There is nothing more dread-inducing than the prospect of moving all your belongings into a car or truck, hauling them to a storage unit, and then offloading everything, before eventually reloading it all, transporting it to your destination, and finally unloading one last time. It’s a generally inefficient, unpleasant, and tiring experience — and one that can thankfully be completely avoided by utilizing PODS. PODS, or Portable On Demand Storage, is a versatile moving and storage system that lends flexibility and convenience to an otherwise frustrating process. PODS cuts out the middle-man by bringing the storage units directly to you, and allows you to store things on your own schedule. It’s a super easy process that, with just a bit of research and foresight, can be made even simpler. Here are nine things you should know before a visit from the PODZILLA.

A variety of PODS storage and moving options

The versatility of the PODS system allows you to either keep your storage unit at home, or at a PODS storage facility. On-site storage at your house, apartment, or business is super convenient for when you want fast and easy access to your possessions. If and when you need to move the unit, just contact PODS to schedule a pick-up time, and have them take care of everything. PODS will either deposit it at one of their storage facilities, or transport it to your eventual destination. You don’t even have to be home for the delivery or pick-up of the unit. Once you’ve scheduled your delivery/pick-up day, PODS will contact you the day before to provide you with a 3-hour window, and your unit will be driven to the site of your choosing.

The loading is up to you…

While PODS drivers will take the contents of your unit wherever you’d like, you’re responsible for getting your belongings inside. Lucky for you, the whole thing can basically be dropped off at your front porch! Of course, you can also avail yourself of moving services to make the loading even more painless (PODS’ moving and packing resource can help hook you up with local professionals).

…but it happens on your own time

The flexibility of PODS allows you to load your storage unit at your convenience, without the added pressure of working around a storage facility or rental company’s hours. The minimum rental period for a unit is 30 days, so you can load a little bit at a time, or all at once. You also have the option of changing your delivery and pick-up dates, so there’s no need to worry if you need more time or flexibility.  

PODS storage units for every household size

PODS units come in three different sizes: 16-foot (16’x8’x8’), 12-foot (12’x8’x8’), and 7-foot (7’x7’x8’). According to PODS, 16-foot units are typically suggested for spaces around 1,200 square feet, or 3-4 rooms; 12-foot units for 500-800 square foot homes, or 2-3 rooms, and 7-foot units for 500 square foot spaces and under. Mileage will, of course, vary; but you can use this storage calculator to plug in your specific combination of furniture, appliances, etc., and decide which unit will work for you. And if you need the extra space, PODS allows you to utilize multiple units at once.

Costs of PODS units vary

Depending on the distance of your move, timing of your storage needs, and amount of space required, prices can range from $150 for a month of storage, to $3,000 for a long-distance move. Most local moves will cost around $300-$500, and all moving services include a month of storage. Additional cost factors include geographical location, unit availability, and length of rental. Get a personalized quote to find out exactly how much you’ll be spending for your storage/moving needs. Keep in mind that the 12-foot units are only available for local moves — generally from 50-100 miles — and storage.

Pay as you go, with no deposit required

A credit card is required to reserve a PODS unit, but you won’t be charged until 7 days prior to delivery. You can also cancel up to one day prior to the date your delivery is scheduled. Adding even more flexibility to the process, PODS rents units on a month-to-month basis, so it’s super easy to renew or alter your plan when you need to make a change.

PODS units are built with durability in mind

The portable units — composed of steel, wood, and sturdy polymers — are made to withstand adverse weather, so that even in high winds, rain, or snow, your belongings will stay safe. If you’re planning on storing for several weeks, however, PODS recommends utilizing their storage facilities for extra protection.

A WORD OF CAUTION: All the weatherproofing in the world won’t help if you forget to close the unit door.

Choose a proper home for the unit

If you’re aiming to keep a PODS unit on your property, you’ll need to make sure that its new site has the right dimensions, along with suitable conditions to prevent potential issues. Luckily, the units can be placed almost anywhere with an even surface. Make sure that the space is free of debris and obstructions, and at least 12 feet wide, 15 feet high, and 40 feet long. Most driveways are easily accessible via the patented PODZILLA loader/unloader; and standard parking spaces are usually large enough to accommodate a unit, provided there is enough space on either side for delivery. 

NOTE: Many apartment complexes and homeowners associations require permits for on-site storage. Be sure to apply for these ahead of time, and have them ready before your unit is to be delivered.

PODS does the driving

If you’ve driven a moving truck across the country, you know how exhausting and stressful the process can be. PODS solves this problem by picking up and hauling your entire unit for you, eliminating the hassle of dealing with rental companies, unwieldy moving trucks, and (perish the thought) parking. Conveniently, PODS delivers to 46 states and parts of Canada, making even the longest cross-country moves exponentially easier — and possibly even enjoyable.