08 February 2010

Self-Storage: An Urban Tale

In my growing up years, putting something in storage meant taking it out to a barn or a chicken house. (Most things never came back out, which is just as well. I can conjure up the dust now, 40 years later.) My experience with commercial storage was limited to taking wool coats to a cleaners for seasonal storage. I stopped that during college. And then I went a long, long time before I needed to seek out a storage place other than my attic or garage. That time was last week.

My inexperience was obvious. I had to ask elementary questions like, "what kind of items need to go into climate controlled storage?" It finally wasn't the temperature factor that made me select two inside units, it was the agent's explanation that anything in an outside unit ends up collecting a lot more dust. More than your garage at home. Well, there's that dust issue again.

After a round of Internet comparison shopping, I visited a single self-storage facility and latched on to two small units with "first month free" rather than a large, full-priced unit. Did I visit the facility that looked like the best deal (from the Internet)? Nope. I went to the one that is most convenient to our grocery store and dog park. Familiar path and maybe an efficient path.

And what did I learn? To get two locks (for two units) that use the same key. And to label boxes with boring codes. You see, the manager once lost some valuable items in a storage facility because she carefully printed "Antiques" on selected boxes. Those were the only boxes the thieves took. (At a far-away facility, not mine, of course.)

The self-storage business is down a little due to the economy but holding its own as people preserve their house stuffs even if they are between houses. Baby boomers will help this industry in the next few years as retirement and relocation decisions increase in number.

© 2010 Mary Bold, PhD, CFLE. The content of this blog or related web sites created by Mary Bold (http://www.marybold.com/, http://www.boldproductions.com/, College Intern Blog) is not under any circumstances to be regarded as professional, legal, financial, or medical advice. Or education advice. Or marital advice. Or even a tip.

1 comment:

MessageForce said...

The urban tale moved my heart. i read it twice an i found it very interesting. I did not even once feel that i was wasting my time.