Storage Unit Size Matters: How to Avoid Overpaying for Unused Space

Posted on October 20, 2023

How to Avoid Overpaying for Unused Space

Choosing the right storage unit size or portable container can sometimes feel like a daunting task. Nobody wants to go through the stress of loading and unloading tricky items, plus having to account for additional expenses. We’re here to tell you that there is a sweet spot, and it lies right between paying a reasonable amount and ensuring you don’t run out of space for your items. We can ease the process of figuring out how much space you’ll need to store your personal or commercial belongings appropriately. 

The challenging part is visualizing how much space the items you want to store will take up. Most people overestimate the space they need simply because they are not used to how things are traditionally stored in units. Whether it’s a self-storage unit or a portable container, items typically stored in boxes can be stacked; you can not only take advantage of floor space but also height. Additionally, if you plan to store furniture like cabinets, a dining table, or a sofa, items can be stored inside, under, or over them for efficient space usage.

So, where should you start? 

Step 1: Take inventory

It’s best to begin collecting items you want to store in one place. That way, you can anticipate size requirements for your storage unit. Next, make a list of all the stuff you’ve gathered so you don’t forget or miss anything. This may even help jog your memory about other items you want to add to the pile before it slips your mind. Be sure to note the dimensions of trickier items like surfboards, bikes, or perhaps your hexagon-shaped coffee table.

Step 2: Determine access needs 

Apart from assessing the space you need based on your items and their volume, It is important to consider how much access you will need to your belongings while in storage. If you plan to store seasonal items, like decor, equipment, or clothes, then it’s best to store past-season items towards the back of your unit and upcoming seasonal items in the front, like the cozy Christmas sweater your grandmum knit you last year. 

If you are planning to store bits and bobs, aka random things you don’t need around the house but may need occasionally, you should consider setting up an aisle between boxes. So your storage unit doesn’t end up looking like a storm blew through it when you go in to look for lightbulbs or extension cords.

Lastly, if you only need storage in the interim while moving houses and won’t need your stuff till you move, then you have the liberty to load away. Get stacking floor-to-ceiling boxes and gear, save space and dollars, and you're golden. 

Step 3: How much outdoor space do you have? 

If you are planning on storing your items in a portable storage container, It is important to think of where you have sufficient space to place the container. Be it your garage, a spare parking spot, or a safe area in front of your home, it’s good to be prepared. If you choose our MI-BOX option, it fits in a standard parking spot (7ft x 8ft x 16 ft), but be sure you have a flat, level space clear of any obstructions. Changed your mind at the last minute and don’t want it outside your house anymore? No worries, we can store it inside our climate-controlled warehouse; we even pick up and deliver, so you can be at ease!

Even if you’ve assembled your items, counted your boxes, or measured the space you need a thousand times over, you might still feel unprepared; it’s only natural. You want to have enough space but also can’t justify choosing a huge storage unit because what if it’s too vacant? Here’s a bonus tip: take the current size estimate that you think you need, and use painter's tape to mark it down on your floor, lawn, or empty garage space. Try fitting all your things within those borders, leaving enough room for retrieving items. If everything fits and there’s excess space, you can size down; if not, size up! 

This will help your nerves and assure you of elbow room. The price difference between storage units from one size to the next is minimal, so you wouldn’t be breaking the bank, and your teacups can be saved from turning into powder. We can even show you around the facility, head on over, and we can help you make the best choice!

If you still feel undecided about the storage size you'll need, this is our helpful storage unit size estimator

Space Centre Storage has several secure self-storage options for all your seasonal items, including drive-through, covered or indoor access self-storage units, storage lockers, RV and boat storage, MI-BOX® portable storage containers in Kelowna, and much more. Contact us and find out about all that we offer!

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