Many residential construction companies have their own backhoe, bulldozer and truck, but few have a crane. Occasionally, a crane is needed to move forward with a construction project, though. For example, if landscaping and buildings make it impossible to move supplies around a home, they must be lifted over the home. Crane rentals aren't cheap. If you run a residential construction company and a building project requires renting a crane, however, you can save money on the contract lift by scheduling it around traffic.
Residential Construction Companies Use Contract Lifts
There are two types of crane rentals: contract lifts and crane hires.
Contract lifts are short-term rentals, as Allegiance Crane & Equipment details. They're called "contract lifts" because there is a contract between the contractor equipment rental company and the residential construction company to rent the crane for a specific lift. The rental includes the crane, any additional equipment that's required, an operator, any other support staff that are needed and insurance.
Crane hires, in contrast, are long-term rentals that only include the crane itself. Companies that rent cranes via crane hires must supply their own operator, support staff and insurance.
Most residential construction companies use contract lifts when they need to rent a crane, since few residential construction workers are certified to operate cranes, and few residential construction companies carry the necessary insurance. Crane hires are typically reserved for larger commercial projects.
Contract Lifts Usually Have Hourly Rates
Construction equipment rental companies that offer cranes may have daily and weekly rates, but contract lifts for residential projects are typically charged by the hour. After all, lifting supplies over a house only takes a few hours at most.
As is the case with any short-term construction equipment rental, hourly rates for a contract lift aren't cheap. According to HowMuchIsIt.org, crane rental rates range from $100 to $600 per hour.
Anything you can do to reduce how long the contract lift takes will save your company money -- and lots of it. Even shaving just a few minutes off of a contract lift could provide significant savings, as renting a crane costs between $1.67 and $10 per minute.
Work Around Traffic
Since your company won't be operating the crane during a contract lift, you can't reduce the lift time by working faster or adjusting the crane operation. You can, however, reduce how long the lift takes by working around traffic. Specifically, you can schedule the lift for mid-day, and you can direct traffic when the crane arrives.
Many companies charge for crane rentals from the moment it leaves their facility until it returns, charging for the time it's being transported as well as when it's on your property. By scheduling a lift to be done during late morning or early afternoon, the construction rental equipment company won't have to transport the crane during rush hour. They'll be able to take the crane to your job site after morning rush hour and return it to their facility before evening rush hour. Depending on how bad rush hour is in your city, this could reduce your contract lift by a few minutes or as much as an hour.
You can also offer to direct traffic once the crane arrives. Traffic will likely need to be stopped temporarily while the truck driver moves the crane onto your property. If there's only a truck driver and crane operator, having a third person help direct traffic could make this process easier.
If your company is working on a residential construction project that requires a crane, you're going to have to rent one—and it will cost hundreds of dollars, at least. You can save money on the equipment rental, however, by scheduling it for mid-day and offering to direct traffic. Even if you save only a few minutes of time, your efforts will provide significant financial savings.