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How can I keep my storage costs down?

How can I keep my storage costs down?
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Operations - Store and Insure

Six ways to reduce your self-storage costs

Self-storage does have a cost to it – but there are ways of making it cheaper. Here are six tips to help keep your storage bills lower.

1.       Choose the right facility

Not all storage facilities are created equally, so you should shop around before you commit.

Look for extras that are genuinely useful to you. Do you need free pick-ups and delivery, or are you happy to do your own transporting? Do you need a town-centre location, or is the industrial estate good enough for you?

Some facilities have state-of-the-art security arrangements – but you might be more comfortable with just a padlock.

You may also find yourself paying more for 24-hour access. If you’re happy to move your stuff only in business hours, you could go for a cheaper facility that is less flexible.

2.       Declutter first

The more space you need, the more expensive your storage bill is going to be each month. So think carefully about what you’re storing. Are you storing things you don’t want because you can’t be bothered to get rid of them? When you work out how much it costs you each month to store unwanted items, it might put a different light on the subject! You could even make a bit of money by selling your stuff, particularly if you’ve been holding on to it because it was a high-value purchase. It can be worth comparing the cost of hiring items you don’t use very often with the cost of storing them, too.

If you are struggling to declutter, there are plenty of experts keen to help. You can even hire a professional de-clutterer – or you could take tips from experts like Marie Kondo at KonMari or Gretchen Rubin.

3.       Think long-term

You can often get a better deal if you commit to a longer period of storage (say six months), rather than paying week by week. The space opened up when you use self-storage is quite addictive and you may find yourself storing for longer than you thought. But do review your needs often, too.

4.       Read the small print

Some storage units come with a fixed price guarantee, while other facilities draw you in with a low initial price that suddenly shoots up after a couple of months. Go in with your eyes open, and work out the cost over the entire period you will be storing.

5.       Pack with care

Efficient packing will help you use your storage space to its best advantage. Stack your boxes right to the ceiling – but remember to put lightweight things on top as you don’t want to be lifting heavy containers. Consider using recycled bubble wrap and boxes for packing. Or get creative and use suitcases and bags you already have. Your local Freegle or Freecycle may be a good source of free packing materials.

6.       Do I need storage insurance?

One cost you shouldn’t skimp on, though, is storage insurance. Nearly every storage facility will require you to insure your stored household goods. They may offer their own insurance policy – but some storage companies do not offer competitive pricing when it comes to insurance. I’ve already talked about shopping around for a storage facility. Do the same for your storage insurance. Store and Insure would be delighted to give you a quick quote.