The demand for self-storage has increased drastically over the years. In the US, approximately 10 percent of households rent a storage unit. The reason being that a storage unit is usually the solution to a number of situations:
- Couples or families moving into a smaller home
- People moving abroad for school or work
- Individuals needing space for items when a room or their entire home is being remodeled
- College students who need additional space for items that can’t be stored in their dorm or hostel
- Travelers who wish to keep their possessions secure while they are away
- Retailers and businesses that need additional storage space for inventory
- Office storage for important documents
- Homeowners who need space while they are decluttering their home
- Individuals who like to accumulate stuff that they can no longer store at home
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Depending on the companies available in your immediate proximity, there are several mobile self-storage solutions available.
Private individuals can avail of self-storage solutions where they can drive up to the storage facility and load their possessions into the unit or storage pod themselves. It is also possible to have minipods delivered to the home and have people from the storage company drive it to the facility.
Businesses also have several options. They can avail of small business storage units which allow them to place items inside a dedicated unit, including a temperature-controlled mini warehouse should they need one. Alternatively, they also have the option to avail of onsite storage.
What not to store
Although storage units can be rented by any individual or business, it is not the client’s property. The storage company still needs to keep it safe and secure for all their clients. As such, renting a storage unit is still subject to the specific rules and regulations of the company you rent it from.
This is the reason why there are types of items that cannot be stored inside a unit. Think of it in the same way as renting other items, such as a car or a moving truck.
Here are some of the types of items that are not allowed inside a storage unit:
1. Food and perishables
Whether it is in dry or wet form, food should never be stored inside your rented storage unit. Some facilities do not feature temperature-controlled storage units which can expose your items to extreme changes in temperature. As a result, your perishables may rot or start to develop mold while they are being stored.
Things could get worse as well. Rotting food can emit strong smells which can permeate and affect the other units. There is also the possibility that the smells could attract insects and rodents to your unit.
With all these possibilities, it makes sent to not store any type of perishables. The same can be said with other living organisms such as plants or pets. Never store these types of items or face the consequences from your storage facility or even the law in the case of pets.
2. Hazardous items
Anything that contains dangerous chemicals or substances such as paint, gasoline, liquor, fireworks, pesticides, even batteries, should not be stored inside a rented unit. These may contain corrosive, explosive or flammable ingredients which can cause harm to both people and property.
If you are planning to store equipment that runs on gasoline or oil such as a lawnmower, remember to drain the machine prior to storage. The same goes for electronic gadgets. Remove the batteries to protect your items from damage.
3. Items that are wet or have a strong odor
Damp or wet items can encourage the growth of mold, mildew, and bacteria inside a storage unit. Not only will they damage the items inside your storage unit but also ones nearby.
As previously mentioned, any item with a strong or foul odor shouldn’t be stored either as these can attract rodents, insects and other types of pests. You wouldn’t want to come back to your unit only to find it full of pests and other vermin.
4. Cash and valuables
It is also not advised to store anything that is of value in a storage unit. Cash and jewelry could attract the attention of unscrupulous people. If you need to store valuable items, go to a bank instead.
In some cases, what you may consider valuable may not be valuable to other people. For instance, a collection of newspaper clippings may not be of value to anyone else but yourself. If this is the case, you need to decide on your own whether you will feel more secure keeping the clippings at home or in storage.
The storage facility cannot be held liable if anything goes missing inside your unit. To be on the safe side, do not use your unit to store such important items.
Renting a storage unit provides a means to store personal items or additional inventory for your business.
However, renting one does not mean that you can do whatever you want you want with your unit. By taking note of these items, you are now more aware of what you can and cannot store, and avoid the risk of getting penalized for not abiding by storage unit restrictions.
Chris Humphrey is the General Manager of Easytruck Moving & Storage. In 2013, the company combined their expertise in professional moving services and storage to create an entirely new approach to the business – and mobile storage was born! Easytruck now operates over 30,000 sq.ft. of air-conditioned facilities in three convenient locations in Dubai and is the only Mobile Storage operator in the UAE.