A self storage unit is a handy way to keep things you don’t have room for in your home, but don’t want to throw away. You can use a self storage unit to hold your furniture between moves on a temporary basis, or as a more permanent solution for keeping things you may one day fit into a larger home. If you live in a very small apartment, you may even use a self storage unit to keep holiday decorations and out-of-season clothes.
Step One: Determine the Purpose of Your Unit
Before you begin placing things in your storage unit, you need to consider when and how they will be coming out of it. If you’re storing your furniture for a move, the items at the front of the unit will probably end up at the back of your moving truck. Thus, you will want to organize it backwards so that the items at the back of your storage unit are the ones you want at the front of the moving truck once it’s loaded.
If you’re using the storage unit to hold items for long-term storage, you may want to organize the unit in a manner that allows you access to all items. Use shelving along the walls and in the center with isles between so you can reach everything while still maximizing the space available.
Step Two: Sort and Label
As you pack boxes and bins for your storage unit, make sure that everything is very clearly labeled on all sides. If you place labels on the top, but stack the boxes vertically, you won’t be able to find what you’re looking for until you’ve moved every item on top of it away. If you’re using the shelving method for long-term storage, consider using a variety of storage boxes rather than defaulting to plain cardboard options. Clear plastic boxes give you a clear view of the contents. A series of smaller boxes is more efficient for storing jewelry or craft supplies than a large jumbled box would be.
Step Three: Map and Store
For the most efficient organization, make a map of your storage unit. Clearly mark where each item is as it goes in. This is useful for a unit that’s completely filled. When it’s time to unload, you can refer to your map and know how much further you have to go to get to that couch, or how many more rows of boxes are sitting between you and the back of the unit. Make both a vertical and horizontal map if you need to, to ensure that you know where each and every item is located.
With good organization, your storage unit can be a very workable space. Teetering piles of unknown clutter will be a thing of the past when you implement shelves, labels and a handy map to help you find your way around everything you’ve packed away.
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