Reserve a unit as soon as you know you need one as they fill up quickly. Be realistic when choosing a unit size.
Pro Tip: Select the next unit size larger than you think you’ll need to help protect your belongings and make the job easier.
Packing and moving are a hassle, you can reduce the stress by creating a list of what must be packed and moved into storage. This will help you get appropriate packing materials, select an appropriate units size, keep you focused during the packing process and function as an easy reference to determine what’s in storage and what’s not.
Pro Tip: Consider a safety deposit box for valuables.
We’ve all been there, staring at stacks of boxes wondering which one contains that one lamp or appliance we’re searching for. Label your boxes as you pack them, placing similar items logically together, i.e. seasonal, kitchen, tools, bathroom etc.
Pro Tip: Pin up a copy of your inventory list of boxes with contents to the wall inside the unit, updating it to record items that have been removed or added.
Are some of your items things you will require access to regularly? Create an aisle down the centre or place those at the front of the unit. Photograph and/or draw a map, with notations, of items in your unit to make future trips for you, or someone else, much easier.
Pro Tip: Pin up the photos and maps to the wall and leave an easy to find flashlight, you’ll need it!
Protect your stuff
Cover furniture with cloth sheets (plastic may ruin wood finishes) that you can find inexpensively at many Thrift Shops.
Cardboard boxes absorb moisture, keep them off the concrete floor, ideally on wood pallets or shelves to allow ventilation. Better yet, use plastic tubs to keep your stuff organized, dry and clean
Pro Tip: Using a box cart and wheeled dollies with stackable plastic tubs makes moving really easy.
Nothing makes unpacking as upsetting as finding something has caused pests to move-in. It could be the neighbours but double check your boxes for food and drink prior to moving into your unit.
Pro Tip: Pest proof your unit with disposable ant traps and mouse bait etc.
Don’t store paints, chemicals, fuels, pressure tanks or any combustibles or flammables in your unit – no fuel or propane tanks!
Pro Tip: Remove and store separately, or properly discard, batteries from all items left in storage – old batteries can leak or overheat, ruining your possessions.
Prop appliance doors open
As even a clean refrigerator will become musty if left closed for an extended period time so make sure to prop the door of any appliance open to allow ventilation when stored.
Pro Tip: Clean appliances inside and out. You’ll be glad you did when you want to use them again!
Did you perform pre-storage maintenance on the vehicle? Drain the fuel tank, or add fuel stabilizer, and take your battery home to keep charged? How about checking your registration and inspection? Prior to parking your vehicle over the winter make sure you are set legally and safely drive it off the lot next season.
Pro Tip: Take a charged battery, tire pressure gauge and compressor or air pump with you when picking up your vehicle.
Trailer and boat storage
Did you perform pre-storage maintenance on the boat or vehicle? The best practice is to have boats shrink wrapped but if that’s not possible, make sure covers and tarps are snug so as not to collect water, snow and ice or break loose in nasty winter storms.
Pro Tip: Use a hitch lock and/or a wheel lock on your trailer and plan to drop by occasionally to make sure all is secure.