A Guide to Renting a Container for Storage

renting a container for storageRenting a container is a flexible, affordable, and hassle-free solution that can save you time and effort. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process of renting a container and offer some valuable tips to make your experience as smooth as possible.

Assess Your Storage Needs

Before you start looking into container rental options, it’s crucial to determine your storage requirements.

Estimate Space Requirements

To make sure you rent the right size container, you’ll need to estimate the space you’ll need for your belongings. Make a list of the items you plan to store and consider the dimensions of larger items like furniture and appliances. You can use online calculators to help you estimate the required space.

Consider the Items You’re Storing

Think about the type of items you’ll be storing. If you’re storing delicate items, you may want to look for a climate-controlled container. If you’re storing heavy machinery or construction materials, you might need a reinforced steel container with easy loading features.

Understanding Container Types

1.    Standard Containers

sea container sizesThe most frequently seen loader is the standard container, which is usually available in the dimensions of 20 and 40 feet. These containers are made of steel and feature a single door for easy access. They are ideal for storing:

  • Household items
  • Furniture
  • Equipment
  • Supplies

Standard containers are weatherproof and secure, making them suitable for both short-term and long-term storage.

2.    High Cube Containers

High cube containers are similar to standard containers but offer extra height, typically 9.5 feet instead of the standard 8.5 feet. This additional space makes them perfect for storing:

  • Large items
  • Bulky equipment
  • Stacked pallets

High cube containers provide more vertical space, making them an excellent choice when you need to maximize storage capacity.

3.    Open-Top Containers

Open-top containers have a removable roof, allowing for easy loading and unloading of oversized items or materials that need to be loaded using a container handler or other heavy machinery. These containers are suitable for:

  • Construction materials
  • Heavy machinery
  • Scrap metal

If you need to store items that are difficult to maneuver through a standard storage container door, an open-top container may be the solution.

4.    Refrigerated Containers

refrigerated containersRefrigerated containers, also known as “reefers,” are designed to maintain a constant temperature and are perfect for substances vulnerable to temperature increase. These storage containers are perfect for:

  • Perishable food items
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Chemicals

If you require a controlled environment for your storage needs, a refrigerated storage container is the way to go.

5.    Flat Rack Containers

Flat rack storage containers for rent have collapsible or fixed sides and do not have a roof or walls. They provide a versatile solution for transporting and storing large, heavy, or irregularly shaped items. Flat rack containers are suitable for:

  • Large machinery
  • Vehicles
  • Construction Equipment

If you have items that are too large or awkward to fit inside a standard portable storage container, consider using a flat rack container.

Research Container Rental Companies

container pricerOnce you have a better understanding of your storage needs, it’s time to find reputable shipping container rentals.

Compare Prices & Reviews

Get quotes from several storage container rental companies and compare their prices. Keep in mind that the cheapest option may not always be the best. Look for a balance between price and quality.

Read customer reviews and testimonials to learn about the experiences of others who have rented portable storage containers from the companies you’re considering. This can give you an idea of the company’s reliability, customer service, and shipping container quality.

Verify Availability and Delivery Options

Make sure that shipping container rentals have the size you need available and can deliver it to your desired location. Ask about delivery fees, as these can vary depending on the distance and any special delivery requirements.

Choose the Right Container Size

Shipping container sizes can range from small 10-foot containers to custom 30-foot containers and larger. Choosing the right size is crucial to avoid paying for more space than you need or running out of room.

A 20-foot container can hold the contents of a small apartment, while a 40-foot container can accommodate the belongings of a three to four-bedroom house.

Select Additional Container Features

Before you rent shipping containers, consider additional features that significantly impact the container’s utility, security, and comfort. In this container rental guide, we will discuss some of these features that you should consider when renting a shipping container.

1.    Customization Options

Add-Ons and Accessories

Many shipping container rentals offer various add-ons that can enhance the functionality of your container. The storage container rental accessories might include shelving systems, lighting, insulation, air conditioning or heating units, and more. Consider your specific needs and the nature of the items you plan to store when choosing additional features.

Interior Layout and Design

The interior layout and design of your shipping container can have a significant impact on the overall storage experience. Some shipping containers come with adjustable shelving or partition walls, allowing you to customize the space to suit your needs. Ensure that the shipping container you rent has a layout that will work well for your intended purpose.

2.    Security Features

Locking Mechanisms

Ensuring the security of your shipping container and its contents is a top priority. Opt for a container with a robust locking mechanism, such as a lockbox, to protect your items from theft or vandalism. Additionally, consider whether the shipping container rentals offer security systems like surveillance cameras or alarm systems for added protection.

Fire Resistance

In some cases, it might be essential to ensure that your rented shipping container is fire-resistant. Check with the rental company about the container’s fire rating and any additional fire-resistant features it may have.

3.    Ventilation and Climate Control

Ventilation Systems

shipping container ventsProper ventilation is crucial, particularly if you’re storing items sensitive to moisture or temperature fluctuations. Look for shipping containers with built-in ventilation systems or the option to add vents to maintain a stable environment inside the shipping container.

Insulation and Climate Control

If you plan to store temperature-sensitive items or use the container as a workspace, insulation, and climate control features are essential. Check if the container rental company offers insulated shipping containers or the option to add insulation. Additionally, inquire about available climate control systems such as air conditioning or heating units.

4.    Container Condition and Quality

Opt for a Well-Maintained Container

The condition of the container is vital for the protection of your stored items. Look for a well-maintained container with no significant dents, rust, or damage. Shipping containers made of steel or aluminum are durable and can withstand harsh weather conditions.

Check for Waterproofing

To protect your items from moisture and water damage, ensure the container you rent is watertight. Check the seals around the doors and any vents to make sure they are in good condition. A waterproof container will provide peace of mind and keep your belongings safe.

5.    Environmental Considerations

Select an Eco-Friendly Container

If environmental concerns are important to you, consider choosing a container rental company that offers eco-friendly options. Some companies provide shipping containers made from recycled materials or incorporate energy-efficient features like solar panels or LED lighting.

Verify Proper Waste Disposal

When renting a container for construction or renovation projects, it’s essential to ensure that waste materials are disposed of responsibly. Check with the container rental company about their waste disposal policies and whether they comply with local regulations.

Key Components of a Rental Agreement

Renting a shipping or storage container is a practical solution for a variety of needs, from temporary storage to transportation. However, before you dive into the process, this container rental section will help you understand the contents of the rental agreement you’ll be signing.

Rental Term

One of the primary aspects of a container rental agreement is the rental term, which specifies the duration of the rental period. Rental terms can range from a few days to several months or even years. Make sure the term aligns with your intended use and consider potential extensions if necessary.

It should also contain the essential component of a rental agreement which is the delivery and pickup process. The agreement should clearly outline the delivery and pickup dates, as well as the associated fees. It’s crucial to understand the delivery fee structure, as it may vary based on factors such as distance and location.

Rental Rates and Payment Terms

The rental agreement should outline the rental rates, including any additional fees or charges, as well as the payment terms. Be sure to review these details carefully and ask for clarification if anything is unclear. You’ll want to ensure you’re getting the best quality container at the best price.

Insurance and Liability

Insurance and liability are critical components of a rental agreement. The agreement should clearly explain the insurance coverage provided by the rental company and any additional coverage you may need to secure. It’s essential to understand the extent of your liability while renting the container and take necessary precautions to protect yourself and your belongings

Prepare for Container Delivery

A rented shipping container should have a well-planned delivery system to save time, money, and potential headaches down the line. In this guide, we’ll provide actionable tips and insights on how to prepare for container delivery, so you can enjoy the convenience and flexibility that container rentals offer.

1.    Assess the Location & Coordinate with the Company

Before the container arrives, thoroughly assess the delivery location to ensure there’s enough space for the container.

Inspect the delivery site for any obstructions that might hinder the container’s delivery or placement. Remove any debris, vehicles, or equipment that could impede the delivery process. If there are overhanging branches or power lines, trim them back or find an alternative delivery spot to avoid potential hazards.

2.    Prepare the Ground

Shipping containers need a level surface to sit on, which helps ensure their stability and longevity. Uneven ground can cause the container to warp, making it difficult to open and close the doors. Level the ground at the delivery site as much as possible, and consider placing the empty containers on a gravel or concrete pad for added stability.

Heavy containers can potentially damage the ground beneath them, especially if placed on soft or wet soil. To prevent damage to your property, consider using wooden planks, concrete blocks, or other materials to distribute the container’s weight evenly across the ground.

3.    Receive the Delivery Company

container on a truckCoordinate the delivery time with the container rental company to ensure that you or someone you trust is available to receive the container. Make sure you’re present at the delivery site to guide the driver and address any issues that may arise during the delivery process.

4.    Plan for Access and Security

When choosing a delivery location, analyze ways for gaining access to the container during the rental period. Ensure that you can easily reach the container doors and that there’s ample space to load and unload items.

Containers are generally secure, but it’s essential to take additional security measures to protect your belongings. Plan for proper locking systems, such as padlocks or security bars, and consider installing security cameras or motion-activated lights to deter potential thieves.


Q. Are there any restrictions on what can be stored in a container?

Most container rental companies have guidelines on what can be stored in their containers. Generally, hazardous materials, perishable items, and illegal substances are not allowed. It’s essential to consult with the company to understand their specific restrictions.

Q. Can I rent a container for temporary storage at a construction site?

construction storageYes, many construction companies rent containers for on-site storage of tools, equipment, and materials. Containers are durable and secure, making them excellent temporary storage units at construction sites.

Q. What’s the difference between renting and buying containers?

A rented shipping container should be cost-effective and provide a flexible solution for temporary storage and moving needs. Buying your own container can be a more significant investment upfront but can serve as a long-term storage unit or if you plan to modify the container for other purposes, like a workspace or living space.

Q. How secure are rented storage containers?

Storage containers for rent are typically made of durable steel and come with secure locking mechanisms to protect your belongings. However, it’s crucial to choose a reputable rental company that maintains its containers and provides advanced security features.

Q. Can I move my container to a different location during the rental period?

Many container rental companies offer moving services for their containers. If you need to relocate the rental container, contact the company to discuss your options and any associated fees.


shipping container shedRenting a container for storage and moving is a convenient, flexible, and cost-effective solution. By following this guide and understanding your needs, you can find the right rental container and company to make your experience as smooth and stress-free as possible.

Remember to compare prices, read reviews, and ask questions. Get started by requesting pricing for containers near you, here!