Garage/Storage: Part 4: Pros and Cons of Renting a Self Storage Unit
Since the 1970’s, the average U.S. home has grown by 80%. Yet Americans face a “storage crisis,” according to UCLA researchers. Pretty crazy, huh?
As an Atlanta professional organizing and move management company, we’ve seen a lot of “stuff” through the years. Sometimes people even hire us to help them deal with the contents of storage units they’ve had for years, which has cost them a lot more $$$ than the value of the stuff being stored! However, there may be valid reasons for renting a storage unit, particularly if it’s short-term or you’re moving and need a temporary solution.
As anyone who has moved knows, it’s a lot of work – from carefully packing fragile items, checking all the nooks and crannies of your old house, recruiting your strongest friends and family to lift heavy furniture, and the list goes on. Coping with a transitional period where you have to be out of your old home but can’t move into the new one yet presents yet another challenge.
Here are a few of the pros and cons of renting a storage unit while moving to determine if it’s the right solution for you:
Pro: Good for transitional periods. As I mentioned above, you might be in a situation where you have to move out by the end of the month, but your new home is not available right away. If you don’t have a hospitable friend or family member who can store all your stuff, renting a storage unit may be the ideal solution. It gives you a safe place to keep your belongings without inconveniencing others.
Con: Can sometimes be hard to find an available facility. Don’t assume you’ll have no problem renting a storage unit the day you need it. They’re a lot more popular than you might think, and it can sometimes be hard to find an available unit if you don’t plan far enough in advance. If you plan on moving and think you might want to rent a storage unit, you should contact a storage facility in advance to see what they have available.
Pro: Store valuables in a secure place. Even if your time between homes is only a few days, you probably don’t want to leave expensive items in your car or anywhere else that isn’t safe from theft or damage. Storage units offer a secure place to keep your valuables during your move, and the peace of mind alone may make it worth it.
Con: Potential organizational nightmare. Moving is always hectic, and it can be hard to stay organized, especially when putting your possessions in a storage unit. The temptation may be to throw boxes and furniture in wherever they fit, but this can make it difficult when you need to take your things out of storage and figure out where everything goes. One thing you can do to avoid this problem is to clearly mark boxes and organize things in the unit based on the room they will go into at your new home.
Pro: Renting a storage unit is relatively cheap. You can usually get a smaller unit for less than $50 per month and pay on a month-to-month basis. A lot of facilities will even provide a moving truck for you to use free-of-charge if you use one of their units. Check with your local storage facility to see what kind of deals they offer.
Con: Out of sight, out of mind. A big danger with storage units is that when your belongings are packed away, you’re more likely to forget about them and just leave them there, paying month after month in storage fees. This is the #1 reason I’m not a fan of renting storage units unless it’s for a temporary, specific reason. Wasting money is, well, a waste of money!
If you have a storage unit you’re ready to deal with, here are some ways Real Order can help:
We will do the physical labor.
We will help you disperse items that can be sold or donated.
We will arrange for items to be to be disposed of that have no value (this includes National Geographics and encyclopedias!)
We will do all this with compassion and sensitivity.
We will give you permission to throw things out.
We hope these tips from your Atlanta Professional Organizer and Move Manager are helpful. We would be delighted to help you or your family/friends with any of your moving, organizing or home office needs.