6 Tips to get the most out of your Self-Storage Unit

Maybe you’re considering a storage unit as a way to hold onto your couch and tables in preparation for an upcoming move, or you want to put your birdbath or garden decor someplace warm for the winter. Maybe you’ve just got too much stuff. Whatever your reason is, we offer climate-controlled storage space to help you protect your possessions. If this is your first time using a storage unit here are some tips to help you prepare.

Let nothing touch the ground

Much like a basement, storage units are designed to stay dry but accidents happen and it’s better to be prepared for the worst case scenario. While most floors are sloped to keep water from pooling within the units, rare accidents are possible, such as something spilling in the next unit over. Get your hands on some wooden shipping pallets or blocks so your possessions will remain above the floor.

Bring a hardy lock

Just like in the changing room at the gym, your storage unit will need a lock that you control. Make sure it has a short elbow so someone, such as another storage unit renter, can’t simply snip it off with a pair of bolt cutters. (At Ayer Moving and Storage, we supply the lock for you.)

Bring packing materials

A storage unit isn’t just another room in your house where you can move objects, so don’t treat it like one. You need to prepare by bringing packing materials like thick sheets of flexible plastic, cardboard boxes and bubble wrap to make sure everything is protected. Be careful with wrapping things in old newspapers as the ink can come off.

Disassemble and stack high

The legs will come off most tables, so save space by breaking items down into easy-to-store segments. You can get the most out of your unit if you place items in safe, secure stacks, so bring some plywood or boards to place between layers of items to help make sure everything stays flat and firm.

Get organized

Leave an empty channel down the center of the storage unit so you can walk through the middle and access items without juggling too many objects. If items are in cardboard boxes, label them, especially if you plan to keep items in the storage unit for more than a few months. If you have something that could possibly leak fluids, like oil from a lawn mower, make sure you put them away or below items like clothing, furniture and sheets.

Check your insurance

Some homeowners’ insurance policies will cover items in a storage unit. Others won’t, so check your policy to see if you should purchase any insurance for your unit. You can also modify your homeowners’ insurance policy, or you can try to purchase one through the storage unit.

10 Tips to ensure a smooth and safe move in Winter

When planning a move during the winter months, keep these tips in mind to help ensure a smooth and safe move for all.

1) Keep an eye on the weather.

Winter can pay a surprise visit so be aware of any changing conditions that might impact your move.

2) Set aside winter supplies.

Pack a box to include gloves, hats and scarves, as well as an ice scraper and salt.  Keep this box in the car with you, along with a snow shovel.  If your driveway or walkways at your new house are snow covered, you’ll have what you need on hand.

3) Board the pets.

If you have pets, it is a good idea to board them during the move.  You don’t want them underfoot and with doors open, you don’t want pets to get out and go missing!  Moving is often an emotional trauma for pets, so it is best to bring pets to your new home when the household is calm and filled with familiar scents.

4) Let there be light (and heat).

Be sure that all utilities have been called well in advance so that the electricity and heat can be turned on a couple of days before move-in day.

5) Have a back-up plan.

Talk to your mover about a “Plan B” if a winter storm threatens your move.  Movers are used to winter weather conditions, but if a move must be postponed, you will want to have discussed this with your realtor, landlord, and the movers beforehand. The movers may be able to pick up your things, but not be able to deliver them to your new home.  If this is the case, you will need short-term accommodations.

6) Clear the way.

Make sure the sidewalks, walkways and driveways are cleared of snow and use salt or ice-melt so that the movers have clear and safe access to your home to move your belongings to the truck.

7) Plan your route.

Know how to get where you are going and check with the local authorities in the event of bad weather to be sure there are no road closures.  Know where overnight accommodations are located along your route should you need to stop.

8) Keep everything tidy.

Have old towels and paper towels on hand in the car so that you can wipe snow and/or rain off the boxes as they are being carried into your new home.  Be sure to have padding on the floors to soak up moisture from inclement weather.

9) Offer hot drinks.

Hot chocolate, tea and coffee will be most welcomed by everyone who’s helping with your move.

10) Prepare your car for winter.

Have your car winterized, topping up all fluids and checking the brakes and tires.  Be sure to put on snow tires just in case.  Carry extra windshield fluid as well.

If you have concerns about the weather on moving day, talk to your movers.  They have experience moving in all seasons
and can answer your questions.