Is Buying a Mini Excavator a Good Investment? 6 Reasons Renting a Mini Excavator May Be a Smarter Decision

Posted on Monday, April 15, 2024

If you frequently use a mini excavator, you might find yourself at a fork in the road wondering if buying one is a better option than repeatedly reserving a mini excavator rental. Although both options offer valid benefits, there’s no denying that the road to renting is often more advantageous for businesses and individuals.

Let’s look at different factors that affect the decision to rent or buy a mini excavator.

Identify Your Usage Needs

As you start to think about which option best suits your needs, there are two important factors to consider:

  1. What you’ll be using the mini excavator for
  2. How often you expect to use the mini excavator

For instance, even a passionate DIY project enthusiast won’t use a mini excavator as much as a construction company. (That doesn’t necessarily mean that a construction company should ignore the option to rent).

According to Garry Bartecki, managing member of GB Financial Services LLP and consultant to the Independent Equipment Dealers Association, you should only consider purchasing a mini excavator if you expect to use it at least 60% of the time you work in a month. How does that translate to real-world work? Let’s assume that a month is 30 days, that you don’t work on weekends, and that you work 8-hour days. Thar means you should expect to use the machine for at least 106 hours each month.

Construction is a broad industry with a wide berth of project types and tasks. Accordingly, it’s much more practical for many construction companies to rent a mini excavator as needed instead of purchasing one. But for personal use? Renting is almost always the better option.

Think About Your Budget

Even though it’s called a “mini” excavator, the accompanying price tag certainly isn’t mini. Even if you’re looking at buying a cheap Chinese mini excavator (which we do not recommend), you’re still looking at spending thousands of dollars on the purchase. Fortunately, mini excavator rental prices are substantially lower than purchase prices.

But it’s not just the initial price tag that you need to keep in mind—you also need to consider maintenance costs (more on this later) and operational expenses like the cost of fuel. A mini excavator typically uses about a quarter of a gallon of fuel per hour up to 3 gallons per hour. With the national average price of gas being $3.59 and the national average price of diesel being $4.06, it’s not hard to predict how rapidly operational expenses can add up.

6 Reasons Why Renting Mini Excavators Makes More Sense


New Technology

Time moves fast, but technology moves faster—including the tech used in heavy machinery like mini excavators. That means the newest and most advanced mini excavator will quickly become outdated. You know how it goes: Something new today often becomes nostalgic by tomorrow.

Coincidentally, rental companies like The Equipment Source make it a point to regularly update their available tools and equipment. So instead of committing to the significant price tag of a new mini excavator, you can rent the newest models equipped with the latest technology.

Try Before You Buy

Have you ever bought something that wasn’t quite what you thought it would be? While this isn’t a big deal if you’re talking about buying a sandwich, the repercussions are much more significant if it were to happen with a mini excavator purchase.

Fortunately, a rental offers you the opportunity to “try before you buy.” You will be able to try different models and brands, experiment with their features and performance, and come to an informed decision about which option best suits your needs.

Maintenance: Costs and Time

Whether you’re an individual or an employee at a construction company, everyone likes to keep as much money in their pockets as possible. That’s where the benefits of renting a mini excavator really shine.

For instance, mini excavators require regular servicing, repairs, and part replacements—all of which cost money. And when you add in the necessary time to perform these activities and tasks, the total cost compounds quickly. But if you opt for a rental, you don’t have to spend time on these activities—and that inherently boosts your productivity and profit potential.

Emergency Services

If you buy a mini excavator and something breaks while you’re in the middle of a job, it’s up to you to figure out what broke and how to fix it—and on your own time. But if you rent instead, the rental company is there to help identify and fix the issue. The Equipment Source team will even send a mechanic to your job site so you can get back to work as soon as possible.

Use Capital to Renovate Your Home or Grow Your Business

By saving money with a mini excavator rental, you can take that money and put it back into your business or home. For example, you can use the money to fund other home renovation projects like installing a pool or setting up a new garden space. Alternatively, businesses can use the extra capital on advertising to expand their clientele or to add new people to their team.

No Long-Term Commitment

Many people are heistant to commit to a big purchase, and and when it comes to a hefty purchase like a mini excavator, that commitment is no joke.

Think about it: What if the machine falls short of your expectations? What if you realized a different model would have been a better choice? Some companies only offer very brief and limited return opportunities, and others don’t offer refunds at all. Renting effectively eliminates all of these risks.

Are There Any Mini Excavator Rentals Near Me?

Looking for equipment rentals in Naples, Florida, or in another area? With eight different locations, we are ready to help you access the tools and equipment you need to finish your projects.

If you’re asking yourself, Are there any equipment rentals near me in Englewood, Florida? you can rest assured that The Equipment Source has you covered. From questions about our different location hours or inquiries about our available earth moving equipment rentals, our experienced team is here to help you get the project done.

Have any questions? Ready to rent? Contact our equipment rental experts today!


What do you think is better renting or buying an excavator and why?

It depends on your situation: If you estimate your monthly usage to be at least 106 hours, an excavator purchase is worth looking into. If you don’t expect to use the machine that often, a rental is the wiser choice. If you’re unsure of your projected usage, it’s best to start with a rental until you can make an accurate estimate.

Do mini excavators hold their value?

If you commit to purchasing a mini excavator, its value will depend on the brand and how well you take care of it. In other words, a cheap Chinese excavator won’t hold nearly as much value as a machine from a more reputable, well-known brand. In addition, a well-cared-for excavator will retain its value a lot better than a machine that hasn’t received proper maintenance and repairs.

Is buying a mini excavator a good investment?

If you expect to use a mini excavator more than 106 hours a month, purchasing a mini excavator represents a good investment opportunity. They’re more efficient and cheaper on fuel than larger excavators and other heavy machinery, and they can facilitate and streamline a wide range of projects and jobs. If you don’t plan to use the excavator that much, renting is a better option.