Self-storage units are a lifesaver. They provide homeowners and renters with extra space to safely keep items that they can’t necessarily fit in their residence. However, renting a unit and sporadically placing items inside will cause problems. How? By taking up more of your time and potentially causing damage to your possessions. We’ve spent many years helping others find the perfect unit and get the most out of self-storage. If you’ve got a new space to utilize, follow these steps to organize like a professional.
1. Clean it out
Getting the most out of your storage space would include first giving the floors a clean. You don’t have to get too detailed, but if the unit is new to you, you’ll want to make sure it’s free from dust, dirt, or debris that might affect the integrity of your storage containers.
2. Organize your items
Whatever you have going into storage, organize it by groups. For example, think about seasonal here and kitchen items there. Clustering everything like this will make it easier for you to complete step number three.
3. Identify what items will require quick access
Not everything in storage is going to “collect dust.” Some of the things will be used intermittently. Putting them in the front will make it easier to access when the time comes. Things to think about are recreational equipment, seasonal decor, or tools.
4. Buy storage containers that are similar in size
You can maximize your storage space by getting multiple boxes and storage containers in the same size. It will make it a whole lot easier when it comes time for stacking everything. When they are the same size, they will sit a little more effortlessly together and won’t take up as much room.
5. Label your boxes
It would surprise you how many people forget or forego this step altogether. Getting everything to fit in the unit is usually one of the priorities. But, there might call for an occasion when you need to access the stacked boxes. Knowing what’s inside will make it less challenging to find.
6. Have an itemized list
This step is an extension of the previous. While labeling your boxes “kitchen” will tell you where something is located, an itemized list will confirm that it’s actually in the unit. Detailed records will reduce the amount of time you spend searching for something that might be in your attic.
7. Make a floor plan
We don’t want you to get caught up in a technical drawing, but if you know, you will utilize the storage unit to its full potential create a general map. You’ll love yourself for do this when the time comes. Focus most on boxes that might not be so easy to see. Anything tucked away in the back, draw it out. This step coupled with the labeled boxes is a lifesaver.
8. Leave space for a walkway
Forgetting to leave a walk space is something individuals forget all the time. Trying to get as much in the unit seems to be the priority, but not issuing a walk space creates problems. First, it makes it more difficult to get what you need. Secondly, not enough space will mean there is potential for injury trying to access the box.
9. Pack your boxes like an expert
Some of your belongings can sit in a box without any issues. Others will require a little finesse, especially fragile items. We’ve talked about the best ways to pack fragile items before. Just ensure you’re used adequate amounts of newspaper, bubble wrap, and packing tape to prolong the lifespan of those things you hold dearest.
10. Place heaviest boxes at the bottom
Never place heavy boxes on top of lighter boxes. Gravity will do what it’s supposed to do and eventually collapse down. One heavy box may rest on top of another, just be mindful of the items inside the box. If it’s a “heavy” box of fragile pieces, place it on top of something that is sturdy.
We try to make storing what matters most to you safe and secure. At Stuff It Inn, we have years of experience helping our clients get the most out of their self-storage units. Contact us today to learn more.