Four Questions to Consider When Deciding to Buy or Rent Tools

The Editors's picture
Four Questions to Consider When Deciding to Buy or Rent Tools

Four Questions to Consider When Deciding to Buy or Rent Tools

By Tony English, Senior Tool Rental Merchant, The Home Depot

Maintenance expenses are one of the largest controllable elements for a property manager’s operating budget, and you have to factor in both labor and equipment. One of the most important considerations for managing equipment costs is deciding whether to buy or rent necessary tools. 

In addition to the upfront vs. rental costs of the products, there are a lot of factors to consider when deciding to rent or buy. Equipment may be required on a seasonal or ongoing basis and used for small- or large-scale projects. Ask the following questions to help determine what’s best for you and your maintenance staff.

How frequently will we use it?

Generally speaking, this is one of the easier questions to answer. Renting is a viable solution when equipment is used a few times a year, while buying is much more economical when it’s an item of regular use. There may even be times when choosing to do both is the best option. For projects that require duplicates of the same tool, consider buying one and renting the extra items to complete the project more quickly. This will allow you to scale up and only worry about maintaining one tool or piece of equipment. 

What kind of maintenance is required?

Depending on the complexity of the tools, maintaining them may cost significant time and money, especially if your staff is not familiar with the ongoing upkeep. Purchasing equipment may require the assistance of an experienced professional and may hold up projects if tools are not in working order. Renting gives access to tools that are professionally and regularly maintained by experts. Your staff will then be able to spend more time and effort completing the project.  

Do we have space for storage?

Don’t underestimate the amount of space a large piece of equipment will take up in your storage area. If a new piece of equipment requires an additional shed or room, factor in the cost. You don’t want items sitting out as eye sores for residents. Renting takes this factor out of the equation and simplifies the process, allowing you to return all units to the tool rental center after being used. 

How do we transport the item?

Lastly, take into account transportation costs if the piece of equipment is particularly large and factor in whether you will need to transfer it to different parts of the property. Avoid taking a toll on your current vehicles and consider renting a large truck or special oversized trailer to transport the equipment. It may be an additional cost, but it will make for smooth and safe transportation from the tool rental center to your property and back. 

By Tony English, Senior Merchant, Tool Rental

Tony has worked in the capital equipment manufacturing and equipment rental industries for nearly 20 years, with extensive experienced gained at Ingersoll-Rand, Sunbelt Rentals, and The Home Depot. 

Rate this article: 
No votes yet