3 Steps to Increase Your Self-Storage Savvy
More people than ever are using storage units for reasons as varied as the people themselves, and the life events they’re facing.
At Your Austin Storage, we’re guessing the life event that had you rolling up the door to your first storage unit was simply running out of space at home. It’s a typical reason to utilize self-storage, but your life journey may also find you moving to a new house, renovating, empty nesting, or needing a place to store college dorm items in the summer.
EVERY STORAGE UNIT TELLS A STORY
These are just a few reasons to join the ranks of millions who use self-storage units. There are so many more! Would it surprise you to know that we’ve had clients who’ve started their small business, or even stored their cars, in one of our storage units?
These important mile markers in your life may require getting a bit creative about where and how you keep your belongings safe and secure. What life mile marker are you living right now? What is the event that led you to us?
If you think about it, every storage unit tells a story. The next time you visit your own storage unit, take a moment to imagine some of the interesting life stories that have led others just like you to trust us to keep your things protected and safe.
THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX
Also think about this: If you’re willing to invest in keeping your items safe in a place that offers you peace of mind, don’t sabotage your efforts by throwing your boxes and items into your storage unit with no real rhyme or reason.
You’ve seen that scene in movies where someone frantic to find a particular item rolls up their storage unit door to face a wall of unorganized boxes. You know they’re never going to find what they’re looking for – at least not without a fair amount of hair pulling, panic, and wasted time.
So, we say to you : “Don’t be that person!” You can choose differently, and we can help!
Think of it this way:
We provide the storage unit ‘box.’ And we can help you think outside of it.
We want to ensure you get a good return on your storage unit investment. So, get creative about how you store your items so that your storage unit actually works for you instead of against you. Your storage unit is a blank canvas. Use it wisely!
Need some tips to get started? Whatever reason you’re here, we encourage everyone who joins our Your Austin Storage family to start with these three simple steps.
Step One: Size Up The Space
As they say, size is everything. It’s important to set yourself up for success from the outset, so take the time to pick the right storage unit size. Start by taking inventory of everything you want to place in storage. Use a measuring tape for your larger items. Once you have your list, use our unit size estimator to determine what unit size you need.
Also, consider going one size larger on your storage unit if you can. A few additional feet and dollars can preserve your sanity, especially when it comes to considering how you will access your storage items.
Step Two: Create A Storage Plan
Once you’ve picked out the right size storage unit, now’s the time to get creative! This is your own personal storeroom to organize to suit your needs.
Using your inventory list, map out where items should go based on how often you may need to access them. Keep more valuable items toward the back of your unit to keep them out of general public view. It’s also helpful to include a center aisle to allow easier access to items further back.
Keep your master inventory list and diagram in an easy-to-find place in the storage unit and add or edit it as the contents of your storage unit change. You can also use an inventory app like Sortly.com to create a visual inventory of your items with photos, tags, notes, and more.
Step Three: Use Your Storage Smarts
Disassemble large furniture to save space. Place hardware in a zip-close bag, label, and tape to the furniture it belongs with.
For electronics, place small colored stickers on the cord and the same color sticker where the cord connects. This will allow for easier reassembly when the time comes. Place cords, remotes, and related items in a zip-close bag, label, and tape to the electronic item it belongs with.
Round up old shelving units and pallets.
It might seem counter-intuitive to seek out items specifically for your storage unit, but these can be handy for organizing smaller boxes or odd-shaped items that don’t stack well. Wooden pallets allow you to keep important items off the floor of the unit. It’s likely you can find these for cheap on online local classifieds sites, or even free curbside.
Label each box – on all six sides. It may seem excessive now, but you’ll thank us later when you’re able to quickly identify the box you need.
Bonus Step: Create A Storage Unit Kit
If you want to take your storage savvy to the next level, find a few minutes to assemble a Storage Unit Kit. Pack a tote with items you use most often at the storage unit. Here’s what made our list:
- Packing tape
Blank labels and sticky notes
Pens, pencils, markers
Plastic bags and garbage bags
Old sheets and moving blankets
Spray cleaner and rag
If you thrive on being extra prepared, stash a furniture dolly, broom, and label maker to make your storage unit trips more efficient and hassle-free.
Whatever your storage needs, Your Austin Storage is happy to provide tips, expert advice, and monthly spotlights on relevant storage topics throughout the year. Next month we’ll focus on ways to close out 2018 and ring in 2019 with helpful storage solutions and resolutions. Get a head start with our Holiday Storage Hacks, and enjoy all that the holidays have in store!