Where Can I Buy A Shipping Container?

where can i buy a shipping container

Where Can I Buy A Shipping Container? In an era where repurposing and innovative uses of industrial items are at their peak, shipping containers have surged in popularity. Not only are they used for cargo transport, but they have also found new lives as homes, offices, pop-up shops, and more, thanks to their durability, modularity, and relatively low cost. If you’re wondering where you can buy a shipping container for your next project, you’ve come to the right place. This article will explore the various avenues for purchasing shipping containers, ensuring you make an informed decision tailored to your needs.

Local Depots and Yards

Advantages of Buying Locally

The most straightforward place to start your search for a shipping container is at local depots or yards. These facilities often have a range of containers in different sizes and conditions, allowing you to inspect them personally before making a purchase. Buying locally means you can assess the container’s condition, avoiding surprises. Moreover, local purchases can significantly reduce delivery costs and time.

How to Find Them

To locate these depots, a simple internet search for “shipping container sales near me” should provide a list of nearby vendors. Additionally, reaching out to local shipping or logistics companies can lead you to their preferred suppliers.

Online Marketplaces

The Digital Hunt

In the digital age, online marketplaces have become a hotbed for finding shipping containers. Websites like eBay, Craigslist, and specialized online platforms dedicated to shipping container sales offer a vast selection from sellers across the country or even globally.

Benefits and Considerations

Shopping online provides the convenience of browsing options from your home and the ability to compare prices and conditions easily. However, it’s crucial to vet sellers carefully and, if possible, inspect the container in person or request detailed photos and condition reports before committing to a purchase.

Manufacturers and Retailers

Going Direct

For those seeking new or specific types of shipping containers, purchasing directly from manufacturers or specialized retailers is the best route. These companies offer new containers, often with customization options for doors, windows, and other modifications.

Customization and Quality

Buying from a direct manufacturer or retailer ensures you get a container in excellent condition, with potential warranties and the option for customization. However, this route tends to be more expensive than buying used or from local depots.


The Auction Route

Shipping container auctions, both online and in-person, are excellent places to find deals. These auctions often come from companies liquidating excess inventory, offering a chance to purchase containers at a fraction of their retail value.

Strategies for Auction Success

To succeed in auctions, set a budget, including delivery costs, and stick to it. Familiarize yourself with the auction process beforehand, and don’t hesitate to ask questions about the container’s condition and history.

Tips for Buying a Shipping Container

Regardless of where you decide to purchase your shipping container, here are some universal tips to ensure you get the best deal and product for your needs:

  • Know Your Needs: Determine the size and type of container you need. Standard sizes are 20 and 40 feet in length, but there are also high cube containers that offer extra height.
  • Inspect Thoroughly: Look for signs of rust, damage, and wear. Ensure the doors operate smoothly and the seals are intact.
  • Consider Delivery: Understand the logistics and cost of getting the container to your location. Some sellers offer delivery, but it’s often at an additional cost.
  • Negotiate: Don’t be afraid to negotiate the price, especially if you’re buying in person or see visible damage.
  • Plan for Modification: If you intend to modify the container, consider consulting with a specialist to ensure the container’s structure remains intact.


The journey to buying a shipping container can lead you down various paths, from local depots and yards to online marketplaces, direct manufacturers, and auctions. Each avenue offers unique advantages, whether it’s the ability to inspect the container in person, the convenience of online shopping, the quality assurance of buying new, or the thrill of snagging an auction deal. By understanding your needs, doing thorough research, and following the tips provided, you’ll be well on your way to finding the perfect shipping container for your project. Remember, the key is to approach the process with patience and diligence, ensuring that you get a container that meets your requirements at the best possible price. Where Can I Buy A Shipping Container?

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