out-of-state middlemen that don’t own a single dumpster. They take orders for dumpsters, charge an additional 10 to 20 percent on top of the cost of the rental, and then pass that order on to a local hauler. They pocket the extra for themselves. One way to tell if you’re dealing with a broker is they often have a toll-free number. Or, you can simply ask, “Are you a broker, or an independent hauler?” Brokers may not volunteer that information, but they must be honest about it when directly asked.
If you’ve got a ton of junk to get rid of, it’s best to call local dumpster rental companies directly. That’s your best chance to get good service at a fair price.
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