Keep Your Neighbors Out of Your Dumpster

Are Your Neighbors Using Your Dumpster?

When renting a dumpster for your renovation project or household clean out you may start to notice some garbage going in that isn’t yours. A dumpster rental can be a stressful process if you’ve got neighbors who figure they can just piggyback on your rental while they do some clean up of their own. However, even from just one or two neighbors tossing some of their garbage into your dumpster your rental can turn into to a headache.

Dumpster rentals have set weight limits, if your neighbors toss out their own garbage on top of yours, causing you to exceed the weight limit you will be charged an additional fee. There is also the added risk that your neighbors could throw in some prohibited items such as batteries or paint that will cost you another extra fee.

To avoid this issue, there are several ways you can keep your neighbors from using your dumpster.

Bring it Up Casually

If you see your neighbors often and commonly make small talk with them, try to make it a point to mention that you’re going to have a dumpster delivered. Tell them what you’re using it for and try to casually mention the regulations including the weight limit and what can’t go in there.

If you’re feeling extra daring, mention how you heard about other renters being charged extra because other people had used their dumpster. For many, this should be clear enough that using your dumpster is not okay.

Keep the Area Lit

Leave your garage or porch lights on while the dumpster is on your property. Try to have the dumpster delivered as close to your property or to your home as you can, having the lights on the dumpster and the area surrounding it will most likely keep any unwanted people from tossing some of their own junk in. Most neighbors will feel too awkward to try using your dumpster when there is a good chance you or someone else will catch them doing it.

Put a Tarp Over it

One of the most effective ways from keeping unwanted people from using your dumpster, is to put a tarp over it! Use a bungee cord and a tarp to cover the top of your dumpster, this will also help keep your dumpster safe from any rain or snow that may effect the weight of the debris. Most of the time neighbors who use other people’s dumpster aren’t doing it to be malicious, they just see it as a convenient way to get rid of an old box of stuff they’ve been meaning to toss.

If your neighbors have to undo bungee cords and remove a large tarp just to get to the dumpster, then it’s no longer convenient, if the inconvenience doesn’t shut the idea down, trying to remove the tarp would attract too much attention for most to even attempt it.

Check Daily

Every morning make it a point to check your dumpster before you start working on your project. If you see something there that you didn’t put in, remove it. If you know who dumped it, a friendly confrontation may be in order. The key thing to remember is that you want the issue resolved peacefully and quickly, so try to keep it civil.

If you do find items you’re unsure of and don’t know where they came from, politely ask your neighbors if they have been using your dumpster or have seen anyone who has. Explain to them that you will be charged an extra fee if their stuff causes you to exceed your weight limit, and ask them to take their stuff back. If they’re reasonable, they should have no problem with this, however if they refuse to move items that you know are theirs, you’ll have to make a judgement call about whether or not you need to contact the local authorities. Remember it is illegal to use someone else’s dumpster without permission, as it’s considered a theft of services, since you are responsible for paying for what’s inside.

If you’re unsure as to which neighbors are using your dumpster, or feel you can’t confront them about it, contact your city council and explain the situation. They can provide you with information and resources on the appropriate steps to take.

Do a Group Rental

Instead of trying to keep your neighbors out of your dumpster, invite them in. If you’re planning a small project that isn’t going to create a ton of debris, you may be able to cut down the cost by getting some neighbors to split a dumpster rental with you. Almost everyone has household junk sitting around that they never get around to cleaning out. This is a great alternative and you can definitely find at least one neighbor who is willing to split the dumpster with you.

If you choose to split a dumpster with a neighbor or two here’s a few things you should do before hand:

  • Research dumpster rental prices in your area, so you can give your neighbors a better idea of what they can expect to pay.
  • Make sure all the neighbors who’ve agreed to go in on the dumpster know who else will be using it.
  • Agree among yourselves on where the dumpster will be placed. Once it’s delivered you won’t be able to move it between different properties.
  • Make sure everyone knows the rules regarding the dumpster’s weight limit and prohibited items.
  • Ask everyone to state in writing the amount they’ve agreed to pay and that they understand all of the rules associated with the dumpster rental. This way everyone is protected if anyone tries to skip out on the bill or dispose of unapproved items.


With some planning and vigilance you can make sure you’re the only one who’s using your dumpster rental, and avoid any extra fees and headaches. If you’re ready to rent a dumpster for your next project call us at Dumpster Rental Inc for a free quote on and get one of our affordable roll off dumpsters today!

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