Frequently asked questions

What is an Anti-Vandal Cabin?

An Anti-Vandal Cabin is a secure portable unit which provides added security in comparison to a classic portable cabin.

Our Anti-Vandal Cabins are built with a 1.6mm thick steel frame which provides a robust outer casing to help prevent potential break-in attempts and vandalism, industry leading 10-point locking steel security doors by Kirncroft, extra thick 18mm flooring and cost effective/low energy metres and lighting.

Our Anti-Vandal cabins are ideal for a multitude of environments, and are a favoured solution for construction sites and remote site locations.

Check out Shield by Cabinlocator, our range of secure portable units here

Who are the top portable building manufacturers?

Cabinlocator as a manufacturer can provide both brand new, modern modular buildings and stylish and practical portable cabin buildings. We can manufacture portable buildings, portable cabins, site cabins, office cabins, containers stores, mobile classrooms… the list is endless as to how we can create your ideal building, right from the design work to the final touches on-site.

Our aim at Cabinlocator Ltd is to offer a service that is beneficial to both buyer and seller, creating a market where both parties can find the best deals possible, offering help and advice from our experts, and linking you to one of the of the UK’s largest and most established platforms of new and used portable buildings in the UK.

What is a portable building or cabin?

A portable building is a self-contained freestanding cabin that is delivered to site in one piece and once craned into position and connected to electric is ready immediately. You can unlock the door and you can have an office up and running as all lights, heaters and electrical connections are already installed.

You can still double stack portable buildings or cabins but usually using an external staircase to access the upper floors is the norm so you won’t be protected from the wind and rain as you go from cabin to cabin.

The individual cabins can also be linked in a line by constructing a covered walkway between them by utilising the doorways but this does take quite a lot of space internally as you will need to allow in effect for a corridor for people to walk through to access the next cabin thus you will lose valuable desk space.

What different types of portable cabin are there?

Jackleg cabins: This is a very common type of portable cabin which has the extendable legs visible on the exterior of the cabin. This is the type of cabin we mainly supply in both new build and second hand or used.

Modern jackleg cabins are normally externally clad in plastisol steel on the exterior, which will give many years of virtually maintenance free ownership rather than the older style timber textured cabins which would need repainting periodically.

Anti Vandal Cabins: Constructed from either corrugated or flat steel these cabins are a more secure option for a site where it may be more at risk from vandalism or theft. They still have all the normal heating, lighting etc. internally but the opening windows benefit from steel shutters that can be opened but then locked securely when the cabin is not being used. We offer both new and used anti vandal cabins.

How much is a used portable cabin?

How much you will pay for a portable cabin depends on the quality of the building you buy and whether you buy new or used.

New portable cabins aren’t usually that much more to buy and your building will come with a 12 month warranty but a used cabin will be covered for a shorter period.

Another thing that will affect the cost of a portable cabin is what it is made out of. Timber textured exteriors have less life expectancy than a plastisol steel exterior and so you are paying more but the cabin will last longer.

What is a modular building?

A modular building is constructed from two or more individual modules or bays. Each module is basically a portable cabin with only two end walls on that are then connected. This gives a larger building without having lots of internal walls thus giving a larger and more efficient open plan space internally.

Each module can still be craned in by a lorry and then when each module or bay is sited they will have the electrical bay to bay and weather sealing joints completed. All the individual modules will need to be completed before you can use the building.

A modular building can be double or triple stacked and as it has more open plan internal space than e.g. double stacked portable cabins, internal staircases and lifts can be fitted to give a more effective working environment.

How are portable buildings delivered?

Modular and portable buildings are designed to be transported by road on a lorry to site, they are then normally craned into position using the same lorry with a hi ab or lorry-mounted crane dependant on site access and conditions.

Good site access for a lorry is required up to and around where the building is to be sited otherwise a standalone crane will have to be hired separately.

A standard portable cabin width is up to 10ft wide and requires no more than the lorry it sits on to deliver it but wider buildings can still be transported, in this case they will require a wide load escort vehicle. This should be taken into consideration when fixing your cabin budget as it will add to the overall costs.

How do you connect a portable cabin to services?

If you require your portable cabin to be connected to services that is easily done as the units come with an inlet box ready to be connected by your qualified electrician once it has been delivered to site.

The same applies to portable buildings with toilets, sinks etc. fitted. The cabin will come complete with connections for your qualified plumber to connect to water and suitable drainage up to the cabin.

If you are on a site with no services we do sometimes have second hand cabins that come complete with water tanks, septic tanks and generators fitted, call the team on 01757 282319 for more details on what we have in stock.

What foundations do portable cabins and modular buildings need?

Normally portable cabin foundations are required to be supported on the jack legs and modular buildings are designed to be supported on the four corners. If going straight on to a flat concrete pad the buildings may just need to levelled.

We can supply a pad foundation drawing on request and we will also supply the leg centre measurements so that the pads can be pre prepared by others prior to the delivery date of the cabin.

Double stacked units will need stronger foundations but requirements may vary significantly between sites, products and uses, so a site visit maybe required.

Where can I sell my portable building?

Here at Cabinlocator we are always looking to buy quality used portable buildings and cabins to add to our stock. If you are looking to sell your portable building we may offer to buy it direct for a trade valuation or you could advertise on our website to reach a wider audience.

In the first instance please email some photographs of the portable cabins or modular buildings you would like to sell to along with the area of the country they are situated in and your contact details and we will be in touch.

If you would like any further information regarding our service, please contact the team direct on 01757 282 319.

Do Cabinlocator supply spare parts for your buildings?

Yes, we can offer a variety of additional, spare or replacement materials.

Call our helpful team on 01757 282319 to discuss your requirements further.

Do Cabinlocator arrange connection to electricity, phone lines and data cables?

The Cabinlocator team will not supply any internal installation services, our buildings once in place and connected to mains and water supply are passed over to the new owners or hirers to organise IT services.

What happens if I don't have a mains power supply nearby?

Cabinlocator would not be able to supply a portable building which required electrics if no mains electrics are nearby.

You could rent a generator or consider one of our refurbished groundhog units which are cabins that are half generators with toilet and welfare facilities and could meet your requirements, enquire with a our friendly team today if we have stock, call us on 01757 282319

What happens if my Cabinlocator portable or modular building is damaged?

If your building (both bought or hired) is damaged please get in touch with us as soon as possible so we can assess the extent of damage.

Call us on 01757 282319.

With hire buildings some weathering is expected on buildings but significant damages need to be resolved by the hirer and could involve costly charges, that is why we recommend hirers insure their buildings.

Will my Cabinlocator building require certain foundations?

Following a free of charge site visit our team will advise whether the foundations require any additional footings.

We can provide foundation pads at an additional charge which will support your new building.

How long does delivery and installation take?

Cabinlocator are a small family run business, a new building is currently taking on average 4 weeks from receipt of initial payment to completion (statement accurate Jan 2024).

We will provide an estimated turnaround timescale at the time of enquiry. Once ready for delivery, the portable buildings are collected from Cabinlocator HQ in East Yorkshire and delivered to site the following morning for installation. It then takes about an hour to offload, position and level the building into place.

What happens if I don't have a mains water supply and drainage nearby?

Unfortunately if you do not have mains water supply or drainage nearby we would struggle to accommodate your needs unless you required a building with no water or electrics.

We often have second-hand groundhog units which are cabins that are half generators with toilet and welfare facilities and could meet your requirements, enquire with a our friendly team today if we have stock 01757 282319

Why work with Cabinlocator?

We pride ourselves on the service we provide. Our friendly and helpful team are here to advise and can be contacted via phone, email or live chat.


Read some of our customer testimonials here 

What technical support will I get with my Cabinlocator building?

Our helpful and knowledgeable team are available to help our clients with any queries they have from initial enquiry to aftercare.

How are Cabinlocator portable buildings delivered?

Cabinlocator portable buildings are delivered via road on articulated lorry mounted crane.

The crane that is situated on the lorry lifts the building from the lorry into position on site. This procedure must be adhered to via strict health and safety guidelines by a trained project manager.

What happens if a problem occurs with my building?

Our aftercare sales will be on hand to assist you with any issues you may come across following installation of your portable or modular building, call us on 01757 282319 and speak with a member of our friendly team.

What do I need to do before the building is delivered?

Our project manager and customer care team will keep you fully in the loop with the progress of your building and delivery.

Prior to the delivery we will provide full details of any general procedures such as ensuring access to the site is kept clear and has space to receive delivery.

If you have any questions throughout please feel free to contact our helpful team on 01757 282319.

Are you fully licensed for health and safety?

Health & Safety is incredibly important to us at Cabinlocator, before every building is delivered a thorough risk assessment is completed to ensure delivery and installation runs smoothly without any potential risk.

Do I need planning permission and how long will it take?

In most cases, you will need planning permission for a portable building or any other temporary structure that you plan to install on your property. However, there are some exceptions to this rule, and the regulations can vary depending on your location and the intended use of the structure.

If you plan to install a portable building on agricultural land, you may be able to do so without planning permission if it meets certain criteria. The structure must be used solely for agricultural purposes and cannot be used as a dwelling or for any other commercial use. Additionally, the structure must not exceed a certain size, typically around 100 square meters.

Similarly, if you plan to use the portable building as a temporary structure for a specific event or activity, such as a temporary classroom or office, you may not need planning permission as long as the structure is removed within a specified timeframe and does not cause any harm to the surrounding environment.

However, if you plan to use the portable building as a permanent structure or for a commercial purpose, such as a storage facility or office space, you will likely need planning permission. This process can vary depending on your location and the specifics of your project, so it’s important to check with your local planning authority to determine whether you need permission and what the requirements are.

In summary, the need for planning permission for a portable building will depend on its intended use and location. If you’re unsure whether you need permission, it’s always best to check with your local planning authority to avoid any potential legal issues down the line.

How many people can welfare site accommodation site building accommodate?

Cabinlocator portable and modular buildings are available in a range of sizes to suit client requirements. Buildings can be stacked up as well as having a large footprint.

Our buildings range from one person gatehouses to 100+ people school classroom blocks.

What are your buildings made from?

90% of Cabinlocator portable and modular buildings are made from timber and steel.

We buy from quality and local suppliers to ensure a premium and as sustainable as possible end result.

What structural warranties and certifications do you have?

At Cabinlocator we offer 3 years structural warranty and 12 month as per electrical manufacturers warranty on our portable and modular buildings.

Can I choose my own internal layout?

At Cabinlocator our in-house design team will work with you to create a bespoke building, or you an choose from a range of standard layouts which we know to work well within your chosen industry sector.

How many people can a portable building accommodate?

Cabinlocator portable and modular buildings are available in a range of sizes to suit client requirements. Buildings can be stacked up as well as having a large footprint.

Our buildings range from one person gatehouses to 100+ people school classroom blocks.

What are your welfare site accommodation buildings made from?

90% of Cabinlocator portable and modular buildings are made from timber and steel. We buy from quality and local suppliers to ensure a premium and as sustainable as possible end result.

Can portable buildings withstand extreme weathers?

Yes, our portable and modular buildings are manufactured to last and withstand all kinds of weather from extreme heat to severe cold that you would expect from residing in the UK.

Can you change door and window positions?

Our in-house design team and workshop can create bespoke building designs, that sit within our structural framework but can offer a significant uniqueness.

How often am I invoiced when hiring a portable building from Cabinlocator?

We invoice for our hired portable buildings every four weeks.

Do I need to insure the building when it's on my site?

Our T&C’s state that any hired portable buildings must be insured prior to site delivery. If you have bought the building it is up to you but we strongly recommend you do take out some form of insurance.

How can I buy a pre-owned modular building?

We offer a range of second-hand and/or refurbished modular buildings from a variety of manufacturers and big names. Get in touch with our team to find out the current stock list.

Can I extend my hire?

It is easy to extend your hire contract, we request an initial one year hire agreement and then we can offer a 4 weekly rolling contract, with only 4 weeks notice period to end the contract.

Can I hire a building for an unknown amount of time?

At Cabinlocator we request at least a one year initial hire term, and following that we offer a 4 weekly rolling contract.

What upfront payments are required?

When purchasing a portable or modular building we require 50% payment at time of order, and the 50% balance before delivery.

When hiring a portable or modular building we require the delivery charge and first 8 weeks hire costs paying upfront.

Will I be charged for site visits?

No, all our site visits are free of charge.

Do you buy back your buildings?

Yes, we offer a buy back and part exchange service, subject to T&C’s on the condition of the building.

Is maintenance included?

It is your responsibility to check on general upkeep and conditions of your building.

If you come across an issue then please get in touch with us on 01757 282319 and we can discuss potential solutions

What happens if I no longer need the building during the minimum hire period?

We offer a minimum term hire of 1 year that must be adhered to and paid as part of your contract. 1 year minimum is one of the shortest hire term options available in the UK market.

How long can I hire a building for?

You can hire a portable building for as long as you want, but if it is going to be long-term you should consider if it would be more financially viable buying the portable building upfront instead.

What will it cost to remove the building at the end of the hire period?

It states in our T&C’s that the price to remove your portable building is subject to site inspection and costs associated at the time of removal.

Are the doors and windows secure?

We provide a range of doors options to suit your needs.

Our fire and security doors provide additional security against varied environments. All openable windows have lockable handles and are provided with 2 sets of keys per window.

We install security sensor lighting to our buildings to assist in keeping the buildings secure.

Can I design my own vinyl wrap?

Yes, you can create your own design or work with our in-house design team to create your desired build aesthetics.

Be aware that vinyl wrap can damage plastisol cladding.

Can I attach signage to the outside of the building?

Yes, if we are provided required information from the start of production we can install additional features such as signing to be attached to the building.

Can I brand my portable building?

Yes, our buildings are available in a range or colours provided by plastisol steel cladding, or wood designs. You can choose up to two colours to compliment your brand.

Can I change the external appearance of the building?

Yes, our range of plastisol colours, or timber clad designs can create a really unique design for your building.

Will I need steps or ramps into the building?

Steps and/or ramps are fitted as standard with our buildings.

Your environment will determine how many steps are required and the best solution for your business needs.

Are portable buildings cold?

Cabinlocator Portable and Modular buildings are built to withstand a variety of conditions. The timber and steel clad exterior creates great insulation.

Cabinlocator use Firestone RubberCover which is an industry leading roof membrane. Your building can be fit with a variety of doors and windows to compliment the environment you plan to house your building.

Can we use our own air conditioning company?

Yes, you can use your own air conditioning company.

Air conditioning units do not travel well so we would install these on site, so you can use one of our preferred partners or supply your own air conditioning company to fit your building.

Any amendments made to the build would be documented at the time of installation and require them to carry out their own risk assessments and diligence.

What can you do to enhance the security of my modular or portable building?

You can enhance the security of your portable or modular building by installing additional security measures such as steel window and door guard, alarms and more locks.

Check out our Shield by Cabinlocator range of secure portable buildings here

Do you provide furniture?

We do not supply internal decoration or soft furnishings.

We have a list of suppliers if you require any help finding a reputable business.

How do I enhance security measures for my building?

Shield by Cabinlocator offers a range of secure portable buildings that fit a multitude of anti-vandal and high-secure units.

They are built with resilient steel cladding and solid window and door guards for additional protection from external sources.

How many keys do I get with the building?

You get four keys per door, and two window keys as standard.

What floor covering do you offer?

Cabinlocator Portable and Modular buildings flooring is covered with hard-wearing vinyl and/or carpet tiles depending on the usage of the building. We also offer cove skirting which allows for easy cleaning if the usage requires high hygiene standards and regular deep cleaning.

What is the difference between a 'modular' and a 'portable' building?

A ‘portable’ building is a self-contained, freestanding cabin that is delivered to site in one piece by road, craned into position and connected to electrics and ready for immediate use.

You can unlock the door and you can have an office up and running as all lights, heaters and electrical connections are already installed.  A ‘modular’ building is constructed from two or more individual modules or bays.

Each module is basically a portable cabin with only two end walls on that are then connected. This gives a larger building without having lots of internal walls thus giving a larger and more efficient open plan space internally.

Can you manufacture buildings for tight spaces or sites with limited access?

Yes, our first port of call would be to arrange a free of charge site survey to check the environment is fit for purpose, once it has been agreed our design team can create a space to fit your needs.

Our experienced team have the knowledge and expertise to navigate buildings into the trickiest of spots. There is also the option to build up and create a multi-storey space which requires a smaller footprint.

Can I relocate a building?

If you have bought or hired your initial portable building from Cabinlocator, feel free to call us on 01757 282319 and we will happily put you in touch with one of our preferred transport partners who can assist you with your relocation requirements.

Can I put buildings inside our factory or warehouse?

Yes, we are able to install buildings inside factories and warehouses.

Following a free of charge site survey we will plan how best to execute your requirements.

Read one of our customer testimonials here from a warehouse housed portable building project.

How do you compare against traditional construction?

Portable and Modular buildings are more environmentally friendly than traditional construction because they use less green house gasses to manufacture.

Portable buildings are made from recyclable products, that are also built to last, so a lot less ends up in landfill.

The build is built in one place and then assembled at location using less emissions.

The buildings are built to last and have many design aesthetics to choose from, so the building can be design in-keeping with surrounding environments.

What is the main benefit of buying a refurbished portable building?

The main benefits of buying a refurbished portable building are, its an economical choice, it suits more budgets as it is significantly cheaper than newly manufactured portable buildings, and it is a great short term solution that has a shorter turnaround time-scale.

Are there any energy saving options available?

Yes, portable and modular buildings are an eco-friendlier option to traditional forms of construction.

At Cabinlocator we have standard features which are energy efficient, such as PIR lighting and push taps, which are also cost effective solutions.

How long do portable buildings tend to last?

Portable Cabins by Cabinlocator, are manufactured to the highest standards using industry leading brands such as Dobel steel cladding and Firestone Rubbercover roof membrane making them built to last and a sustainable choice.

Because of the life-span expectancy and warranty’s of the component infrastructure we estimate a Cabinlocator portable building will last between 20-25 years.

What are pre-owned modular buildings?

Pre-owned portable and modular buildings are buildings which have been previously owned or hired/on hire to single or multiple businesses.

We buy a range of different buildings from different manufacturers, not solely Cabinlocator originated.

Once we have bought the second-hand building, we have the capacity to refurbish the internal and external infrastructure to quality conditions.

What site accommodation building options are available?

At Cabinlocator we offer a bespoke design service to accommodate your site requirements.

We can either follow direct layout instructions or work with you to tailor a buildings layout and design to fit your needs.

Can I view a Cabinlocator portable building before buying/renting?

Yes, we love to have visitors at Cabinlocator HQ, come see us in sunny East Yorkshire!

As we are a working site we require appointments to be made in advance but welcome customers to visit. Come see our buildings and meet our friendly team.