Choose the Right Unit
1. Use a Reliable/Trustworthy Storage Company
Renting a storage unit generally means you will be entrusting the facility/provider with the security of your items. That said, you don’t want to pick the first company that comes to mind, but rather do your due diligence. One way to learn about a company’s creditability is by checking past customer reviews, testimonials, and experiences.
Most companies allow customers to leave a review on their page, valuable information for prospective customers. Follow your ‘gut’ feeling when choosing a facility as well. If anything seems sketchy, seek clarification from customer support or whichever channels they have provided. There’s no stressing how finding a trustworthy provider is crucial when looking for a short term storage unit.
2. Avoid Last Minute Craze
Several factors, including price, size, location, and convenience, should be considered when shopping for a self-storage unit. In this light, your potential candidates should satisfy all the 3 mentioned factors, another reason you need to begin your search early.
Do not wait until the last minute, but rather identify a potential provider/facility a week or so before D-day. Window shopping for available units in your preferred area also gives you several options to choose from. Choosing a good unit early enough also gives you time to plan and organise.
3. Take Inventory of Everything in the Unit
Make a habit of keeping a record/inventory of everything that goes into the unit. This is beneficial in a number of ways. First, it will give you a precise idea of what will be going into storage, hence calculating the required square footage. Second, it will make finding items already in the storage easier without necessarily having to comb every inch of the unit.
Packing the Unit
1. Label All Boxes and Storage Containers
There’s a good chance item going in for storage will not be needed for the next couple of weeks or even months. This is quite a long time to remember where everything is kept (even those with the sharpest memory do forget). A fool-proof way to remember where everything is is to keep inventory and label all storage containers/boxes accordingly.
For example, if a box contains sports equipment or utensils, label them as such. This will make finding those utensils, baseball, etc., easier without having to comb through the entire unit.
2. Don’t Keep Expensive Items in the Unit
The first rule of self-storage is never to store anything super-valuable in the unit. While you can be assured the items will be secure, there’s still a risk of the unit getting broken into, especially if anyone learns of valuables in the specific unit. Consider keeping expensive jewelry, house art, family heirlooms, and other valuables elsewhere. Don’t keep items you can’t afford to lose in the unit. If possible, consider keeping the valuables in a safe storage box in banks or take them with you.
3. Pack Strategically
Your packing method will significantly determine how much space you’ll need in storage. This is where you need to work on your planning and organizational skills. Packing carefully and organizing the unit in a way everything is accessible without moving things around would be an excellent idea.
For instance, keep items you hardly use/need at the back of the unit and those commonly needed at the front, closest to the door. Planning the storage space strategically can leave you more working space and make retrieving specific things possible.
These are some of the critical things to remember when shopping for a storage unit. Choose the most reputable and affordable provider, book the unit early, and organize everything for easier retrieval.