If you have made the decision to downsize or are moving in with family for a while, you may be on the lookout for temporary storage for some or all of your things. Renting a self-storage unit from family Movers can be a good way to solve your immediate problems or difficulties when it comes to insufficient place to store your things. Here are some tips to help you pack your belongings safely.
Decide which items to put into self storage
If you are downsizing and want to keep certain things you do have to decide what things to pack and which things to keep, and dare I say it which things to throw away.
- Pack for storage only the things you really plan to use again. The more items you prepare to stow away, the more money you’ll need to pay due to the bigger storage unit.
- Inspect closely each of your things before you start packing them for storage. You shouldn’t keep an item if it’s not valuable, sentimental or useful in any way.
- Do NOT pack for storage items that are really expensive or have high sentimental value for you. Keep such high-value articles with you, in your home.
Create an inventory list
Depending on your needs, by now you should have decided what items to pack for long-term or short-term storage and which things to throw away.
- Create a detailed list of all the belongings you plan to store as it is very easy to forget what you have stored.
- Make sure this inventory is kept safe, make a copy and give it to a friend or family member.
- If your contents whilst in storage encountered a natural disaster or accident, the contents list would help you file an insurance claim.
Prepare items for self storage
You will need to prepare your items for self storage.
- Clean thoroughly all items you plan to put in a self storage
- Make sure each and every item is 100% dry before you pack it up.
- All leather products should be treated with a leather conditioner before self storage
Get proper storage boxes
To be able to pack for storage, you’re going to need the right types of packing boxes to keep your things protected for the duration of the storage period.
Consider purchasing brand-new cardboard boxes that are strong enough to keep your things safer for longer. Get sturdy boxes of similar sizes – they will be easier to stack up so that the vertical storage space gets utilized as well.
- Strong plastic bins a handy for long term storage. They are more expensive than standard cardboard boxes but can last for many years and provide a much better level of protection for your belongings.
- Do NOT pack your items in plastic bags even your clothes as plastic tends to trap moisture and humidity and can cause mold and mildew to grow with time.
Never pack hazardous items for self storage
Before you start packing your items for storage, you should know that there are public storage restrictions to what you can move in storage and what you can’t.
- Remember that you’re not allowed to store any items that are dangerous in nature. Also, you can’t store perishable items such as food and plants because they can cause all sorts of problems.
Pack clothes for self storage
Clothes and fabrics are one of the most common items placed in storage, especially when it comes to seasonal pieces of clothing.
- Keep in mind that the best way to store clothes is to hang them inside wardrobe boxes. This way, they will stay wrinkle-free, dust-free and won’t get damaged by the damp.
- You can use vacuum-sealed bags to save space especially winter coats, curtains duvets and spare pillows.
Pack furniture for storage
Here are a few pieces of advice on how to pack furniture for storage:
- Clean all furniture surfaces with a suitable furniture cleaner.
- Protect furniture legs by wrapping them in bubble wrap, foam sheets or furniture covers.
- Wrap your furniture pieces in thick blankets to keep them protected against dust and scratches.
- If your furniture can be disassembled this is a good idea to do they will be protected better in individual parts, make sure all nuts and bolts are securely taped to each item of furniture.
Pack appliances for storage
It’s a good idea to know how to pack your appliances for storage to eliminate damage in self storage.
- Defrost your refrigerator or freezer completely to avoid any type of water damage and make sure they are completely dry.
- Baking soda will help remove any residual bad odors.
- Drain the water from your washing machine and dishwasher before packing them up.
- You can store drained removed hoses inside the appliances.
- Leave the doors of your household appliances slightly open if you can.
- Wrap all appliances in thick furniture blankets for extra protection.
Pack electrical goods for storage
This is straightforward.
- Pack sensitive electronic equipment first in soft and clean packing paper, then use bubble wrap to secure the bundle.
- If you can find them pack your devices in their original boxes. If you don’t have them, find strong boxes that are the same size.
- Seal the boxes well that contain so that no dust or moisture can get inside the containers.
- Keep really expensive electronic devices with you, do not leave them inside a storage unit or a storage area.
Pack tools for storage
Packing tools for storage can be a bit tricky to keep things safe from beginning to end.
- Ideally pack small tools in a toolbox. Remember you may need these during your move, so keep some essentials behind with you.
- Sharp tools and knives must be wrapped in bubble wrap, then use string or packing tape to keep in place.
- Garden tools need cleaning then wrapped in blankets and tied securely.
- Pack electric power tools in their original boxes or use ones of similar size. Remove any detachable parts, then take out the batteries before boxing them.
- Drain all the gas from gas-operated power tools before packing them for storage.
Pack books for storage
Books are a heavy items, use small boxes.
- Ensure the books are completely dry. If you have any doubts leave them in a sunny room for a few days.
- Wrap valuable books or books with leather covers in soft packing paper first for extra protection.
- Use small cardboard boxes because books are rather heavy and can easily make a container too heavy to be handled safely.
Pack China and breakables for self storage
Packing fragile items for moving is never easy. The first thing on your mind will probably be china.
So, how to pack fragile items for self storage?
- Pack each fragile item individually in packing paper first, then in bubble wrap. By far, this is the best way to approach the packing process.
- China and glass can be heavy, use smaller boxes to be sure of no accidents.
- Line the bottom of each box with enough padding that will serve as a shock absorber – crumpled paper, bubble wrap and soft fabrics can all do the job well.
- Fill in any gaps with crumpled paper or other fillers.
- Mark all boxes that contain highly-breakable items as FRAGILE.
Pack artwork for storage
You may need to put into temporary storage some of your framed artwork pieces as well – pictures, photos, and paintings. Treat these as you would your fragile items.
- Wrap your pieces of artwork individually, first in soft packing paper and then in large sheets of bubble wrap.
- Use cardboard corners, whenever possible, to protect the weakest and sharpest parts of the frames.
- Make an X with the packing tape on the glass area of your framed pictures, photos or paintings. In the event of an accident the glass pieces should stay contained.
- Use special picture boxes to provide the best possible protection for your valuable framed artwork pieces. If you don’t have such picture boxes, use cardboard boxes of similar sizes.
BONUS STORAGE PACKING ADVICE: Label each box
It’s very important that you label each and every box with a black permanent marker. Try and write the contents of the box too. Do this on at least two side of the box. any crucial information such as FRAGILE or THIS WAY UP could be written in a different colour marker to stand out.