What to Look for in a Storage Facility

If you’re like most people in America, you probably have some stuff you’re interested in getting out of the house. The average home in America is holding 300,000 things, and 25% of American households don’t have enough room in their garage to park a car, even if they have a two-car garage. Another 32% only have room for one car in their two-car garage. You, like many people, could probably really use some self storage space for storing your vehicle, boat storage, or simply decluttering your home. Fortunately, America has more than 50,000 facilities for storage, and finding a controlled access storage facility is pretty simple. But how do you find a good one? Here’s how to choose the right controlled access storage facility or other storage space for your needs.

  • What do you plan to put in your storage unit? A a lot of people make the mistake of renting a facility that will just hold their stuff. You want to have enough room your self storage space for you to move around. You also want to have a bit of room for growth in case you have a sudden need. You might use a controlled access storage facility primarily for boat storage, for example, but also need space for storing items while moving at some other time in life. Think about this as you consider finding the right storage unit.
  • Do you have any items that are temperature sensitive? This is a big question, but you need to think about in advance. Some storage units are outdoors while others are climate controlled, so it’s important to determine what kind of protection you need for the items you plan to store. If your items are valuable and temperature sensitive, you will want insurance for your storage unit. Your homeowners insurance policy may cover items in the storage unit, and many storage facilities will offer insurance as well.
  • Be sure to compare office hours and gate hours. As you are checking out a controlled access storage facility, you want to make sure that the gate hours and office hours are clear. Gate hours will be the time when you can access your unit, but office hours are the only times you’ll be able to speak to someone if you have an issue. You want these hours to match as closely as possible.
  • Don’t tie yourself to one location. The important thing is that your goods are safe. The one that’s closest to you, or the cheapest one in your area, is not necessarily the best. It would be a lot better to have to travel a few minutes extra distance in order to be assured of excellent security at a controlled access storage facility.
  • Ask to see the unit that you will rent. You should be able to see the precise unit that you will be getting, or at least a unit of the same size in the same area and floor. If you are shown a unit on the third floor, you should expect to get a unit on the third floor. Check out the lighting, security measures, and arrangement of the unit.
  • Be sure to nail down financial specifics. What will happen, for example, if you were late on a payment? Precisely what day is payment due? Every state and every rental facility has their own grace period rules and regulations, and in some places even a few days’ late payment will mean that your unit could legally be auctioned off. It’s always wise to set up payments in such away that you’re unlikely to ever miss one, but sometimes checks get lost in the mail or the Internet goes down. If that happens, you want to know exactly what their policy is.

Using a rental storage facility is nothing unusual. One in 10 people in America are doing so. Just make sure that you choose the right controlled access storage facility for your goods and needs.