Life is unpredictable and you never know when you might need a long term storage. Maybe you’re relocating for a new job and need to put your items away, or maybe you are a store owner who needs a place to store the seasonal merchandise (afterall, there isn’t much demand for skiing equipment in the summer months). Or, some people prefer to store large items such as cars, boats, and RV’s in a long term storage because it takes up a lot of space in their home.
Regardless of the reason for why you need a long term storage, it can be dizzying to choose from so many options of long term storage, but not all of the choices will suit your needs. Read on to find out 6 important factors you should consider to make sure you chose the best long term storage unit for your needs!
1.The location of the facility & its accessibility
The distance of the long term storage should be carefully considered because it determines how accessible your trips will be. Unlike short-term storage, you can expect to travel back and forth a lot to retrieve your items in long term storage. How important is it to have a storage close to you? Are you willing to go for a more distant, but storage plan that is of better value? These are important questions to answer so you make the best choice for both your gas and storage budget. At U-Lock Mini Storage, we have storage facilities across Greater Vancouver and Vancouver Island. Our facilities include self storage Victoria, self storage Parksville, self storage Nanaimo, self storage Burnaby, self storage White Rock and Surrey, and self storage Chilliwack.
2.The Hours of operation & your personal schedule
Factoring in the facility’s hour of operation allows you to determine if you can access the storage unit at a time that is convenient for you. For example, if you are someone who works long hours during the day and the storage unit follows a strict 9 to 5 work day, it will make it very difficult for you to find the time to retrieve your belongings without sacrificing work hours. Ideally, we would recommend a storage unit that offers access on weekends or past work hours.
3. The Finances & The “Fine-Print”
There is often flexibility in paying by the month or by the week, and sometimes there may even be “freebie” storage months if you are a long term client. On the other hand, if you’re not sure how long you’d want to keep your items in storage, make sure to find out if you’re able to terminate the contract anytime without penalty. It is always in your best interest to pay attention to these details so you are storing your items on your terms, and not the other way around.
3. The Safety & Security of the Unit
While all storage units offer some level of protection, not all security measures were made equal and you should consider what levels of protection you are comfortable with for your belongings. The security can range from a simple lock on the unit, to ones that include additional 24-hour digital surveillance in a brightly lit environment. It is never a bad idea to double check with the security measures before signing a contract with your chosen facility.
4. Insurance Options for the Storage Unit
If you have insured your items through a third-party insurance policy, you may need to check if those items are still protected when they are placed in a storage unit. If not, you may need to opt for a storage facility that offers additional insurance policies to protect your belongings. These policies usually cover losses such as water damages, theft, and will properly compensate you if the unfortunate events do happen. Plus, it can offer your great peace of mind to know that your items have an additional layer of protection in the storage unit.
5. Past Reviews and Ratings
Last but not least, past review ratings paint an honest picture of what you can expect when you trust the long term storage with your belongings. Even if you are signing with an established storage facility, it is still important to double check with your specific location.
Websites like Yelp or Facebook can give you an idea of the storage unit’s services from the customer’s point of view, or even asking for friends’ and neighbours’ recommendations are a good way to gauge whether or not you should go with a certain storage unit.
And there you have it – 6 important things to consider when choosing a long term storage unit. You are now all set to find an option that works the best for you!