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How to Get the Most out of Your Self Storage Space

SunflowerProductions (9 of 32)outside unitsPeople utilize self storage facilities for a variety of reasons. Perhaps you’re getting ready to sell or remodel your home.  Maybe you’re a college student looking for a place to store your belongings that won’t fit in your small dorm room.  You might be expecting a new family member or have run out of space in your garage to park your car.  Whatever your storage needs, Self Storage Specialists have a variety of storage unit sizes for all of them.

Before you rent your storage unit, there are a few things to consider to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck and maximizing your self storage space.

1)      Location: It might be tempting to choose a facility with the lowest rates, but a better idea is to rent a unit at a self storage facility closest to you. You won’t want to waste your gas running all the way across the town when you need to access your items. Not only that, but look into whether or not the facility offers a security system. You want your belongings to stay safe and secure in the unit.

2)      Make a Plan: Give yourself plenty of time to pack your boxes and get them stored in the unit.  You’ll find your items are much easier to access if you’ve taken the time to label your boxes and put them in your storage unit in an organized layout.  It’s also advised to take an inventory; number each box and make a numbered list of what each box contains. You can use this inventory list as a sort of roadmap when it comes time to access something you may need. Bring everything you intend to store to the unit at one time, rather than adding things in little by little.

3)       Use the Correct Materials: Make sure you’ve taken the time to invest in good packing supplies so your belongings are protected. Purchase same-size, sturdy boxes and wrap fragile items in bubble wrap or newspaper to keep them from breaking once inside the unit. Cover your couches, beds, or dressers with furniture covers and place a tarp on the floor to prevent moisture from damaging them.

4)      Use the Space Wisely: Place taller items in the back of the unit, like mattresses or furniture, or vertically against the walls.  This will allow you to have access to the contents of your boxes since they’ll be closer to the front of the unit.  Keep the lighter boxes on top of heavier ones. Create a walkway or small aisles so you can easily get to all your belongings. Use empty dresser drawers or appliances to store smaller, fragile items. Break down furniture by disassembling bed frames and taking the legs off tables to create more room. Also, make sure your belongings are clean before storing them in your unit so they don’t attract any sort of critters.

If you take the time to plan how you’ll use your self storage unit, you’ll reap the benefit of your efforts in the long run.  Stop in to any of our 34 Self Storage Specialists locations to find out more information.

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26 Comments

  1. Dave Thompson Posted May 21, 2015 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

    Wonderful idea to have a plan before moving your things into a self storage unit. If you know where everything will go before you start putting it in the unit then the moving process will be a lot easier. I’ll have to give that a good next time I am looking to put a few things away in a storage unit. Thanks for the great advice on storage units.

  2. gary birtles Posted June 1, 2015 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    I’ve found that when it comes to renting a storage unit, most of the time items can fit in a smaller unit than you think. In the past I’ve paid for larger units and have been surprised that I didn’t even fill them up all the way. The past few times I’ve moved, I’ve chosen smaller units and my things have fit fine. That is something to keep in mind.

  3. Sergio Posted June 5, 2015 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

    I think you’re right: making a plan is important. Knowing what you’ll store beforehand will help you to be sure that you’ll get the most out of your unit. You don’t want it to be cluttered with things that you don’t need. Thanks for sharing your tips with us! http://www.storage2000.com.au

  4. Brandon Roberts Posted July 21, 2015 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    I am going to be moving for the first time in a few weeks, and I really want to make sure I do everything right. I rented out a storage unit, and it would be nice to make the absolute most of it. I totally feel like making sure I use the correct materials is going to help me out a ton with organizing everything. Thanks a ton for making me aware of this! It was a huge help.

  5. James Bay Posted August 27, 2015 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    The last time we filled a storage space, we failed to put the taller items in the back. This cause us much grief later in the process. That is a great tip. We will use it next time!

  6. Deanna R. Jones Posted September 2, 2015 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

    Using good packing materials when putting things away in storage seems like pretty sound advice. It seems like a lot of damage can be prevented when you belongings are protected by sturdy packing supplies. Sometimes things get dropped when you’re taking things out of storage, so using bubble wrap and newspapers can really help to keep things from breaking. I already have a few belongings in storage, but I should replace the flimsy boxes I’m using with better boxes and bubble wrap to make sure that they don’t break in storage. Thanks for the tips!

  7. Zach Potter Posted October 12, 2015 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    While doing research on storage and hiring units, I have heard a lot in the ways of step 3 here. It seems that getting the proper materials is very important and we will have to work on that better! We should also really get more of the same size boxes and keep them in good shape for the future. Thank you for the information and advice here.

  8. Joel Posted October 22, 2015 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the point about finding a place that’s close to you as opposed to finding one that is the least expensive. There’s some merit to that. I have a friend who recently moved all of her belongings from a storage unit into a larger apartment. She found that the thing had been unlocked the whole time that they had it. I’ll have to show her this article. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Aspen Bowen Posted November 6, 2015 at 2:15 am | Permalink

    I agree with what you said about making a plan. That is a smart way to make packing everything a lot easier. I need a storage unit, so when I am moving things in I will remember to make a plan to make it easier.

  10. Lauren Woodley Posted January 25, 2016 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    I really liked what you had to say about making a plan because I think that this really will help you to organize what you need to put in the storage unit, so that nothing gets lost or ruined. That being said, too, having adequate materials and time to do so will help you reduce the stress that is tacked on with this job and help you to get everything done that you need to. Thanks for sharing!

  11. Paul Langley Posted February 1, 2016 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

    These are some really great tips for anyone who uses a self storage unit, or is planning on getting one. Placing larger items is a great way to make sure you can get to the things you need to when you need them. Also, creating a walkway is vital, otherwise you’ll have to move everything when you want to get at things near the back. Thanks so much for writing!

  12. Vicky Durrant Posted February 12, 2016 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

    I’m going to be moving in a couple of months, and I’ve decided to put all of my things into a storage unit while I make the transition. I’ve never used a self storage unit before, though, so I’m happy that I found your post! I like what you mentioned about planning where I’m going to put all of my things in the storage unit. I think that doing this will help me keep everything organized! I’ll be sure to plan out where I’m going to put everything before I bring my belongings to the unit. Thank you for the advice!

  13. Jackie Oliver Posted February 18, 2016 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    I really like what you said about about using the right materials in your storage unit. I hadn’t thought about that, but that’s an excellent point. The last thing you want is for something to get into your boxes, so you want to make sure that they are good, well-made, sturdy boxes.

  14. Marie Watson Posted March 30, 2016 at 2:02 am | Permalink

    Thanks for mentioning some things to consider before renting a storage unit. You make a good point about considering the location over the price. I would think that it is important to be able to easily travel to your storage unit, so you can come and go as frequently as you need. It seems like it is also important to find out if the facility has insurance. I assume it is important to make sure your belongings are insured, in case of any accidents.

  15. Lillian Schaeffer Posted April 12, 2016 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

    These are some great tips, and I appreciate your advice to find a storage unit that’s close to you, even if it costs a bit more. My husband and I are going to be moving into a smaller apartment, and we need to find a good storage unit for some of our belongings. We’ll definitely look into renting one that is close by instead of just choosing the cheapest one. Thanks for the great post!

  16. Rockford Johnson Posted April 18, 2016 at 11:34 pm | Permalink

    Great post! Thank you for helping me understand how to get the most out of my self-storage unit. I really like how you said that “It might be tempting to choose a facility with the lowest rates, but a better idea is to rent a unit at a self-storage facility closest to you.” I am looking to buy a self-storage unit to put my stuff in so it is good to know that it is smart to find one that is close to home.

  17. Kenneth Gladman Posted April 20, 2016 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

    These are great ideas for saving space in a storage unit. I remember running out of room while packing and having to play tetris for a while to get everything to fit. Great advice about getting the bigger items in the back.

  18. emily bennette Posted April 29, 2016 at 12:45 am | Permalink

    I liked your second tip on having a plan for the space in your storage unit. That does sound like a good way to get the most out of your unit. It also seems like it would help you fit the most things possible in your unit.

  19. Aria Wellington Posted May 2, 2016 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

    I like your tip about stacking the bigger and taller items in the back of the unit. My sister and her husband are going to be moving soon and they want to look into self storage. Making sure that the bigger items are in the back will make it easier to get the smaller things that you need safely.

  20. Braden Bills Posted May 17, 2016 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been trying to figure out how I’m going to have all of my stuff transferred to my new home. I didn’t realize that you could rent a self storage space for that kind of thing! It would be perfect for holding my stuff while the transfer happens. Thank you very much for sharing!

  21. Wade Joel Posted May 18, 2016 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

    I liked your tip that you should consider what storage facility to use that has the best location. I also liked your tip to make a plan before hand and give yourself time to pack and label everything before putting it into storage. I can definitely agree with using your space wisely.

  22. Braden Bills Posted May 19, 2016 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been planning a move, but I don’t know how I’m going to store my stuff. I didn’t realize that a self storage space would help me out so much in this endeavor! I’ll make sure I find one in a good location so it’s easily accessible. Thanks for sharing!

  23. James Bergman Posted May 19, 2016 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

    I have started getting much more specific with how I organize my storage. I used to just label my boxes, but it still took a long time to find the right box. However, I got a suggestion to organize my storage unit by room and put a map inside the unit. This has cut down my search time considerably.

  24. John Carston Posted May 25, 2016 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    I hadn’t thought of making an inventory system when moving or using a storage unit, but it seems like it would be very helpful. I like that I would be able to better keep track of my items and also be able to pack the storage space more efficiently. I’ll have to use this bit of advice and the rest of the storage tips you’ve given. Thanks for the helpful article.

  25. James Bergman Posted June 13, 2016 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    I agree with you that it is a good idea to pick a storage facility close to you instead of just finding the cheapest one. The less gas you have to burn to get to the unit the more money you will be saving. I have yet to manage to store stuff so well that I haven’t had to go back multiple times because I accidentally packed something, like my wife’s brush, in a storage box.

  26. Kendall Ryder Posted June 30, 2016 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

    Location is important when purchasing a storage unit. Most people won’t want to have to drive miles away when they want to access their items. Also, when you are moving things in or out, you are going to have to make multiple trips. If your unit is far away it will be a whole lot more inconvenient driving back and forth.

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