Features to Consider When Choosing a Storage Facility

Categories: Self-Storage Tips

Choosing the right self-storage facility is a little more complicated than stopping at the first one you happen to see. Before making any type of commitment, it pays to make sure the facility offers all the features that you consider necessary. By taking the time to consider each of these features in turn, you will soon determine if the facility you are evaluating is a good fit or if you need to keep looking.

Storage Units and Square Footage

How much storage space will you need? Perhaps the plan is to store most of your furniture while you are on the other side of the country handling a special assignment for your employer. Instead of paying rent on an apartment, it seems like a good idea to place everything into storage until you return. If that’s the case, you will need a storage unit that is large enough to hold just about everything you own.

Maybe the plan is to remove some of the clutter around the house and make it easier to find the things you need most often. In this scenario, the storage unit must be large enough to hold holiday decorations, artwork and other things you aren’t using but want to keep, and even sporting equipment that you only use during certain times of the year.

With either scenario, you want the unit to be large enough to allow for easy organization. The goal is to ensure that if you do need to get into the unit for any reason, it will not take long to find what you need, retrieve it, and not have to spend a lot of time moving the other contents back into position.

Affordable Storage Supplies

Many of the things you want to place in storage should be packed in boxes or similar containers. While you could spend a lot of time running all over town trying to find boxes that are the right size and are sturdy enough to stack, find out if the facility you have in mind offers a selection of storage supplies in Winnipeg. It won’t take long to get an idea of how well they will hold up, the amount of weight each box can support, and how much it would cost to purchase enough boxes for your purposes. You could find that purchasing the boxes there will save a lot of time and money.

Hours of Access

Some storage facilities are only open for a limited number of hours each day. That’s fine if you plan on placing your belongings in storage and then being out of town for several months. When you plan on remaining in town and may occasionally want to retrieve something or possibly add more belongings to the unit, limited hours can be a problem.

Before assuming the posted hours are the only times you can get to the unit, find out if there is some sort of procedure for customers getting on the grounds after hours. You will find that some facilities do provide customers with keys or possible security codes that allow them to enter the grounds even when the facility is not open.

Another point to clear up is whether someone is on call after hours. This would make it possible to contact the facility in advance and arrange for someone to let you onto the property by appointment. This is often one of the most convenient alternatives when the facility you choose is not open around the clock.

Climate Control

What are you planning to store in the unit? Belongings like wood furniture, bedding, and similar items should be in a temperature and humidity controlled environment. Keeping those types of items at a constant temperature ensures they are not damaged by changes in the weather. For example, you would not want for the upholstery on your furniture to degrade faster due to extremely high temperatures in the summer. By the same token, you would want to keep the humidity level within reason so that excess moisture in the air would not damage your wooden cabinetry, chairs, and other furnishings.

Security Measures

The reason for storing your belongings rather than selling them or giving them to loved ones is that you want to keep them. That means they must be stored in a secure facility. While just about any storage company will have some ways of keeping your items safe, it pays to find out what sort of measures are taken.

Seeing a fence around the storage units is a good start. It’s even better when there are security cameras mounted at strategic places around the units. Knowing that the footage captured by those cameras is uploaded to a cloud location as well as preserved locally also means there will be no doubt about who does and does not get near your unit.

Security guards should be part of the efforts made by the storage company. Someone who monitors activity via the cameras as well as walking the grounds from time to time does provide another level of safety for your belongings. It also means there is someone there to summon help if necessary.

Don’t forget to ask about alarms and what it takes to trigger them. In the best-case scenario, suspicious activity will be enough to automatically alert the local authorities and provide the chance to capture the thieves in the act.

Location Matters

The location of the facility may not matter much if you plan on storing most of your belongings and heading out of town for an extended period of time. It becomes more important when you will be visiting the facility regularly to add to or retrieve something. Some people prefer Winnipeg storage facilities that are right on the way to and from work; that makes it easy to drop in and get whatever is needed without making a special trip. Others like something close to home so they can drive over and get what they need in just a few minutes.

You are the one who decides if a certain storage facility has all the features you want. Make a list of what you consider essential and don’t consider any company offering less. Doing so will ensure you feel good about the choice and won’t worry about the condition or the safety of your belongings.

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