Comparing Self-Storage and Storage Lockers

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Are you wondering what the difference is between a self-storage unit and a storage locker?

If yes, you have come to the right place. Although they may sound like fairly similar storage solutions, there is in fact a distinct difference between self-storage and storage lockers, and you need to make sure that you pick the right option for your storage needs.

Let’s now take a look at what each option can offer you in terms of storage, plus the difference in cost between the two choices and how you can choose the right storage provider for you and your possessions.

What is a self-storage unit?

A self-storage unit is a space that you rent for storage. A self-storage unit can range in size from a smaller 5×5 space to as big as a 10×30 area that offers as much space as a four-bedroom home.

In terms of storage features, a self-storage unit usually has higher ceilings than a storage locker, making it ideal for larger furniture items.

What is a storage locker?

A storage locker is also a space that you can rent out for storage, with the main difference being the scale of storage space available. Storage lockers offer a much smaller space than self-storage units, with typical lockers being on average only 3×3 with average ceiling heights or sometimes even lower.

Typically, storage lockers are located in an indoor facility, whereas self-storage units can be found either inside or outside.

Why choose a self-storage unit?

A self-storage unit is an incredibly flexible storage option, being able to accommodate most items and keep them safe either in the short or long term.

Some of the items that you may choose to store in a self-storage unit include:

  • Home furniture
  • Garden furniture
  • Garden machinery such as lawnmowers
  • Seasonal sports equipment such as skis or cricket sets
  • General household clutter
  • Books
  • Valuable items
  • Sentimental items such as photographs
  • Collectibles

There are only a few items that you are NOT allowed to store in a self-storage unit, and these are as follows:

  • Live or dead animals
  • Combustible or flammable materials
  • Firearms, explosives, weapons, or ammunition
  • Chemicals or radioactive materials
  • Illegal items
  • Money
  • Food and perishable goods

Why choose a storage locker?

As briefly mentioned above, storage lockers are a lot smaller in size than self-storage units and should, therefore, be used for very different storage needs.

In a standard storage locker, you can fit one box of your belongings, a home computer, and monitor, or a couple of rucksacks.

Storage lockers can be a good option for students who only have a few items to store during summer break or when moving in between different student properties. It is also a great choice if you only have a small collection of valuable items that you want to be stored safely.

Alternatively, a storage locker can be used as an address to have your packages delivered to, completely free of charge in some cases.

Some of the common items that people choose to store in a storage locker include:

  • Clothes
  • Shoes
  • Small musical instruments
  • Valuable possessions such as rare comics, stamps, and coins
  • Books, DVDs, and video games
  • Small electronics

What is the price difference between a self-storage unit and a storage locker?

As you would expect, a storage locker is a much more affordable option but that is because it offers a lot less storage space. However, the exact price of any storage option will be dependent on the exact size of the unit, its location, and its availability.

The below prices are the average monthly cost of each unit based on size:

5×10 standard unit = $65

5×10 climate-controlled unit = $76

10×10 standard unit = $107

10×10 climate-controlled unit = $126

10×20 standard unit = $180

10×20 climate-controlled unit = $217

In terms of location and cost, some cities are known for being more expensive to live in, and this is reflected in the cost of their storage facilities. The most expensive city in the United States for storage is New York City, where the average cost for a 10×20 climate-controlled unit is $691 per month. On the other end of the spectrum, Shreveport, LA, has the lowest monthly prices for all standard storage units.

What is climate-controlled storage?

As the name suggests, climate-controlled storage units are storage spaces that are kept at a consistent and optimum temperature and humidity to prevent damage to your goods. These types of units are more expensive than standard units, but they are definitely worthwhile if you have items that need to be kept at a specific temperature or level of humidity.

Items that will benefit from climate-controlled storage include:

  • Wine
  • Furniture made of or containing wood, metal, wicker, leather, or upholstery
  • Other items such as clothing that are made of any of the above materials
  • Electronics
  • Media
  • Important documents
  • Photographs
  • Collectibles
  • Antiques
  • Sports equipment
  • Medical supplies and medication
  • Makeup and toiletries
  • Household appliances

How do I choose a self-storage provider?

Once you have made a decision on what type of storage solution best suits your storage needs, now is the time to choose a storage provider.

As you are entrusting this company with your valuable and treasured possessions, you need to make sure that you not only pick a provider that can accommodate your storage requirements but also one that you know you can trust. offers the largest database of storage facilities in the United States, with over 15,000 reputable companies for you to choose from. Simply type in your zip code or city and the date you would like to check-in your items, and you will be presented with a comprehensive list of storage facilities in your area.

Once you have narrowed down your search, you may want to look at some customer reviews from your preferred providers to see what their level of service is like and to see if there are any areas where they fall short.

Still not sure about what storage solution to choose? Get in touch here, and we will do our best to help you.

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