Tips and Tools:
Storage Basic Overview
If you don’t know where to start when it comes to finding storage—or even in deciding what you need—you’re not alone. It can be a daunting process. Start by asking yourself the following questions to determine what you need. Once you understand that, selecting storage just gets easier.
- How long do you need the unit?
Specials abound! You may find that you can get a great deal on long-term storage. If so, knowing how long you want to store items for can help you find the rate that is best for you. On the other hand, if you are looking for short-term storage, make sure you look for temporary specials.
- How much space do you need?
It’s best to only rent what you need. Next Door Self Storage’s storage calculator can help you figure exactly how much storage space you need. Make sure to save some space to walk around in. See Self Storage Packing Information for details on how to calculate that space.
- How often and at what times of the day will you need to access the unit?
If you anticipate needing to enter your unit at night, make sure your facility has 24/7 accessibility. If you need to load or unload large items and typically load your vehicle alone, look for a facility that has drive-up access.
- Do you have items that are temperature or dust sensitive?
Musical instruments, delicate papers, heirlooms and electronic equipment need to be protected from temperature changes. If you are storing delicate items, make sure to rent a climate-controlled unit. If you have some items that need climate control and others that don’t, consider getting two smaller units; you’ll save money. If you have any questions about what constitutes a temperature-sensitive item, just ask a Next Door Self Storage representative. They’re always happy to help you.
- How much security do you need?
While all storage facilities are generally secure, “general” is not always enough. Make sure you have enough security for your possessions. If you have expensive or priceless belongings, check for additional security features that make you feel like your belongings are in safe hands. In addition, make sure you are comfortable visiting the facility during the hours that you will be there. Cameras, fences, motion alarms and security guards all add to the security of a facility. Make sure your facility’s level of security matches your personal comfort level.
- Do you need mobile storage? If you want a storage container dropped off at your house and picked up and delivered straight to storage when you’re finished packing it, you might do well to find a mobile storage unit. These units are great for need storage during a move, military personnel who will be moving to a new location, or college students who are leaving one location and returning to a second one. And if you are ready to move your belongings yourself? Find out if your storage facility has a truck you can rent. Next Door Self Storage often offers free truck rentals, so make sure to ask about that when you’re researching facilities.
Even better? We have locations all over Illinois, so your belongings are never far from home.