A Step-by-Step Guide to Renting Your First Storage Unit

Warehouse with shelves filled with boxes

Discover the process of renting storage units with our comprehensive step-by-step guide. Simplify your first storage rental journey today!

Managing your things and finding adequate room for everything can be a real hassle in our on-the-go lifestyles. Maybe you're becoming a minimalist, moving from one home to another, or dealing with holiday decorations. A storage unit might just be the answer.

We will guide you from start to finish on finding your first storage unit - from figuring out what you need to packing efficiently.

Step #1 - Size Up Your Requirements

Renting a storage unit isn't one size fits all – you must consider your particular needs before making big decisions about space and type of storage. Here are factors that deserve serious thought when contemplating what size and type of storage unit will suit you best:

1. Quantity and Type of Items

Begin with mapping out an extensive inventory of everything you plan to store. Take an inventory of each room in your home and identify what gets a spot in the storage unit. Split things up by size, fragility, and dollar value.

This classification gives you a ballpark estimate of the extra space needed. It steers you toward organizing your unit like a professional.

Size - Storage units come in all sizes! Items like furniture and appliances will take up more room. On the other hand, compact items - think boxes full of books or garments - can be neatly piled up in a small storage unit. Always keep practical dimensions in mind when making space calculations.

Fragility - Fragile valuables such as glassware, delicate artwork, or time-worn antiques might need extra TLC and safeguarding. Don't forget to consider the required space for secure packing and padding.

Value - Expensive possessions with high worth or sentimental significance might need stricter storage solutions - consider advanced security measures or insurance coverage as extra layers of protection.

2. Timeframe

Work out how long you think you'll need to store your belongings in the storage unit. Facilities usually have various lease options depending on how long you need storage, and some might add in discounts if you commit to a longer stay. If the duration is unclear, choosing a place that offers flexible storage unit terms is better.

3. Special Needs

Certain valuables are sensitive to their environment. Consider renting a climate-controlled storage unit for important papers, electronics, or works of art. This way, the temperature and moisture levels remain stable, so your property avoids any possible harm.

4. Access Needs

Think about how often you'll want to visit your storage unit. Some storage units are always open for business, while others keep office hours only. If it looks like you'll be a frequent visitor at the facility, consider renting a unit that offers generous access hours or even 24 hour availability.

Step #2 - Research the Storage Unit

The ideal public storage spot is key for safeguarding and getting to your things comfortably. Here's a deep dive into how you can make smart choices:

1. Online Reviews

Thanks to the digital world, scrolling through customer feedback is so easy. Leverage this when looking up local storage spots on sites like Google or Yelp.

Notice recurring themes in these reviews - good or bad ones typically cover aspects such as security, cleanliness, and staff behavior, while the negative ones often speak about issues like pests, lousy service, or poor security measures.

2. Recommendations

Tap into your social circles for their advice. Your friends, relatives, coworkers, and neighbors who've used storage facilities can offer firsthand insights that go above and beyond what you read online; they might share greater details about how things function at these facilities.

3. Location and Accessibility

When storing your items, choose somewhere near your home or business. Take into account the following:

Proximity - Pick a place near your home, work, or someplace you go often. That way, if you need to store or grab something, it won't take half your day.

Transportation - Consider how close the storage facility is to a bus stop or car rental service if you can't use your vehicle unexpectedly.

Traffic and Parking - Visit the storage facility during rush hour and see what traffic is like then. Also, make sure there's plenty of room for parking.

Step #3 - Visit Your Storage Facility

Google has its uses, but nothing beats visiting in person. See what shape the storage facility is in and review their security measures. Do you have any questions? This is your chance! Here's how to get more out of your visit:

1. Inspect the Storage Unit

When you arrive, find the storage unit you're considering and give it a thorough once-over:

Cleanliness - A clean facility shouts 'great management.' Keep an eye out for cleanliness in the unit and its surrounding areas.

Security Features - Scan for security equipment like heavy-duty locks, security cameras, and entry control systems. Make sure the lock on your unit works before renting.

Pest Control - Glance at the corners of your potential unit, looking for signs of bugs or rodents. Animal droppings, chewing damage, or other pest signatures are warning signs that there could be a problem.

2. Ask Questions

Speak with the people running the storage facility during your visit; it's your chance to clear up any doubts:

Security Protocols - Dig into their security protocol. Ask questions about surveillance level, alarm setups, and their process on unauthorized break-ins.

Insurance Options - Inquire if they provide insurance coverage for your goods during storage time – crucial when discussing expensive items.

Additional Services - Ask about extra perks like taking in package deliveries, moving help, or packing supplies offered at hand.

Step #4 - Review the Rental Agreement

Before deciding on a storage unit rental, you must review the rental agreement. It lays out all the details related to your rental, and knowing what it outlines could help you bypass any awkward surprises later on. Don't hesitate to ask for any clarity anywhere.

Read Carefully - Does something seem like a red flag? Ask the facility staff about what it means. Misunderstandings are best cleared up right at the start.

Document Everything - Keep a copy of your signed rental agreement. Should anything come up, this document will be your support.

Negotiation - Do you have particular needs? Try negotiating with the facility staff. Some clauses might be amenable – even more so if you plan to rent for an extended period.

Step #5 - Prepare Your Items for Storage

Appropriately packing and arranging your items can turn your storage experience from overwhelming to impressive.

By investing time in organizing and preparing your items before storing them, not only do you make optimal use of space, but you also keep everything effectively managed during the rental term. Here's an insider guide on streamlining this process efficiently:

1. Clean and Disassemble

Before packing, thoroughly clean your possessions to ensure they're free of dirt, dust, or moisture. Doing this will prevent mold growth and unpleasant smells in a storage unit. Plus, take apart larger pieces like furniture if you can, to save space and make transportation smoother.

2. Use Quality Packing Materials

Spend on quality packing materials; ensuring your items are well-guarded during storage is a worthy investment. A good storage facility offers these packaging materials

Sturdy Boxes - Pick durable boxes that match the size of what you're storing. Avoid putting too much into one box – it can get too heavy, potentially damaging what's inside or even breaking the box.

Bubble Wrap and Packing Paper - Cushion breakables such as glassware, electronics, and art pieces with bubble wrap or packing paper; this helps prevent any shattering from happening. Give extra padding around vulnerable corners and sharp edges.

Tape - Opt for robust packing tape to shut your boxes securely. Add an extra layer on each box's bottom for additional reinforcement; this keeps them from giving way under the weight within.

3. Put Labels Everywhere

Every box should have a clear label of what's inside to make your life easier when searching for something specific. Grab a waterproof marker and write down what's inside on several sides of the box, including the top - it will save you from unnecessary frustration later.

Step #6 - The Final Move In

Finally, moving all your things into the storage unit is no small feat - savor that accomplishment! Making good use of every inch and placing your items thoughtfully allows for easy access and a hassle-free storage experience. Here are more nuanced steps to packing those goods into the storage unit:


Use Vertical Space - Get crafty with your storage unit by thinking vertically. Shelves, racks, and wall-bound units come in handy to use every inch of height in your storage unit.

Aisles and Pathways - Create clear walking routes within your little warehouse to reach far-end goods. Easily accessible aisles are a lifesaver when retrieving that box at the back without interfering with the rest of the boxes.


Bagging your premier storage lease can be quite seamless and effective, given you adopt the right approach. Sorting out necessities, scouring facilities, and skillful positioning are essential to this process - ensuring you take maximum leverage of your rented space. Don't forget planning and organization are the soul mantra for a successful storeroom experience. If you’re renting your first storage unit, visit Storage Post, as they are considered the leaders in the industry!