Pros and Cons of Renting a Storage Unit for Your Extra Stuff
In most urban communities today, you can’t drive more than a block or two without coming across a public storage facility. Storage units are increasing in popularity as people find themselves moving from home to home within the same city to save money on housing. And many families just want a little extra space to store all the stuff that accumulates over the years.
If you’re just looking into self-storage and wondering if it’s the right option for you, here are some pros and cons to consider.
Pro #1: Quickly Declutter Without Giving Anything Up
Tons of people today have more stuff than they know what to do with, but they have a hard time letting go of it all. Sure, there might be a few items here and there that are easy to let go of, but it’s hard to radically downsize because you have an emotional connection to a lot of those items. So what can you do?
Box up the things that you haven’t used in a year or more and put them in storage. Maybe you can go through them later on and downsize further, but if you just can’t seem to part with them right now, put them in storage temporarily so that you can finally relax in your own home again without feeling cramped and stressed out.
Pro #2: Safe, Secure and Convenient Storage
Public storage facilities have gated parking lots, security cameras, monitored access points, and even overnight security guards. That’s more security than most apartment complexes, and single-family homes have to offer, making these storage places a safer choice than many people’s own houses.
Plus, climate control also helps to preserve the life of your possessions.
Pro #3: Perfect for Short-Term and Long-Term Storage
Whether you are moving to a new residence long-term or are just taking a temporary job or vacation and expect to come back again in a few months, self-storage units are a great choice due to their flexibility. You can rent month-to-month from many moving and storage companies without getting locked into a contract, so there’s no penalty for pulling your items out on short notice.
Or if you want long-term storage, you’re usually able to lock in a lower monthly rate with a contract.
Pro #4: Easier to Stage Your Home When Selling
When you’re trying to sell your home, it’s crucial that you stage your home with as little clutter as possible. To attract more buyers and get the highest sale price possible, presenting a clean, partially-furnished home with zero mess and clutter is essential.
And you’re going to have to box up everything to move anyway, so putting those boxes into short-term storage down the street is a smart move that will likely end up paying for itself many times over.
Con #1: People Often Overlook Moving Costs
The cost of moving is not included in the storage rental fee, and a lot of people don’t realize how much it can cost to hire a local moving company to move some stuff from their home to a storage facility just a few miles away.
Now, if you’re moving a ton of items – including bulky and heavy furniture – then that’s a lot of work for just one person, and hiring someone with a moving van to help you move those things might be a necessity.
Con #2: Additional Risk With Cheaper Storage Units
Many storage customers make the mistake of opting for the outdoor units just to save a few bucks every month. But this can be a big mistake, since the storage units with outside access are not climate-controlled and are easier for thieves – and pests – to get into.
Con #3: Not As Convenient As Home Storage
Let’s face it: having to get in the car and drive down to the storage unit just to grab one or two items can get old in a hurry. A lot of people find this out the hard way when opting for long-term storage. But this problem is easily avoided if you plan ahead and only put rarely-used items in your storage unit.
Con #4: Can Only Be Accessed Locally
Military families and nomadic millennials can recall plenty of times that they needed an item from their storage unit but were unable to access it because it was literally a thousand miles away. So if you’re backpacking halfway around the world or moving cross-country, you can’t just jump in the car and be at your storage unit in 15 minutes.
Self-storage units can be a convenient and affordable option, whether you need short-term storage or long-term storage. You just need to be aware of the pros and cons of self-storage and plan ahead when deciding what to pack away and what to keep with you at home or on the road.