• Should I Rent a Forklift?

    Every fleet manager has at one point in time wondered if they should rent or buy a forklift or other piece of material handling equipment. We all have the same objective: we want the dollars we invest to work for us and our business.

    At MH Rents people often ask us if it’s possible to rent a forklift. The answer is yes, and you can find what you’re looking for right here with MH Rents.

    There are two primary schools of thought when it comes to the equipment used in business. The first is the “if I’m ever going to need it, I should buy it” mentality.

    The second is, “if it’s not a primary component of my business, I’m better off investing the capital funds somewhere else.”

    Let us first begin by saying, both of these mentalities can be correct. It all comes down to the needs in your industry and the financial philosophy of your business.

    MH Rents serves customers from almost every industry you can imagine, but it often helps us make a choice when we know what people like ourselves have decided. To give you an idea, we see a lot of forklift and equipment rentals from these industries:

    • Ag or Seed forklift rentals
    • Manufacturing forklift rentals
    • Distribution forklift rentals

    Whether or not you find yourself in one of those industries, the remainder of this post will help you decide if renting equipment is better than buying for your individual business needs.

    Do these challenges sound familiar?

    When my warehouse equipment breaks down, our productivity suffers.

    Downtime in our warehouses is an all-too-common enemy. But it doesn’t have to be. Renting can fill in the gaps when equipment fails you. Rapid availability is extremely important in these instances which is why in most cases, MH Rents can deliver your equipment in 24 hours or (usually much) less.

    If you’ve ever been forced to slow down or halt your operations because of a broken piece of equipment, it’s time to face downtime head on and explore rental options.

    My needs change with the seasons so it’s hard to justify buying a piece of equipment.

    No one wants to see their hard-fought-for capital expenditure dollars collect dust for 9 months out of the year. If your industry is cyclical in nature, or you have a busy season with high volume, renting is an option to be seriously considered.

    For example, let’s say you hire an extra employee or two in the summer months. It doesn’t make sense to buy another piece of equipment or two just for those months. This is where renting saves the day. Your productivity soars but your expenses stay low. It’s a win-win.

    The Benefits of Renting and Buying

    Benefits of Renting:

    • Never worry about downtime, because rental equipment is maintained and repaired by MH. If maintenance is coming due, we replace the rental unit, you keep working, and we do the work. No downtime.
    • Don’t lose sleep about old equipment dying. When you rent from MH, you always have a reliable piece of equipment, rarely more than 7 years old.
    • Forget battling for dollars with your corporate entity to justify a large equipment purchase. Renting allows you to write off your unit as an operating expense rather than a capital equipment purchase.
    • You won’t regret a big purchase decision, but that doesn’t mean you can’t look to the future. MH Rents also lets you explore rent-to-own or long term leasing options.
    • If your industry is cyclical or seasonal in nature, expensive equipment can end up sitting unused in the offseason. Remove the necessity to calculate the return on the investment and see your dollars pay off during a short-term rental period.
    • Get access to top-of-the-line equipment at an affordable price. If you’re set on working with a specific brand whether it be Hyster, Yale, Mariotti, JLG, Powerboss, Railking, or any of our other manufacturers MH Rents has you covered at a great price.

    While renting is a perfect solution for many of our partners, there are also many instances when buying is definitely the way to go. If you’re weighing the options, don’t jump into renting without first considering the benefits to owning your own piece of equipment.

    Benefits to Owning:

    • Planning is a breeze. You’ll always have that forklift or piece of equipment on hand even when you think you might not have needed it. If a situation pops up, you don’t need to coordinate a rental.
    • While renting allows you to remove the stress of maintenance and repairs, if your in-house mechanics are ready to do maintenance, it doesn’t make sense to pay a rental company for this benefit.
    • Future strategy. An obvious benefit to owning is the asset belongs to you. Should your company no longer need the equipment you can sell the asset or otherwise gain from the ownership of it.
    • If the equipment you need is very specific and you need it often, you may have better luck purchasing it. Often, these specific pieces of equipment can be difficult to find available for rent (although MH prides ourselves on having a wide variety). Due to the low supply of these particular items, the cost of renting could eventually outweigh the cost of ownership.
    • Maintenance doesn’t have to be scary. If you use your equipment less than the average business owner but still on a consistent basis, consider purchasing. You’ll likely save on repairs if you’re not running high hours on the unit.

    The MH Difference:

    Obviously, we believe MH is the best option for your rental equipment needs (full disclosure, we may be biased) but you’re probably wondering: Why? What makes MH Rents a better option?

    The three biggest differentiators for MH Rents is the size of our fleet, the variety of our fleet, and the age of our fleet.


    MH Rents has a high volume of inventory ready to meet your needs. Almost always, we can have your piece of rental equipment delivered within 24 hours or much less so you have as little downtime as possible.


    Our fleet includes small forklifts needed for incredibly tight spaces, all the way up to equipment with a 36,000 lb. load capacity. The variety extends far beyond forklifts to include rental availability for boom lifts, scissor lifts, railcar movers, sweepers, scrubbers, excavators, backhoe loaders, tow tractors and more. So chances are, no matter what your material handling equipment rental needs, you only need to call number (309) 699-4024


    Perhaps the biggest differentiator we have is the young age of our fleet. We rarely rent a piece of equipment more than seven years old to our customers. Be careful looking at other rental options as often companies buy old used equipment to turn around for rent. MH prides ourselves on offering a high-quality experience, and our rental units are no exception. It doesn’t do you any good to rent an old unit that could have issues of its own. Often, at MH have the whole history of each rental unit, so you know it’s a high-quality option for you and your business.

    Still have Questions?

    If some of these topics sound like issues you’re faced with or you’re wondering: What does it cost to rent a forklift? Contact an MH rental manager today by calling (309) 699-4024. We can rent by the hour, day, week, month or beyond. Let us know how we can work for you.

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