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Should We Rent or Buy our Forklifts or Lift Trucks?

We find that some of our customers have a difficult time deciding whether to rent or buy their forklift or lift truck. With all the different options out there, it isn’t always clear whether the right choice is to buy new, buy used, lease, or rent your material handling equipment. There are a number of different variables for your management team to consider and the aim of this blog is to help identify some of these questions you’ll need to ask yourself, as well as discussing some pros and cons of each option.


Like any other investment deciding whether to buy or rent a forklift comes down to a cost analysis. Cost issues you need to consider include how much you have available to spend up front and monthly, how long you can afford this cost, maintenance costs if a problem arises, and interest rates if you plan on financing the costs.

Going hand in hand with your cost considerations should be your usage considerations. Beyond determining whether you’ll need the forklift for a few days, months, or years, you’ll also need to consider how often you’ll be using it, what uses you need it for, and whether or not your business will function without one in case of a maintenance problem. Will the maintenance occur on location by an employee or will you need forklift service professionals like our team at International Forklift Company, Inc.

Purchasing or Renting

When you can answer the initial questions above, you can determine whether or not you’d be better suited for buying or renting your forklift.

Buying or leasing a new forklift is best suited to those who have heavy and frequent use. There is a relatively consistent cost you can plan for each month, and you won’t need to worry about service since the forklift is brand new. You’ll need a significant upfront investment or good credit though, and as the equipment ages it won’t be getting the newest and best tech.

Renting a forklift or lift truck is a much lower cost up front, and you can plan on a consistent cost each month as long as maintenance is not required. This also allows you to have access to the most up-to-date equipment and technology. If the forklift starts to get dated, you can look into renting a newer model. You’ll continue to pay for the rental in perpetuity though, so if your job is long-term or the equipment is necessary for the day-to-day operations you may consider buying instead.

If you need advice on what is the best option for your business and your unique situation, our experienced team at International Forklift will be glad to help you make the right choice. If you already know what you need, we can help get you your new or pre-owned fully reconditioned forklift or forklift rental today. Simply contact us through our form or through the phone number above, we are available to meet and discuss these options with you without any obligations. We look forward to your call, and are happy to help!