featured image

Guide to Renting Equipment for Your Home Project

Category: Equipment and Solutions

When you’ve decided that you’re ready to tackle a home project, you’re going to need the best tools and equipment backing you up. Though you likely have basic tools at home, you probably don’t have a backhoe or air compressor. If you’re taking on a bigger job like doing some landscaping on your yard, repaving your driveway or constructing an extension on your home, you need heavy-duty equipment to get the job done properly.

To ensure you can complete your projects and save money, learn why renting is the ideal option for many home projects, and find out how you can get the best rental equipment for DIY projects on the market today.

Benefits of Renting Versus Buying Equipment for Home Projects

Anytime you have a home project that’s going to need some equipment you can’t just find lying around the house, you’ll need to decide whether you want to rent or buy it. For most individuals, renting equipment is going to be the better choice. Consider some of the benefits of renting equipment:

  • Lower initial costs: Renting equipment offers a much lower initial cost than buying it. People who buy their equipment often are expecting to get a lot of use out of it, eventually saving money over renting in the long term. Most individuals who need a piece of equipment for a job only need it for one-time use and will be returning it within a week, or even a day. As such, it’s a better financial decision to rent the equipment than buy.
  • No maintenance costs: When you buy a piece of equipment to handle home projects, you not only have to take on the high initial costs, but you also need to spend money on any repairs or maintenance costs. If a piece of equipment breaks down, you’ll be the one responsible for fixing it. If you choose to rent, you’ll never have to worry about these costs, as the rental company will have it all handled for you.
  • Get the latest technology: When you rent equipment, you can guarantee you’re getting the most cutting-edge technology. If you were to buy, you’d likely have to use the piece of equipment for years before it pays itself off. Renting the equipment means you always get the latest model.
  • No storage or transport costs: If you buy equipment, you might have to spend money to store it. Additionally, equipment that’s stored away from home will need to be transported back to your house or another location whenever you need it, which brings extra costs. By renting, you don’t have to worry about storage or transportation, saving you time and money.

Guide to Renting

With all of the benefits of renting, you’re probably ready to dive into your project. However, before you choose your equipment, consider the following three steps. They can help you be a more informed renter who picks the best equipment for your DIY projects.

1. Know Your Project

The first thing you need to do when deciding what equipment you’re going to rent is to lay out what your project needs. For example, do you need to excavate parts of your yard for one of your summer landscaping projects? Or do you need to put in a new driveway? Whatever your project is, you’ll need to have some criteria to work from to determine which pieces of equipment you require to do the job right.

To help you narrow down what kind of equipment you need, ensure you can answer these questions before you start looking for equipment to rent.

How Much Space Do You Have?

Knowing how much space you have to work with is crucial to renting the right equipment. While it might not matter if you have a hundred-acre property, a home in the suburbs will often be more restricted in terms of open space. Ensure the equipment can fit into the area you’re planning on using it in. After all, you don’t want to find out that the equipment is too large to make it into your backyard.

Besides just looking at the equipment’s size, it’s also important to see how maneuverable it is. Though you might be able to get a piece of equipment into your yard, it may be too difficult to navigate around the space. For example, backhoes usually need more room to back up and turn themselves, while skid steers can usually take tight turns, making them more preferable for tight spaces.

Do You Have to Worry About Damaging Existing Structures?

If you’re doing a project on a well-kept lawn, with carefully placed structures and planted flowers or other greenery, you’ll likely not want to destroy your landscaping efforts while you put in a pool or some other addition. Instead of going with a tire based piece of heavy-machinery that will leave deep tire tracks in your yard, for instance, you could choose a track based piece of equipment that often leaves a lighter mark on the ground after use.

If you have a yard that doesn’t have any greenery or structures to worry about, you’ll often be able to pick equipment that’s heavier and bulkier. Since you don’t have to worry about harming anything, you’ll have a freer range to move. Additionally, you can pick machines that move dirt and complete tasks faster, since you don’t have to worry as much about accuracy or precision.

How Deep Do You Need to Dig?

For projects that require you to dig into the ground, you should know how far you’re going to need to go. If you’re trying to dig out a pool, you likely need an excavator instead of a wheel loader. Depending on the size of the pool or other projects, you can usually choose between different sized excavators, ranging from mini to large sizes. Projects that don’t need to go so deep around can often rely on compact loaders.

Do You Need Multi-Functionality From Your Equipment?

Your project likely needs more than one piece of equipment to complete the job properly. Evaluate the types of equipment you need to use to complete the job, and keep them in mind as you search for a match. With technological advancements, pieces of equipment now often have multi-functionality. This means attachments can be added to them to let you complete a variety of different tasks.

For example, it’s quite common for mini-excavators and backhoe loaders to have the capacity for several attachments like grapples, augers and breakers. These attachments can help with a number of different jobs. Before you go ahead and rent multiple pieces of equipment, check to see if any of the models you’re looking at to rent have the capacity for attachments. Staff members from a rental company can also usually help you evaluate the best machines for the job you need, taking attachments into account.

What’s Your Experience?

Take an honest stock of your experience level. Have you ever operated the equipment you’re renting? If the answer is no or of it has been a long time, you should probably train on the equipment or hire someone to help you operate it. Often times, rental companies offer training to people who rent from them, so always reach out to the company about training if you need rentals.

2. Understand the Equipment

Renting equipment for masonry projects is going to be different than renting equipment for home repairs. As a result of the different needs, you should figure out what equipment your project requires. If you describe your project to a top rental company, their staff can assist you as you try to find the best fit, helping you become more knowledgeable about your options in the process.

However, it’s still a good idea to have some sense of what you need before you start talking to anyone about rentals. Below you can learn more about some of the most commonly used pieces of equipment for a variety of home projects to give you a sense of what you might need and the options you have:

  • Excavators: When you need something dug out of the ground or need to make a large hole, an excavator is usually going to be at the top of the list. Mini excavators are especially useful in residential settings since they can often navigate into harder-to-reach areas at your home.
  • Skid steers: Skid steers, or loaders, are some of the most commonly used pieces of equipment for residential projects. They can be employed for lifting, hauling, digging and dumping a variety of materials, making them ideal for work concerning yards or driveways. Additionally, they come in a variety of sizes and offer superior maneuverability.
  • Backhoe loader: backhoe loader is a popular option if you have landscaping projects where you might need to do some digging, while also moving debris or other materials from one place to another. The combination of a loader and a backhoe in one piece of machinery keeps the project running smoothly, without having to switch between two separate pieces of equipment. These loaders also often come with attachments like augers.
  • Aerial lifts: Need to work on your roof, your home’s siding or another high-up location on your property? Aerial lifts should be your top choice, as they help you work up high more safely and efficiently than ladders do. Boom lifts are perfect for projects where you have to get somewhere hard to reach, as their platform is very flexible. For areas where you need to go up in a straight direction, scissor lifts are ideal — especially if you require portable scaffolding.
  • Air compressors: For times when you’re using air-powered work tools for your project, you need air compressors to help power them. The best air compressors will provide you with compressed air safely, while also eliminating the timely and costly process of having to take hard-to-transport motors to your home. Portable air compressors are especially useful for home projects as they can be easily moved to your home and around your work site.
  • Dozers: Sometimes, you just need to knock things down and move them out of the way. Enter dozers. Small and large dozers can be used to even terrain, clear passageways and lanes, develop driveways, move materials and level ground.
  • Augers: Augers are usually attached to other pieces of larger equipment like loaders or backhoes. They’re especially helpful for home projects since they’re regularly used for drilling holes for placing trees, shrubs, fencing and footings. If you’re trying to beautify your backyard or put up a secure fence around your land, an auger is a must-have.

3. Consult a Professional for Training

Once you’ve decided on the rental equipment, you should also take the time to learn how to use it before you put it to work. You don’t want to hurt yourself or your home by trying to use a piece of heavy machinery that you don’t know how to control. Common issues associated with not having enough training include safety risks and inefficiency with your project.

To protect yourself, the project and the equipment, see if the rental equipment provider has training services for you to access. The best companies will give renters the ability to learn more about any of the new technology or tools associated with a piece of equipment, while also being taught basic safety practices.

With the right training, you’ll know how to use your equipment quickly, helping you complete the project with speed and without any major accidents. You’ll also learn how to operate the rental equipment like a pro, making it so your equipment does exactly what you need to finish your project.

Contact NMC The Cat Rental Store for Your Home Projects

Whether you need rental equipment for landscaping or you are renting equipment for summer projects, you’ll want to turn to NMC The Cat Rental Store for your home projects. With nine locations across Iowa and Nebraska, we’re ready to provide you with the equipment you desire to make your project a success. Not only do we offer a huge selection of high-quality machines, but we also provide fast delivery to your worksite, guidance on equipment and competitive pricing.

Browse our selection of rental equipment to find the perfect fit for your projects. Not sure of what you need? No problem. Contact one of our knowledgeable representatives for assistance, and they’ll be happy to guide you through the variety of equipment available to you.