Finding the right storage company
Whether you’re moving to a smaller property that doesn’t have space for all your furniture, renting for a short time while you find a new home, or doing renovations and you need to move out temporarily, there are many good reasons for using self-storage. Here are some of the key things to consider when choosing a self-storage company.
Work out how much storage you’ll need
The last thing you want is to end up paying for empty. Here are some approximate estimations to help you work out how much storage space you’ll need:
- Studio flat or bed-sit – Storing the average contents from a studio flat or bedsit requires approximately 40-50 square feet of space. This would give you space for a dozen medium sized boxes plus a double bed, a settee, chair, table, wardrobe, carpet and TV
- Two-bed house or flat – To accommodate the average contents from a two-bed house or flat requires approximately 80-110 square feet. This would give you the space for more chairs, beds, wardrobes, carpets, a washing machine, fridge, freezer, garden furniture and around 24 medium-sized boxes
- Three-bed house – For a three-bedroom house you’ll require between 140 – 190 square feet. This will allow extra space for the furniture from the third bedroom and the extra downstairs living space
Packing your furniture
If you’re using a removal company’s packing service, they’ll provide all the necessary boxes and packing materials to ensure your breakables are safely stored. If you’re doing your own packing, there are several things you’ll need to do, including:
- Ensure your packing boxes are strong enough
- Number your boxes and keep a separate list of the contents of each box for easy access
- Ensure no box is too heavy to be lifted safely
- Disassemble larger pieces of furniture for easy transportation and storage
- Ensure all breakables are individually wrapped, using paper or bubble wrap
- Protect particularly fragile items using bedding and linen
- Use small boxes for packing books and magazines as collectively these can be very heavy
- Empty, clean and defrost all white goods and cookers before moving into storage
Moving your furniture into storage
Decide if you’re going to transfer your contents to storage yourself or use a removal company.
If you’re going to use a removal company, they’ll usually send a surveyor around to check which sized vehicle you’ll need.
If you intend to do it yourself, make sure you get the correct-sized van. If the trip is a local one, it may be cheaper to rent a smaller van and make several trips. If the journey is a long one, you may be better making one trip, to save time, and save money on fuel.
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Check if you’ll have access to your contents in storage
- When getting a quote from a storage company, check that their access availability suits your needs. Some storage facilities limit the days and hours they’re open. They may allow you access outside of those hours, but often charge you extra. If you think you’ll need to regularly visit your storage facility, choose a company with flexible opening hours
- Place larger, heavy boxes at the bottom of the storage unit and place other heavy items on top. Keep heavy items stacked reasonably low
- If there’s a chance you’ll need to access certain boxes or items regularly, place these at the front of the unit
- Finally, cover all your items with a dustsheet or similar to keep them clean