Let me ask you two very simple questions:

  • Is your house starting to feel a little cluttered?
  • Are you moving house or downsizing and looking for somewhere safe to store some of your possessions?

If you have answered yes to any of the above, then you might want to think about self storage as the solution.

Here at Fife Group, we are experts in the self storage business and we want to help you find the best storage solution for you.

Lots to choose from, how will you know what will work for you?

How to choose a self storage facility

Step 1 – Get the right size of unit for you

There is a direct correlation between the amount of goods you have and the size of self storage unit you’ll require.

The best approach is to pile together all of the items you want to put into self storage, so you know what is staying and what needs to go. Pack fragile items together to ensure they are safe for transit and put heavier items together to prevent breakages.

Once you see all the items together you should have a good idea of the size of self storage unit you will require. If you are still unsure what size you need, your elected storage provider should be able to tell by how many boxes you have or how large your vehicle is and will be able to determine the size of storage you need.

Click here to find out more about the sizes of storage units we offer here at Fife Group.

Once you know what size of unit you’ll need, you can make cost comparisons more easily.

Step 2 – Decide what storage solution suits you

An empty rectangular storage unit(Photo: Individual unit at Fife Group)

There are a number of different storage solutions available – individual units, vertically stacked boxes and outdoor containers.

At Fife Group, we provide our customers with individual units inside a fully secure warehouse where we can guarantee your goods will be safe and secure.

With other providers you still have the option of vertically stacked boxes or outdoor containers, although the problems with these types of storage include: limited access, your goods can be moved around when in boxes causing breakages, cold weather and condensation damaging your belongings and also security issues.

A good idea is to actually go and visit various storage facilities and see what you think for yourself. Ask them as many questions as you can and make sure you are happy before you sign for anything. Your aim should be to get the right solution for you.

Step 3 – Costs

The price of self storage varies from supplier to supplier and you also have to remember that there are different storage solutions – individual units, vertically stacked wooden boxes and outside containers, so in terms of cost you have to compare like for like.

Another aspect of price is the size of the unit, obviously a smaller unit is going to be more cost effective than a larger unit, which can hold double the amount.

Just make sure that you think about security, it’s all fine well getting storage to later find out that the security is poor or there is none. You should always aim to pick a storage provider who has CCTV in operation and where the premises is alarmed.

You also need to think about time as this will affect cost, obviously the more time you have your goods in storage the more it is going to cost you. Self storage is usually charged as a monthly cost, so you’ll need to factor this into your costings.

Step 4 – Flexibility

By this I mean, you are not tied into a contract for a minimum period of time. We always like to be flexible with our customers, so once they no longer require their storage, we stop charging them for it.

You should always check with your elected self storage provider what their terms and conditions are when it comes to cancelling your contract. The last thing you want to do, is to have to pay for storage you no longer require, so check the small print.

Step 5 – Location

This might sound like common sense, but its probably easier for you to get storage closer to your home address, so you can make visits to your chosen storage facility if you need to.

What to do is to do a Google search of local self storage facilities in your area and have a look at there websites. You can call them to arrange a viewing and check out what they have to offer.

I really hope these 5 steps help you choose the right self storage facility for you. If in doubt, always ask and find out where you stand on anything.

Another good tip is to look for reviews and ratings – read customer testimonials and find out what they’re saying.

Happy storing!

John Kilgour
Managing Director
Fife Group