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Summer Boat Checklist: Get Your Boat Ready for the Summer by Following These 5 Tips!

Cleaning off a boat for summerOne of the main perks of living in Michigan is being surrounded by so many beautiful lakes. For boat owners, the close proximity to water can be even more attractive. Before you can spend the day cruising on the water, it is important to prepare your boat for the nice weather.

Seasonal Boat Maintenance Tips for Summer

  • Give the boat battery a quick test: Before taking your boat out for the summer, test the battery. If the boat was relatively new, stored properly, and in good condition before storage, you shouldn’t have a problem. Check the battery’s terminals to make sure they are free of corrosion. Additionally, if your boat battery is a few years old, it doesn’t hurt to have a marine technician check it out to ensure it will hold a charge.
  • Check all of the fluids: One of the best ways to ensure the health of your boat during boating season is to make sure that when you put your boat away for winter storage, the fluids are in good condition. Check the oil level, coolant level, hydraulic-steering fluid level, and gas level before taking your boat out.
  • Test the boat lights: Check the exterior lighting on both your boat and the trailer. Test the turn signals, brake lights, sidelights, masthead light, and stern light. Checking that your lights are in good working condition will ensure your safety when boating at night.
  • Inspect the safety equipment: You never know what you’re going to encounter when boating, and it’s better to be prepared than sorry. Before your first boating trip, check and make sure your flares, flotation devices, and fire extinguisher are in good working condition. Next, check the first aid kit for any items you may be missing or need to buy.
  • Ensure your boat and trailer are properly registered: Although this isn’t necessarily a part of preparing your boat for the summer, it is important to make sure your boat is still properly registered. In Michigan, your boat registration is valid for 3 years.

Need a Location to Store Your Boat?

After a long day spent out on the lake, what do you do with your boat? Unfortunately, many homeowners’ associations will not allow boat owners to park their boat long-term in their yard or garage. When you rent a storage unit with Self Storage Specialists, you don’t have to worry about where you will park your boat. Self Storage Specialists have the perfect place to store your boat all throughout Michigan, including in: Detroit, Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor and Kalamazoo, MI.

Reserve a storage unit with Self Storage Specialists today!

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A Breakdown of the Best Boats for Families and Fishing

Kids Happy on Boat with DadAre you considering buying a boat? A boat can be a very big purchase, one that you have likely thought over for a very long time. Before you make that purchase, it is important to determine the activities for which you will use it. Whether you plan on boating for days on the water with your family or spending a long day fishing, we know there’s a perfect boat out there for you.
Keep reading this post for a breakdown of different kinds of both family and fishing boats!

Best Boats for Fishing and Family Fun in Michigan

Best Boats for Families on The Great Lakes

Are you looking to spend some quality family time out on the water? Check out these family-favorite boats!

  1. Pontoon Boat: The pontoon boat has come a long way. What once was a noisy, bulky, boat is now known for its smooth ride. Today, pontoon boats can be used for water sports such as tubing and water skiing, and can exceed speeds of 50 mph. These boats are also large, which makes them a great solution for boating with family and friends.
  2. Bowrider: The main reason most people choose a bowrider boat is for the ease of use with watersports. Most bowrider boats will have a tow eye on the stern of the boat for pulling either those tubing or skiing. Additionally, these boats will have a platform with a ladder for swimmers to use to get in and out of the water.
  3. Deck Boat: The deck boat is a combination of a bowrider boat and a pontoon boat. These boats are large and spacious, but also very speedy on the water. The deck boat is another great option for water sports enthusiasts.

Best Freshwater Fishing Boat for Michigan Inland Lakes

  1. Bass Boats: A bass boat is perfect for freshwater fishing. These boats are spacious with an attached swivel chair. This allows the angler to cast a line anywhere. These boats also come equipped with storage for both equipment and fishing tackle.
  2. Walkaround Boats: A walkaround boat is ideal for both fishing and cruising. The walkaround design of the boat keeps the entire deck accessible. These boats will often have cabin amenities such as a bed, toilet, sink, and kitchen.

Reserve a Boat Storage Unit with Self Storage Specialists!

There’s nothing like spending the day out on the water skiing, tubing, fishing, and swimming, but, what do you with your boat once you’re done cruising the water? Many homeowners’ associations prohibit residents from storing large vehicles, like boats, in the driveway or yard long-term. Instead, between seasons or boating trips, consider storing your boat in a storage unit.

Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities surrounding Lake Erie, Lake Michigan, and many other major inland lakes. Reserve a boat storage unit in either Michigan or Ohio today!

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Renting vs Buying a Home: The Undeniable Advantages of Both Options

A house that is soldIf you know you want your next residence to be a house, the next logical decision is whether you want to either buy it or rent it. Although this may seem like a big decision, there really is no wrong answer. There are many advantages to either renting or owning a home, so the decision really comes down to which is best for you.
Keep reading this article to find the advantages of either renting or buying a home!

Advantages of Renting a Home

  • Less of a commitment: Typically, when you buy a home, you’re looking to stay in it for the next few years. Rental contracts are usually just a one-year commitment, which gives you the freedom to move elsewhere once the year is up.
  • Smaller upfront cost: When buying a home, there are more upfront costs required, such as the down payment on the house. The down payment of the home will typically cost you between 3.5- and 20%.
  • Less of a responsibility: Maintaining a house takes a lot of work. If you’re not ready to deal with the day-to-day maintenance and upkeep of it, a rental might be the best option for you. Typically, the landlord and owner of the home will be responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the house, appliances, and lawn.

Advantages of Buying a Home

  • More freedom: When you’re the owner of the house, you’re able to do whatever you want with the property. If you want to knock down one of the walls to expand the kitchen, that is not a problem! Owning a house allows you to truly make the property yours.
  • Ownership: One of the biggest pros to buying a house is that you are paying towards something you will own. When you rent a house, this is not the case. Once the mortgage is paid off, you will own the house.
  • Take advantages of tax benefits: There are many tax-related benefits to owning a home. These tax benefits allow you to deduct the interest you are paying on your home from the mortgage payment on your tax return.

Keep Your New Home Organized with a Storage Unit Rental

Whether you are either renting or buying a home, you can benefit from renting a storage unit. Renting a storage unit allows you to drastically expand your storage space, which can keep your homeless cluttered. Self Storage Specialists have both traditional and climate-controlled storage units for rent all throughout Michigan and in Dayton, Ohio. Minimize household clutter and reserve a storage unit with Self Storage Specialists today!

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A Breakdown of 3 Great Senior Living Options

Seniors stretching in a classAs your mom and dad age, you may start to grow concerned about their safety around the home. Maybe they’re having a harder time getting around, or maybe they seem to be more forgetful than before. As more concerns arise, you may be starting to consider a senior living option for them, but with so many options out there, how do you know which one is best for your parents? We’re here to help! In this article, you will find a breakdown of several popular senior living options.

3 Top Senior Options for Senior Living to Choose From

1. Nursing Home

Nursing homes will provide a wide range of services to their residents. This living option focuses more on medical care than other options. In a nursing home, residents can expect to receive care services such as: 24-hour supervision, nursing care, assistance with day-to -ay activities, and more. Often times, occupational, speech, and physical therapy are also available on-site.

2. Assisted Living

Assisted living is one of the most popular senior living housing options. With assisted living, your mom or dad will receive long-term care services including: housing, personal care, and assistance with normal day activities. Generally speaking, assisted living communities will also offer 24-hour supervision, medication management, 3 meals a day, laundry, linen services, and more.

3. Continuing Care Retirement Communities

Continuing care retirement communities offer a different array of services all in one campus. With a continuing care retirement community, assisted living, independent living, and skilled nursing care are all available in one location. For this specific community, the location each resident lives in is dictated by the kind of care that is needed.

Using a Storage Unit for Downsizing

When your parents are downsizing into senior housing, they may not have as much space as they once did. Renting a storage unit will allow your mom and dad to store items that they care about in a safe and secure location where it will be waiting for them when they need it. This can prevent their new home from getting cluttered with out-of-season clothes, seasonal decorations, and more.

Are you looking for a storage facility near you? Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities all throughout Michigan including: Detroit, MI, Ann Arbor, MI, Grand Rapids, MI and Kalamazoo, MI. We also have a storage facility in Dayton, OH. We offer a variety of storage unit sizes including 5x5s, 5x10s, and 10×10 storage units. Store your items with us, and reserve a storage unit today!

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The Benefits of Becoming an Airbnb Host

A young couple huge in a vacation rentalAirbnb has changed the way people travel. Instead of having to rely on staying in hotels, motels, hostels, and bed and breakfasts for any of the times one is away from home, Airbnb allows hosts to rent out their home or spare bedrooms. This not only has created a cheaper way to travel, but it also allows homeowners and renters to make some extra money.

Are you thinking about renting out either part or your entire home as an Airbnb? Please see 5 of its benefits below!

Airbnb Hosting Benefits

  • Make money: Depending on where your Airbnb is located, the features and amenities offered in your home, as well as the popularity of the listing, can make you quite a profit from being an Airbnb host. According to Travel + Leisure, about 50 percent of Airbnb hosts make more than $500 per month.
  • Meeting new people: Another benefit of hosting Airbnb is the ability to meet so many new people. Depending on where you live, you may attract visitors from all over the state, United States, or world! Airbnb hosts have the option to either stay in the same residence or leave altogether during a rental.
  • Learn more about your area: Through hosting Airbnb, you will learn a lot about your area. Not only is it a good idea to do some personal research before hosting so you can recommend restaurants, shops, and local activities and hotspots, guests will often leave behind brochures and pamphlets that might highlight other areas of interests for future guests.
  • Ability to set your own price: With Airbnb, each host has the ability to set his or her own price for the home. When determining a rental price, it is important to set it fairly. Often times, people that are using Airbnb are looking for a low-price alternative to a hotel.
  • Control of your own schedule: With Airbnb, you are in control of your own schedule. Do you not want to host around Christmas time? Perfect, block off the dates. Do you only want to host for a few years and then be done? Awesome, you’re free to take your home off of the market at any time! Airbnb gives hosts a lot of flexibility and control over their schedules.

Make Space in Your Home By Renting a Storage Unit!

As an Airbnb host, it is important to keep your home clean and organized. Guests will leave reviews about their stay and one thing they will review is how clean and organized the place is. If you’re hosting an Airbnb, consider renting a storage unit in which to store unneeded or out of season items. This can help to keep your home free from clutter while still allowing you to keep the items with sentimental value.

Are you looking for a storage unit in the Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, or Detroit areas?

Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities throughout Michigan and in Dayton, Ohio. Reserve a storage unit with Self Storage Specialists today!

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Detroit, Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids Spring Events

Tulip Time Festival in Holland, MIAt long last, spring is here! Are you looking for a way to celebrate the season finally turning? We’re here to help! We pulled together some of our favorite Ann Arbor, Detroit, Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo spring activities below!

Detroit and Ann Arbor Spring Events

Looking for some exciting spring activities in the Detroit and Ann Arbor areas? Check out these events!

57th Ann Arbor Film Festival

57th Ann Arbor Film Festival
This year is the 57th annual Ann Arbor Film Festival. The Ann Arbor Film Festival was founded by George Manupelli in 1963 and is the oldest avant-garde film festival in North America. Every year, this festival receives over 3,000 submissions from people living in more than 65 countries. This film festival is also one of only a handful of Academy Award®-qualifying festivals in the United States.

Fabulous Spring Wreath Workshop

Saturday, March 30th, 2019
Are you looking to create a new rustic spring wreath? Head over to Detroit Mama Hub for the Fabulous Spring Wreath Workshop. At this workshop, attendees will be taught how to use high quality silk flowers and a wooden frame to make a gorgeous decoration.

Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids Spring Events

Need something to do this spring in the Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo area? Take a look at these spring events!

Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming

March 1st through April 30th, 2019
This year, the Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming exhibition is back at Meijer Gardens. This exhibition is the largest temporary butterfly exhibit in the nation. At this exhibit, tropical butterflies from all over the world fly freely. Tickets for this event can be purchased at the exhibit.

MARINARAthon

Friday, May 3rd
Whether you’re looking to carb-load before the Kalamazoo Marathon, or are just interested in eating some pasta outdoors, we have an exciting event for you! The MARINARAthon takes place under the lights of DeVisser Alley, with pasta, sauce, meatballs and bread available for all attendees. Before or after the event, don’t forget to make time to shop at your favorite local stores or attend Art Hop!

Tulip Time Festival

May 4th through May 12th, 2019
Tulip Time is back for its 90th year! This festival offers a 9-day experience and draws in more than 500,000 people annually. This event will not only feature Dutch traditional garb, dance and nationally renowned entertainment, but also 5 million blooming tulips! Festival attendees will get to enjoy the parades, carnival rides, elephant ears and more! Don’t miss out on this awesome event!

We Have Storage Facilities in the Detroit, Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo Area!

Looking for a storage unit near you? We are proud to have storage units in the Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo and Detroit areas! Our storage units have a variety of storage unit sizes, including the 5×5, 5×10 and 10×10 storage unit. Visit one of our storage facilities for help finding a storage unit perfect for you!

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How to Get Your Home Ready to Sell

Tips for selling a homeMoving season is here! Are you planning on selling your home? If so, there are a few tips of which you should be aware to make your home sell faster! So, buckle up, sit back, and check out these tips for selling your home quickly!

5 Tips for Selling a Home Faster!

  • Stage your home: Home staging is a powerful tool that can help buyers picture themselves living in your home before they even buy it. If you need help with this step, consider hiring a professional homestaging company. If you don’t want to hire a professional, have a friend walk through the home with fresh eyes and point out any eyesores, problem areas, or spots that could use a decluttering.
  • Remove any personal items from the home: As we said earlier, the goal of home staging is to help the buyers picture themselves in your home. Unfortunately, this can be difficult if they are distracted by both pictures of your wedding and your children. For the time being, pack these items away until your home sells.
  • Choose a reputable real estate agent: When choosing a real estate agent, don’t just go with the first one you find. Choose one that has both a great track record for selling homes fast and is familiar with your neighborhood. Never be afraid to ask the agent questions before choosing him or her.
  • Declutter your home with a storage unit: When you have people tour your home, they are going to want to see everything. They will want to venture down into the basement, peer into the closets, and check out the pantry storage. Unfortunately, this means that hiding your clutter can be that much more difficult. Thankfully, by renting a storage unit, you can get items you will not need until after your move out of the house. This will help your home to appear less overwhelming and may help your house sell faster.
  • Give your home a fresh coat of paint: A fresh coat of paint can go a long way. Before taking pictures of your home and putting it on the market, give your home a fresh coat of paint. When painting, consider also painting the ceilings. Bright white ceilings can help make the space look taller and increase the natural light in the room. Generally, when choosing a paint color, it is best to go with light, neutral tones.

Looking for a Storage Facility Near You?

When it comes to selling your home faster, renting a storage unit can be beneficial. . Are you looking for a self-storage facility near you? Look no further as Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities all throughout Michigan, including Grand Rapids, Detroit, Ann Arbor and Kalamazoo. Our storage facilities have many different sized storage options, including 5×5, 5×10 and 10×10 storage units.

Reserve a storage unit with Self Storage Specialists today!

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5 Tips for Organizing Kids’ Toys on a Budget

A young child playing in a playroomDolls, Legos, and action figures, oh my! Is your home constantly scattered with kids’ toys and games? We get it; we’ve been there too. Keeping your home organized when it feels like toys are taking over is no easy task, but we’re here to help! We’ve compiled a list of 5 easy toy organization and storage tips. Check them out below!

Organizing Toys with Ease: Check Out These 5 Tips!

  1. Create a “play zone”: If you haven’t already, designate a play zone in your house. The play zone can either be a full room or just an area inside of a room. This can help to keep the toys, dolls, blocks, and more all together in one spot.
  2. Invest in a toy chest: While a toy chest is a relatively old school storage idea, it works! Invest in a toy chest to corral any large toys or other items with which your kids love to play.
  3. Use storage containers: Use storage containers to keep similar items together. For example, store all crayons, craft supplies, and doll clothes in separate storage containers. When your child wants to play, you can easily pull out the bin and everything you need will be right there.
  4. Label, label, label: Even if your kids aren’t old enough to read, it is still important to label the outside of all storage containers, bins, and boxes. This way, you will be able to easily find what you’re looking for, and this will help to ensure that items get put back in the right box.
  5. Use wire baskets for stuffed animals: Keep all stuffed animals neat and organized by storing them in wire baskets. This trick will not only help to clear floor clutter, it will also help your child to easily find his or her favorite stuffed animal.

Are You Looking for a Full-House Storage Solution?

After having kids, did the office or living room become the play room? Did the furniture that once inhabited that space get moved to the remaining rooms in your home? Sound familiar? While you want to give your kids an area in which to imagine and explore, it can lead to the rest of your house feeling cluttered and cramped. While your kids are young, it may be beneficial to rent a storage unit in which to store extra pieces of furniture and other large items.

Looking for a storage unit near you? Look no further! Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities in Ann Arbor, MI, Grand Rapids, MI, Detroit, MI and Kalamazoo, MI! Our storage units come in a variety of sizes, and this helps to create flexibility for our renters. Reserve your storage unit today!

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5 Tips for Moving During the Winter

Two movers carrying boxes ahead of a moveAre you moving during the winter? Depending on the weather, winter moves are usually more difficult, but they are nowhere near impossible. Between the unpredictable weather and the concerns with the safety of the roads, it is important to be thoroughly prepared. Don’t worry; we are here to help! We’ve compiled a list of some quick tips to keep your winter move as smooth as possible! Check them out below.

5 Must-Follow Winter Moving Tips

  1. Check in with your movers: It is important to keep in mind that winter is generally the off-season for moving companies. During the weeks leading up to your move, be sure to check in with your moving company. This will not only help to keep you in the forefront of their minds, but it will also help to mitigate any last-minute concerns for you.
  2. Keep an eye on the weather: It’s important to always keep an eye on the weather. If you notice a winter storm on the radar during the week of your move, express your concerns to your movers. It’s always a better idea to push back the moving date as opposed to getting stuck in a storm.
  3. Protect your floors: On the day of your move, you will have people trudging in and out of your house. Cover your carpet and hardwood floors with plastic tarps to protect them from any mud or snow that may have been brought in.
  4. Shovel the snow outside of your house: If there is snow on your driveway, sidewalks, or the street in front of your house, clear it. The last thing you want during your move is for either you, your family members, or one of your movers to slip and injure themselves while moving large pieces of furniture.
  5. Stock up on extra warm items: As the day goes on, your movers’ gloves may get drenched from the snow. Stock up on extra hats and gloves to offer to your movers if they are starting to look a little cold or wet.

A Storage Unit Rental Can Make Your Move Easier!

If you’re moving during the winter, you may benefit from renting a storage unit. A move can be a big deal, and renting a storage unit allows you to slowly move items out of your home and into a secure location ahead of your move. Renting a storage unit is also beneficial if your old home has already sold and your new home will not be ready for you to move into for a few more weeks.
Are you looking to rent a storage unit near you in the Detroit, Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo areas? Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities all throughout Michigan and in Dayton, Ohio. Our storage facilities have a variety of storage unit sizes including: 5×5, 5×10, and 10×10 storage units in both traditional and climate-controlled. Reserve your storage unit today!

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Keep Warm this Winter at these Fun Indoor Activities for Kids in Michigan

A young kid watching animals in an aquariumEvery child loves building snowmen, making snow angels, and having a snowball fight in the winter, but when the weather is bad and it’s too cold to go outside, how do you keep your kids entertained? Well, lucky for you, there are a wide variety of indoor kid-friendly winter activities in Michigan. Stay warm this winter as you check out these fun indoor winter activities!

Indoor Winter Activities Nearby Detroit and Ann Arbor

Legoland Discovery Center

Do you have little builders in your family? Bring them to Legoland Discovery Center! Legoland Discovery Center is open every day, and has many exciting attractions to keep your little ones entertained! Everything at Legoland is kid-sized, perfect for kids between 3-10 years old. There are over 10 family attractions and activities including: 4D cinema, Kingdom Quest laser ride, Merlin’s Apprentice, and a play area!

Sea Life Michigan

Are you looking for more of an educational day with the family? Check out the Sea Life Michigan Aquarium! The aquarium features many different events and exhibits all throughout the year. Visitors to the aquarium can also enjoy the interactive touch pool experience and the underwater ocean tunnel. The aquarium also teaches visitors about animal conservation.
When you buy Legoland Discover Center and Sea Life Michigan tickets together, you save! In order to qualify, you must visit both exhibits within the same day.

Grand Rapids Indoor Winter Activities

X Golf

Are you looking for a fun daytime activity or date night? Check out X Golf in Grand Rapids! X Golf is the most innovative and accurate golf simulator in the world, and is located just down the street from you! Visitors can book a tee time, a lesson, or an event!

Ice Skating at Griff’s Ice House

Spend the day ice skating at Griff’s Ice House and get the winter experience without being subjected to the winter elements! While Griff’s Ice House is the official practice facility for the Grand Rapids Griffins, there are still many open skate hours for the public. Before heading to the ice rink, check out the skate hours online.

Self Storage Specialists Has Storage Facilities in Detroit, Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids

Are you looking for a storage facility near you? Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities in Detroit, Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo, and all throughout Michigan. Whether you need long-term storage, vehicle storage, or a student storage solution, we’ve got you covered. Our storage facilities have many sizes of both traditional and climate-controlled storage options, making us the ideal storage solution for all of your storage needs.

Reserve a storage unit near you today!

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