Answering Some Common Questions About Self Storage

Self storage is a great option for anyone who has run out of room at home for all their "stuff," or if they want to store certain items away from the family, such as dangerous tools they use for their business or a nice car they don't want to get scratched or damaged.

Whatever your needs for a self storage unit, note the questions you might have about their use overall, and this can help you determine if such a space is the right option for you.

What is the risk of pest infestation?

If you're worried about mice, roaches and other such pests getting into your stored items, consider investing in a unit indoors, where there is less risk of rodents and insects. Be sure you wrap and pack your items properly; invest in plastic or rubber totes and bins, rather than cardboard boxes or even leaving items in the unit unpacked. Get shrink-wrap for larger items such as furniture pieces. Be sure you don't have anything left out that would attract pests, such as pet food, cooking oil and the like. This will keep your items as protected as if they were being stored at home.

What items shouldn't be stored in the unit?

A self-storage rental company may have their own limitations on items that can be stored and may not allow anything hazardous, such as propane tanks, gasoline, welding equipment and the like. This will vary from location to location, and each rental location will usually have these items spelled out, in writing, so you know of their restrictions before you sign your rental agreement. Some locations may also have certain requirements for how other items are stored; for example, if you want to store large quantities of pet food, you may need to keep it in a rubber or plastic tote, even if the bag is unopened.

Other than these restrictions, it's good to just use common sense about what to store, or how to store certain items, when renting a unit. Any battery will drain in overly cold or hot weather, and of course clothes may hold mildew and be eaten by moths if not properly packed before put in a storage unit. Have a battery charger ready if you're storing a car battery in the unit, be sure clothes are packed in rubber or plastic, and do the same for other delicate items or those that might risk damage while in storage.