You have a big construction project coming up. You’re coordinating all the materials, suppliers and labour to make sure the job gets done right. When you need temporary construction fence to secure your site, you may wonder if it is best to rent or buy. There are many different factors to consider, but to help simplify things we’ve narrowed them down to these three:
In this case, “resources” refers both to equipment and people. Of course, purchasing construction fence will involve transporting the fence from the job site to a storage facility once the project is complete. This will require disassembling the fence and loading it onto a properly equipped vehicle to bring it to its final destination. Do your trucks have the necessary equipment, such as straps and banding, to transport fence safely? Do you have a forklift to safely and efficiently load and unload the fence? Can you allocate the appropriate amount of labour to facilitate tear-down, loading and transportation? During the busy summer construction season, it can be difficult to spare labour for non-essential tasks. Renting may be your best option for this reason. We can coordinate our Fence Guys for set up, removal, and transportation – saving you the headache.
Buying temporary fence means you will need a place to put the fence when it is not in use. If you’re working with a large site (and therefore, a large quantity of fence), it may be difficult to find the necessary space to store the fence if you decide to buy. Obviously, the more fence you purchase, the more square footage you’ll need to dedicate to storing the fence.
The safest way to store fence is with it laying flat on the ground, with panels banded together. As a best practice, at Modu-Loc we stack construction fence in quantities of 1,000′ – so 100 panels to a stack. If you’re working with standard 6′ tall by 10′ long fence panels, this means you need approximately 60 square feet for every 1,000′ of fence. Don’t forget to factor in additional space to be able to access the stacked fence with a forklift.
Beyond having the available space, you will also need to consider whether your storage area is suitable for temporary fence. It should be a secure area, and ideally it should be protected from the elements. You want to avoid wet conditions in order to prevent rust and extend the life cycle of the fence.
This is arguably the most important factor when it comes to deciding between buying or renting temporary construction fence. Generally speaking, if your job is expected to last for at least 2 years, you should consider buying. This is usually the point at which the cost of renting for the duration of the project would exceed the cost of buying the fence outright. Will you be returning to this site, or moving on to another project with similar fencing requirements? Buying may still be worthwhile if you have several similar jobs that will run consecutively and last a total of at least 2 years. It may be more cost-effective to purchase the fence if you believe it will work well for multiple upcoming jobs.
If you do plan to move the fence from site to site, you’ll want to carefully consider the type of fence you purchase. Some temporary fences hold up better to relocation than others, so do your research. Making an investment in the right kind of fence will ensure your decision to purchase pays off in the long run. Of course, not every project or contractor has the budget to make a capital investment in construction fence. If cash flow is a concern, renting may still be the way to go.
There are many aspects to consider when deciding whether to rent or buy your temporary fence – such as your budget, access to storage, and available resources. We hope this helps give you an idea of which option will be the most beneficial for you. It is always best to consult your sales representative before making a final decision. Our sales representatives can help identify the possible challenges and benefits of renting versus buying as they pertain to your specific situation. Contact us and we’d be happy to help you make the best decision for your job.
Have you decided that buying is the way to go? Check out When is the Best Time to Buy Fence? to see when you should plan to make your purchase in order to get the best deal. Then, read our How to Install Modu-Loc Fence and Best Practices for Installing Modu-Loc Fence posts to achieve an optimal installation every time.
Editor’s Note: this post was originally published in 2018. It has been updated with additional detail for 2019.
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