Looking for ways to reduce pet stress during your next move? It turns out humans aren’t the only animals to thrive on healthy routines. Fido and Fifi do too.
Anyone who has moved knows that it requires planning, preparation, and a tremendous amount of hard work. Moreover, it disrupts our familiar daily routines, which is precisely what behavioral health scientists believe creates stress in both humans and pets in the first place. Continue reading “Moving Tips to Reduce Pet Stress”
Are you frustrated by how quickly your child’s bedroom organization? Does it turn chaotic after tidying up? You’re not alone. For many parents, a messy kid’s bedroom is a source of conflict and annoyance, both for them and their child. The child doesn’t like being nagged, while the parents despair about their child’s disorganization and uncleanliness.
However, keeping a child’s bedroom tidy doesn’t have to be a never-ending fight. With the right strategies, you can teach your kid how to organize their bedroom without much effort. The following guidelines can help them learn to tackle the mess to keep their bedroom clean and organized. Continue reading “Tips to Teach your Kids Bedroom Organization”
Every holiday season is an opportunity to spend quality time with friends and family. However, if you’re in charge of cooking, you can easily miss out on this opportunity by getting stuck in the kitchen the whole time.
One way to avoid this problem is to organize your pantry before the holiday rush. An organized pantry can make cooking faster and more relaxing, and it can make you feel more comfortable involving other people in the kitchen. In fact, your pantry could actually be a source of comfort. The rest of the house may be chaotic in December, but at least your pantry will be clean and orderly.
Getting this perfect pantry doesn’t have to be difficult, either. You can organize it slowly, dealing with one task at a time. Even at this slow pace, you can create a beautiful, organized pantry within a week. For some guidance, here’s a day-by-day schedule to help you tackle even the messiest pantry.
Day 1: Create pantry zones.
To get organized, you first need to know where everything should go. That’s why it’s important to create “pantry zones” before you start unloading the shelves. These sections should be organized in categories that fit your cooking style. For example, if you bake a lot, you might have a zone just for baking ingredients and pans. Or, if you like quick meals, you might create a section just for boxed food mixes and instant noodles. Drinks, kids’ snacks, and holiday fixings are other great ideas.
Keeping these sections well-organized is easy if you use cabinet organizers, like baskets or transparent containers. You could also hang pocket organizers on the door for extra space. Once you’ve created these “zones” and found a way to organize them, you’re ready to get your pantry in order!
Days 2 & 3: Rearrange, organize, and clean.
Depending on how large and messy your pantry is, this step could be simple or overwhelming. Either way, you don’t have to conquer it all in a day. You can reserve one day for emptying and cleaning the shelves, and another for putting everything in order.
As you organize each item, be sure to check its expiration date before putting it back. Moldy and stale food can be embarrassing, especially if you accidentally serve it. Taking a moment to check the expiration dates can prevent this unpleasant mistake and save you an extra trip to the store later.
If your pantry still seems overcrowded, you could consider moving extra kitchen supplies into a self storage unit to free up space. For instance, if you have two dozen jars of jam you canned this past summer, you could keep half of those in your unit. Removing these extra supplies can make your pantry look clean and well-organized almost immediately.
Days 3 & 4: Label jars and containers.
Labeling jars and containers can save time and prevent cooking mistakes when friends and family help in the kitchen. With clearly-written labels, no one will need to interrupt you to ask, “What is this?” This process can take some time, so break it up into two days. One the first day, find a label design you love. (You can download free stylish labels online or buy an inexpensive pack at the store.) Then, on the second day, fill out the labels and stick them on the containers. Once everything is labeled, you can step back and admire your pantry, which is already looking beautiful.
Day 6: Stock up on food.
While going through your pantry, you might have noticed that you’re running out of certain ingredients. Today, go through your pantry more thoroughly and check whether you have everything you need for the holidays. Since your pantry is now organized, you’ll be able to see what you’re missing much faster. Still, it might be worthwhile to make a list of staple ingredients and items you use regularly. If you have time, you can even create a holiday meal plan and shop for those ingredients in particular. All this preparation will save you time and stress later, when you’re cooking for guests.
Day 7: Add finishing touches.
Your pantry is almost perfect now. It’s only missing small details—things you don’t necessarily need but would be happy to have. For example, if the top shelves are too high for you or your guests, you could get a small ladder for the pantry. You could also hang a shopping list on the wall or get a dispenser for your plastic bags. These final touches will make your pantry go from “nice” to “amazing,” turning it into a source of pride during the holidays and the rest of the year.
Clothes on the ground. Papers stacked up on the desk. A lone shoe missing its mate. Does that sound like your bedroom storage? If the answer is yes, then it’s time to get organized.
When most people think of affordable bedroom storage, they think of big ugly boxes, plastic totes, or DIY furniture from big-box stores. Metro Self Storage is here to change your mind and offer an alternative. Here are a few ideas to help you organize your bedroom and do it in style.
Five Cheap and Easy Ways to Organize Your Bedroom
Buy Bed Risers
Call it a trick from our college days. If you’re living, or have ever lived in a dorm, then you know that when space is tight, you’ve gotta get creative. Bed risers are the perfect budget solution to give you more space and help you get organized. Sold in sets of four, some lifts can raise your bed up to six inches. While that might not sound like much, you’d be surprised at the amount of storage space you actually get with six extra inches. You can purchase bed risers for under $10 from many retailers and big-box stores, including Target, The Container Store, and Bed Bath & Beyond.
Vacuum Pack Bulky Winter Items
It’s no secret that parkas, puffy jackets, and down comforters take up a lot of space. And while they are vital for warmth during the winter months, you don’t need them year round. One of the easiest ways to store these bulky winter items is to seal them in a vacuum packed bag. Not only will it save you space, it also makes these items easier to store under your bed or in the closet. Bags cost only $6.99 when purchased from Kohl’s or Walmart.
DIY Jewelry Organizers
If you wear jewelry, then you know what a pain it is to untangle a necklace chain or track down missing earrings. Sure, you could buy a fancy jewelry holder on Etsy, but it’s much cheaper to make one on your own. All you really need is a cork board and push pins from your local office or art supply store. Simply hang the cork board on your wall and insert the pins to begin organizing your jewelry. You can hang necklaces, earrings, rings, bracelets, and more!
Unlike a chest of drawers which can take up too much room in your closet, vertical hangers are a great storage solution for when you’re short on space. Tie on your scarves, hang up your belts — there are even vertical hangers just for storing your shoes. Best of all? They’re cheap, like under $10 apiece cheap, so you save both money and space.
Clever Storage Spaces
Anyone who has ever searched for “bedroom storage ideas” on Pinterest can tell you that repurposing everyday items for storage is all the rage right now. Not only is it chic, it is also quite affordable. Hit up your local thrift shop or second-hand store for a gently-used ottoman with removable lid, or pick up a few old suitcases to stack on top of one another as a statement piece to put next to your bedside table. The trick is to find pieces that are beautiful but also double as storage.
Other Ways to Store
Have you followed all of our tips, but are still feeling short on space? Consider leasing a small storage unit from Metro Self Storage. We offer affordable storage units for rent throughout the Midwest and Eastern United States. Contact our friendly leasing team to learn more about bedroom storage on a budget.
Cats generally don’t like change. They’re sensitive animals, so a major life event like moving can come as a shock. That’s why moving with a cat requires special care and thoughtfulness. If you approach the move like any other normal event, you could end up with an overly anxious cat and a particularly stressful move.
Preparing for and adapting to your cat’s anxiety during a move can prevent a lot of difficulty. Easing your cat into the move takes more effort and planning, but in the end, you’ll have a happier and more well-adjusted cat. Here are 5 tips to make your next move go as smoothly as possible for you and your cat. Continue reading “5 Tips for Moving with Your Cat”
When it comes to knowing how to make moving easier, you can count on Metro. We understand that moving is a stressful event. Whether you are combining households, separating households, or moving to a new city that promises fun and excitement.
The difficult process of packing, unpacking, and changing homes inevitably causes some stress. That stress doesn’t have to overwhelm you, though, especially if you use self storage as an interim solution.
Besides providing you with moving supplies like boxes, a self storage facility can help ease the difficulties and complications of moving. Here are four ways renting a storage unit can make your next move much easier.
1. Pay less rent while looking for your perfect home
Trying to find a new place to live is one of the biggest sources of stress while moving. You want to find a home you’ll love, but you also don’t have much time. Perhaps you’ve already packed everything, and the moving truck is on the way. Or maybe your new job is starting soon, and you want to get settled beforehand.
On top of these stresses, you might not know the area very well. Finding a new place can be difficult if you’re not even sure which neighborhood you like best.
Self-storage can take away some of this pressure and make moving easier by giving you the freedom to live in a smaller, cheaper place. Then, you can look for someplace better and more long-term at your own pace.
2. Take time to travel
If you’re in between jobs or don’t need to go to work immediately, your move can easily turn into a long vacation. All you need to do is put your stuff in storage. The price of a self storage unit is much cheaper than paying another month or two of rent, leaving you with extra cash to travel.
Turning a move into a vacation can also help relieve the stress of being constantly at work. Instead of going straight from packing to unpacking, make moving easier by allowing yourself time to relax and take a break, especially if your vacation is laid back. A long walk on the beach followed by a massage is sure to ease the stress of moving.
3. Avoid paying double rent
Even if you’re moving locally and don’t have time for a vacation, self-storage can be a great option. It prevents you from worrying about paying double rent as you arrange your move-out and move-in dates. For example, if you’re moving out on the last day of the month and your new place isn’t available until a week later, you can put your boxes and furniture in storage and stay with friends, family or Airbnb for that one week. You’ll save a month of rent—and potentially have fun hanging out with your hosts.
4. Unpack without the clutter
Unfortunately, the stress of moving doesn’t end once you’ve arrived and found a place to live. You still have the long, time-consuming process of unpacking ahead of you. If you’re super organized and don’t have many boxes to unpack, this final step may not be very difficult.
For many, though, unpacking seems never to end—especially if you have children. Random objects end up scattered everywhere as you dig through boxes and decide where everything goes.
You can cut down on this chaos (and the stress it causes) by putting some boxes temporarily in storage. If you set aside these boxes as you pack, you can fill them with things you won’t immediately need, like photos and souvenirs. With these boxes out of the way, you’ll have more space to unpack what really matters first.
Moving doesn’t have to be chaotic and daunting. Next time you move, check out a self-storage facility in the area and make your move as stress-free as possible.
It may seem like only last week that you were on pins and needles waiting for college admissions letters to arrive. Today, you are closer than ever to realizing your college dreams as universities around the country are preparing for freshmen orientation week.
The Saturday after Labor day is National Clean Out Your Garage Day, however, becoming a National Holiday isn’t easy. It begs the question—is there a compelling reason to dedicate an entire day to organizing a garage? Turns out, there is. Of the nearly 1,000 garage owners Consumer Reports polled in a recent nationwide survey, a whopping 62% said their garages were overcrowded.Continue reading “Celebrate National Clean Out Your Garage Day”
When you use a self-storage facility, you expect that your items will be safe from theft. After all, isn’t safety one of the top reasons for using self storage?
Unfortunately, though, not all self storage facilities are equally safe. Some provide excellent customer service, yet have gaps in their security. Once you’re gone, your items become vulnerable. That’s why it’s important to carefully evaluate the security features of any self-storage facility you’re considering. While friendliness and cleanliness are important, they ultimately won’t protect your property.
But what exactly should you look for? To judge a self-storage facility’s security, you should look at the following 5 features.
The best time to visit a self storage facility is after sunset. Then, you can easily see how much lighting the facility has. There should be plenty of light. A self storage facility shouldn’t be trying to save electricity. Security should be its #1 priority, not reduced light bills.
Sufficient lighting is an easy way to discourage crime, but it’s also important for other security features. For example, video surveillance is only effective if the area is well lit. Before asking about high-tech security, then, first check out the quality of the lighting.
2. Video Surveillance
If there’s enough light, start looking for and asking about video surveillance. Are there enough cameras? Are they always on? For how long do they record video?
Recorded 24-hr video surveillance is absolutely necessary. Don’t be satisfied with just ‘video surveillance’. Be curious about it, since you want any potential crimes to be on video. Otherwise, if your stored property does get stolen or vandalized, you won’t be able to identify the criminal or get your property back.
3. A Good Fence
Robert Frost once wrote, “Good fences make good neighbors.” The same could be said of self storage facilities. An excellent fence is an essential security feature every self storage facility should have. The fence should surround the entire perimeter, not just the entrance, and be sturdy and difficult to climb. A chain-link fence won’t be enough to keep criminals away from your valuables.
4. Secure Access to Storage
Let’s say you want to get something out of your self storage unit. How does the self storage facility allow you to access your unit? Is it easy—perhaps too easy?
Accessing your unit should be convenient yet secure. Simple locks are convenient, but not secure enough. Coded keypads are much safer. The main gate to the self storage facility should definitely have a coded keypad, ideally monitored by video surveillance. Then, entering the premises will be difficult for outsiders, yet easy for you.
5. Disc Locks
Getting an excellent lock is an essential part of making sure your storage unit is secure. The self storage facility might have the best security possible, but that shouldn’t stop you from choosing the best lock—a disc lock.
While padlocks are cheaper, they’re not the most secure option. Even an inexperienced thief can pick a padlock or cut it off. Disc locks, on the other hand, were designed especially for storage units. They’re resistant to picks, bolt cutters, and heavy hammers. A thief would have to grind it off, a loud, time-consuming process.
Disc locks are more expensive than padlocks, but that extra investment is worthwhile if you’re storing valuables. They definitely discourage theft, and they’re not hard to find. You should be able to buy one at the self storage facility.
If a storage facility offers these five security features, you can rest assured that your storage unit will be safe. However, keep in mind that security features can’t protect your property from natural disasters, like earthquakes and flooding. For complete peace of mind, take advantage of tenant insurance, which covers accidents and unexpected events.
For more information about security features, contact Metro Self Storage and check out what we offer our clients!
If you are passionate about crafting, you’ve probably experienced first hand how quickly your work space can go from clean to cluttered. Crafting utilizes many different types of objects, which can make craft storage at home a challenge. Add small children or pets to the equation, and you may choose to opt for offsite craft storage.
Does your dog notice when things are different whenever you change your routine? If you are amongst the millions of Americans moving with your dog this year, remember that pets have a sixth sense and tend to know when something is afoot. Continue reading “5 Tips for Moving with Your Dog”
There are lots of reasons why people decide to remodel rather than move. If the kids are in a great school, or you love your neighborhood, you might not want to give those things up. While spring and early summer are the best times of the year to put your house on the market, you might decide to undertake a home remodel instead. If you utilize self storage during your home improvement project, you can decrease the chaos of remodeling while increasing the value of your home. Continue reading “Utilize Self Storage During Your Home Improvement Project”
A room that is the heart and soul of a home needs special consideration when it comes to kitchen storage. Successful kitchen design is equal parts work space, storage solutions, and seating areas for family and friends. If you want a storage-packed kitchen that is both functional and beautiful, these tips will help make the most of any kitchen. Continue reading “Kitchen Storage: Tips and Tricks in the Kitchen”
Spring cleaning (or a visit from an outspoken friend or relative) can inspire you to finally get everything organized and stored properly. While self storage is a great option for some, you may also decide to find enough space for storage in your home. If you choose to “do it yourself,” keep in mind the following 5 tips to increase your chances of success. Continue reading “Top 5 Tips for DIY Home Storage”
You might be wondering how self-storage could possibly be related to the party-hearty green explosion of St. Patrick’s Day. Perhaps you think of self-storage as a useful place to keep things while moving or living in a small apartment, not as the kind of place you’d need for a party.
Is your car ready to take back its rightful spot in the garage? Our garage storage tips can help you do just that. Every neighborhood has at least one garage that looks organized by someone suffering from OCD, a cross between a hospital operating room and a home improvement store ad. However, truth be told, deep down, we think, “If only I could have a garage that looked half as good as that!”
My garage looks like the stock room of the local Goodwill store. What’s in your garage? If you are ready to crush the clutter in your garage, here are some organizational tips and tools to help you get started.
Garages of Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow
Do you ever wonder how garages came about? Me neither, but after a quick Google search, it all makes sense. Before automobiles, people had horses and buggies, which were kept in a carriage house usually located behind the property. Horses make odorous smells, so the further the way from the kitchens and bedrooms, the better.
Automobiles continued to gain popularity in the US, and home builders soon realized around the 1950s that houses sold better with attached garages. Carrying in the groceries sheltered from snow and rain is a luxury suburbanites take for granted because big-city garages are hard to come by.
Today’s garages are used as flexible space and serve many purposes. Some of your neighbors may take a creative approach and turn their garages into man caves, music studios, or a garage-based business start-up. Others have a place to park their cars as well as space for garage storage.
What will tomorrow’s garage look like? That mostly depends on what the cars of the future will look like, and who better to ask that Jay Leno, a world-renowned car aficionado whose new CNBC show, Jay Leno’s Garage, airs on CNBC Prime Time.
Crush the Clutter in Your Garage
The first step in any decluttering project towards garage storage is deciding what stays and what goes. The general rule of thumb for closets is that if you haven’t worn it in a year, toss it. However, for garages, the timeframe is longer.
Professional home organizers recommend that if you haven’t used an item housed in your garage for three years, then it is time to either donate it or toss it. If you have items with significant sentimental or financial value, then consider placing them into a secure, convenient self storage facility.
Working Walls Make Great Garage Storage Solutions
Create more usable square footage in your garage by using easy-to-install shelving. Pictured here is steel shelving by Monkey Bars, which is a combined hook-and-bar system to create customized garage storage spaces. Depths range from 16-inches to 32-inches deep, allowing you to customize the storage system based on the size of your garage.
The hooks come in a variety of sizes and weight capacities that enable you to hang even heavier items like bikes and golf clubs or lighter things such as strollers, miscellaneous yard tools, tennis rackets, and helmets.
Upgrade the Floor to Keep Your House Cleaner
Chemical-, oil-, and water-resistant, epoxy-based garage floor coatings have come a long way thanks to improved materials and not a moment too soon since the garage is fast becoming more than a place to park your car. This type of flooring does double-duty, durable enough to handle hot tires and de-icing salts and beautiful enough to create a hang-out space.
Not only does a floor coating look beautiful, but it’s also much easier to keep clean. Regular concrete garage floors attract and then kick up dirt and grime, which is tracked into your home. A coated garage floor gets rid of that nuisance and also brightens up the garage space because it is very light-reflective.
Garage Floor Tiles Give Garages a Polished Look
If you have limited time, or you are a DIY kind of guy or gal, then you may want to consider garage floor tiles. Tile installation doesn’t require prepping your garage floor for adhesion to a paint or epoxy coating and is less expensive than having a professional do the installation. Price and quality vary, and, depending on where you live, melting snow and subzero temperatures may dictate a high-quality, rigid tile. These types of tiles are advisable if you use kickstands or floor jacks. They are easy to clean and come in perforated versions that drain spills and snowmelt, making slippery spots less of an issue.
Overhead Bins Require Owning a Ladder
After making the painful decision of what stays and what goes, it’s time to look up for storage. If you have seasonal ski gear or sentimental items that don’t need climate controlled storage and with which you can’t bear to part—such as your grandfather’s toolbox, toys, or holiday decorations—then, consider installing overhead bins for garage organization. These are ideally suited for the long-term storage of items that you don’t plan to access frequently. Unless you opt for a pulley system like the ones you can find at Home Depot, reaching these items will require a ladder. Also, remember to choose storage containers that are not too large or too heavy.
Conceal Clutter to Create an Enviable Garage
If you, like that neighbor down the street we mentioned earlier, suffer from a touch of OCD, then a behind-closed-doors solution may be the focus of your garage organization project. Free-standing cabinets are easy to install, protect items from dust, and can be designed to accommodate different heights and features to meet your specific storage needs. The interiors are configured with shelving for stacking boxes or with bars and hooks to hide a bag full of soccer balls and sports equipment or garden tools and bikes.
Whether your inspiration for a garage storage comes from the desire to create a man cave or a game center boasting a ping-pong table for family fun night, remember your newly organized space will require maintenance. Just like you take your car in every 5,000 miles for an oil change, your garage will need periodic maintenance too.
Clutter is essentially deferred decision making and what better way to help you remember to declutter your garage than the “National Clean Out Your Garage Day.” Celebrating its 8th year, this relatively new holiday is celebrated the first weekend after Labor Day. Add it to your calendar now to keep your garage looking as good in 2017 as it will in 2016.
Are you wondering how to have a stress-free Valentine’s Day? Is that even possible? If you are single, then Valentine’s Day could be anything from empowering to a major downer. If you are in a new relationship, and nobody has said, “I love you” yet, things could get awkward. But for anyone in a relationship between the first kiss and a 50-year wedding anniversary, take notice because Valentine’s Day is just around the corner.
Have you ever really thought about how clutter accumulates in your home? We all have things that we cherish like a set of favorite golf clubs or a comfortable chair for binge-watching TV. But let’s face it, we own a wide variety of objects that often have a powerful grip on our psyche. Continue reading “Home Organization: How to Downsize Your Possessions”
Clutter happens, often for good reasons, such as a new baby, a death in the family, a move or any other event that throws life out of balance. The New Year is a good time to hit the reset button, and since January is National Get Organized Month why not learn how to organize and simplify your home? Anyone can appreciate a place to rejuvenate after a long day, and without the distraction of clutter all around. Continue reading “Popular New Year’s Resolutions: Celebrate National Get Organized Month”