Should Your Business Buy Or Rent Shipping Containers?


Shipping containers can be turned into temporary structures for event venues, pop-up shops, mobile restaurants, or retail stores. Similarly, roadshow shipping containers are utilized for promotional events and experiential marketing activities. These containers can be customized specifically for your items, business, and brand.

However, the challenge is whether to rent or buy shipping containers. Regardless of whether you buy or rent, it’s crucial to know your situation. But how do you make that call? If you’re unsure, consider calling experts like Royal Wolf Shipping Containers to help and advise you which option is best suited for your business needs. Several essential considerations need to be given your full attention.


Renting Vs. Buying

The best approach to deciding if you need a storage unit is to determine how long you’ll be using it and where it will be stored. It would be best to buy a shipping container if you require one in a fixed location. These situations arise in long-term modular construction projects like container apartments and workplaces. 

But renting may be preferable if you simply need a container for a short time or on one occasion. A standard lease for a shipping container will cover the rental period, delivery of the container, and any modifications you need. The buying process is slightly different, but it does have its advantages.


Pros And Cons Of Buying Shipping Containers

If you’re using a shipping container frequently or have special needs, it’s probably best to buy one rather than rent one. However, there are some notable exceptions to this rule. Before making a decision, you must evaluate the pros and cons.


  • Containers are easy to move. A single, off-grid container can be picked up and moved anywhere in the world via specialized freight transportation services.
  • Steel is hard to break into and too heavy to steal undetected. They’re suitable for a remote or secure areas.
  • Shipping containers are intended to handle heavy cargo and harsh weather, making them almost indestructible. They’re heavy-duty, sturdy, and durable since they can survive being carried on and off ships.
  • Containers are multipurpose. One unit has multiple uses and sizes. Units can be layered to make a multistory building.
  • Converted shipping containers are cheaper than new construction. Strong, self-standing shipping containers need little foundation. They can be used as-is or modified.


  • Rust and corrosion can cause shipping containers to degrade like any other structure. Cleaning, inspecting water on the roof, lubricating hinges, and changing seals are all part of routine shipping container maintenance. You may either do this upkeep yourself or hire a cleaning service.
  • When you are through using your shipping container, you will be expected to get rid of it. This can be time-consuming and expensive to do.

It is crucial to see the container in person before making the purchase, just as it is with any other significant investment. Check for dents on the sides, rusting on the exterior, and leaks, as fixing any of these issues during construction can be rather expensive.


Pros And Cons Of Renting Shipping Containers

When you rent a container, you may use it for whatever you need, whether that’s warehousing, transport, or a conversion, and then just give it back when you’re done. Outlined here are some of the positives and negatives of renting a shipping container.


  • If you don’t plan on utilizing the container very often, renting is usually more cost-effective than buying.
  • You may need extra storage as your project or business grows. Your demand may change from time to time, either good or bad. By renting, you may meet your business needs by adding storage when needed and reducing it when not.
  • If you need a larger container or find that you need to go with a smaller one, it is simple to switch out the storage unit for one of a different size. It is not hard to find a location to store a container when you no longer need it.
  • There will be less of a burden on your wallet for maintenance and storage.



  • Most rentals don’t cover moving costs. Check with the storage facility to see how much they charge for transferring your belongings and look into ways to reduce the costs associated with the move at the same time.
  • When storing and moving, it’s hard to monitor your belongings. But some container rental providers offer security cameras.
  • Keeping items in a temperature-controlled container is expensive but necessary. Thus, standard storage units aren’t good for fragile objects.



In general, shipping containers offer a solution for commercial storage and transportation that is affordable and long-lasting. They are also quite strong, making them suitable for short-term and long-term applications. 

Buying and renting have benefits and drawbacks, and the information presented here can guide you toward a solution that considers your requirements and financial concerns.