If you are in the process of moving house and need somewhere to store your items of furniture or other household items, leasing a storage unit could be the perfect solution. They can also be beneficial if you’re planning to go traveling and lease your home while away and want to keep your belongings safe until your return. Additionally, a storage unit is ideal if you run a small business and need somewhere to store your stock, paperwork, or other essential items. While there are many uses for a storage unit that you might find beneficial, it is important to think about the following before signing any contract.
The Location of Your Storage Unit
When you’re choosing a storage unit, you need to be mindful about where it will be located. Most towns and cities will have various storage facilities to choose from, but if you live further out in the country, your closest facility could be miles away. Even if you’re not planning to make many trips to your storage unit while it’s in use, it does need to be close enough that you can access your belongings as and when you need to. Ideally, you don’t want your storage facility to be more than half an hour away for convenience, but it should take you more than an hour to reach it. Do some research into your nearest storage facility to make sure that it won’t take up too much of your time to access your belongings when you want to.
The storage facility that you’re using should have security measures in place, but some are better than others. At the very least, there should be CCTV but look for facilities that also have people on-site during daytime hours and are accessed via security gates or have limited access to leaseholders only. You should also think about getting a quality lock for your storage unit as an additional precaution so you can have peace of mind that your belongings are safe when you’re not there.
Size of Unit
Storage units will come in a variety of sizes, and you can always upgrade to a larger unit if you need to in the future. Sometimes it can be hard to guess how big you will need your unit to be, so it’s sensible to talk to the people who are running your facility for some guidance. Let them know what items you will be storing in there, and they should be able to offer you an estimated size based on this information. If you’re just storing boxes, one of the smaller units should be suitable for this, but larger items of furniture, tools, or materials will need a bigger space. If you are planning to store a vehicle in your storage unit, again, speak with management and ask if they have any units available that would be big enough for a car, as not all facilities will offer this.
The Cost and Terms of Contract
Another thing to consider when looking at storage units is how much they will cost and the terms of the lease. Of course, the size of your storage unit will affect the price and whether or not you will require a climate-controlled unit or not. It’s important to figure out your budget before you start looking at units, so have a price in mind already and shop around to find the best rates before you settle on one. Most storage facilities offer flexible/rolling contracts so you are not tied in to anything long-term, but it is always important to look at the fine print before you sign your lease agreement. There should also be an outline of what you are responsible for when leasing a storage unit and the facility’s services.
Do You Need a Climate-Controlled Unit?
As mentioned above, you will need to figure out whether or not you need a climate-controlled unit before you start looking for one. Some items that will require this include electronic/battery-powered appliances and furniture items made from wood, wicker, metal, leather, or upholstery. Certain art pieces will also require climate control, so will clothing, photographs, important documents, antiques, household appliances, sports equipment, medical supplies, wines, and other collectible items you want to preserve. That does cover quite a lot of common items that people do keep in storage, so if any of the above apply to you, you should factor in this additional cost when coming up with your budget.
While the storage facility management will be responsible for maintaining shared areas, it will be your responsibility to keep your storage unit in good shape. You will need to keep it clean and tidy, both for your benefit and to avoid potential damage being caused that could lose you your security deposit. It is a good idea to check over your storage unit before you move your belongings into it and report any issues with the management team as soon as possible. Take photographic evidence as proof that these issues were there before you moved your items into the unit, and keep copies of emails or other documents to prove that you reported it to the management team. To keep your unit in good condition, make sure your items are cleaned before they go in and dust and clean surfaces every few weeks. You should also sweep and mop the floors and allow some fresh air to circulate where possible.
There are many reasons why you might want to lease a storage unit, and they can provide many benefits. However, it is important to make sure that you have thought through all of the above before you sign a lease to ensure that this is the right decision for you and that the unit you’re renting will be the right one to suit your storage needs. Remember to look around at different facilities in your area to help you find the perfect fit and the best rates, too.