When deciding if you should rent storage to store your belongings you should first identify the size of the self storage unit you will need and how long you will need to rent the unit. Here are some basic self storage sizes and guidelines
to help you narrow down your selection. Remember it is always better to have extra room than to have to cram your belongings into a smaller space.
After deciding which size of storage unit rental you need, create a list amenities you want the storage unit to have.
It may help to go through and rate the amenities on a scale of one through five. Below is an explanation of the rating system we use:
Here is a list of a few amenities that we have found most storage unit rentals have:
- You will not rent storage from this facility if this amenity is not available.
- You might not rent storage from the facility if this amenity is not available but you could live without it.
- You are indifferent and are not sure if you would benefit from this amenity but you would use it if the facility offered it.
- You would still rent storage from the facility if this amenity wasn't offered but you would consider it an added bonus if it was offered.
- You place little importance on this amenity and would rent storage from the facility without this amenity.
- convenient and safe location
- climate control
- 24-hour access
- security cameras
- security guards
- keypad entrance
- gated grounds
- lighting system
- 24-hour on-site manager
- alarm system
- renters insurance available
- various payment methods accepted
- convenient payment schedule
Self Storage Finders directory makes looking for storage unit rentals in your areas fast and easy. The directory allows you to access all of the self storage facilities in your area with one click. You will be able to narrow your self storage search by zip code and then view the locations on google maps, as well as view the facilities personal websites, so you can compare your list of amenities must haves, which you created in step 2, against what the facilities offers. If the facility does not offer the amenity that you ranked as a number one priority then the facility should be crossed off of the list.
Visit your top self storage location and get a good feel for the facility so you feel comfortable when it comes time to leave your belongings in the storage unit rental.
Call the facilities before you plan on visiting to make sure that the storage operator will be available to give you a tour of the facility.
Although visiting each facility may seem like an inconvenience for you, it will reveal things about the facility that their website won't tell you. You will want to pay close attention to how the location of the facility looks and its surrounding neighborhood. Look at whether or not the facility is easy to access and the condition of the storage units. Has the facility been maintained and well taken care of? Here are some key things to look for during your visit.
- When you arrive at the facility look around the property grounds to see if the facility is well maintained and clean.
- Look at the property's fencing and gate making sure that there are no broken or weak points in the fence.
- Are there properly working lights around the perimeter and inside the facility? Are there working surveillance cameras?
- Inside of the office look to see if it is clean and taken care of.
- Does the manager greet you when you walk into the office? Is he paying attention to whoever walks onto the property?
- Do you feel comfortable bringing and leaving your belongings here?
- Are you allowed to view an actual storage unit? Is the unit clean and rentable?
- Do you feel safe visiting the facility?
If you have followed the previous four steps then you should be ready to make the final decision and choose which self storage facility you want to rent from. During the last step hopefully you were able to eliminate one or two of the self storage facilities that did not measure up to your standards. After doing this try placing the remaining storage facilities in order of how they ranked during the previous steps, eliminating your least favorite facility and so on until you have only one facility left.
If you are finding it difficult deciding which facility to eliminate, compare the monthly price of each facility. The safety of your belongings is the most important factor so this is why we recommend that you don't rely on price to sway your decision; however price can be used to decide between comparable storage facilities. Ask the facility if they offer any special rental rates, discount programs or bonuses that you might qualify for:
- First or last month free
- Discounts for seniors, students or military personnel
- Discounts on other moving supplies
When signing the contract you may be offered rental insurance, before agreeing to purchase renter's insurance check with your homeowner's insurance policy to see if you are covered. Check to see exactly what is covered, whether or not damaged or stolen items are reimbursed and at what cost level and if you have a deductible.
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