There are many things to think about when you are planning to relocate. From packing and hiring a moving company to do the heavy lifting to arranging auto shipping, the seemingly unending list can be overwhelming. On top of the tasks involved in the move itself, you may also need to look for a storage facility where you can store your excess belongings you aren’t ready to let go of but cannot fit into your new home.
When choosing a storage facility, knowing what to look for ahead of time can make a big difference in the long run. Like the rest of your move, it is best if you plan out your storage needs before your actual relocation date to avoid additional hassle later.
6 Things to Consider When Looking for a Storage Facility
Most moving companies offer storage on top of their main long-distance moving service offerings. However, it is best to think it out thoroughly before signing a contract. There are six main considerations when picking the right storage service, including:
Items for Storage
The first thing you should do before selecting a storage facility for your move is to evaluate the specific items you will be putting in storage. Having an idea of what you need to store will help you estimate about how much space you will need in your storage unit, the level of security required, and the insurance you may opt to have.
Once you are closer to the move it is also wise to have a detailed list specifying the items you’re planning to store, which may include documents, valuable antiques or heirlooms, unused furniture, appliances, gym equipment, and even vehicles.
Storage Unit Type
Now that we know which of your possessions you will be keeping in the storage facility, it will be easy to decide what size of storage unit you will need for the job. You may want to plan on a slightly larger storage stall then you think you actually need, especially if your move includes short-term housing. It will cost you a little bit more compared to having a unit that is just the right size for what you are planning to put in storage. But odds are you will end up with more items than you originally estimate for.
Depending on what type of items you are putting in your storage stall you may also opt for a facility with climate control. Naturally, this option is more expensive than the non-climate controlled alternative but will definitely make sense if you are storing delicate items that may be vulnerable to fluctuating temperature or humidity.
Accessibility is a big factor to chose the right storage facility. Storage facilities that are near the city center or in a higher population neighborhood generally cost more, but they offer unparalleled accessibility. Of course, this consideration will depend on how often you actually need to visit your storage unit. If you are leaving your possessions long-term with just occasional visits, you can save a lot of money by choosing a storage facility in a more remote location. However, if you need to go there regularly, you may spend more fuel, time, and effort if you don’t opt for one that is nearby. If your move includes a short-term living arrangement, it might also make sense to think about where you plan to end up living. Having the storage facility close to your long-term home may save you a lot of time and hassle in the long run.
Storage Unit Security
Another important consideration is the level of security you may require in a storage facility, especially if you have prized possessions and valuable items in storage. Generally, a facility with a reliable surveillance system, a fence, and a gate guarded by security personnel round-the-clock would be a good choice. Those with fire prevention measures ready are also preferred, especially if you’re storing important documents and other highly flammable items.
Be sure to verify that the items you are planning to keep in a storage facility will still be covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy. This is very important because some homeowner’s policies may require specific storage unit features for stored items to be covered. In the case that they aren’t covered, you may be able to get insurance coverage from the storage facility or a specific policy to cover your more valuable stored items.
Payment terms are another huge consideration when picking the right storage unit for your move. Some storage facilities have unusual policies especially when it comes to late payments. There are also other facilities that have a one-time low payment incentive which will eventually increase, so make sure to read the fine print before you sign anything.
Searching for a storage facility requires ample preparation and time. In fact, it should be finalized before the actual date of the move. Knowing what you need to consider will be essential in helping you pick the best fit for you.
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 30,000sqft of air-conditioned facilities in three convenient locations in Dubai and is the only Mobile Storage operator in the UAE.