What Does It Cost to Rent Scaffolding?

Ryan Womeldorf
by Ryan Womeldorf

Scaffolding provides a temporary platform for workers to be safely elevated during construction projects. Scaffolding can make even the most dangerous of jobs much safer. This is because it provides solid footing in places that are difficult or higher up to reach. And no matter what the job, safety is of the utmost importance.

The average cost to rent scaffolding is $35 per day and $95 per week. Weekly scaffolding rental can cost up to $150, and it can save you an average of $500 on labor. It costs an average of $100 in delivery fees to transport scaffolding.

Why Scaffolding is Essential

If you have a project coming up that requires work off of the ground, safety is of the utmost importance. Ladders may be able to reach the area in question but working on a ladder can be difficult at best and very dangerous at worst.

Implementing scaffolding into a job means adding safety and security. Stronger, more even footing is provided by the scaffolding, providing a more stable and safe working space. Just as importantly, it means that you have the leverage and space to work properly.

Owning Scaffolding

For construction companies that regularly take on projects where scaffolding is required, it may be more beneficial to simply buy the scaffolding. Paying rental fees repeatedly may wind up costing more in the end.

When you purchase the scaffolding, there are no reoccurring fees to worry about. They are yours to use whenever a job dictates that need. In the long run, it could be cheaper to buy scaffolding provided you are getting regular usage.

And depending on who you rent from, there can be fees for damage, late returns, etc. When you own your own scaffolding, it is yours to do what you please. No need to worry about scratches or dents that could result in even more fees.

When You Should Rent

Of course, not everyone has their own construction company, nor do they have a high demand for that scaffolding. If there is no need for regular scaffold us, renting is by far the better option. You can pay for them when you need them, don’t have to worry about storage, and so much more.

Short-Term Projects

Renting is a much better solution than owning when it comes to short-term projects. Especially if you are just getting your start as a contractor, renting can prove to be a smarter choice. When you are just starting out, there may not be a steady stream of jobs available and finances can certainly be tight.

Not only that, renting scaffolding can be a great idea for any one-off residential-type projects. Only look into buying if you plan on repeat usage that will ultimately deliver return on your investment. Otherwise you could wind up sinking money into an investment that you don’t get the most usage out of.

Saving on Storage

Unless you have proper storage space for your tools, it is important that you rent instead of buy. When you buy scaffolding, you not only have to pay for the equipment, you will likely already be paying for a place for general storage.

But if you don’t have a storage place, renting will be far cheaper to go. This way, you can get the scaffolding when you need it and don’t have to worry about where to keep it in between jobs. This helps to eliminate any potential long-term storage that you would have to pay for otherwise. And long-term storage can be quite expensive and something that a new company may not be ready to take on from a cost standpoint.

Trying to Save on Labor

One of the biggest costs involved in purchasing your own scaffolding is in the labor. Consider that there are costs involved with inspecting, assembling, and disassembling any scaffolding equipment that you buy.

Not only that, but it can take hours at the least to set up scaffolding. The more that you plan on implementing, the longer that it takes to set up. That is a cost that comes out of your pocket and it can add up in the end.

On top of that, you’ll need to train any new hires that will need to know how to operate and install the equipment. It will also mean having a separate worker to inspect the equipment each time that it is set up.

When you rent, however, everything is covered. This includes the transporting, inspection, assembling, installation, and storing. That can mean major savings on overall labor and overhead expenses that are important to a business, especially early on.

Factors in Rental Costs

While it may sound simple to know when you should rent versus when you should buy scaffolding, there are factors that you’ll want to keep in mind before renting. Any one of these factors can mean the difference between a deal or a more expensive rental fee.


Location is important when determining the costs of your scaffold rental. Whenever possible, look for a scaffold rental company that is closest to you. This will help to minimize things like mileage costs which some scaffolding companies will add to the overall rental cost.

Not only that, there will be transportation costs to keep under consideration. If the rental company has to come some way with a lot of equipment, they may charge transportation costs that can run anywhere from $50 to $150 and in some cases even more.

Project Duration

The overall cost of renting scaffolding will also depend on how long your project is lasting. If it’s just a couple of days, renting by the day may be more cost effective. This is generally a $15 to $50 per day fee depending on a number of factors.

If you have a project that is lasting a little longer, consider weekly rental rates. You could get a deal and find something in the $40-$50 per week range but could go all the way up to $150. It really depends on the prices that you get quoted and what your budget is on that particular job.

Type and Size of Scaffolding

If it didn’t seem complicated enough, you also need to consider the size and type of scaffolding that you will need to do the job safely and efficiently. The key is to ensure safety as well as improve productivity, so keep that in mind when making your selection.

Cost of Labor

Last of all is the cost of labor. When you rent scaffolding, the rental company will generally install it for you. Make sure that you inquire about any installation costs involved as well because that can factor greatly into the budget of your project.

Help yourself out by clearing the worksite beforehand to make it as easy as possible for the scaffolding company to perform the installation. This will cut down on labor costs and ultimately save you money in the end.

At the end of the day, it is all about the costs to your project. If that means renting daily versus weekly, it needs to be weighed. The job is about completing the project safely and efficiently and that is the entire purpose of scaffolding. Weigh all the factors and you will be able to more accurately predict what a job will wind up costing you at the end of the day.

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Ryan Womeldorf
Ryan Womeldorf

Ryan Womeldorf has more than a decade of experience writing. He loves to blog about construction, plumbing, and other home topics. Ryan also loves hockey and a lifelong Buffalo sports fan.

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