Choosing a Storage Facility or Unit

Sticky notes with who, what, when, where questions about choosing a storage facility unit

We understand choosing a storage facility can be both confusing and overwhelming.

At Maxwell Self Storage, we have a LOT to offer, but if for any reason we don’t have what you need we’ll be happy to refer you elsewhere. Give us a call, we’re happy to help!

☎ 334-264-1113

SIX Questions to Ask

Picking a storage facility may not be as easy as it seems.

Here are six questions to ask yourself before you choose a facility or select a storage unit.

1) Are You Moving?

Happy man and woman saving money by performing DIY move and renting storage space

If so, do you want to pack up and move your items yourself (and save money), or do you want to hire someone?

If you don’t have the time to pack up your own items, you can hire professional movers to pack up everything and take them to the storage facility. Then they can move these packages to your new home later.

Of course, you’ll want to make certain that you’re hiring the best movers before you commit. Make certain the company you hire has a good reputation and that they include mover’s insurance in their cost.

If you pack and move your items into storage yourself, you’ll need to pay extra for insurance.

2) Do You Need Additional Packing Time?

Packing storage boxes with tape gun

You might consider a mobile storage unit if you need additional time to pack up your items.

The moving company will bring the mobile storage unit to your location so you can take your time packing it. Then they move it to your new location when you’re done.

You can then unpack when you have the time. Some movers provide packing assistance for a small fee.

3) Do You Need to Store “Sensitive” Items?

Thermometer shows hot, rising temperature against blue sky backdrop symbolizing the need to storing sensitive items

Some items are sensitive to humidity, dust, or extreme heat/cold.

If you need a place to store electronics, furs, leather items, documents, computer equipment, or anything else that will be affected by extreme temperatures, humidity, or dust, you may need to look for a climate-controlled storage unit or one that is guaranteed dust-free.

Are you going to want to swap out your storage unit’s contents regularly?

If you’re using your storage unit to store your winter items during the summer or your summer items during the winter, you’re going to want to be sure you can access it regularly.

If you’re storing things such as patio furniture, snowmobiles, ATVs, or other large things, you may also need to have a storage unit you can drive up to.

4) Do You Need 24/7 Access?

24/7 storage access with automatic keypad entry device

Some storage facilities only allow access during their hours of operation, and some may even be closed on specific days.

It varies from facility to facility.

If you need to have access to your storage unit 24 hours a day, every day of the week, you’ll want to make certain the facility you select offers that. Be sure you know the hours of operation before you rent a storage unit.

5) Are You Storing Large Items such as a Vehicle?

Several cars in storage covered with tarps

Self-storage units do come in sizes large enough to fit vehicles.

Some, in fact, can hold several cars. These large storage units may also be climate controlled, too, so you can use them to store your classic cars or luxury vehicles.

You do want to make certain the storage unit has a good reputation and is properly secured, though, if you’re going to store expensive vehicles there.

6) Does the Facility Offer Security?

Security fence around storage facility with sign warning of video surveillance

In fact, you’re going to want to make sure the facility is secure no matter what you’re storing there.

  • Does the facility have security cameras that cover the entire area?
  • Are there lights set up throughout the facility?
  • What about motion sensitive lights?
  • Is there a security guard or manager on the premises at all times?

If you’re storing anything, regardless of the value, you want to make sure that the facility is going to protect it.

21 thoughts on “Choosing a Storage Facility or Unit

  1. I just moved into a new home and I realized that I don’t have as much room in this new house. I really need to store some items that I don’t use frequently. That is a good idea to find a storage facility that is secure. I would want to have my items protected at all times!

  2. It’s awesome that you talked about considering if you need access at all times or not. My grandpa is looking to get some self-storage units to put away his winter stuff for the summer. I’ll be sure to talk to him about finding a place that he can access when needed.

  3. It’s great that you’ve mentioned that some items are sensitive to humidity, dust, and extreme temperatures, and need a climate-controlled storage unit. I, for one, am looking for a storage unit because most of the things that I want to move to the storage unit are computer equipment and some leather items that can still be used but will break if exposed to harsh elements. I’ll definitely ask around our area to check if there are heated storage units available for rent.

  4. Thanks for these tips for finding a storage unit. I’m glad that you explained that you should think if you need a lot of time to pack your items so you can get a mobile unit. Maybe you could even ask them of some situations where it’s beneficial to get this unit and see if your circumstances align.

  5. I like the tip that you gave to choose a storage unit that is available during the times that you would use them. My wife and I have been talking about finding a storage unit while we would move to a new home, and it would be important for us to know that we can choose one that will work well for us. If we choose to get a storage unit, I will be sure to look for one that will allow us access during the necessary times.

  6. My wife and I have been thinking about getting a storage unit for some time now. I really like that you mention finding out if they are open 24 hours a day. IT would be nice to be able to access them whenever you need.

  7. It’s good to consider whether the items I’m going to be storing are going to be sensitive to temperature, humidity, and such. I’m only planning on renting a unit for a couple of months, but it’s going to be cold enough that I should consider whether that would be harmful to what I’m keeping in there or if it would be worth it to keep them with me. It’ll be nice to have most of my stuff out of the way while I’m moving around, but I definitely want to keep everything safe!

  8. It’s smart that you’d store electronics and leather items in a storage unit that has a regulated temperature. That way you don’t have to be worried about them getting ruined while you’re not there. I need to temporarily store things while I’m in between houses, so this is a good choice for me. My dad will be relieved that I don’t have to stash my stuff at her place anymore.

  9. Thank you for your great tip on how you should be sure you know the hours of operation before you rent a storage unit. My house is way too cluttered since I moved into a smaller place, and it’s been driving me crazy. After learning all of the many benefits of having a storage unit, I will definitely consider getting one to try to help make my house look less cluttered.

  10. Thank you for all this great information about choosing a storage unit. I really like that you say to figure out if you need the facility to have controlled things like temperature, dust and humidity. I know that I would like to make sure that nothing is going to get damaged in the end.

  11. I appreciate the reminder that the hours you can access a storage unit can vary from location to location, so we should check that when we’re deciding what we need. Our apartment is getting too small, so we want to store some of our stuff until we move in July. It would be frustrating to not have access to something when we need it, so maybe we should consider using a location that we could get into any time.

  12. I appreciate that you mentioned that we will need to consider the level of security that is offered by a storage unit before we would choose it. My wife and I have been talking about finding a storage unit for our boat, so we could keep it safe from the outside elements, and it will be important for us to know that we could find the best one to help us. To be sure that our boat will be safe where we store it, I will be sure to consider their security level.

  13. I like that you mention the importance of finding a storage facility that is secure and can help you have peace of mind with your items. My parents need to have more room while they are moving and need somewhere to store things. I think we should look into finding a safe storage unit for their things during that time.

  14. I appreciate that this post highlighted the importance of asking about the company’s climate-control units when storing sensitive items. It makes sense you would want to know if the units do have climate-control because moisture could damage your belongings. My aunt is an art collector and she intends on storing her prized collections in a self-storage unit, so I will advise her to ask about their units and policy as well.

  15. It’s valuable that you mention that renting a storage unit can be very useful when you need to pack and move to a new home. I need to move to my new house next week, so I’m thinking about keeping some of my belongings in a self-storage unit. I’m going to search for a good self-storage business in my area to use.

  16. Thanks for the tip to store computers or leather items in a climate-controlled facility. I think a lot of people forget how sensitive these items are to heat and humidity. I need to lock up some old hardware and an old leather chair so I’ll get a cold storage unit.

  17. I appreciate that this post stressed it is important for us to keep in mind the purpose of renting a storage unit. My wife and I are planning to rent a storage unit while we are renovating our home, which is expected to span roughly a year and a half. When we consider our options, I will definitely keep in mind this information for when we look at our options.

  18. Thanks for the tip to get a climate controlled storage unit if you need to store electronics or leather material. I don’t want the heat to ruin my belongings. I also think it would be nice to enter a nice room temperature storage unit instead of one that is a hundred degrees.

  19. My husband wants to invest in a storage unit to free up space in our apartment. I like how you made a comment about making sure a company has good security available before choosing to store things there. I will make sure to have my husband check out the security systems at any storage units he considers choosing.

  20. I didn’t realize that you could have someone come pack your items and move them to your storage unit for you. My parents are going to be remodeling their new home before they move all of their things into it. I wonder if they have looked into putting all of their things into a storage unit while they are remodeling.

  21. My brother and sister-in-law are moving into a smaller apartment in two weeks, so they are hoping to rent a self-storage unit so they can have more space. It makes sense to inquire about security cameras and lighting throughout potential storage facilities. I will suggest that my brother and his wife find a facility that provides great security solutions to ensure the protection of their belongings.

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