Your FAQs About Self Storage Answered

Metro Self Storage New Addison, Illinois Indoor Climate Controlled Facility

 

If you’re new to self storage or need help figuring out whether or not your life transition can be made easier with self storage, you probably have questions. How much does self storage cost? Are self storage facilities really secure? Should I rent a climate-controlled storage unit? What if I change my mind?

These are just a few of the questions people ask when deciding whether or not to rent a storage unit and why your friends at Metro Self Storage have put together a helpful list of some of the commonly asked questions we hear from current and prospective tenants.

Keep in mind, no matter where you decide to rent your unit, each storage facility will have their own set of features and rules such as access hours. The best way to know for sure what you’re getting is to contact your local storage provider. At Metro storage facility, our friendly, professionally trained Property Managers are on site at each and every one of our locations to give you personal attention.

 

How much does self storage cost per month?

Tampa Bay Area Self Storage in Riverview, Florida

 

The cost of your storage unit depends on several things, but mostly the age and location of the facility, the type of security features available, and whether or not you rent a climate-controlled storage unit. According to MarketWatch, “The average asking rent for a 10X10 unit in the U.S. is $118 a month for non-climate controlled and $152 for climate controlled.”

The two most common types of storage buildings are indoor where all storage units are housed within a structure, and outdoor, single-story buildings. Outdoor facilities function much like household garages (drive-up units with wide roll-up doors).

Indoor, climate-controlled units are like storing your items in an extra room in your home or office. Many storage companies like Metro have facilities with a combination of outdoor drive-up units and indoor climate-controlled units.

The cost of climate-controlled storage varies by market, and you can expect to pay roughly 20% less for a traditional non-climate unit than you would for a temperature-controlled space. Keep in mind, paying a bit more for storage is advisable for anyone who is storing high-value items or lives in a region of the country with extreme temperature swings or high humidity.

 

How much storage space should I rent?

Metro Self Storage Indoor Storage Units and Storage Lockers in Pinellas Park, Florida
Indoor Storage Units and Storage Lockers in Pinellas Park, Florida

 

The most popular storage units sizes are 5X5 and 10X10. However, storage unit sizes can be as small as 3X5 (storage lockers). These smaller units are ideal for personal items such as jewelry, collectibles, or seasonal decorations and sports gear.

Large storage units commonly referred to as commercial units, are ideal for business and inventory needs as well as large households. Here is a list of the most common sizes you can expect to find at your local storage facility:

  • 5×10 unit is roughly the size of a large walk-in closet
  • 10×10 unit is about the size of a child’s bedroom and tends to be the most popular size
  • 10×20 unit is about the same size as a one-car garage
  • 15×20 unit is roughly the size of a master bedroom
  • 20×20 unit comes close to the same size as a two-car garage

 

The unit size you choose will depend on the number and size of the items you plan to store as well as how frequently you’ll need to access those items. A 10X10 unit, for instance, covers 100 square feet and can hold the contents of a one- or two-bedroom house or apartment.

For more information on choosing the right storage unit sizes see our blog:  Storage Units Sizes: How to Choose the Right-Sized Unit Every Time

 

Do I need to reserve a storage unit?

Inside the Metro Self Storage office in Wichita, Kansas
Metro Self Storage office in Wichita, Kansas

 

If you’re one of the 11 million American households who need to rent a storage unit, reserving your unit ahead of time can help you lock in the best price at the time of your search. Especially if you live in a city where there is a high demand for storage units, or you’re renting during the height of moving season (May-September).

Most storage facilities welcome walk-ins and don’t require a reservation, but you’ll risk not finding the right-sized unit for your things. Even so, if you see an attractive, well-maintained facility while your out running errands, stop by and speak with a member of the storage team.

If you like to do all your research online, be sure to choose storage websites that are easy to navigate, offer free reservations and online promotions, and provide details of the specific facility that you’re inquiring about.

Websites are a first impression and representation of a company or brand. If a company doesn’t keep their website well maintained and up to date, it could be reflective of how they do (or don’t) maintain their facilities.

 

What features make self storage facilities secure?

Car bumper shown with Secure Electronic Keypad Access at Metro Self Storage in Kingwood, Texas
Secure Electronic Keypad Access at Metro Self Storage in Kingwood, Texas

 

Be aware that security features typically vary from facility to facility. For example, Metro Self Storage prides itself on offering upper tier facilities that are newer or recently renovated, and we regularly add brand new state-of-the-art facilities to our self-storage portfolio. We take security seriously at all our facilities which offer state-of-the-art video surveillance 24-hours a day 7 days a week.

If you find a facility offering bargain rates, check to make sure that cheap storage units don’t mean low-end security features. The last thing anyone needs is to deal with insurance claims for damaged or stolen belongings—an investment in a secure storage facility is for the safekeeping of your things. All Metro Self Storage facilities provide on-site managers to give personalized attention.

Here are some of the best security features to look for in a storage facility:

  • 24-hour recorded video surveillance
  • Ample outdoor and indoor lighting,
  • Fenced perimeters
  • Coded keypad gate access
  • On-site Property Managers

 

Red flags to watch out for when renting storage unit include apparent signs of deferred maintenance issues. Also, if you’re not required to present your driver license and proof of current address and insurance prior to storing your items, keep looking for a more secure option.

 

Do I need to insure the items in my storage unit?

 

Most likely, yes. Storage facility insurance requirements are governed by the states and cities in which they are located. As a result, each storage facility will have their own policies around tenant insurance requirements. While many storage companies accept proof of existing homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, they also offer tenant insurance (usually around $10 to $20 per month). Fees are automatically added on to your monthly storage bill.

Getting tenant insurance is the best option for people who are between homes or expect to move in the near future and cancel their existing homeowner’s policy.

 

How can I prevent the contents of my storage unit from being auctioned off?

 

The answer is simple: Pay your storage rent on time, which brings us back to choosing a company that offers an up-to-date website. Good self storage providers offer a variety of payment options: Online payment, cash, check, credit card, or automatic bank withdrawal.

The advantage of online bill pay options can’t be overstated. During a storage unit auction, the contents are auctioned off to the highest bidder in order for the company to recoup the loss of rental fees.  

However, these events are not as glamorous as they look on reality TV shows. Also, auctioning off someone else’s belongings is always a last resort. Moreover, it is a well-known and respected practice for the highest bidder to return personal items such as photo albums to the facility’s manager.

To keep your belongings safe, it bears repeating, pay your storage fees on time every month. To help ensure this happens without fail, look for a storage company that features online bill pay options and other amenities like a 24-hour customer service number.

Some storage facilities have 24-hour kiosks that allow you to rent and pay your storage fees, but if you aren’t visiting your unit on a weekly basis, it could be a source of inconvenience.

 

Can I upsize or downsize my unit if I need a different size?

Metro Self Storage moving boxes stacked inside 5X5 storage unit in Round Lake Beach, Florida
Metro Self Storage moving boxes stacked inside a storage unit in Round Lake Beach, FL 

 

Absolutely! However, you may have to wait depending on availability and the terms of your lease. While storage facilities like Metro rent units on a flexible month-to-month basis, it’s worth a conversation with management to make suitable arrangements.

 

What type of lock do I need for my storage unit?

Beautiful moving supplies display at Metro Self Storage in Amarillo, Texas
Disc Locks, packing tape, furniture covers and wraps on display at Metro Self Storage in Amarillo, Texas

 

Think of Storage locks as an additional investment to protect the things that really matter in your life. When choosing a lock for your storage unit, location is a big factor. Whether you’re renting a drive-up storage unit at an outdoor facility or an indoor storage unit inside a multi-story building, it can help determine the type of lock you choose.

For instance, when a lock is kept outdoors, it won’t be worth much if it breaks due to rust or dirt. Other reasons you may need to increase your budget for a padlock is because there is a high burglary risk at your storage location.

The costs for padlocks vary wildly. You can expect to pay as little as $15 for a disc padlock designed for the storage industry. These affordable disc locks have drainage holes and a reputation of deterring criminals who know it’s difficult to pick and practically impossible to cut.

 

Can I store my car, boat, or RV at a storage facility?

Covered vehicle parking at Metro Self Storage in Tampa, Florida
Covered vehicle parking at Metro Self Storage in Tampa, Florida

 

Medium and large drive-up storage units can typically accommodate a car or motorcycle. Besides cars and motorcycles, vehicle storage includes RVs, boats, ATVs, and commercial trucks and vans.

Whether you live in a suburb or a large city like Chicago or Atlanta, finding free, off-street parking for RVs and boats is nearly if not entirely impossible. To store specialty vehicles like RVs and classic cars, renting a secure space can be of great benefit when they are not in use.

There are three kinds of vehicle storage:

  • Outdoor vehicle parking
  • Covered/Canopy storage
  • Indoor vehicle storage

 

You’ll want to look for the same 24-hour security features you’d look for when renting a storage unit with an emphasis on electronic gated entry. While the sight of security cameras discourages potential thieves, a gated entrance gives you a private access code and simultaneously prevents anyone else from getting into the facility.


WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT METRO SELF STORAGE?

To learn more about renting a storage unit from Metro Self Storage, visit our website for specifics about our facilities, policies, and services we offer. To find a storage facility near you, visit our locations page.

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Storage Unit Sizes: How to Choose the Right Sized Unit Every Time

 

Even though storage unit sizes are standardized, most people wing it when choosing a self storage unit for the first time. Naturally, this usually results in renting (and therefore paying for) more space than they need. Even so, budget crashing disasters are avoided every day at Metro Self Storage thanks to our highly trained Property Managers. Continue reading “Storage Unit Sizes: How to Choose the Right Sized Unit Every Time”

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7 Reasons to Choose Metro Self Storage

 

When it comes to choosing a self storage facility, how do you decide? It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all the choices around you. How do you know which is right for you?

At Metro Self Storage, we simplify your storage experience. Our professionally trained Property Managers are on site at every location to assist with selecting your storage unit and answering all of your questions. Continue reading “7 Reasons to Choose Metro Self Storage”

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The Best RV Storage Operators Make Vehicle Storage Easy

 

Boats and RVs are great for traveling on America’s endless highways and scenic byways. However, finding a place to park oversized vehicles in between trips can be a challenge. That’s why the best RV storage operators in the country recognize the need to provide options for storing recreational vehicles such as boats, campers, motorhomes, and RVs.

Market research shows that fewer than 5% of RV and boat owners have a place to store their vehicles at home. Off-site self storage options for recreational toys and vehicles is in high-demand due to the growing popularity and affordability of RVing.

Continue reading “The Best RV Storage Operators Make Vehicle Storage Easy”

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How to Keep Mold Monsters (and Other Gross Things) Out of Your Storage Unit

 

If you’re planning to move, there’s a good chance you’ll rely on self storage during your transition. Besides moving, people utilize off-site storage space during other types of life transitions as well as for seasonal storage. Most household items need climate controlled storage units to protect them from ice-cold temperatures, rainy and wet conditions, and damage caused by mold, heat, and humidity.

Why is that? It comes down to science, and unless you’re a chemical engineer or a medical professional, you may not have heard of this word before:

*Hygroscopic – (Of a substance) tending to absorb moisture from the air.

For humidity to destroy something you own, it must be hygroscopic. Think, mattress, fabric, upholstered furniture … you get the idea. Additionally, hygroscopic things are the ideal place for mold monsters to grow. So in a nutshell, most of the things your own are hygroscopic. Read on …

Continue reading “How to Keep Mold Monsters (and Other Gross Things) Out of Your Storage Unit”

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Why You Need Climate Controlled Storage in Hot, Humid Climates

 

No matter where you live if you’re planning a move this summer, keep in mind that most household items need climate controlled storage units. They are designed to protect your belongings from the damage caused by heat and humidity and to keep you more comfortable while loading your storage units.

There’s a good chance you’ll need to rely on self storage during your transition. During the summer months, renting a basic storage unit might be sufficient for some items if you live in a state with temperate weather.

Why is that? It comes down to science, and unless you’re a chemical engineer or a medical professional, you may not have heard of this word: Hygroscopic. In order for humidity to destroy something, it must be hygroscopic.

Adjective: Hygroscopic
(of a substance) tending to absorb moisture from the air.
relating to humidity or its measurement

In a nutshell, most of the things your own are hygroscopic. Read on … Continue reading “Why You Need Climate Controlled Storage in Hot, Humid Climates”

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Student Storage Deals | Find Clean, Reliable Storage Units Near Your Campus

Finding the best student storage deals is easy if you plan ahead. Procrastinate and finding cheap storage gets harder as summer approaches. Moreover, living in cramped quarters brings home the fact that there are only so many nooks, cubbies, and crannies to cram stuff into in a dorm room.

When faced with sharing a room, the big question is, “What do I do with all this extra stuff?” From a surplus of college books and university gear to clothes and kitchenware, it’s easy to accumulate more stuff than you have room for in your dorm room. Continue reading “Student Storage Deals | Find Clean, Reliable Storage Units Near Your Campus”

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Reasons to Consider Self Storage When Selling Your Home

 

You’ve decided to sell your home. Perhaps the listing contract is already in place with your real estate agent. This is the time when a seller begins to appreciate all the work it takes to get a home ready for sale. An owner might be downsizing. The closets could be overflowing. Furniture might make a home look too full to show well. A garage could be stuffed to the rafters. Considering self storage might prove to be a big help in making a sale. Here are five reasons why.

Continue reading “Reasons to Consider Self Storage When Selling Your Home”

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Where Not to Store your Guitar and Other Stringed Musical Instruments

 

Where you store your guitar and other types of wooden instruments will determine their longevity. Stringed instruments are some of the pinnacles of music creation. From Stradivarius Violins to the wide world of classical guitars, these creations are as delicate as they are priceless.

Continue reading “Where Not to Store your Guitar and Other Stringed Musical Instruments”

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Quick and Easy Wine Storage Tips for Texans (in Less Than Ten Minutes)

 

Our quick and easy wine storage tips will have you looking like a sommelier in less than 10 minutes. Okay, maybe not quite at that level but close.

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. 

Why should you consider wine storage? Continue reading “Quick and Easy Wine Storage Tips for Texans (in Less Than Ten Minutes)”

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How to Properly Care, Store, Handle, and Retire the American Flag

 

Flying the American flag is acceptable any day of the year, especially on National Holidays like Veteran’s Day and Labor Day. American flags are collected and cherished by many, becoming heirlooms and keepsakes. However, these aging flags need to be carefully stored because the fabric used to make older flags often become fragile over time.
Continue reading “How to Properly Care, Store, Handle, and Retire the American Flag”

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The Benefits of Utilizing Short-Term Storage Between Homes

 

At some point our lives, most of us will go through a transition that requires us to rely on short-term storage between homes. Whether Mother Nature has forced you out of your home, you are taking on a temporary work assignment, or you are in the midst of a remodel, experiencing any type of change in your day-to-day lifestyle is stressful.

One of the easiest ways to give yourself the peace of mind you need during a time of transition is by moving your valuable belongings to temporary storage to protect your belongings from theft or damage. Continue reading “The Benefits of Utilizing Short-Term Storage Between Homes”

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Kid Friendly Toy Storage Tips for Busy Parents

 

Family friendly toy storage tips can be invaluable when you’re preparing to move, have a baby, or simply clean the house. Keeping toys tucked away when not in use can relieve stress and prevent your home from becoming a toy disaster zone, especially during transitions.

While you can find plenty of great ideas and inspiring pictures online, in the end, all you might need is a few good principles to follow. Here are some toy storage tips that can make the difference between organization and chaos.

Continue reading “Kid Friendly Toy Storage Tips for Busy Parents”

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Moving to Alabama? We Offer Storage Units in Montgomery!

 

Whether you are moving to Alabama or have lived here your entire life, there are great things to see and discover in Alabama’s state’s capital of Montgomery.

While Montgomery is recognized worldwide for its historical and cultural significance and landmarks due to the Civil Rights Movement in the 1950s and 60s, it continues to be a city of great significance. Continue reading “Moving to Alabama? We Offer Storage Units in Montgomery!”

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How Sheepshead Bay Self Storage Makes Apartment Living in Brooklyn Easy

 

Big city apartments are usually high on costs and short on space, especially in terms of storage space such as closets and cabinets.  The trend towards smaller apartments in New York continues to gain popularity. Prefabricated in Brooklyn, New York, these modular micro-apartments range anywhere from 260 to 360 square feet. It’s no wonder many Brooklynites turn to Sheepshead Bay self storage to make their lives more manageable.

While the idea of living in a minute amount of space may come as a shock to most, for many New Yorkers, a self storage unit often serves as their second home because it provides the extra space people need to make living the apartment life in Brooklyn more enjoyable.

Continue reading “How Sheepshead Bay Self Storage Makes Apartment Living in Brooklyn Easy”

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