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Residential and commercial moves can be stressful. It is not easy to pack, move, and unpack all of your stuff. All this sorting, packing, and moving your belongings can get on your nerves. 

It is normal to feel overwhelmed and looking for help to get some of the load off your shoulders. 

Using a storage facility is a great way to reduce some of that stress. You can send out the stuff you do not need frequently or currently to a storage facility. That way, you will not be left with a lot of things waiting to be shifted on the moving day.

Here is everything you need to know about using a storage unit:

Types of Storage Facility:

Most people prefer renting out the storage unit. However, some buy it for investment purposes. Mostly, storage facilities are available on a monthly lease. You will require some form of ID and a lock to access your unit. A contract is also signed in this regard. The storage units are of two kinds—based on the needs of a person:

Full-Service Storage:

Full-service storage involves a ‘valet-like’ service. The company picks up your stuff and takes it to the storage unit. Some companies also enable the customers to request and arrange a return or pick-up from their phones.

Many storage services take photos and keep records of your belongings too. If you do not remember what is in storage, you can check the inventory list or look at the photo. This service is a little expensive as compared to self-storage.

Self-Storage:

This one is the most popular storage option. It offers a secure, safe, and affordable storage facility. You can store everything, be it belongings from home or larger items like boats. In this service, the customers deliver and pick up their belongings to the storage unit by themselves. They document their belongings on their own.

Renting a Storage Unit

Here are the things to keep in mind while renting a storage unit:

Choose a Reliable Storage Company:

Since you are trusting your belongings to a third party, it is important to do some research. Even if you do not plan to store something valuable, you should still pick a company that is reputable for reliability. Check out the past customer experiences and reviews before contacting a unit. If something seems off to you, do not go just because the rates are cheaper.

Take an Inventory of Your Belongings

Enlist your belongings that you intend to store. It enables you to decide the size of the unit you need and to stay organized as well. Moreover, if you are going for a self-storage facility, you are supposed to document your belongings by yourself. So, doing so earlier will save you from the trouble later.

Determine the Unit’s Size

Choosing the wrong size unit can create a lot of trouble later. If you rent a storage unit larger than your need, you are wasting money on it. Whereas, if the size of the storage unit is smaller, you have just created additional work of managing space and storing your belongings. It somehow reduces the benefit of using a storage facility if the size is smaller as per your need.

Rent Online or in Person

The option of renting a storage unit online is also available. Decide whether you want to get the unit online or in person. Renting online definitely saves time, but it entails several risks as well. You need to be extra careful while choosing a storage unit company.

That is why many people prefer to see the storage unit in person when it is their first time renting one. Check the company’s website or call ahead to check out the policies a company has in place. Compare the information research the review about the company.

Rental Agreement

To rent out a storage unit, you need to sign a rental agreement. The document includes the unit’s description, duration of the agreement, responsibilities, and other terms like non-payment and cancellation.

Get Renters’ Insurance

Most of the storage companies require renters’ insurance. This condition is to ensure protection for both the landlord and the tenant. At some storage facilities, a third party provides the property tenant insurance. In some cases, the companies waive this requirement like having homeowners’ or renters’ insurance with coverage of belongings in a storage unit.

Picking the Size of Storage Unit

Most of the self-storage facilities offer different unit sizes for rent. The common sizes offered are 5’x5’, 5’x10’, 10’x10’, 10’x15’, and 10’x20’. Some facilities provide even larger sizes. However, the price and square footage is usually based on the number of boxes you ask for. First, enlist your belongings and then ask for the specific facility you will need.

What to Look for in a Storage Facility?

When picking a storage facility, many things need to be taken care of to get the most out of your money. Look at the space around the unit before choosing a storage facility. You should be getting these amenities along with the storage unit:

Clean Grounds

Clean and well-maintained grounds shows the owner’s care for the facility and ultimately for the customers and their belongings. The maintenance of buildings and the floors will also keep your belongings much safer and give an overall pleasant experience.

Good Lighting

Keeping a storage unit well-lit makes it easier for you to navigate and maneuver in the facility. Hence, when choosing a facility, you should keep this factor in mind.

Protection

Get a storage facility with an electronic gate, which requires a code to enter and leave. This is an extra level of protection to keep your belongings safe. Protective fencing is another thing that keeps the facility protected.

Location

Choose the storage unit in or near the areas you frequently visit. The location should be convenient, i.e., your unit should be in the proximity of where you live or work. If you are storing an RV or a boat, try to get a facility that is in the vicinity of your favorite vacation destination.