How Much Does A Shipping Container Cost?

Shipping containers have various names, such as sea cans, freight containers, IS0 containers, and storage containers for their various uses. In the shipping sector, people have been using it for making mini restaurants, personal storage, bars, bachelor pads, party spots, and various personal purposes.

But as these containers are not something you get to buy in local shops, it might get very confusing just to go and buy a shipping container. Hence, the big question arises: how much does a shipping container cost?

The price of a shipping container can start as low as $1000+ and go up to $8000, depending on your chosen size, condition, personalized add-ons, and where you buy it from. The add-ons can add more than $2500 depending on how customized you want the shipping container to be.

To get the best value for the price you are paying, you need to understand what will impact your purchase and budget. So, before committing to buying, go through this article to find out all you need to make a smart container purchase.

Factors That Impact The Price Of A Shipping Container

When deciding to buy a shipping container, there are several variables to consider. Because these factors will assist you in selecting the best shipping container at the best price. The factors are given below-

Price Based On Size

Storage containers come in two “conventional” sizes: 20-foot and 40-foot. The dimensions of these storage containers are 8 feet (w) by 8.5 feet (l). You may, however, alter your containers if necessary. You can also choose a high-cube container that adds extra feet to the height. If you require additional height, evaluate whether you’d like to store higher things.

Now it’s up to you whether you want to buy new containers or used containers. Used containers are those that have surpassed their designated lifespan for international transit. Nevertheless, they are still fully adequate for many other applications.

So, buying a container in poor condition does not mean you will get a container in poor condition. In fact, buying a secondhand container of this size can be an excellent way to maximize what you save. Just be careful to examine before buying.

New Vs. Used Shipping Container-20 Foot

A new shipping container of 20 feet will cost you approximately $6,000. But, depending on the brand, supplier, and modified size, the price will be greater or cheaper.

A secondhand 20-foot shipping container costs around $3,500-$3700. The costs vary based on the conditions and customized features of those used containers. Without any add-on features, you might even get it for under $2500.

New Vs. Used Shipping Container-40 Foot

A new shipping container of 40 feet will cost you approximately $8,000 if you overlook all the other modifications. If you do have any problems with some wear and tear, buying a secondhand shipping container is a reasonable alternative to look into.

A secondhand shipping container of 40-foot size costs around $4500-$4,800. Again, the container’s characteristics, modifications, and conditions may increase or lower the total cost. Without any special features added, you have a good chance of getting it for under $3500.

Price Based On Condition

The cost of a storage container is directly related to its condition. Older containers with greater wear and tear will cost the least, whereas brand-new ones with little or no use will cost the most. A shipping container has a 15-year lifetime on average. So the time spent shipping matters too. The following factors need to be answered in this criteria-

  • How many years has it been used?
  • How severe is the damage?
  • Does the container need any repairs?
  • Can they be used for shipping or only for storage?

Related: how much does it cost to ship shoes

Brand New Shipping Containers

Between $5000-$6000, you will get a brand-new shipping container of the highest quality. A container that has been used mostly for less than a year or so with a good appearance is considered new. As they have been used less, they will last longer as they didn’t have to undergo any harsh journeys before.

Premium Shipping Containers

Premium shipping containers, also known as “IICL-5”, can be found for over $3000, but they will still cost less than new shipping containers. These are usually the highest-grade used containers that have very little damage even after being used for 3-8 years. These are also inspected and certified to meet all repair standards.

Grade A and Grade B Containers

These containers are also known as wind-water-tight containers and have usually been used for more than 8 years. But grade A containers can still be used for shipping overseas, whereas grade B containers can only be used for storage purposes. So, whereas the grade A container costs between $2000-$2500, the grade B container can be found for under $2000.

Shipping containers For General Use

Under this category, you can either buy a repaired container or buy it in its condition. Repaired containers will make you invest $1500-$2000, whereas unrepaired ones will be as close to $1000. Both will have damage and will need repair work. It’s up to you whether you want to do the repair work by yourself or not.

Costs Based On Personalized Features

There are hundreds of add-on options to pick from based on your needs and planned usage of the container. Because of the numerous add-on options available, the pricing might add $250-$2,500+ to the total cost.

Added Height

If you want to add 1.5 feet-2 feet to your usual sized (8-8.5 feet) container, you will have to pay 25%-30% more. So, for that price, you will get a 9.5 to 10 feet tall container.

Added Doors

Two types of doors can be added according to your needs. For example,

  • Personnel doors: The price starts at 100 and goes up to 400 for each door.
  • Roll-up doors: cost around $600 for each door.

Added Shelves

To add built-in shelving, you have to budget at least $85 for each shelf/bracket. If you want a more customized look for the shelves, the price will go higher.

Added Locks

On average, you have to add $90-$100 to your total cost for locks. Smart locals that detect motion can cost more than that.

Added Heavy Duty Wheels

If you want to be able to move the shipping container, you need to add those, which can cost up to $500-1000, based on the weight you are putting in your container.

Added Awnings

You can opt for two types of awning. For example,

  • Permanent awning: cost can go up to $1000
  • Retractable awning: cost can be more than $1500

Adding customized accessories can increase the cost of your shipping container, but it will be worth it. Because then you will have a container that matches all the requirements without settling for less.

Related: how much does it cost to ship to china from usa

Costs Based On Your Buying Plan

After you’ve settled on the best shipping container to purchase, you must determine where you want to purchase it from. The seller and the location you will buy your container from play a role in hiking or lowering your total cost.

Resellers Or Larger Suppliers

Resellers usually increase the price by 25%-30%. Because if you buy from resellers, you are also paying for the middleman involved in that. So, buying directly almost always results in a cheaper price.

One thing to note is that when you buy from resellers, they tend to hand you containers that have been in stock for a very long time. So it means that even when you invest more, you are still likely to get a product that is worth less than what you paid for. Hence, it’s better to buy directly from dealers to get a worthwhile deal.

Delivery Rate Of Shipping

If you ignore these prices and select a provider thousands of kilometers away, you might end up spending $1,000 or more on shipping. Based on the distance and weight of your container, the cost of delivering and installing your container can go up to $500.

Before making a decision, inquire about the seller’s shipping rates and methods. Then you can decide whether it would be a good idea to buy it from a local seller.

Final verdict

How much does a shipping container cost? Well, now that you know the answer, make sure to make a smart purchase. Also, spending a few more bucks to customize the shipping container to fulfill all your needs could come to your rescue in the future.

So if you want to buy a shipping container, be wise and plan everything accordingly. From size to the dealer, everything should be in that plan. Then, go and seal the deal so that you get everything you paid for. Here’s my top advice to get the most competitive rate: Do Your Research! After about an hour of research, you’ll have a pretty good idea about the local cost range. It will help you to get the best deal from the seller.

Related: How Much Does A Shopping Cart Cost?

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