Using a Storage Facility

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Storage facilities can be ideal for a college student. If you are moving out of someone else's place (e.g., your parents') and don't know where you're going to end up after four years, storage may be the best answer for the things you can't fit in your dorm or apartment. By keeping your stuff in self-storage, you'll have access to it whenever you need it, and it will be protected and secure in a single location.

How It Works

Self-storage facilities will rent out some space to you (from the size of a locker to the size of a garage) wherein you can keep your things for however long you want to pay for the privilege. You will be provided with a key or a keycode that will allow you access to your storage space whenever you need it, limited only by the facility's hours of operation.

What You Need to Consider

There are a lot of options open to you in the world of self-storage. Before you go rent a space out, you'll need to get a few things straight about your needs:
  • How much stuff do you have? This will dictate how large of a space you need.
  • How often do you need to access your stuff? Some facilities offer 24-hour service, while others are closed at night. This information will also help you choose a location; you'll want the facility to be close to school if you need access to your things pretty often.
  • How valuable are the items you are storing? Are you willing to pay extra for higher security?
  • How long do you want to keep your stuff there? There are long-term storage facilities that offer more limited access to your things, but added security and, in some cases, a lower price.

What to Look for in a Storage Facility

When you are checking out a potential facility, the first thing to do is use your eyes; how does it look? Is it well-maintained, or rusty and dirty? You can probably expect similar treatment for your things. The company should have clear pest control policies in place. Check out their offices, too; make sure the area looks organized and professional. Also, ask about what is and what is not prohibited in their facility. This may affect your decision, depending on what you are looking to store.

For more information on any of this, check out our guides on the subject, under "After Your Move." For many, college is the first big step toward adulthood. Once you have all your ducks in a row, you can step into this new phase of life with confidence.

Patrick Hanan  Posted by Patrick Hanan on June 29, 2010

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