TorontoChoosing a Storage/Self-storage Facility
When moving to a home that is smaller than your former home, or when merging two housefolds into a new family, you may have more possessions than can fit into your new home.
Options for holding onto the surplus items include storage, where a mover picks up your items and transports them to their facility, or self-storage, where you move and store your items in a public facility.
Here are some important criteria used in selecting a self-storage facility:
- Location: Find a location close to either home or work, or in between. The more often you expect to access your elf-storage unit, the more convenient it should be. The location should also be able to accommodate the size of truck used to transport your belongings.
- Unit size and type: Self-storage operators offer a wide range of unit sizes, including indoor, garage-style, or drive-up units. If your goods are temperature-sensitive or delicate (say, clothing, antique furniture, or artworks), consider temperature-controlled space.
- Hours of operation (office and unit access): Different storage operators and locations may have different office and gate hours, so select one that suits your likely hours of access. Find out about holiday hours, or if special arrangements need to be made.
- Security and lighting: Review the security in place at each location. This is typically a combination of gates, access entry codes and door alarms, which can track all entries and traffic from the gate to your unit door. See that all corridors are well lit.
- Cleanliness and appearance: The grounds, roadways, corridors and units should be clean and well maintained. You don't want your valuables damaged or dirty getting to & from your self-storage unit.
- Staff friendliness and experience: If staff respond in a timely and friendly manner when shopping, they are more likely to do so once you are a client.
- Competitive Pricing and Special Offers: Storage is a competitive market, and you should be able to get competitive quotes for your space requirements. There may be pricing available from time to time, to further reduce costs. Your likely length of stay in the storage facility may offer options ranging from a discounted first month's rent or a lower ongoing rental rate.
- Contract terms & conditions: Your storage contract terms should be able to flexibly handle your expected term of stay, and have no surprises. Review the facility rules and regulations, especially the payment and termination stipulations.
- Related products & services: Many self-storage locations sell packaging and storage supplies, and can assist in finding reputable truck rental & moving services as required.
- References. Ask questions of other clients while doing a site inspection/tour, to see how the facility meets their needs. If you do not run into other customers, ask for references.