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How Much Does a Skip Cost to Hire?

Author: Samuel Beckingham
Updated: Apr 04, 2024
8 minutes read
  • Average skip hire costs by size
  • Process involved
  • Overview of sizes to help you choose the right one for your job

If you have a lot of waste to get rid of, you’re probably thinking about skip hire. It’s the most useful way of removing rubbish on a medium to large scale that won’t take you hundreds of trips to your local waste and recycling centre. But how much does a skip cost?

This article will look at how much it costs to hire a skip based on different skip sizes. It will then cover different aspects that affect the price you pay and the process involved. Finally, it will go over the most common sizes of household skip to help you decide which size you’d need.

Ready to hire a skip already? Use our quote comparison tool to find out how much you’d pay. It only takes a minute.

A yellow skip covered in a green material on top of a lorry heading down a dual carriageway

How Much Does a Skip Cost on Average?

Skip pricing is offered at fixed rates for certain volumes, and there’s usually only four options for houses. All skips are measured in cubic yards. This is the equivalent of three feet high by three feet wide by three feet deep.

Average prices to hire a skip are mainly geographically dependent. For a small 4 yard skip, this could be as cheap as £140, but some areas can charge up to £230.

On the larger end of the scale, a 12 yard skip costs £275 in a highly competitive area, or up to £460 in others.

You can see typical costs in the table below.

This means that, on average, it’s around £263 to hire a skip across all sizes. This figure is not an indication of how much you’d pay though, as there’s many elements that impact the price.

Top Tip

With skip hire, you’re effectively charged per tonne of waste disposal. While it’s useful to go for a larger skip than you might need, it’s important to fill your skip so you’re not wasting money.

Making use of all the space you’ve hired gives you the best value. This is why it’s important to choose the right size skip for your project. With a skip that’s too small, you’ll end up paying more for an additional one.

Factors Affecting the Cost of Skip Hire

The price of skip hire is not the same for all jobs. There are a few specifics that affect what you pay. These include:

  • Where you live

  • Disposal costs

  • Competition

  • Demand

  • Skip hire permit

Where You Live

Green Skip

The main factor that affects the price you’ll pay for skip hire is your location in the UK. Generally, the north is cheaper than the south, sometimes by up to £100. London is only slightly more than the national average, but this is due to relatively healthy competition.

The bottom line is, you don’t have much of a choice in how much you’d pay for a local skip hire company. There are other elements that keep the overall price down though.

Disposal Costs

The company you hire a skip from needs to consider local disposal costs. This may come under the availability of landfill or if there is space for the waste in energy incinerators. It’s also affected by how close nearby sites are. Greater distances to cover means greater transportation costs for the skip hire company.

In actuality, most of the waste from a skip is recycled. It makes the most commercial sense to do so, and it’s kinder to the planet. Depending on how far away you are from one of their facilities can make a big difference.

Competition

The availability of competition drives prices down for skip hire as different businesses compete for your custom. The more companies around, the better prices can be. If prices are high, it can mean one company has started to buy out others in order to raise their costs. This can come down if another skip hire company pops up.

Unless you’re looking to start your own firm, it’s more about luck than anything else. Larger businesses like to grow and take over smaller skip companies to increase the profits they can make. If you’re feeling particularly lucky, you could always ask for a discount.

Demand

As with the rules of supply and demand, the higher the need, the higher the price. If skips are readily available and demand is low, costs can be on the bottom end of the scale.

The length of hire can also spike prices. You can typically hire a skip between 1 and 14 days, although it’s normal to have a 7 day contract, with extensions from your skip hire company if need be.

Skip Hire Permit

If your skip is going on a public highway, you will need to purchase a skip hire permit. These prices vary by local council, ranging from £15 to more than £60. You can apply for this through the council and it grants you permission to keep a skip on the road for a specific length of time.

Drives are generally big enough for a standard 6 yard skip. If this is where you want your skip to sit, you won’t have to apply for a permit. However, if you don’t have a drive or the skip is too large for your driveway, you will need to apply and pay for a skip hire permit.

Skip Hire Process

Skip Lorry Vector

Skip hire services are used for the safe and legal disposal of your waste at a licensed facility. The company you’re hiring a skip from should have suitable accreditation, as you are ultimately responsible for your waste. Once you’ve filled up your skip, they will collect it from you.

Skip hire companies need to sort the waste they collect back at their depot before they can dispose of it. Some materials can be recycled, while the rest might be burned to make energy or disposed of in landfill. Incineration plants will charge to have your waste. Landfill sites will also charge, but this will be a higher cost due to landfill tax.

To keep costs down, it might be useful to limit the types of waste you put in your skip. Having a full mix of materials (without checking what’s permitted) can land you with additional costs.

Restrictions for Skip Hire

While skip hire is the perfect solution for house clearances and renovations, there are some limits on what you can and cannot place inside a skip.

The following restrictions usually apply when you hire a skip:

  • Asbestos

  • Aerosols

  • Food waste

  • Animal waste

  • Carpets

  • Cooking and engine oil

  • Electronic equipment and appliances (WEEE)

  • Explosives

  • Fluorescent tubes

  • Fridge freezers

  • Gas cylinders

  • Hazardous materials

  • Household and car batteries

  • Liquids

  • Mattresses

  • Medical and clinical waste

  • Paint and paint tins

  • Petrol and diesel

  • Plasterboard

  • Solvents

  • Tyres

These items are restricted with skip hire because some of them contain hazardous waste that can be a risk to humans and the environment. Other items need to be recycled but can only be done so in a specific way.

The good news is, all of the prohibited items can be taken to your local waste and recycling centre. While there may be a charge for some of these items, the majority will be taken free of charge.

If any of these restricted items are found in your skip when the waste is sorted, you are likely to be charged additional fees, so it’s important to keep an eye on it. Some companies may even return the waste to you.

Which Skip Is Best for Me?

Recycling Bin Vector

Skip hire comes with so much choice so it can be hard to know which size to choose. You should only hire a skip that fits your needs. To be more helpful, we’ve put a little guide together below.

4 Yard Mini Skip

A 4 yard skip, also known as a mini skip, is the smallest size you can hire. It’s the most compact and ideal for small domestic jobs.

6 Yard Small Skip

The next size up is a 6 yard skip, or small skip. This is good for medium projects, such as home clearouts. It is also able to fit on most driveways.

8 Yard Builders’ Skip

An 8 yard skip, or builders’ skip, is the largest for soil and rubble due to weight limits. It’s ideal for large domestic clearance and is also the biggest skip you can have on a public highway.

12 Yard Skip

A 12 yard skip is ideal for the biggest items, that aren’t too heavy, and for large clearouts. You can get larger sizes, such as a roll on roll off skip, but these are usually reserved for commercial or industrial premises.

See our Top 5 Reasons to Hire a Skip.

Find Out How Much You’d Pay

How much does a skip cost in my area? The simple way to find out what skip hire costs is to click on the button below. You’ll receive tailored quotes based on companies in your postcode.

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