A quality storage solution can transform your living space into a neat, organised oasis.
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Running out of space at home is something we've all been through at some stage. If your wardrobe is always overflowing and your pantry is a black hole where everything gets lost, you certainly know what we're talking about. That's even before a mention of the attic or basement.
Finding a service who'll safely store our belongings can be a little challenging, especially if you're busy trying to move homes or are redecorating.
Use this guide to discover some of the top storage services, along with tips that could come in handy for a range of needs.
What storage options are available to me?
When it comes to storage, there are generally three main options available.
If you have a lot of stuff to store – for instance when you need to clear up your entire garage or store large items – an affordable solution is self-storage. That's when you rent a storage unit away from your home, such as a garage lock-up. You package your stuff neatly, drive to the unit, deposit your belongings and can breathe easily once you get back home.
There are a lot of companies specialising in self-storage solutions, with National Storage being a particularly popular choice.
Mobile storage is like self-storage, with the key difference being that the storage unit comes to you. In other words, the company delivers a unit to your property and you can take your time to pack and load the unit.
Then, you have the option of keeping the unit on your property, or the company can pick up the unit and transport it to one of their storage facilities. Highly-rated mobile storage companies include TAXIBOX, MetroBOX, Pods among many others.
You don't have to have watched popular shows like The Home Edit or Tidying Up with Marie Kondo to know that there are endless home storage solutions you can invest in.
From obvious examples like shelving and closets to smaller but life-savings systems like bins, baskets, boxes, coat racks and more, there's usually something to fit any taste and budget.
What is included in a storage service?
It depends on the type of storage you've settled on. Mobile storage services offer delivery and pick up of the storage unit. For self-storage, you have to drive the items to the unit yourself, which may involve hiring movers or a truck.
Either way, depending on the service you opt for, it can include:
- Short and long-term storage options.
- 24/7 access to your storage unit.
- Wine or climate control storage.
- Vehicle/caravan/boat storage.
- Furniture storage.
- Individually alarmed doors.
How can I get my items stored?
The best way to get around organising your home is to come up with a system that works for you. This involves taking stock of everything you own, sorting it and eventually finding a dedicated space for all your belongings.
We suggest you set enough time aside to go room-by-room. Then, you can decide if you have enough space in your home to store everything or if you would be better off with renting a storage unit.
How much does storage cost?
The cost depending on factors such as which storage solutions you opt for:
- Self-storage. A small storage can cost around $50 per month, but you can pay $200 per month or more if you need extra space;
- Mobile storage. Prices for a unit typically start at around $100 per month.
- Home storage. You can pay anything from a couple of bucks for a basket to keep your toiletries in, to hundreds of dollars or more for a spacious closet;
How can I compare storage services?
When looking up storage services are available in your area, read the fine print and make sure to understand what's included in the service. Here are some things to check:
- Location. You want to have easy access to your unit.
- Security. See what types of security measures the company employs.
- Storage types. Based on what items you need to store (e.g. if you need a climate-controlled unit).
- Storage restrictions. There are certain items like perishable food, explosives or plants companies don't accept.
- Promotions/discounts. After all, saving a few dollars never hurts.
- Reviews. See what others are saying about the company.
How should I prepare my items for storage?
Packing can be a tricky and time-consuming business. Follow this checklist for best results:
- Make a list of all the items you need to store.
- Clean and vacuum belongings where applicable.
- Use labeled boxes or clear bins to avoid confusion.
- Safeguard fragile items and appliances with blankets or bubble wrap.
- Disassemble large items like furniture to save on space.
What to consider when booking storage
There are three main factors to take into consideration when choosing a storage solution:
- Value. Are the items actually worth storing in the long run?
- Cost. Does your budget cover the total expense?
- Space. How much storage space are you going to need now and in the future?
Do I need to be there when my items are picked up for storage?
Usually, yes. If you opt for mobile storage, the unit comes to you and you load it yourself. For self-storage, you take your belongings to the storage unit.
Pros and Cons of storage services
- Enables you to free up space in your home
- Peace of mind that your items are secure
- Access to your belongings whenever needed
- Short-term and long-term options available
- Can be expensive
- Unless you get a climate-controlled unit your items, will be subjected to the heat/cold
- It can be a hassle to not have your stuff handy
Finding the right storage solution for you can take some research, but if you find a quality solution it'll be worth the initial time investment. Look for a storage service that meets your individual needs and enables you to streamline your home and maximise your space.
Frequently asked questions about storage
What risks are there with storage?
The risks can be minimal as long as you use adequate packing supplies, especially for storing fragile items.
Can I store items myself or do I need to book a handyman?
If you're organising small items you can do it yourself. If you need to move larger items to storage or require help loading a storage unit, consider hiring a handyman or a removalist service.
What are some popular stores/websites that sell storage solutions?
We recommend you check out stores like Bunnings, The Storage Shop, Howards, Big W, Ikea or Target.
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Mobile storage solutions are becoming more popular. For good reason.
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