Whether you're getting ready to move or you just have too much clutter, self-storage can be a convenient way to keep your belongings safe when you're not using them. Resist the temptation to throw everything in the unit and forget about it; getting the most out of your storage unit means packing and preparing correctly.
Make a plan
One way to organise your self-storage unit is to think of it as a miniature version of your home or office. Group boxes from one room together; if you need something, you'll be able to find it by visualising where it belongs. This system will also make moving easier, cutting down on indecision once your boxes reach their final destination.
Just like in other areas of life, clarity is important when storing. Mark each box with its contents and make sure to turn the box so that side is visible. Clear labels on boxes will also help you know which boxes should go on the bottom of your stacks: a box labelled 'books' will make a good foundation, whereas a box full of teddy bears should be light enough to go atop a pile.
Wrap & pad
Wrap fragile items individually in bubble wrap or use old newspaper to fill the empty space around them. Your boxes won't get knocked around in storage, but transporting them is a different matter. For large items like furniture or mattresses, wrapping is more a matter of preventing scratches and dust; wrap vulnerable areas such as corners and cover the whole item in plastic sheet. Blankets, towels and jumpers can all be good impromptu padding, although be careful not to use them to wrap items that will leave a mark.
Drain the tank
If you're storing an item with a fuel tank, such as a lawnmower, don't forget to drain the tank before storing. A full tank can leave your storage unit and everything in it smelling of petrol fumes.
Leave tools for last
Even once you're done packing, you may need a few basic tools: more packing tape, bubble wrap, pens, a utility knife and so on. A screwdriver will come in handy as well if you want to take furniture apart for storage. Leave these tools stored loosely toward the front of your storage unit in case you need them.
When you put your possessions into storage, leave a small gap—about 25 mm—between the back of each box and the wall. This will help air circulate and cut down on the risk of damp and other damage.
Create a corridor
If possible, organise your boxes into islands with a "walkway" between them. Don't simply pack them all the way to the back.
For more tips or assistance, consult local resources like Surfers Paradise Self Storage.