By Stacey Dale, Property Manager
If you are like me, you like to have everything in a neat and organized fashion at all times. Moving is one of the most stressful times you will ever have to deal with, and almost nobody enjoys it. When moving and packing, I like to make sure I know everything will be stored safely and securely (and neatly) to reduce that stress for me. One way I can ensure this happens is by packed and organizing everything the right way. Let’s review some tips on how to pack a storage unit successfully.
When I start to pack things up, I like to start and finish one room at a time. This way boxes from one room don’t get mixed up with boxes from another room, or with ones that you may not need right away. For example, if I am packing my kitchen, I will start from one side of the room and work my way around. This way all my dishes are packed together and not with other items that could potentially damage them.
Next, I make sure that anything breakable is wrapped with bubble wrap or packing paper and clearly marked “fragile”. This way it is obvious to anyone helping me move boxes that what’s inside is breakable. This prevents fragile things being placed under something heavy, and lets everyone know to handle these boxes with extra care and attention. Make sure to write “fragile” on at least two sides and the top of these boxes to be sure it is seen and not missed.
Then label your boxes clearly and notate which room they go with. For example, if I have 20 boxes for one room, I like to label them “1 of 20 master bedroom”, “2 of 10 kitchen” and so on. This way I know if I am missing any boxes for any room after moving is done. This also helps when you are unpacking the items in your new place. You can start with box one and basically work your way around the room like when you packed it. Labeling your boxes is a simple way to start organizing your move from the beginning, which sets the tone for the whole process. And all it requires is a marker! When you place these boxes inside your storage unit, keep them together by room for less headache. Then they can be placed on the moving truck together and easily unloaded at the new house room by room, no matter who is helping you move, with little or no confusion.
An easy way to plan the organization of your storage unit is to make a diagram after you rent it. You can use graph paper or even plain paper, and draw it out using one foot squares for reference. This allows you to mark sections where you want certain items to go. For example, you may want to put winter items toward the back of your unit if you move in the warmer months, or summer items in the back if you move during the colder months. And any items that you plan to keep in the storage unit even after you are done moving should go in the back since they are not being taken back out. Then you won’t have to move all sorts of items out of the way to get to the boxes you need first. It is also helpful when you are home packing things up and you have other people helping you move. They will know where you want the items placed inside your unit without having to ask you every five minutes. Make several copies of this graph and give it to each helper, and also tape one inside the door of your storage unit for easy reference. Now you can focus on moving and you won’t have to worry about your storage unit being in disarray, or needing to be there to supervise at every step.
If you are renting a storage unit temporarily in between moving from one place to another, grouping together items such as large furniture and bulky and heavy items is a smart move. This makes it easier when you bring the moving truck to move these items from your house, to the storage unit, then into your new house. All the items that require extra manpower and a truck for transport stay together, which is ideal especially when you are limited to borrowing a friend’s truck with only so much time. You should place all the large items on one side of the unit so you can “unpack” them from the storage unit and put in the truck first when it’s time to move into your new home. Doing so allows for fewer trips, which makes moving take less time and effort. This allows keeps the smaller items together on the other side of the unit, and you can load up your back seat, trunk and empty spaces in the truck easily for transport.
We all know that moving can be an extremely stressful time. It is in fact one of the most stressful things to experience in anyone’s lifetime. But organizing your storage unit so you can find what you need doesn’t have to be! Follow these tips for a smooth moving and self storage experience.
If you have more tips to share, please add them in the comments below. And if you are ready to get organized and start moving, you can rent a storage unit online 24/7.