Nowadays more and more people are using storage during their move. Putting your possessions in storage at this time can simplify the process and give you some added protection or breathing space. Basic reasons for using storage include:
- International or long-distance relocation when you won’t need all your possessions with you or want to have them forwarded later.
- To cover you if you sell your home and then rent a small property as an interim measure before you buy again.
- To cover any gaps between you having to leave your old home and before you can move into your new one.
- To allow you to decorate or work on a new property before you move all your possessions in.
- When moving from a large home to a smaller one.
- To keep clutter out of your home while you are trying to sell it.
- To keep valuable and personal items secure during the moving process.
- To protect vital business information during an office move.
There are two basic options for you when it comes to storage: your moving company and a Self Storage facility. The majority of moving companies offer storage as an extra service to their moving capabilities. In these cases, they simply load up your possessions, take them back to their facility and store them for you rather than dropping them off at your new home. Then, when you’re ready, they load them back up again and deliver them. Your possessions may be stored in a large warehouse with other people’s goods either simply stacked up in a specific area or in a locked container. Alternatively, you may be allocated a personal unit to yourself.
Self Storage is slightly different in that you take responsibility for getting your stuff in and out of storage yourself. You can always get your movers to get it there and help you unload/load etc but that will cost you extra. Some Self Storage facilities also offer moving options or can recommend companies to help you, please see our website Guide to Self-storage. With Self Storage you usually get a self-contained and fully enclosed space that you can lock and access whenever you want. Storing with your mover may mean that you can’t access your property if you need to unless you make a specific appointment and you may have to pay for this. In some cases access will not be allowed so do check their policy before agreeing to hire them.
Whichever method you opt to use and irrespective of how short or long a time you plan to have goods in storage, you need to assess the storage facilities. There are specific questions you should be asking, such as:
- What kinds of security measures are in place?
- Can you have access and if so will it cost you extra or do you need to give notice? (this doesn’t apply to Self Storage)
- Might your possessions be moved without your permission at any time?
- How are your possessions stored?
- Do you have to give notice or can you extend your time in storage if necessary?
Insurance is the key thing to know about here. You need to find out if your mover or Self Storage facility has in-depth and comprehensive coverage against loss, damage, accident, fire, theft and so on. Most Self Storage facilities won’t offer insurance cover for your goods and may have limited liability insurance on the facility itself. They will, however, willingly sell you insurance or recommend an insurer to you. Many movers will ask you to take out extra cover if their policy isn’t enough for your needs. Do check out your storage options with your home insurer first though. You may already be covered or they may offer you extended coverage for a premium. In many cases this will work out cheaper for you than going through your mover or Self Storage provider.