How To Find Used Shipping Containers Like an Expert

Used Shipping Containers for Sale or Rent - Shop ModuGo

Why Buy Used Shipping Containers?

Are you in the market for used shipping containers for sale or rent to store your company’s tools, keep your property safe and secure, or to build that idyllic, Millennial dream home that you recently saw on YouTube? Or was it on HGTV?

You’ll find that used containers come in a wide variety of options that give you true freedom to shop for exactly what you need. With internationally regulated certification programs, various size dimensions, customization options, and options to buy or lease, there are plenty of reasons to choose a used container.

Here are the top reasons we recommend looking for used shipping containers for sale:

  1. Buying a used shipping container can save you A LOT of money;
  2. While they may not look as pristine, used shipping containers can be just as structurally sound as “new/1-trip” shipping containers; and 
  3. Shopping “used” gives you more opportunity and flexibility due to generally higher inventory volume.

No matter the reason, we’d like to offer you a comprehensive guide to finding those perfect used shipping containers for sale all across the country.

Buy from Someone Who Stands by Their Product

It is imperative that you purchase your used container from a company that will stand by their product. Used containers will sometimes have defects despite best efforts to prevent them. In the event that happens, you will want the protection of buying from a reputable company who can AND WILL remedy the issue. At Rent-A-Container, customer satisfaction is our #1 priority and we will do everything we can to ensure that you are satisfied with the condition of your container and that you get what you pay for. 

Ask About Warranties

Containers are made from CorTen steel and they can rust. In order to provide some peace of mind, Rent-A-Container offers a 1-year warranty on all container sales guaranteeing that your container will be wind & watertight. Specifically, that the doors will work and that there will not be holes.

Shop the Best Prices on Used Shipping Containers

There are several ways to get the lowest price on a used shipping container that you should take advantage of. Shopping on Rent-A-Container’s website is a great first step to finding the right price on a used shipping container for sale nearest to you.

Prices for used shipping containers can vary widely. Factors that impact the cost include the condition/category of the container, location of the container (distance the container must be shipped), and whether you want to rent or buy your used container.

Shop Used Containers for Sale Nearest To Your Location

A major factor in getting the best price is to cut down on the cost of shipping and transportation – but that is not the only consideration. That’s why Rent-A-Container’s software automatically provides you with the lowest prices possible. Most companies just give you the closest container, whether that is the best deal or not. Since container prices can vary so widely from place to place, Rent-A-Container’s software automatically searches all locations and provides you with the lowest price of shipping + container possible.. 

Search Rent-A-Container’s Inventory to Find Used Shipping Containers for Sale by Zip Code

Shop Used Shipping Containers By Zip Code

Order the Right Container Dimension Sizes

Larger containers typically cost more than smaller container sizes. That’s why it’s so important to know which storage container dimensions will serve your storage and shipping needs. Also consider the weight of the material you’ll be putting into your container. Shorter containers are better at distributing and holding more weight than longer containers.

Decide if You Want to Rent or Buy a Used Shipping Container

While renting is often initially cheaper, you’ll need to decide if you need the freedom associated with buying a container and how long you’ll need that container for. 

Used Shipping Containers for Sale | Pricing by Size and Condition

Type of Used Container
Purchase Price
Rental Price/Mo
8’ x 20’ Standard Door Used Container Cargo Worthy ~ $1,300-$2,100 $85
8’ x 40’ Standard Door Used Container Cargo Worthy ~ $1,400-$2,400 $105
8’ x 40’ Standard Door Used High Cube Container Cargo Worthy ~ $1,450-$2,500 $115
8’ x 45’ Standard Door Used High Cube Container Cargo Worthy ~ $1,900-$2,600 N/A
8’ x 20’ Standard Door Used Container Wind and Water Tight ~ $1,150-$1,900 $70
8’ x 40’ Standard Door Used Container Wind and Water Tight ~ $1,350-$2,300 $90
8’ x 40’ Standard Door Used High Cube Container Wind and Water Tight ~ $1,400-$2,600 $99
8’ x 45’ Standard Door Used High Cube Container Wind and Water Tight ~ $1,900-$2,650 N/A
8’ x 20’ Used Office Container Wind and Water Tight ~ $15,000 $475
8’ x 40’ Used Office Container Wind and Water Tight ~ $21,000 $475

*Rent-A-Container prices may vary from the above table depending on your location. These prices do not include the cost of shipping. Check our e-commerce site for the most up to date prices.

Try Rent-A-Container’s price match offering to ensure you always get the best prices!

Certified Conditions for Used Shipping Containers on the Open Market

If you are in the market for a used shipping container, there are a couple of terms associated with the official condition of storage units that you should familiarize yourself with. After an evaluation at the depot, used shipping containers are typically listed to be sold as any of the following conditions.

Cargo Worthy Containers

“Cargo Worthy” containers are typically the highest quality used containers that you’ll find when buying or renting units. Cargo Worthy containers have been inspected and deemed worthy of being used for shipping goods over land or sea (although they may not have valid CSC plates and documentation to be shipped internationally). These containers have generally been used in overseas freight for at least 10 years so they will have visual imperfections including dings, dents and surface rust. They will not have structural rust and will be weathertight.

See Used Cargo Worthy Shipping Containers

Wind and Watertight Containers

Wind and Watertight containers tell you exactly what they’re equipped to handle.  Used shipping containers sold as Wind and Watertight have not met the higher standards associated with Cargo Worthy containers and are best suited for in-place storage. These containers are still high enough quality to protect any of your stored items from harsh outdoor weather conditions. These containers have generally been used in overseas freight for at least 10 years so they will have visual imperfections including dings, dents and surface rust. 

See Used Wind and Water Tight Containers

As Is Used Shipping Containers

Easily the most affordable used shipping container option, this uncertified container is for bargain shoppers who are not concerned about the specific quality of their shipping container. These containers often contain some type of significant damage. They could possibly contain holes, damaged floors, or doors that do not function properly. Rent-A-Container does not generally list these units for sale but we can often obtain them for you if this is what you are looking for. Just let us know at

One Trip Containers (New Containers)

The terms “One trip,” “1-trip,” and “new” are used interchangeably in the retail container market. These all refer to new shipping containers that have been used once to transport goods overseas and are now available for sale. So, these containers are technically “used” but are in a league above the traditional used categories listed above.

How do you buy a used shipping container?

There are a lot more options available to shoppers that are open to buying used shipping containers.

The general process for buying a used shipping container is this:

  1. Do your research on types of sellers you feel comfortable buying from;
  2. Decide which type of container you’d like to buy. Consider dimensions and door layout;
  3. Know which condition shipping container you’ll need;
  4. Choose whether you want to rent or buy a used shipping container that’s for sale;
  5. Consider the location you want your shipping container to be placed in;**
  6. Prepare your site for delivery;**
  7. Buy and Relax.

**For more help, check out our complete guide to buying a shipping container.

Online, Ecommerce Stores Make Finding Used Shipping Containers For Sale Easy

Finding a used shipping container has become dramatically simpler as companies have moved online. You can simply search Google, Bing, Yahoo, Duck Duck Go or any other search engine for the type of container that you are looking for. 

Buying a Used Container from an Individual Seller

While it is possible to shop Ebay or Craigslist for used shipping containers, it is important to do your homework and ask the right questions. You might even find that  individuals may sell containers at lower prices than businesses which is great for your bottom line. HOWEVER, shoppers need to be aware that there is a higher risk of being misled about the condition of the storage container and in the event that there is an issue you will likely have no avenue of remedy or recourse.

Buying from a Top Tier Shipping Container Supplier

Top tier suppliers source containers from the circulation of used shipping containers from the largest intermodal container supply companies. This allows them to offer the best price for you as a shopper at the exact moment that you order; giving everyone the most affordable option for used shipping containers on the market.

With Rent-A-Container, our used shipping containers for sale are sourced by suppliers across the country. We search city-by-city and state-by-state to ensure that you have the best deals on the best quality used containers available.

Shop Rent-A-Container!