You’re making a move and you need to store your belongings or perhaps you have recently acquired an estate full of items you are not prepared to store, but you don’t want to sell. Rental storage facilities are the logical place to store what you own, for both short- and long-term reasons. Here’s what to keep in mind when considering such places.
1. Climate control or not. You have your choice of a climate-controlled facility or one that is dependent upon the vagaries of your local weather. A climate-controlled facility is ideal for anything that could be ruined by mold and mildew. Fabrics, such as couches, are prone to destruction if not maintained in a temperature and humidity controlled environment. You will pay much more for such a facility, but then you won’t find yourself throwing out your grandmother’s antique Queen Anne chairs next year.
2. Wrap with care. The last thing you want to do is store what you own haphazardly. You need to wrap everything just like you would if you were to move because transporting your goods to a self storage facility is moving. Besides, if you end up moving to a new home, you’ll need each box properly labeled, sealed and protected against the bumps and grinds associated with moving.
3. Handle with care. The facility you rent may look like Fort Knox, but it is penetrable. Moreover, the unit itself can easily become damaged if you do not take care on where to load your goods. Avoid leaning anything against the walls as the added weight could cause sheet rock to break. The last thing you want is to be billed for damage that didn’t have to happen.
4. Make use of pallets. Related to the first point, climate control, you should avoid stacking your items on the floor. There are a few reasons for that, including exposure to dirt and moisture. Your rental storage facility may seem like an ideal place to store items, especially when it is dry. A heavy rain, however, can test the unit like nothing else. It may seem waterproof, but a torrential downpour could cause water to course through the interior. If it does, you will be saved if your goods are stored on top of pallets.
5. Security is a must. Only rent at a facility that is adequately secured. Ideally, it will have a pass-code enabled entry designed to allow you and other tenants in, but keep troublemakers out. The door to your unit should be secured and flush with the ground when it is closed. Open the door and it should slide right up on the tracks. Further, you need to invest in a heavy-duty lock, one that cannot be easily cut with a bolt cutter. A few extra dollars paid for a premium lock will ensure that your stuff is not stolen explains Smart Box Moving.
6. Keep supplies on hand. You won’t just occupy a storage facility unit, but you will also access it. At least from time to time. That also means checking your unit regularly to ensure that the facility is secure, that rodents haven’t taken up residence, and that it is clean. Keep a broom and dust pan on hand and if you live in an area where it snows, a snow shovel and sand can come in handy as well.
Rental Unit Considerations
How long will you need a rental storage unit? If it is for the short term, then avoid a long-term contract. Many facilities allow people to store what they own for a few months, although they will pay more. Never allow price to trump everything — cleanliness and security are more important.