Self-storage units can help store personal items securely

Self-storage units in Salisbury NC can be ideal for storing personal items. Self-storage units can be incredibly useful for a variety of purposes, whether you’re downsizing, moving, or simply need extra space to store items. However, there are several common mistakes that people make when using self-storage, which can end up costing time, money, and effort. Understanding these pitfalls and knowing how to avoid them can help you make the most of your storage experience.

Mistake 1: Not Researching Storage Facilities

One of the most critical mistakes is not doing enough research before choosing a storage facility. Not all storage units are created equal, and selecting a facility without proper research can lead to issues such as poor security, inadequate climate control, or inconvenient access hours.

How to Avoid It:

  • Read Reviews: Look for customer reviews online to get an idea of the facility’s reputation.
  • Visit in Person: Take a tour of the facility to check cleanliness, security measures, and overall conditions.
  • Ask Questions: Inquire about access hours, security features, climate control options, and insurance policies.

Mistake 2: Choosing the Wrong Size Unit

Renting a unit that is too large or too small for your needs is another common error. A unit that’s too large means paying for unused space, while a unit that’s too small can result in cramming items, which might cause damage.

How to Avoid It:

  • Inventory Your Items: Make a detailed list of everything you plan to store.
  • Consult with the Facility: Many facilities offer size guides or staff who can help you choose the right size based on your inventory.
  • Use a Space Calculator: Some storage companies provide online calculators to help estimate the space you need.

Mistake 3: Poor Packing Practices

Improper packing is a frequent mistake that can lead to damaged items and inefficient use of space. For instance, not labeling boxes or packing items haphazardly can make it difficult to find things later and increase the risk of damage.

How to Avoid It:

  • Use Quality Packing Materials: Invest in sturdy boxes, bubble wrap, and packing tape.
  • Label Everything: Clearly label each box with its contents and the room it belongs to.
  • Pack Strategically: Place heavier items on the bottom and lighter, more fragile items on top. Use uniform box sizes to maximize space.

Mistake 4: Neglecting Climate Control

Storing items that are sensitive to temperature and humidity without climate control can result in significant damage. Items like wooden furniture, electronics, and important documents can deteriorate if not stored in a climate-controlled environment.

How to Avoid It:

  • Consider the Items Being Stored: Determine if your items are susceptible to extreme temperatures or humidity.
  • Choose Climate-Controlled Units: Opt for climate-controlled storage if you are storing items like antiques, electronics, or important papers.
  • Monitor Conditions: Check the unit’s climate regularly if possible, especially during extreme weather conditions.

Mistake 5: Overlooking Security

Security is a crucial aspect of storage that should not be overlooked. Facilities with poor security measures can leave your belongings vulnerable to theft or damage.

How to Avoid It:

  • Check Security Features: Look for facilities with good lighting, surveillance cameras, gated access, and individual unit alarms.
  • Use Strong Locks: Invest in a high-quality lock for your unit. Disc locks or cylinder locks are often recommended.
  • Insurance: Consider getting insurance for your stored items for added protection.

Mistake 6: Failing to Maintain Organization

Disorganization within your storage unit can lead to difficulty in accessing items and potential damage. Stacking boxes haphazardly or not having a clear system can make retrieval a nightmare.

How to Avoid It:

  • Create an Inventory Map: Draw a map of where each item is located within the unit.
  • Use Shelving: Install shelving units to keep boxes off the ground and organized.
  • Keep Aisles Clear: Leave a clear path in your unit to easily access items at the back.

Mistake 7: Not Utilizing Vertical Space

Many people fail to utilize the vertical space in their storage units, which can lead to inefficient use of space and potentially higher costs for larger units.

How to Avoid It:

  • Stack Boxes Safely: Stack boxes up to the ceiling if possible, ensuring heavier boxes are at the bottom.
  • Use Shelving Units: As mentioned before, shelving can help utilize vertical space efficiently.
  • Store Vertically-Oriented Items Upright: Items like mattresses, couches, or long pieces of furniture should be stored vertically to save floor space.

Mistake 8: Ignoring Insurance

Assuming your belongings are covered by the storage facility’s insurance is a costly mistake. Most facilities do not insure stored items, and in case of theft, damage, or natural disasters, you could be left without compensation.

How to Avoid It:

  • Check Your Homeowner’s or Renter’s Insurance: Some policies may cover items in storage.
  • Purchase Additional Insurance: Consider buying insurance from a third-party provider or the storage facility itself.
  • Understand the Coverage: Ensure you know what is and isn’t covered under your insurance policy.

Mistake 9: Storing Prohibited Items

Storing items that are prohibited by the storage facility can result in fines, removal of items, or even legal action. Commonly prohibited items include flammable materials, explosives, and perishables.

How to Avoid It:

  • Read the Contract: Carefully review the storage facility’s contract for a list of prohibited items.
  • Ask the Facility: When in doubt, ask the facility manager if an item is allowed.
  • Use Alternatives: For prohibited items, seek alternative storage solutions, such as specialized facilities for flammable materials.

Mistake 10: Not Planning for Long-Term Storage

If you plan to store items for an extended period, failing to plan for long-term storage can lead to the deterioration of your belongings.

How to Avoid It:

  • Prepare Items for Long-Term Storage: Clean and dry items thoroughly before storing them. Use covers for furniture and electronics.
  • Check on Items Periodically: Visit your unit periodically to check on the condition of your items.
  • Rotate Items: If possible, rotate items periodically to prevent settling and pressure damage.

Avoiding these common self-storage mistakes can save you time, money, and stress. By choosing the right facility, properly packing and organizing your items, and understanding the importance of climate control and security, you can ensure that your belongings remain safe and in good condition. Taking the time to plan and organize effectively will help you make the most out of your self-storage experience.

Reserve self-storage units in Salisbury NC

Mr. Storage is locally owned and managed with affordable pricing. We have storage facilities in Concord, Salisbury, Harrisburg, Kannapolis NC, and Midland. Contact us today to reserve your unit.