How to Pack for Long-Term Storage vs Short Term

Posted on June 17, 2021


Think about accessibility and convenience when packing for short-term storage.

Did you know that packing your winter gear for a few months is a whole different story than packing up your belongings for long-term storage? Whether you’re packing your recreational items to store for a season or a household worth of goods for the long haul, there are things you’ll want to consider.

Start by looking for multi-sized, secure, and affordable storage units in Kelowna (Space Centre Storage can help with that), and follow these suggestions on how to pack for long-term storage vs. short-term.


Pick the Right Storage Unit 

Long-term: When storing items for more than six months, you’ll want to think about the location, accessibility, and size of your storage unit. Self-storage typically works the best for long-term storage as it offers multiple sizing choices, as well as more convenience and efficiency for placing and accessing your items.

Short-term: While size and location are essential when storing items for the short-term (four months or less), so is flexibility and affordability. Find a storage facility that offers monthly rentals, easy drive-up access, or offers options such as portable storage containers delivered to your door.

Also, we often use short-term storage to store seasonal goods. It’s essential to think about the environment when choosing a storage facility. In extreme temperatures, you may want to consider a climate-controlled unit.


Consider your Packing Materials

Long-Term: When packing for long-term storage, you will need to protect your goods using high-quality packing materials. Wrapping your furniture in a thin sheet likely won’t be enough to protect it from the elements or pests. Use drop cloths or moving blankets for wooden furniture and airtight, waterproof containers for clothing, books, etc. Note, do not use plastic sheeting. It can trap moisture, causing mold and mildew.

Short-term: As you will likely move your items around more in short-term storage. Prevent damage by using packing peanuts or crumpled newspapers to protect fragile items in sturdy packing boxes. If you are storing electronics, store them in their original boxes or pad them in blankets. For easy access, consider using clear plastic containers so you can see the items within them.


Think about the Placement

Long-term: To prevent moisture damage, try lifting items off the ground. Use wooden palettes for furniture and shelving units for boxes. Leave space in and around your goods and leave a clear row down the middle of your storage unit so that you can access items at the back. 

Short-term: Think about accessibility and ease of movement when placing your items in short-term storage. Stack your boxes and containers and leave things that you will need quick access to at the front of your unit, 


For more storage tips, read: How to Organize Your Storage Unit for Easy Access.


Are you looking for long-term or short-term storage? Kelowna’s Space Centre Storage has it all, from 4-by-6’ storage lockers up to 10-by-20’ units that can house items from a 3-4 bedroom home. Choose from outdoor or drive-through access. We also rent our mobile storage containers for both short and long-term storage. Keep them on your property or have them stored in our convenient warehousing facility. Contact us for more information or to book your storage unit.

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