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Everything you need to know about finding a Storage Business

If you need to store items during a move, for short periods of time, or for long periods, a storage company is the perfect solution. Read on to learn more about what they can offer.

Questions to Ask a Storage Company

There are several things that you need to consider when you are choosing a storage company. Following is a list of the questions that you will need to have answered:

  • How much does storage cost? Storage companies will have a pricing structure that takes into account things such as the size of the space, the duration of the storage (whether it is short term or long term) and the types of items that are being stored. Ensure that there is a pricing plan that matches your requirements.
  • Is there insurance available? The company should have insurance policies available so that your possessions are covered in the event of theft, fire, or other damage. Ensure that the policy provides blanket protection, has the backing of a major insurer, and the premiums are a competitive price. Some companies will build the cost of the insurance into the price of storage while others will give you the option. Do not assume that insurance is automatically provided.
  • What is the accessibility like? Many storage companies allow you drive up access to your storage space. However, if it is a multi-storey complex, ensure that they provide moving trolleys and a goods lifts so that you can still easily access your spot. Some facilities allow you to access your storage unit at any time of the day while some will only allow access during opening hours.
  • What security is provided? During operating hours, a manager should always be on site. There should also be a 24 hour closed circuit security video system. As well, there should be security fencing, security patrols, and alarms on each individual storage unit. Your own padlock will be needed and you can choose to supply your own, or buy one from the company. You will be the only person with a key.
  • Is transport provided? Many storage companies will provide a truck and driver to help you get your goods into storage. Enquire if there is a charge for this service and if you will need to book them in advance, and how far. Alternatively, you can bring the goods in yourself or use a removalist. The storage company will be able to recommend a removalist.
  • How can you pay for the unit? Enquire as to what payment options the storage company offers. Most will accept cash and credit cards. Cheques and money orders may also be an option. Direct debit is becoming increasingly popular and you can set this up so that the fees are taken from your credit card or from your bank account automatically. Alternatively, you may be able to pay your account online.


Storage Space Estimator

Most storage companies offer a storage space estimator, to ensure that you are getting a space that is the right size for you. These estimators usually work by you filling in the number of articles that you want to store, and the estimator works out the optimal space from there. It is usually in a list format, with you selecting the quantity of each item to be stored. Once you have the estimated space required, it is simply a matter of ringing your chosen storage company and hiring the space. Be aware, however, that the estimator is intended to be a rough guide, not to be exact. The actual space you need depends on factors such as accessibility, the type of items stored, and how you choose to use the space.

Materials for Storage When you put your items in storage, you want them to be adequately prepared for their time in storage. This is where packing materials come in. Most storage facilities will sell these materials. These include:

  • boxes
  • tape
  • bubble wrap
  • covers
  • padlocks
  • marker pens
  • Stanley knives
  • shelving

Wine Storage Wine storage companies offer the following conditions: 

  • optimal wine-storing conditions – temperature and humidity are controlled
  • high security
  • access to each bottle of your wine – either online or in the facility
  • wine insurance
  • delivery to your location

Before storing your wine, be sure that you understand the company’s membership and pricing policies. Are there any yearly fees or other charges? Are the fees based on a per bottle basis or are they based on six-packs and magnums? Do they charge to retrieve an individual bottle of wine, and what is their charge for retrieval? Is there a loyalty program at all?

It is important that you know how your wine is stored, so that you can be sure that the right bottle will be retrieved. Many places will use a barcoding system for example.

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