Portable Storage Container Under $500

Are you trying to choose a portable storage container under $500?

There are many reasons why you need a portable storage container, whether you’re moving or just need temporary storage.

In this article, we’ll look at 5 portable storage container under $500.

5 Portable Storage Containers Under $500


The first portable storage container under $500 we'll look at is PODS.

PODS is the possibly the most well-known company for moving containers, providing customers with steel-framed, weather-resistant moving containers. As with Mobile Mini, PODS has locations within the US, Canada, the UK, and Australia.

PODS has three different container sizes that customers can choose from, starting at 7’ and going up to 16’, making their containers smaller than the others on the list. Their containers are composed of aluminum skin, steel frames, and lightweight roll up doors that are designed for easy open and close and a plastic top.

Who should use PODS?

People that need climate-controlled storage and security on-site versus being on their personal property.

2. Mobile Mini

Mobile Mini is one of the oldest and most established portable services, with locations in the US, the UK, and Canada. They also provide tank and pump products in addition to their portable storage containers.

In terms of the containers offered, Mobile Mini has a variety of storage containers that range from 5’-40’ and are made of material they call p-panel.

Who should use Mobile Mini?

Anyone who is looking for a specific type of portable storage container under $500 in an area that doesn’t have a lot of other options.

3. Southwest Mobile Storage

Southwest Mobile Storage offers a variety of ISO containers for both portable temporary and permanent storage situations. Southwest Mobile Storage sells to both business-to-business and business-to-consumer companies and have become a leader in the shipping container industry, meeting the highest possible standards.

What makes Southwest Mobile Storage stand out is their ability to modify containers, so you can use them for whatever you need it for! The standard sizes for ISO containers are 8’x20’ and 8’x40’, but again, these can be modified up to 22 different customizations, thanks to the company’s 60,000 sq. ft on-site fabrication facility.

On average, customers of Southwest Mobile Storage save an average of 30% when compared to other Vendor services on this list.

Who should use Southwest Mobile Storage?

If you live in the Southwest and are looking for affordable portable storage containers.

4. COWs

Container On Wheels, or COWs, started in 2009 by an established fabrication company that specialized in both fabrication and modification of ISO steel containers. An interesting fact about COWs is that it is a franchise-based organization, meaning that each location is owned by a local neighborhood moving company or self-storage facility.

COWs has 31 locations within the US and a small footprint within the city of Ontario in Canada. They offer two sizes of containers, a 8’ footer and a 16’ footer, which are made out of metal and are stationed on wheels, making them easy to move. They offer a flexible rate, so that you can rent their storage containers by day, week, or month.

Who should use COWs?

People who are within a COWs location, want a flexible rent schedule, and portable/transportable storage container.

5. Smartbox

Smartbox is another affordable option when it comes to portable storage containers, with a main difference — their containers are made out of wood instead of metal. The Smartbox cubes contain a vinyl cover to protect the boxes from rain and other bad weather.

Unlike the other offerings on this list, Smartbox only offers one size of container, that of their 8x5x7 wood box. They do offer free storage for 30 days with a rental of one of their containers.

Who should use Smartbox?

Anyone who has a small number of items and plans to move during a time when weather or security will not be a concern.

Compare Pricing for Portable Storage Container Services

We looked at five different portable storage container services that can run you until $1,000. Unfortunately, there may be some caveats to that pricing.

For the portable storage container services listed, the final pricing will come down to what you need the portable storage container for, how long you’ll need it, and how far you need to go. For instance, COWs franchise-based model means that different locations will offer different services, plus they may not be offered in your area.

Pricing also depends on your area — as noted, while PODS, Mobile Mini, and Smartbox are widely available, Southwest Mobile Storage only operates in the Southwestern states of Arizona, Colorado, and California; as mentioned above, COWs franchises will have different pricing models, services, and fees depending on the location.

Each state and each city will have different pricing and some of the companies listed may charge more for long-distance use versus local. The size of container also affects the price.

In the case of using Smartbox, you only have one size choice, so if you need more than one storage container, you may need to pay more. In the case of PODS, their container choices, while more than Smartbox’ offering, may be too small for the space or items that you need to have stored.

In this article, we looked at 5 portable storage container services under $500. Depending on what your needs are, you may be able to go far below this figure, though as we mentioned it depends on your location, needs, and size of the container. On the average for local portable storage, prices tended to start around $352 and went up to $754 before taxes.

If you’d like to get a quote with one of our qualified shipping container experts, you can give us a call at 1.800.686.9114.