Renting a Trailer vs. Buying a Trailer

When it comes to moving, camping, or knocking out some landscaping work, trailers can be a huge lifesaver when you need to haul stuff. They’re easy to rent, affordable, and come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

For many people, you’re probably better off renting a trailer than buying one. But there can be certain situations where buying a trailer may be a better fit for you. Wondering what choice to make? Here are some things to consider before making your decision.

Which Type of Trailer Do I Need?

There’s a trailer for just about any job you need to complete.

  • Enclosed cargo trailers can protect your things from poor weather and theft. This makes a great option for people planning to move their belongings long distance.
  • Utility trailers are the better option for landscapers, contractors, or folks who are hauling oddly shaped or bulky items. 

The sizing and capacity you need from a trailer may differ from task to task, also check to see if the dimensions of the trailer work for you.

The Bottom Line:

Buying a trailer is a financial commitment, so be sure to do your research before whipping out your wallet! Renting gives you more freedom to pick-and-choose, but the price can add up over time. So, if you intend to use a trailer frequently (multiple times a week), purchasing one could be the best option. Continue reading to learn more about each option.

How Much Does It Cost To Own a Trailer?

One of the most important factors to consider is cost. Purchasing a trailer isn’t just a one-time payment. Owned trailers require registration, and the price for it can vary depending on your state and the weight of your trailer.

During registration, an inspection for safety must take place for a fee. This requires you to provide proof of insurance in order to register your trailer. The cost of trailer insurance depends on the length and width, how often you use it, and more.

Don’t forget about maintenance and upkeep! To keep your trailer in good condition, you should aim to get it serviced every six months. This can save you from pesky repair fees later.

But with U-Haul trailers, the rental price includes registration, maintenance, inspections, and insurance. On top of simplifying the process tremendously, renting with U-Haul provides peace of mind by ensuring everything is up to date and protected.

How Often Will I Use My Trailer?

A trailer is a unique and versatile tool that can come in handy for a variety of tasks. Despite this, you’ll need to be realistic about how much you’ll use a trailer. Even people that rent trailers as frequently as once a week have agreed: renting is more cost effective. But at what point should you just buy it?

To determine if buying a trailer is the right choice for you, create a list of all the tasks you can use it for. If you’re using it a few times a week over a long period of time, buying a trailer could be a great investment. But if this is just a short-term need, renting is the option for you.

Where Will I Store My Trailer?

Trailers can be pretty big, so where will you store them? This question is often overlooked but extremely important. When not in use, you can store a trailer somewhere on your residence or in a storage lot. If your home is not large enough to accommodate, keep in mind that a storage lot or unit comes with an added fee per month or year.

Renting does not require any storage costs because you can reserve and pick up a trailer whenever you need. Simply return your trailer to your local U-Haul Center once you’re done!

Peace of Mind

U-Haul trailers are reliable and trustworthy. We do regular maintenance on our trailers to ensure they’re your safest option. When renting a U-Haul trailer, you’re also backed up by 20,000+ U-Haul locations across the United States and Canada. If there’s a mechanical issue or flat tire, we even provide 24-hour Roadside Assistance to help you.

An advantage to renting is that if anything goes wrong with the trailer (like an accident or mechanical issue), it can be switched out with one of the other 100,000+ trailers in our rental fleet. But if you choose to buy a trailer, you’ll have to handle the costs of repairs, maintenance, or even replacements.

In-town rentals at U-Haul range from $14.95 to $34.95 per rental period. With rates that affordable, renting is a great option for almost anyone! And by choosing to rent first, you may learn what trailer works best for you before making a final purchase.

So, what do you say, ready to take one for a spin?


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