Renting a storage unit usually means that you’re able to free up an awful lot of extra space at your home or business. It can help you remove a lot of clutter while also giving you a place to store important items that you don’t necessarily always want or need on hand.

That said, storage units can be a bit of a slippery slope. It can be easy to think of them as a bit of a black hole for your stuff—stash it in there, and forget about it.

That’s not what we think storage units should be. We believe that they should be functional, usable spaces. To that end, it’s vital that you organize it in such a way that access is easy and practical.

Read on for more tips about how to accomplish this:

  • Pick a box size, and stick with it: If you choose a medium-sized box to store all of your items in, it’s going to make your life a lot easier. You can easily stack these boxes into any configuration that you. Plus, keeping them to a reasonable size means you aren’t likely to make them so heavy that you cannot easily move them.
  • Sort your items: This can be a tedious task, but it will save you time down the road. Lay out all of the items to be stored, and start sifting. You want to first figure out which items you’ll need in the long, medium, and short terms. Are you planning on going camping this summer? Then it’s probably a good idea to have the tent and the cooking utensils pretty reachable. Don’t think you’re going to hit the slopes for a few years? Tuck the skis in the back.
  • Label everything: When we say everything, we mean everything. Take a Sharpie or two and label the boxes with everything that you’re placing into them. This is not a fun nor glamorous task, but you’ll save yourself an enormous amount of time in your storage unit over the years if you invest at this stage.
  • Consider shelving: Adding inexpensive shelving from any home improvement store could also be a good idea for your storage unit. It can help reduce clutter as well as the strain on boxes that can result from being stacked for long periods.
  • Make a map: Creating a little sketched map that you keep in the storage unit is also a successful tactic that many folks like to use. It doesn’t have to be fine art—just note where the athletic equipment is, where the kitchen appliances are and so forth. It might feel silly, but you’ll be surprised how much it jogs your memory.

Renting a storage unit is a great way to feel like you can finally breathe in your own home again. Getting rid of all that clutter is a great first step, but your storage unit is only as useful as you make it. Organizing it so that you know where everything is makes it more of a functional closet space, rather than a repository for items you don’t have the heart to throw out.

We offer climate-controlled storage in multiple sizes here at A Plus Storage Corporation, so give us a call today, and let us meet all of your extra space needs.

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