Choosing to keep some of your possessions in a storage facility is one of the best decisions you can make. By storing the items you don’t often use or do not currently need, you will have a clutter-free, more spacious and organized home. And if you suddenly need an item, you can quickly get it from your unit without any issues or problems.
Even if you don’t have any use for the items you have in storage, you definitely want them to maintain their look and functionality so that you can use or sell them when the right time comes.
If storage is in the works for you, know that you can preserve the good quality of all the items in your prospective storage unit rental by following the tips below:
1. Choose a climate-controlled storage facility
To maintain the quality of your possessions, rent a unit that will be housed in an air-conditioned or temperature-controlled storage facility. This is something that is highly recommended especially if you will be storing a lot of wooden furniture and décor.
Wooden items will warp when exposed to high humidity; if they are quite expensive and you don’t want them to be damaged, so take this precautionary step.
If you hire a unit in a climate-controlled facility, don’t forget to ask the manager about the average humidity level. The humidity level in a unit that holds a lot of wooden fixtures should be between 30 and 50% and the average temperature between 55 and 85°F. These conditions will help prevent moisture damage, wood rot, and the growth of mold and mildew.
2. Check the facility
Before renting a storage unit, visit the facility first.
The best storage facilities have high, strong fences and locked gates with 24/7 roving security guards and coded security pads. Make sure you ask the facility manager or staff if the building has surveillance cameras and ask about other security features they have as well.
When you know the details of the facility’s security policies and you are satisfied with them, you will have better peace of mind once you have transferred your possessions in your rental unit.
3. Add another level of protection to your unit
The storage facilities have high levels of security and protection. However, there is nothing wrong with bumping this up a notch. You can do this by buying a solid lock if you will be allowed or you are asked to provide one.
This means purchasing a good quality lock that can’t be cut with a bolt or wire cutter. With this type of lock, you will discourage burglars from breaking into your unit.
4. Get insurance
Most storage facilities offer insurance to their clients. If your prospective storage provider does, find out what their policy covers.
In case you are not satisfied with the coverage, check if your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance will cover off-site items. If it doesn’t, consider getting additional coverage for your stored items.
Remember that having sufficient coverage will also give you additional peace of mind that you will be compensated in case an unforeseen disaster affects your belongings.
5. Wrap and pack your items before storing them
To ensure your items will be protected from moisture damage and other types of damage, pack all your items with care. Use good quality boxes and standard packing materials to prevent items from breaking during transport and storage.
If you will be storing furniture and mattresses, make sure they are clean and dry before covering them with furniture blankets. For added protection and to keep moisture out, cover them with plastic sheets.
Ensure your clothes are clean and dry as well before packing them in boxes. If you have some extra money, buy some wardrobe boxes since they are best for storing clothes.
6. Store boxes and items in the storage unit properly
To prevent boxes and other items from toppling over (and getting damaged in the process), stack them according to their size and weight. Avoid balancing furniture on top of each other as well since they could fall and break easily and damage your other possessions as well.
The proper way to store boxes and other items in a storage unit is to place the larger and heavier items at the bottom and the smaller, lighter things on top. Avoid stacking these items too high since they will also fall easily and end up being damaged.
7. Check your storage unit regularly
Lastly, try to visit your storage unit once or twice a month. Check your items. If you have an inventory list, you will do well to bring it during your visits.
Make sure you look out for any cracks in the walls or ceiling whenever you visit your unit as well. If you spot one, have it repaired immediately since it can widen over time and allow for damage-causing leaks.
In addition, always pay your storage bills on time. Find out from your bank and storage facility manager if you can arrange for automatic monthly fees from your debit or credit card so that you won’t have to worry about missing any payments.
Whether you are selling your house or simply want more space, you will enjoy more freedom and have a tidier, more appealing home once you place the items you don’t use frequently in a storage unit.
Chris Humphrey is the General Manager of Easytruck Moving & Storage. In 2013, the company combined their expertise in professional moving services & storage to create an entirely new approach to the business – and mobile storage was born! Easytruck now operates over 30,000 sq.ft. of air-conditioned facilities in three convenient locations in Dubai and is the only Mobile Storage operator in the UAE.