January 14th, 2011
There are several reasons why people rent a storage unit. Downsizing a home is one of them. Having a place to store out-of-season lawn equipment is another, paying to have a son’s or daughter’s stuff stored when they move to another city is common.
The first question to ask yourself:
Does the value of stored items justify the cost of storing them for a year or more? One woman stored her grandmother’s belongings for 26 years.
If storing is worth the price, go through the process of finding the right company and unit.
Sizes and costs: A unit can range from 5×5 or 8×12, to 10×30 or more. Prices can range up to $250 a month for a large unit in some cities.
Features: Is the unit air conditioned to prevent temperature extremes and mold? Are trucks and carts available? Do they furnish the lock? An outdoor unit has access from outside. An indoor unit is accessed from inside the building.
Security: Ask whether there are video cameras monitoring the units and grounds, whether the units are in a gated area, and whether you need a PIN number to gain access.
Free parking: Some companies have a space available to park a car, boat, RV or motorcycle.
Rental Payments: Determine what the terms are, whether the company accepts credit cards or online payment, and what the office hours are.
A visit to the establishment will give you a good idea if it’s a company you want to do business with. Check to see if the buildings are in good condition and whether the grounds are well kept.
If you live in another city and won’t see the place before you move, ask to have photos of the facility sent to you before making a reservation, or visit their website.