Choosing a self storage unit for the first time, whether domestic or commercial, can be a somewhat daunting task. There seem to be countless options and facilities to consider. What size should you go for? What types of storage are available and which one is the right one for you? How much will it cost? All these questions can leave you feeling a bit puzzled. So, we’ve put together a simple guide designed to help you through the process and find the right facility to suit your needs.
The cost of renting a storage unit is very much dependent upon size, location and duration of use. Each method of payment also varies, some companies may charge you weekly, monthly, and others quarterly and even yearly.
Typically you may be asked to pay a deposit when signing the contract. The deposit should be refunded when you remove your items from storage, therefore ensure that you fully understand the terms and conditions to avoid any later issues as well as how much the deposit is. Naturally, when requesting a quote, the company should outline whether or not a deposit is required.
The important thing when choosing a storage unit is to think about what you need and not how cheap it is. For example, if your items are not damp proof and you choose a cheaper storage facility that does not have adequate weatherproofing, then you are throwing your money down the drain.
It is not always easy to visualise how much space your possessions will take up. To help you choose the right size storage facility, we’ve listed some examples of standard store room sizes below and roughly how much stuff you can fit into each one.
- 25 sq ft: Approximately 20 large single boxes or the contents of an average garden shed.
- 50 sq ft: Approximately 65 large single boxes, 1 x Luton van load of goods. A 1 bedroom flat would need a unit of between 50 and 75 sq ft.
- 100 sq ft: Approximately 140 large single boxes, the contents of an average garage, or 240 racked archive boxes. A 2 bedroom house or flat would need a unit of between 75 and 100 sq ft.
- 150 sq ft: 250 large single boxes or 3 luton van loads of goods. A 3-4 bedroom house would need a unit of between 120 and 150 sq ft.
- 250 sq ft: Approximately 400 large boxes or 4-5 luton van loads of goods. This size unit is suitable for the contents of a 4 or 5 bedroom house.
One of the biggest concerns when choosing a storage unit is security. Ideally, you want a secure location that gives you peace of mind when it comes to keeping your possessions safe. When enquiring about storage units, you should therefore check whether the business is fully protected with safeguards such as a fitted gate, security outside of business hours and CCTV. At MoreStore Self Storage for example, all of our self-storage rooms are located inside a modern warehouse on a secure, gated site protected by an access control system and 24 hour, monitored CCTV.
When choosing a storage company, consider the access provided to tenants. Find out the facility’s hours of operation and gate hours. Opening hours could be especially important if you need access to your unit outside of normal business hours. It is important to consider whether the opening times suit your personal needs. Weekend opening times are also important to question as certain facilities may be closed on a Sunday with reduced access.
Location is an important part of choosing a storage facility. If you’re planning on visiting the site frequently, it makes sense to choose a self storage facility that is close to you, even if this works out slightly more expensive, as it can save you the expense of travelling long distances. If you’re not planning to visit the facility often then it could be more cost effective to choose a more remote option.
You should also consider traffic, particularly for centrally located storage units which may be busy, particularly during rush hour and at weekends. Although, a centrally located facility may be closer to you, it may take you longer to get there due to traffic. For example, many Peterborough and Stamford residents choose to use MoreStore Self Storage because it is located on an easily accessible, out-of-town commercial estate with excellent transport routes instead of a busy town centre location.
Types of storage units
When looking into the types of storage that are available out there, you may come across a few different options. Once you have determined what you need in terms of size, location, security and access, you will then be able to choose the most suitable type of storage facility.
Warehouse storage facilities are generally large buildings which have been sectioned into rooms of various sizes of storage units. These tend to be the most secure and the most weatherproof, although this can be reflected in the price.
Container storage facilities offer shipping containers (usually up to 160 square feet) located in either a field or a compound of some sort. These are cheaper but are susceptible to freezing temperatures and wet weather. They are also often located on remote sites which are more easily targeted by thieves.
Garage storage facilities tend to be situated in more urban areas and usually involve boxing your items in a large crate and storing them on a rack. These are a very affordable option but access tends to be more restricted.
In determining the right storage unit, it is worth considering which one is the most suitable, conveniently located and comfortable for you. If you are located close to Peterborough, Stamford, Deeping or Spalding, take a look at what MoreStore has to offer! Get in touch here.