The “throw everything in and shut the door” technique may be faster when moving things into your self-storage unit, but it is ultimately the worst way to organize, unless you’re storing a needle in a haystack, in which case that technique is perfect. To make sure you can find things when you want them and add things when you want to, and ensure you have room to put them there, you need to make sure your storage unit is properly organized for efficiency and convenience. Some of the key ways you can accomplish this include the following:
Make sure you do not clutter the space around the door. Being able to get yourself, as well as the things you’re putting in/taking out of the unit, in and out of the unit easily is dependent on whether or not you have things blocking your way. I would keep two feet on either side of the door and six feet in front of the door clear (although the amount of space you leave would depend on the storage unit size Plan out where things will be stored and where you will walk. Get some painters’ tape and create storage blocks and walkways on the floor before you start bringing everything in. This will make sure you can move easily within your storage unit without getting stuck between things.
Use Shelving! Shelves can be very beneficial to your storage unit. It is a way for you to organize your smaller possessions that would waste space sitting on the floor. The goal is to use all of your unit size, including as much of the height as is safe.
Proper organization is part of taking advantage of all the convenience that a self-storage unit can provide.
Preparing other types of items for storage
Large Appliances: thoroughly clean and remove all traces of food to avoid attracting vermin. Tape down hoses and cords or if able remove and store inside appliance. Defrost refrigerators and freezers to prevent water damage and mildew growth. Secure doors during transport, but leave slightly open before storing them.
Furniture: Disassemble furniture if possible, put assembly hardware in plastic bag, label and tape to appropriate furniture item in an inconspicuous place. Treat wood with furniture polish and leather items with leather conditioner before you store. Wrap legs of chairs with bubble wrap.
Electrical items: Pack in original boxes whenever possible otherwise chooses boxes close to original size and fill in empty spaces with paper.
Before you start placing items in your storage unit, determine what kind of access you’ll need to your stored items. Will you only need access when you move the items out or will it be more frequently? For the items you frequently need to access, place them in the unit last and near the front. All other items can be efficiently arranged in your unit to maximize space:
Largest items should be placed against the far and side walls of the unit, working forward.
Sofas and other large furnishings can be stored vertically saving space. If you have to store a sofa flat, a love seat can be placed upside down on top of sofa. Chairs can be stacked seat to seat.
Store smaller boxes on book cases or boxes containing fragile items inside large wardrobes or other cabinetry.
Stack boxes placing heaviest boxes on bottom, lighter ones on top. Fragile boxes can be place on top of appliances.
Pillows, blankets and other bedding can be stored inside washers and dryers.
Folded clothing can be stored inside dresser drawers.
Mirrors, framed artwork and photographs should be wrapped and stored standing up.
Try to group boxes for rooms together whenever possible.
If possible leave some aisle space for accessibility.
Your planning beforehand and when arranging your storage unit will pay off; moving out will be a breeze and you will have peace of mind knowing that your belongings are well protected and conveniently accessible.