Got your dream job overseas? Downsizing the family home? Starting a small business and need somewhere to keep your stock? Long term self storage is a great way to keep your possessions safe and secure when you can’t keep them in your home.
If you take a little care to organise your self storage properly before you store your belongings, they’ll be in great condition for use when you need them. Check out these handy tips for keeping out little critters, preventing water damage and storing like a pro.
Clean, clear and dust free
It pays to put the hard yards in at the packing stage when you’re storing things long term. If your items are clean, covered and secured when they go into storage, they’re likely to come out in the same condition.
Wash all your clothes, crockery and cutlery. Steam clean furniture and wipe all surfaces of cupboards and appliances. Why pay good money to put your fridge in storage, only to find it’s been ruined by pests thanks to food remnants left on the shelves? Rats and mice are can smell food a mile off, so be careful about those macaroni Christmas decorations too.
Before you store, dig out the attachments for your vacuum cleaner and get right into the crevices of your furniture. You’ll be in for a pleasant surprise when you eventually retrieve your goods and they look like new.
Insect-proof when packing
For storing all your ‘bits and pieces’, get your hands on some plastic air tight containers and line them with clean cotton sheets to protect against moisture and insects. Better still, invest in some cedar blocks or boxes. The cedar wood oil is a natural and effective insect repellent.
Wrapping things in plastic bags seems like a good way to avoid water damage, but plastic bags can trap moisture creating a great environment for mildew and mould. Not only will this destroy your belongings but it will attract pests and insects galore.
If you really want to, purchase some diatomaceous earth and sprinkle it around the storage unit. There are small sharp edges within the earth which will puncture the membrane of any insect, killing them. It’s a good alternative to chemical pest sprays that may harm your wares.
Beware vacuum sealed bags
Vacuum sealed bags are fantastic for saving space around the house, but they are not always the best solution for long term self storage. The argument is that natural fibre needs air to ‘breathe’ and maintain its shape and quality. Vacuum sealing is most commonly used for clothes, but by sucking all the air from around a garment you are essentially compressing the fibres. These may then take significant time to decompress and take shape again, if they ever do. Save it for your seasonal home storage.
Don’t set and forget
If you’re away for years at a time, see if you can get someone to check in on your stored goods once or twice a year. Check for signs of rodents, water leakage and any odd odours seeping from the storage space and report them to your storage site manager.
Long term self storage is an ideal solution for anyone wanting to keep belongings safe and secure offsite from their home. Travellers, down sizers and even small businesses can reap the benefits of quality self storage, if it’s done right!