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self storage and packing tips

Considering a storage unit to de-clutter the house or garage? Or are you moving and need a place to store your stuff until you get a new home? There are just a few things you may want to ask & think about before renting a storage unit:
  • Location? Are you going to need to access your storage unit frequently? If so, aim for someplace nearby.
  • How is the security? Are there cameras, is the property fenced in, controlled gate access, etc.
  • Is the storage facility well lit and clean?
  • Is there an on-site manager?
  • Is there a set-up, administration or deposit fee?
  • Are the first and/or last month's rent prorated?
  • Is there a move out notice requirement?
  • Is there a contract?
  • Do you need to provide your own lock?
  • Will you be able to access your storage unit 24 hours a day?
  • What happens to your stuff if you forget to pay or your automatic credit card or EFT payment doesn’t go through?
  • Are there late payment fees?
  • What can you store there?
  • What about storage insurance? Is it covered under homeowners?
  • What size unit do I need? One Size Does Not Fit All!  Ask your storage professional to assist in determining the right storage unit size for you.
Next, you will need to determine what you are going to store and how to store it:  
  • When packing your boxes, label them which room they go in, then keep them together when stacking them into your storage unit.  This will also help you when it's time to move into your home.
  • Try to use boxes that are a uniform size, they’re easier to stack (remember; keep the heavy boxes on the bottom).
  • Leave small walkways between the boxes and furniture in your storage unit so you can easily get to the items you want without having to move anything around.
  • Fill storage boxes to the top, even if it’s just with padding and old, crumpled newspapers. Boxes that are only half-filled tend to collapse if anything’s placed on them.
  • Are you able to stack your furniture? Can you flip over your end table and stack on top of one another?
  • If you are storing your matress and box springs, protect them in the appropriate sized covers, and lean them against the storage unit wall.
  • If you’re putting any metal objects into storage – like lawnmowers or file cabinets – it’s best to treat them with rust protector first, or wipe them down with an oily rag, it's also good to raise metal cabinets off the floor using a pallet or bricks covered in plastic.
  • Security is important so it is wise to take a few precautions against theft. Pack your storage unit so that your most valuable items are at the back, and purchase a high quality padlock to put on the door.
  • The humidity in your self-storage unit can cause your furniture to warp and your appliances to mildew. Leaving a space between your stuff and the unit’s wall allows for air to circulate within the unit. Purchase a packet of Dri It Moiture Absorber Gel and leave in your storage unit.  Laying plastic sheeting on the floor and stacking boxes on top of wooden pallets can also help prevent condensation damage.
  • Protect you belongings from dust by using old linens or other fabrics to cover your items.
  • If you’re storing a refrigerator or freezer leave the door ajar; this will prevent mold from growing inside.
  • Drain all washing machines and dishwashers before storing and winterize them in the climate requires.
  • Do NOT store food in your storage unit!
  • Under no circumstances should you keep anything flammable or combustible in your storage building. This means no gasoline, oil, cleaning fluids or paint thinner. If you’re storing any machinery that runs on gas, drain the tank before you store it.
  • Place a drip pad under any motor that you are storing to catch and collect any leaking fluids.




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