Cheap skip hire – 9 ways to reduce costs
So you’ve begun your search for cheap skip hire. You’ve finally started that renovation project you’ve been planning, or decided that now’s the time to have a clear out of your house, garden or garage. You’re probably trying to find the easiest and most affordable way to dispose of the waste, and have come to the conclusion that hiring a skip will be the best option for you.
Not much that can go wrong, right? Well, you may be surprised of the many pitfalls that you may meet along the way that could increase the price of the cheap skip quote you found. Here I’ve included 9 top tips of how to ensure you keep the price of hiring a skip as low as possible.
Booking the right size skip
Before booking your skip you should first consider which size skip you will need. The sizes range from a 2 yard mini skip and go all the way up to 40 yard roll on / roll off containers. You may be tempted to get the smallest size possible and hope you can cram it all in, however if you run out of space and have to hire a second skip, it can end up costing considerably more than if you had hired a larger skip in the first place. If you’ve never hired a skip before it can be confusing which size you will need. You would be forgiven if you don’t know how large a ’4 yard’ or ’12 yard’ skip is (the size refers to how many cubic yards of waste the skip will take). To help, you can check out the skip dimensions, and we’ve created a handy guide for you to follow:
Mini Skips (2 yard) – These are used for small jobs and will take around 20 bin bags. They are often used for dig outs and will take around 2 tonne of soil or hardcore.
Midi skips (3 & 4 yard) – These are often used for bathroom and kitchen refits and small clear outs. They will take 25-35 bin bags and 3-4 tonne of soil or hardcore.
Builders skips (6 & 8 yard) – These are usually used for larger clear outs and are will take 6-8 tonne of soil or hardcore (these are the largest sizes you can have for this type of waste). They will take approximately 50- 60 bin bags.
Maxi Skips (12, 14 & 16 yard) – These are normally used for large house, garage and garden clearances. They are for light waste only and will take 100 -140 bin bags.
RO/RO containers (20 & 40 yard) – These are used for very large commercial and industrial projects and are usually charged by tonnage. They will take 160 – 360 bin bags.
Applying for a Road Permit
Right, so now you’ve got an idea of which size skip you’re going to need, the next thing to think about is where the skip will be placed. If you’ve got a driveway or front garden the skip can go on then great, you wont need to worry about applying for a permit. However, if you don’t have an off road site for the skip to be placed, and the skip will need to go on the public highway or grass verge, you will first need permission from the council.
Any reputable skip hire company will not put a skip on the road without first getting permission from the council, so be wary of anyone that will.
The prices of the permits vary a lot between councils, in some areas they are free while you could pay up to £100 in others. The council will also determine how much notice you will need to give for them to approve the permit, which could be any where from 1 to 14 working days. Go to your local councils website to find out more about the permits or ask a skip company for more details.
Book in Advance
When work and home lives are busy it’s hard to know exactly when you’ll have time to start your renovations or clearances. It can be difficult book weeks in advance as plans change and life gets it the way. However, if you leave booking a skip until the last minute you could end up paying over the odds when the cheap skip hire companies in your area are all booked up. We suggest booking at least 2 days before the skip needs delivering to ensure you wont be ringing around all the companies in your area trying to get a cheap skip delivered that day!
Be Aware of Time Restrictions
Most skip companies will allow you to keep your skip for up to 2 weeks, however this can vary. If you know that you will need the skip for longer then it’s always best to check the hire period first. Most companies will be more flexible if you make them aware from the beginning how long you think you’ll be with it. Otherwise you may be charged extra if you need to keep the skip for longer than their terms state.
On the other end of the spectrum, if you know you wont be long with the skip and need it collected quickly, this can also usually be arranged before hand. There are several options available, such as a wait and load service where the driver will wait with the skip while you fill it (you usually get 30 minutes waiting time) or a same day collection where the skip will be delivered in the morning and collected at the end of the working day.
Skip Weight Restrictions
It’s important to consider how heavy your skip will be once it has been filled. If you are filling your skip with soil and/ or hardcore the largest skip you can have will be a 6 yard, if its partially heavy waste (up to 50%) the largest would be an 8 yard. This is because if a large skip is filled with heavy waste it can become too heavy for the skip lorry to lift to take it away, there are also legal restrictions regarding how much weight the lorry is allowed to carry. This can result in you having to empty some of the contents to make it light enough to be taken away.
Any size larger than an 8 yard skip must only be used for light bulky waste. Again, this should be checked with the company first as restrictions can vary.
It’s a common misconception that anything can be chucked in a skip. However this is not true. There are certain items that almost no skip hire company will take. These include:
- Car Tyres
- Gas Bottles
- Oils/ Solvents / Liquids
- Fridges/ Freezers
- Car batteries
- Clinical/ Medical waste
- Food Waste
There are also items that may or may not be restricted depending on the company, these include:
- Paint tins
- Tree Stumps / Roots
If you have any of these items it’s always best to check with the skip company before hand to make sure that they allow them or if there is a charge. This way you can avoid nasty surprises when the skip is collected and you are charged extra, and your cheap skip ends up costing more than expected.
Recycling and Donating
You’d be surprised how much room you could save in your skip simply by saving any recyclable or reusable items and taking them to recycling points (clothes, plastics, shoes ect) or donating suitable items to good causes such as local charity shops. This way you are doing your bit for the community and environment while saving room in your skip for things that are not appropriate for recycling or donating.
Make more room in your skip
When your skip arrives, it might be tempting to just throw everything in the skip as quickly as possible. However, you’ll find that you can fit a lot more in your skip by breaking up items such as bed frames and kitchen units. You should also try to stack items to use up more space. Another tip is to put larger items on the bottom of the skip and smaller items on top.
One of the most common reasons people get charged extra for their skips is overloading. The skip must be loaded no higher than the sides of the skip to ensure it is safe for the driver to remove. Skip companies reserve the right to charge extra for overloads as the waste over the level line has not been included in the original skip quote. They can also ask you to take the excess off the top of the skip to ensure it is safe and waste won’t fall off on to the road.
So there you go! All you need to know to make sure you get the right size skip for your job, and get cheap skip hire without any nasty surprise charges. Remember, if you need a quote or if have any questions you can visit us at Find A Skip for cheap skip hire & all the help and advice you may need!