Top 5 Storage Facility Security Features to Look For

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.

 

1. Lighting

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!

Top 6 Wine Storage Tips

Have you ever wondered why wine improves with age? So many things do.

The great English Philosopher and Statesman, Francis Bacon, explains why, “ … age appears to be best in four things—old wood best to burn, old wine to drink, old friends to trust, and old authors to read.” Many red wines—and some white wines—are meant to be aged before they are opened. Our 6 top wine storage tips will guarantee your wine tastes great when you are ready to drink it. Continue reading “Top 6 Wine Storage Tips”

6 Reasons People Like Living in Southwest Philadelphia

With a population of 1,567,442 and growing, Philadelphia has come a long way since the Founding Fathers gathered here to sign the Declaration of Independence. Today, it is one of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas. This can can make choosing where to live within the 136-square-mile city a daunting task. If you are looking for more affordable housing options in proximity to the airport and public transportation with a nature preserve as your backyard, living in Southwest Philadelphia could be the right location for you. Continue reading “6 Reasons People Like Living in Southwest Philadelphia”

Utilize Self Storage During Your Home Improvement Project

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”

Top 10 Moving Tips from 40 Years in the Storage Business

To celebrate National Moving Month, we questioned storage managers from 10 Metro Self Storage locations to bring you the top 10 tips from over 40 years in the storage business.

Founded in 1973 by Karl F. Nagel, Metro Self Storage has grown to over 100 storage facilities in 11 states and continues to help people just like you find the perfect storage solution when moving or experiencing another type of life transition. Continue reading “Top 10 Moving Tips from 40 Years in the Storage Business”

Business Storage Solutions | How a Self Storage Unit Can Help Your Business Grow

Business growth is a great thing. It is a healthy sign that business is doing well and making money but getting bigger doesn’t come without its challenges. For many businesses, growth and expansion equate to the need for more physical space. Renting a business storage unit can be a cost-effective solution for businesses who want their growth to remain profitable. Continue reading “Business Storage Solutions | How a Self Storage Unit Can Help Your Business Grow”

Reduce, Reuse, & Recycle on Earth Day with Self Storage

Say, what? You are no doubt asking, “How is it possible to reduce, reuse, and recycle on Earth Day with self storage?” It’s a legitimate question because according to the media America has a serious problem with consumption. Even Slate weighed in to tell us how we have become a self storage nation. But the reality is that self storage is most often used to ease stress during life transitions like moving or relocating for a new job, an unexpected death of a beloved grandparent, or combining households. Continue reading “Reduce, Reuse, & Recycle on Earth Day with Self Storage”

Moving to Minneapolis Suburbs? Bloomington Ranks as Best City to Live

Minneapolis continues to rank as one of the best cities to live in the US, and its suburbs regularly rank in top publications like Money Magazine and Forbes as the best places to move to for anyone looking for a high quality of life and above-average income. If you are moving to Minneapolis suburbs, Bloomington ranks as the best city to live in due to its alluring combination of small-town charm and big-city amenities.

Bloomington is a culturally diverse community with neighborly residents who graciously host over 42 million visitors who travel from near and far to see the Mall of America. Many of the reasons so many tourists travel to Bloomington are the same reasons why people love to call Bloomington home.

Ideally situated on the north bank of the Minnesota River and only 10 miles from Downtown Minneapolis, retirees, professionals, and families with kids of all ages are moving to Bloomington, MN.

Furnish Your New Home for Cheap

Moving to Minneapolis Suburbs

When it comes time to furnish your Bloomington apartment or home, there is always a budget to consider, and Ikea fits the bill for spending less on furniture so you can spend more to watch your favorite Minnesota sports team at Target Field.

Shopping at Ikea for furniture basics, like a bed, sofa, dresser drawers, and tables is cost-effective and will save you time and effort. You can furnish an entire home after less than a day of shopping at Ikea—yes, this is possible because I have done it—and then enjoy cafeteria-style Swedish fare that includes savory meatballs and delicious chocolate fudge cake.

But go after the crowds subside to avoid long lines, and grab a seat next in front of one of the large picture windows. Pick up everything else you need to furnish your new home such as artwork and other household items, over the coming weeks and months from one of Bloomington’s numerous top-rated thrift, vintage, and consignment shops.

Shop ‘Til You Drop

Bloomington MN Mall of America

The world renown Mall of America boasts 520 stores, and with no sales tax on clothes and shoes. As such, it is the perfect destination if you like to shop until you drop.

More than just a shopping destination, Mall of America offers plenty of family-friendly entertainment from Toddler Tuesdays to Nickelodeon Universe. You can try out for Minnesota Vikings cheerleader or be on the Skol Line, the official drumline of the Minnesota Vikings.

Hitch a Ride

Moving to Bloomington MN

One of the things that make Minneapolis a great place to live for people who want to ditch their cars and reduce their carbon footprint is the Metro Transit. It combines a light rail and bus system to connect Downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul with Bloomington and Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport with two lines to Mall of America in Bloomington.

While Minneapolis offers exciting sports and a vibrant nightlife, by choosing to live in a less expensive neighboring suburb like Bloomington, you will never be more than 15 minutes away from a museum, the theater, a sports event, farm-to-table dining, or tax-free shopping thanks to the Metro and 35W and 394.

Baby, It’s Cold Outside

Moving to Bloomington

What keeps everyone from going stir crazy in Bloomington during the famously frigid Minnesota winters? Places like the thrilling indoor Water Park of America. Anyone living in a Mediterranean climate might find the idea of a water park indoors a little odd; however, when you live in Minnesota where temperatures routinely drop into the single digits in the wintertime, an indoor water park is not an oxymoron.

In fact, Downtown Minneapolis has over 11 miles of enclosed pedestrian footbridges or skyways, over 69 city blocks allowing people to live, work, and shop without ever having to leave climate-controlled comfort.

Overall Bloomington gets high ranks from its residents according to the National Business Survey, and it offers more jobs per capita than any other Minneapolis Suburb in Hennepin County. Whether you are moving to Bloomington to work at one of its major employers—Mall of America, Ceridian, Donaldson Company, Toro, or Seagate Technologies—or to attend school at Normandale Community College or University of Minnesota, it promises to offer an enviable lifestyle.

Just remember to pack plenty of warm clothes.

3 Reasons Why People Love Moving to Corpus Christi, TX

Moving away can be sad and stressful. When you move somewhere awesome, though, the change is much easier. Instead of being a source of anxiety, a move can be the most exciting event of the year.
Corpus Christi is a place you can be excited to move to. It combines Texan charm with a beautiful coastline, offering plenty of things to do and see. Here are three reasons why moving to Corpus Christi would be a great place to go.
Continue reading “3 Reasons Why People Love Moving to Corpus Christi, TX”

3 Reasons Why Self Storage Makes St. Patrick’s Day More Fun

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.

In fact, self-storage can make anyone’s life easier, especially around holidays. While a storage facility isn’t the next hot spot for a club or festival, it can definitely make hosting a St. Patrick’s party more fun. Here are 3 reasons why self storage should be a part of your festivities this year. Continue reading “3 Reasons Why Self Storage Makes St. Patrick’s Day More Fun”

Garage Storage Made Easy | Moving and Organizing Advice

 

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

ClutteredGarage

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

hanging bike and accessory rack for 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

Antique car stored in garage
Photo Courtesy of Monkey Bars

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

Motorcycle stored in garage
Photo Courtesy of Monkey Bars

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

Overhead garage storage
Photo Courtesy of Monkey Bars

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 

Garage Storage Cupboards
Photo Courtesy of Monkey Bars

 

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.

Why People Love Moving to El Paso, Texas

Are you thinking about moving to El Paso, Texas? The sixth-largest city in Texas and locally known as “Sun City” due to 297 days of sunshine, El Paso has a lot to offer current and new residents alike. From leading universities and the world’s largest military base to a thriving economy and restaurants dishing up delicious Texas barbecue and Mexican food, who wouldn’t love moving to El Paso?
Continue reading “Why People Love Moving to El Paso, Texas”

Ease Valentine’s Day Stress with Self Storage

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.

Planning to impress your partner with a chef-inspired meal at home, popping the big question, or separating from your spouse, here is how self storage can help you ease Valentine’s Day stress. Continue reading “Ease Valentine’s Day Stress with Self Storage”

8 Reasons to Love Moving to Midland, Texas

Midland is located in the western southern plains of Texas, but don’t make the mistake of thinking it’s just another city in the middle of nowhere. On the contrary, Midland is known for its small-city charm and big-city choices. It offers a diverse mix of entertainment, employment, and lifestyle opportunities, and it seems that everyone, from young professionals and growing families, to aging Baby Boomers and retirees, is migrating to Midland. Continue reading “8 Reasons to Love Moving to Midland, Texas”