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It’s not often that you meet someone who is super thrilled about moving, often times, it’s quite the opposite. The moans and groans that come up during a move are often more attributed to the dis-organized mess relocating, packing and storing can quickly turn into. However, with a little foresight and planning this doesn’t have to be the case.

Effective Solutions for Moving & Packing a Storage Unit
Photo Credit: Colorado Self Storage

Keeping organized and knowing what is where is an essential part of using a storage unit for the first time and keeping the one you have in top shape.

Come With a Plan
Showing up to the storage unit for the first time with a truckload of items and no real plan on how you’re going to make it work is definitely not recommended. Storing items this way can usually lead to a host of organizational and space problems that could have been avoided with just a little more planning.

Effective Solutions for Moving & Packing a Storage Unit
Photo Credit: Nevada Self Storage

Instead, take some time to evaluate what you have and how it’s going to work. All storage facility owners will let you take a look at your unit before you move in. Units exist in a variety of sizes from the smallest 5’ x 5’s to larger 300 square feet versions.

Boxes, Bins and Hampers?
Organizing your storage unit just right is a lot like the game Tetris. Certain pieces will fit better together than others. If you have a desk that you will be storing look to see if you have any other items that can fit in the space underneath it or perhaps tucked away into a shelf.

As far as storing options you have two real answers and one non-traditional solution. Perhaps the most common item among storage units everywhere is the box. Boxes are great, economical choices but such is not always the case.

Effective Solutions for Moving & Packing a Storage Unit
Photo Credit: Storage Kings

If you plan on using boxes for your move, try to make sure that they are all of a similar size and shape and if possible, exactly the same. Aligning boxes that don’t match up exactly can cut down on the amount of space you are using effectively as well as lead to stacking problems. Also, if possible try to stay away from boxes that have already been used. Boxes that have been used to transport foods could have been exposed to molds or been damaged in a small way which can work against you as they sit in storage.

Effective Solutions for Moving & Packing a Storage Unit
Photo Credit: Tri State Self Storage

Plastic bins are a great alternative to this dilemma. Plastic containers and bins are more resilient to time and can be used for a variety of other purposes when the time comes to take the items out of storage. While the initial purchasing price may be a little higher than acquiring some boxes, the long term implications are worth the effort.

If you’re looking to be really economical, take a close look at some of the objects you are storing and their ability to house and hold other things. Hampers, washer and dryers can hold towels, blankets and clothes along with other items depending on how well they are packed.

The Logistics
Come to the unit with a plan. Think about things like heavy objects on the bottom and lighters ones on top. If you have a mattress set think about ways you can slide it in so it keeps the same feel of a set of stacked boxes. With enough planning, you would be surprised about how much can really fit in a twenty five square foot space.

Effective Solutions for Moving & Packing a Storage Unit
Photo Credit: Storage Unit Auctions

Label Away
Tedious? Yes. A little time consuming? Yes. Does it pay off later? Absolutely. Labeling every box with a general category along with what is inside can save a world of a hassle later on when you need to access them again. If you haven’t done so already, take some time to label up those boxes and bins.

Effective Solutions for Moving & Packing a Storage Unit
Photo Credit: Lockaway Self Storage

Dust Prevention
Dust can be your worst nightmare, especially if you are storing any sort of electronics or appliances. To combat dust cover anything that is exposed. Use old sheets or even garbage bags to lay over these items. Also, make sure they are securely attached so the protection doesn’t shift as you stack or move other things around it.

Future Access
It may be elementary, but don’t forget to leave the things you might want to access first, the last for packing. Having the items you need most readily right in the front will ensure that you don’t have to go wading through boxes and bin four months from now when you want to get an item out.

Taking the extra effort to organize a storage space can pay off. Not only can it keep the items you are storing in the best shape possible it will also cut down on those moans and groans when you go to access it in the future.

{Jenn Young is a freelance writer working with Uncle Bob’s Self Storage. She has moved over twelve different times, also moving house to Fulham, in her short life and is passionate about helping people save money. She also enjoys beautifying her home, and keeping things organized!}