There are many reasons that you might need to use a professional storage service to temporarily store some of your household items. You might be redecorating your house in Maidstone, downsizing in Canterbury or emigrating for a few years from Ashford. Whatever your reason, here are our top storage tips to protect you and your furniture and to help you manage the storage process. These storage tips are there to help whether you are using a professional container storage solution, self-storage or even using a friend’s garage.
Storage Tips #1 – Dispose or Store
Do you really need to store these items or would it be better to sell them or give them to charity? It can be expensive to store items that you are never going to use again so do challenge yourself on the real need to keep your items. We can help you dispose of any unwanted items by taking them to an auction or delivering them to a charity of your choice.
Storage Tips #2 – Dangerous and Flammable Items
Remove any perishable, flammable or dangerous goods from your storage items as well as any liquids e.g. gas canisters, petrol cans etc. Perishable goods will only rot and damage surrounding items. For safety and fire protection flammable or dangerous goods like acids cannot be stored. If you have items such as these that need storage you should contact a specialist dangerous goods storage company.
Storage Tips #3 – White Goods
If you are storing your white goods you need to make sure they are fully defrosted, drained and completely emptied. Water and food are not good items to store as they can leak and rot, damaging the rest of the items you have in store. To help with this you may wish to hire the services of a plumber to help disconnect your washing machine, dishwasher etc.
Storage Tips #4 – Future Access
Before you pack and send your items to store have a think whether you may need access to any of the items while you are in store. For instance, avoid storing your insurance documents and passport etc. Make a note if there are items that are more likely to be required than others and tell your removal company what these items are so that they can store them in more readily accessible areas.
Storage Tips #5 – Owner Packed Goods
When using a professional removals storage service, we recommend you ask your removal company to pack all the items you wish to store. Removals companies cannot insure items that have been packed by the owner as they cannot confirm the condition of the item nor the quality of the packing prior to removal. We realise that this may be an additional expense you cannot afford and so if you do pack items yourself make sure all heavy items are placed at the bottom of boxes, all items are wrapped and boxes are not over filled. You can also purchase your own insurance to protect yourself if you self-pack.
Storage Tips #6 – Oversize Items
A professional removal company will take your goods away and store them in purpose built wooden containers. These containers are approximately 7x7x5feet or 215x215x150cm and can store approximately 250cubic feet or 7m3 of goods. Self-Storage units come in various sizes from a floor space of 16 square feet up to 400 square feet. This means any large and oversize items of furniture that cannot fit into these containers or rooms will need special handling e.g. a ladder or a large sofa. Most professional companies have designated areas to be able to store these items. Let your storage company know if you have any oversize items to store so that they can prepare the appropriate space and equipment for your furniture.
Storage Tips #7 – Piano Storage & Antique Storage
Pianos and antiques are especially delicate and fragile items that require special handling and storage. With pianos or antiques we would always recommend you use a professional storage company and mover to transport your goods. They will have the right equipment, skills and insurance to move these delicate and often heavy goods. When you are storing these items ask about heated rooms or environmentally controlled areas to keep your piano or antique in the best condition.
Storage Tips #8 – Storage Inventory
Once you have decided exactly what you want to store make a comprehensive list of all these items, including their condition and value (for insurance purposes). If at all possible we recommend you take pictures of your items so that you have a record of their condition. If you are using a professional removals storage service your removals company will make an inventory and condition report for you.
Storage Tips #9 – Storage Insurance
When you are selecting your storage company make sure you ask them about their insurance. You want a fully comprehensive insurance to protect you from any accidents that may happen, as well as fire and theft. Accidents are rare but you want peace of mind that your goods are protected should the worst happen. You also need to check that the full value of your goods are covered rather than only part of their full value.
Storage Tips #10 – Pack Early & Use Quality Materials
Packing takes time, it is not a quick job to sort, dismantle, wrap and pack all of your items and you have to fit it around work and family life. As such start your packing as early as possible and plan on doing a little bit each day and week. You can buy packing materials from any reputable removal company whether you plan to store with them or not. If you are sourcing your own materials make sure to buy ‘double-walled’ boxes and strong tape – the boxes need to be strong enough to take all the weight and be built to last. When packing your storage boxes remember they will be stacked together so make sure you fill every box and tape them shut.
Off-site storage can free up important space to give you more room to work, decorate or declutter. Whether you use professional container storage or self-storage you should plan ahead and get prepared, prior preparation really dies pay dividends. Our storage tips will help to get you sorted and ensure your goods are well protected. Give us a call if you have any other questions or concerns regarding storage. We will be more than happy to talk through your issues and help where we can.