The How to Guide for Self-Storage Done Right

Guide for Self-Storage
The How to Guide for Self-Storage Done Right

If you’re on the market for more space for the items you cherish, self-storage offers an economical solution to your problems. The extra space can be a blessing, but if you do not utilize it properly, you could spend more money and time on it than you would like.

This is why we at Storage Protectors have put together a helpful ‘How to’ guide on self-storage. Here, we cover all the basics to have you set up and maximize the use of your self-storage unit.

Comprehensive Guide for Mastering Self-Storage

Are you willing to make the most of your self-storage unit? With the right techniques, you can maximize your space and make your life easier. Here is our guide to help you out!

How to Select the Ideal Storage Unit? 

You need to consider a few things when choosing your storage unit. The first, of course, is the number of items you are planning to store. The best way to do this is to create an inventory of all the items you wish to move. 

With the help of a list or inventory, you should be able to estimate the required space. Utilize “size calculators” on self-storage facilities’ websites and speak to an agent at the facility for further advice.

Next, you need to determine the type of unit best suited to your needs. Suppose you store items sensitive to temperature fluctuations and/or humidity (such as artwork, antiques, delicate fabrics, electronics, etc.). In that case, you will require a climate-controlled unit to keep your items in proper condition. Hence, it’s important to ask the right questions when renting a self-storage unit to improve your approach.

On the other hand, if your items are not sensitive to such factors, you can decide between drive-up, outdoor units, or mobile storage containers. All of these offer convenience, and the one right for you depends on your needs.

A mobile container is excellent if you have space on your property for it. This will give you the most immediate access to your storage belongings. It also allows you to avoid loading your belongings twice, once onto a truck and then again into a storage unit – with a mobile container, it’s simply a one-and-done load into the container.

If your property has enough parking spaces, a drive-up unit is likely the best option if you need to access it regularly. Otherwise, look for a facility that is a short distance from your home to save time when requiring access.

How to Properly Prepare Your Belongings for Storage?

For small items, it is best to pack them in boxes. Plastic containers are typically not square and take up additional space in your unit. They can also trap moisture, risking mold growth. Plastic bags are even worse, as they do not stack in your unit quickly and are very easy to rip, exposing the contents to dirt and dust. 

Always try to fill boxes with items from one space when packing them. This will make things much easier at the other end of the process. Also, make it easier by labeling: if all the contents of your dresser go together in one box, then labeling the box “Contents of Master Bedroom Dresser” clearly states what is in the box. If items are from all over the house, not only will you be running around with the box putting things away, but the label will quickly turn into a short novel.

Always use moving blankets to protect furniture from bumps and bruises and from becoming dusty. Avoid covering them with plastic unless it is for a short duration.

How to Load Your Storage Unit Effectively?

Never just start bringing items into your unit to load them: plan things out first. If you need regular access to multiple items in the unit, consider creating aisles through the space for access (this will also require you to rent a larger unit). If access is not regular, you can load items more tightly.

Either way, planning is paramount to a good load. Begin with understanding how to load your storage unit to maximize the space. However, large and heavy items serve as a base for lighter things to stack on top. Bring items in waves, such that a few heavy, “base” items arrive, followed by medium-heavy, lightweight items, and then repeat. This will keep the load coming in the correct form.

Try to load in tiers. Start at the back wall, working your way across it to create one complete row that can reach your locker’s ceiling. Start building subsequent tiers as you fill the previous tier on the top, providing you with a base to stand on to get the height of the load.

Always fill in every nook and cranny: the tighter things are put together, the less likely they will shift or move. Approach the process like a giant Tetris game, and choose your pieces wisely.

How to Make Sure Your Stored Items Have Adequate Insurance Coverage?

Regardless of the type of items, number of items, and space, you will require contents insurance. Some homeowners’ insurance policies may cover some items, but getting renters insurance for storage units is better, as it will offer more comprehensive coverage of your stored items. 

Homeowners’ insurance or facility-provided insurance often covers only limited items and has many exclusions in the policy. It’s highly recommended to go with dedicated storage insurance that covers all of your stored contents. After all, you don’t want to store some of your items with a risk of no coverage. 

Make the Most of Your Self-Storage Experience

Getting the most out of self-storage is all about thinking things through. Whether picking the suitable storage space, getting your stuff ready, or sorting out insurance, careful thought goes a long way. So, by thinking about the size of your storage, taking care when packing, organizing your space well, and getting the proper storage insurance, you’ll make your self-storage journey easy and worry-free.

Storage Protectors is a leading contents insurance provider across North America, offering coverage in every type of self-storage. Speak with your Storage Protectors agent today for more information on getting the most out of your storage unit and protecting your contents for their life in storage.

guide for self-storage, The How to Guide for Self-Storage Done Right