What to Consider When Choosing a Long Term Storage Unit

Storage TipsJune 22, 2023

Storing your items long-term warrants much more consideration than storing them for a short period of time. You will want to consider the size of the unit, its location, as well as means of access, to start with. You may want to be dealing with one of the best moving companies Columbus Ohio, as they will be able to help you choose an ideal storage unit. Then there is security to consider, insurance and payment options, etc. You also want to read as many of the customer reviews as you can find. But if you are dealing with a reputable moving company, you need not worry over much. Great movers are honest and transparent with their customers and will help you reach the best decision for your needs. In this article, we will review what to consider when choosing a long term storage unit.

Things to consider when choosing a long term storage unit

Here is the list of things that require careful consideration:

  • First, consider the size when choosing a long term storage unit
  • The location
  • Consider the storage access when choosing a long term storage unit
  • Security of the storage facility
  • Insurance options
  • Payment options and cost of a long term storage unit
A girl making a list of the things to consider when choosing a long term storage unit
Take all factors into consideration before you choose a storage unit

Of course, you need to take the specifics of your situation into account. If you have special requirements, they need to be considered as well. When choosing a long term storage unit, you need to always have the big picture in mind. That way, you will not be sidetracked. But let’s explore the above considerations a bit more, shall we?

Consider the size when choosing a long term storage unit

The size of the unit is one of the major factors that will influence how much your storage unit will cost. It will also limit your options to storage units of sufficient capacity. The best way of figuring out the necessary size is to measure your boxes and items that will be going inside. Then add about 10-15% to that, and you will get the capacity that you require. Ideally, you will work with your long distance movers to figure out the best storage space. They can show you a few tricks that will make the process a lot easier. Their knowledge and experience will definitely come in handy. Therefore, always ask for advice before you start looking for a storage unit.

Moving boxes ready to be stored in a storage unit
The size of the unit depends on the number of boxes you need to store

In addition, consider the shape and dimensions of the unit as well. Not everything you store will be in neat, square boxes, so the unit’s height, length, and width can play a crucial role in how efficiently you can store your belongings. The unit’s size can also impact the accessibility of your items. If you need to access certain items while they are in storage, a larger unit could make it easier to arrange items with this in mind.

Take the potential growth of your storage needs into account

Moreover, consider the potential growth of your storage needs. Your belongings may increase over time, so consider getting a slightly larger unit than you need to accommodate future acquisitions. This may save you from the hassle and cost of transferring to a larger unit later. For example, at one point, you might need commercial storage Columbus Ohio. So, having a larger unit from the beginning can make this situation easier.

Lastly, remember to account for unusual or large items. For example, furniture pieces, appliances, or bikes may require more space than you initially anticipated. It can be helpful to create a floor plan or layout of how you’ll organize your items within the unit to ensure you’ve chosen an adequately sized space. Don’t forget to include space for aisles or walkways to easily access your items.

A teddy bear inside a storage facility
Choose a unit you can use for more than one purpouse

Choose the right location

The next important thing to consider is the location of the unit. This is the second major factor that determines the unit’s price. The more remote a location, the less the cost. Simple as that. The ideal location of the unit is going to heavily depend on how many times you expect to be visiting it in a year. If you need to drive to the unit once or twice a year, being in a remote location is less of a problem. But if you need to access it regularly, you will want to have it a bit closer to your place of residence. Normally, the ideal location is somewhere between remote and easily accessible.

However, if you are anywhere near Columbus or Hilliard, you can find portable storage units Hilliard Ohio. Portable storage units offer unparalleled convenience. They can be delivered directly to your location, allowing for easy loading at your own pace. Once filled, they can be transported to a new location or a storage facility, eliminating multiple trips and simplifying the moving process.

Consider the storage access when choosing a long term storage unit

Speaking of accessibility, you need to consider that not all storage units have the same degree of access. Some units require you to announce your schedule in advance, whereas others can have you come and go with impunity. You need to figure out what kind of access you require and rent a corresponding unit. At this point, you want to look into available services, too. If the moving company, in addition to a storage unit, can offer packing services, for example, it may make your life a lot easier down the line. However, do note that storage units with great access options (such as drive-up access) can cost considerably more than other variants. It all depends on your moving budget and your needs, though.

Security of the storage facility

Regardless of everything else, you want your storage unit to be safe, and that is what you need to consider when choosing a long term storage unit. You must verify that the facility has all the necessary security measures in place, such as cameras, live guards, etc. But you also need to put these measures into context. If a facility is remote, having a few cameras around does not sound as good as having a few live guards on the premises. On the other hand, if the unit is located in an urban area, you might want to go with a storage option that has password access and similar measures to protect your belongings.

Consider the security of the unit to be high on your list of priorities. Even if your items are insured, replacing them (or getting adequate compensation) might be difficult and time-consuming. Of course, it all depends on the type of long term storage you use. For instance, residential storage Columbus Ohio requires fewer security measures than commercial ones. Certainly, this doesn’t mean your belongings are less valuable to you, just that the risk is lower.

Two security cameras since security is one of the points to consider when choosing a long term storage unit
Video surveillance is the minimum of security that your unit needs to have.

Insurance options

When considering insurance options for your storage unit, it’s essential to evaluate each plan’s coverage details closely. You want to ensure that your items are covered in the event of damage, theft, or disaster. While most storage facilities offer their own insurance policies, the coverage might be basic and may not fully cover your stored belongings. Look at what each insurance plan covers. Standard policies typically protect against events like fire, theft, and water damage. But if you’re storing valuable items, you might want to consider a policy that offers more comprehensive coverage. This could include protection against mold, mildew, pest damage, or even floods.

Check the limit of the coverage as well. Some insurance policies have a maximum limit, which might not cover the total value of your items. Suppose you have valuable possessions like antiques, artwork, or heirloom pieces. In that case, you might need a policy with a higher coverage limit or even an additional rider to insure these items adequately.

Another important aspect is the claims process. How easy is it to file a claim? How quickly do they pay out? This is particularly important if you find yourself in a situation where you need to replace your items swiftly. It can be worthwhile to read reviews or ask for customer testimonials to understand the insurance company’s reliability and efficiency.

A portable storage unit
Mobile units are the most convenient

Lastly, although it might seem counterintuitive, don’t overlook the possibility of using your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance to cover your items in storage. Depending on your policy, it might already provide coverage for items stored off-premises. This can save you from needing to purchase additional coverage.

Payment options and cost of a long term storage unit

Most storage facilities will allow for multiple payment options, as well as providing a discount when renting for the long term. There are many great deals to be had, and you would do well to shop around. You also need to take a look at the pricing policy and how much the landlord is able to raise the price. While you can always refuse the price increase, of course, you may need to relocate your belongings, which can be a considerable cost on its own. Similar to renting an apartment, you have options on how to respond. You need to know your options before you rent a unit and carefully read the terms of the lease. For instance, climate controlled storage Columbus Ohio is usually more expensive than the regular units. Have this in mind when you consider the possible increase in prices too.

Two people holding US dollar bills
Before renting, consider all the payment options available.

Choose a storage unit wisely – read online reviews

You will want to read as many customer reviews as possible before renting a unit. This might be, perhaps, one of the most important things to consider when choosing a long term storage unit. By reading the reviews, you can avoid many traps and only rent a unit from someone that is reliable and trustworthy. Well-established moving companies are your primary choice, and they have plenty of reviews out there.

Use all the benefits of a long term storage unit

Even though it may seem complicated at first, having in mind all these things to consider when choosing a long term storage unit helps you in the long run. A long term storage unit really has many benefits, and you need to use all the perks that renting one offers. So, don’t hesitate, follow our advice, and find the unit you need.

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