3 Factors That Impact Your Price for Pallets

These days, purchasing agents are under pressure to procure savings above all else. When considering pallets, it is possible to buy economically if you understand the factors the impact cost and what you can do to avoid over-spending. We’ll break it down for you.

Cost is dependent on:

  1. Geographic Considerations – Type of lumber, core availability, and labor supply varies by region and this affects pallet pricing. For example, mills around the country use different wood species, depending on what is widely grown and harvested in the area. Typically, hardwoods such as oak are more expensive than softwoods such as pine. In general, if cores and labor are plentiful, the cost to produce pallets will be lower; however, the converse is also true.
  2. Order Details – The quantity you order and pallet specifications can drive up or down cost. For example, smaller orders may be more expensive due to transportation costs. (The fewer the pallets on the truck, the smaller the dividend; therefore, each pallet bears a larger portion of the cost.) A custom pallet is more expensive than a standard GMA pallet. And, a new pallet is more expensive than a used pallet.
  3. Fluctuations in Material Prices – The price of a pallet (even one made in the same region with the same type of lumber and specifications) may vary from one month to the next based on market fluctuations in material. Half the price of a pallet is in the wood and another 5%-10% is in the fasteners or threads (nails, staples, screws, bolts, lag bolts, adhesives, and welds).

Manage costs by:

  1. Reviewing application – Understand how pallets function in your operation. Know the load carrying capacity. From there, you can look at ways to improve the stiffness without adding cost. Consider how they interact with other material handling equipment to determine the proper pallet size/style for best handling.
  2. Using design software – The right design ensures optimal unit load and safety. Through software such as the Pallet Design System you can make smarter design choices to ensure you are getting the most bang for your buck—both from a cost and performance aspect.
  3. Choosing an alternativeReconditioned pallets are the most affordable option because they do not require any additional lumber; they are simply repaired and re-used. Combo pallets combine reclaimed and new wood making it less expensive than buying new, but slightly more than reconditioned pallets.

How can we help? Give us a call or request a free quote today. Our pallet specialists are eager to help you get the right pallet for the right price.

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