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5 Tips for Using a Self-Storage Unit in the Winter

 

Using a self-storage unit for seasonal items can free up more space at your home or office and help keep your seasonal belongings in tip-top shape.

How to keep your self-stored items safe and secure over the winter months:

  1. Climate Controlled Storage Units

Certain delicate items are more sensitive to extreme temperatures. Climate-controlled storage units will keep your belongings safe from damage caused by fluctuating temperatures. At Secure Self Storage, all of our storage units are climate-controlled to keep your items safe from cracking, warping, or rotting.

  1. Use Insulation

Using insulation to cover your items in the winter is always a good idea. Breathable fabrics like cotton blankets or towels are ideal. Avoid vinyl and plastic covers that can trap moisture.

  1. Clean Your Items Before Storing

Cleaning and covering items before storing them in the winter is essential. Dirt and grime can cause deterioration to your belongings over long periods of storage.

  1. Prep Items for Storage

Different items require different measures of preparation for storage. Properly preparing for storage will help to protect your belongings from damage.

  1. Winterize Vehicles Before Parking Them in Vehicle Storage

If you plan to park your vehicle, RV, or boat in a secure storage lot, be sure to winterize it in advance. Taking the necessary steps to prepare your car for storage will ensure it’s in great shape when the snow melts.

 

Secure Self Storage offers the most secure, climate-controlled facilities with 24/7 security to protect all of your belongings at an affordable price. Check out our special offers or contact one of our storage experts so you can start storing today.  


6 Supersized Tips For Downsizing Your Home

Whether you’re trying to save money, at a time in your life where you don’t need as much home anymore, or simply want to simplify your life, there are plenty of reasons to downsize your home. Once you make the decision to downsize your home, you also have to downsize your belongings; after all, what furnished a three-bedroom home with a garage and yard won’t fit in a one-bedroom condo. This can prove difficult to some, so here are some tips to get you started.

  1. Start Early

As long as you’re working within your own timeframe, give yourself at least four months before your target move date. Looking for a new home, packing, and moving takes a lot of physical—and mental—effort. If you’re stressed out, you may make rash decisions you’ll end up regretting when it comes to downsizing your possessions. Make sure you give yourself enough time to be confident in your decisions.

  1. Go Digital

Do you have a towering bookshelf gathering dust? A movie and TV show collection you never seem to touch? Boxes of pictures and photo albums you don’t want to lose for sentimental reasons, but rarely look at? Save the space and still keep your things by going digital. Scan those pictures, download eBooks, and upload those DVDs and Blu-Rays to the Cloud for the best of both worlds.

  1. Pass It Forward

Just because you can’t take all of your belongings with you doesn’t mean they can’t live a second life in another home. Give your friends and family a chance to look at the items you’re not keeping and to take home what catches their eye. Just remember: Once it’s theirs, it’s theirs to do with what they wish. Don’t demand to knows its whereabouts next time you’re over for dinner.

  1. Remember You’re Not a Bed and Breakfast

If you live alone or share a room with your partner and have no other household members, there’s no reason for you to pay for a second bedroom. If you have occasional overnight guests, many sleeper couches are just as comfortable as traditional beds and only need to be converted when it’s lights out

  1. Play Favorites

Sure, you may like the variety of 12 sets of sheets and blankets, or the look of three different sets of mixing bowls, or the decision between of a single cup, full pot, or French press cup of coffee, but do you need all these options? Decide which ones you gravitate toward more often and streamline the rest.

  1. Say “Yes” to Amenities

Do you need extra space in your home for your treadmill and elliptical machine, a game room with billiards and darts, or a huge yard that requires equipment and tools to maintain? Simplify your home—and life—by downsizing to a community or apartment complex that provides these amenities and handles the yardwork and gardening so you don’t have to.

 

Now you’re ready to downsize your home—but what about the things you couldn’t downsize out of your life too? Don’t worry, you can still scale back and keep the things most important to you by relocating them to an affordable, secure, climate-controlled storage unit. Contact the professionals at Secure Self Storage to get started.


5 Thanksgiving Dinner Prep Tips To Gobble Up

The leaves are falling, the air is crisp, and the days are darker, which can only mean one thing–Thanksgiving is upon us! While October has candy and December has gifts, November has its own claim to fame: Thanksgiving dinner. Whether it’s your first time or your 10th time, hosting Thanksgiving dinner can be very stressful and complicated, so here are five dinner prep tips you’ll be thankful for:

  1. Set the Menu in Advance

Aside from the obvious star of the meal, it’s important that you decide on the rest of your menu ahead of time to allow for your guests’ preferences and any dietary restrictions. If you’re trying out new recipes, you’ll want the extra time to perfect them, and if you’re cooking your favorite dishes, you’ll need to stock up on ingredients before they sell out!

  1. Do Your Due Diligence if it’s Pot Luck

Whether you requested it or your guests offered, if someone else is bringing food to your Thanksgiving meal, you need to be properly prepared. You should make sure it’s not a dish anyone else is bringing, check to see if anyone has allergies to be mindful of, and find out if it’s being precooked and reheated or if you need to make space and allot time to cook it.

  1. Stick to Your Schedule

As many people eat Thanksgiving “dinner” earlier than their typical dinner, the day can seem much shorter–and much busier. That’s why it’s important to get any decorating and table setting done in advance so you can concentrate on your busy kitchen. Make a list of all your cooking times ahead of time and coordinate your schedule around them to ensure everything is ready for when your guests arrive.

  1. Use All Your Appliances for More Cooking Options

All of your kitchen appliances will get a workout on Thanksgiving and it can be hard to get all of your dishes cooked in time when they’re in constant use. If your turkey is monopolizing the oven for over four hours, how are you going to roast your potatoes or make your favorite brussel sprouts? This is where your instant cooker, crockpot, air fryer, and other underused appliances can shine!

  1. Precook and Freeze When Possible

While it would be nice to have all of your dishes made fresh and served immediately, sometimes it’s just not possible. Take a look at your menu and see what dishes will still retain their taste and texture if they’re prepared in advance, frozen, and reheated, like stuffing, dough for rolls, sweet potato casserole and more.

 

Will your Thanksgiving dinner come with a side of overnight guests? Make some extra space in your home by putting your extra belongings in self storage. Contact the professionals at Secure Self Storage to learn more about their affordable, secure, climate-controlled storage units.


5 Ways To Look For The Right Moving Company

Whether you’re moving your belongings into a new home or a storage unit, it can be a very stressful, complicated time. Once you know where you’re going, it’s time to figure out how you’re going. Hiring the right moving company, especially if you don’t have any prior experience, can be a confusing and overwhelming decision. Here are five tips to get you started:

  1. Look for Recommendations

Sometimes the best referral is word of mouth. Sure, you can read their company website, visit their Facebook page, and call to speak with someone, but that’s always going to present the company’s best face. Get real reviews and recommendations from friends, family, and coworkers who have gone through the experience already.

  1. Look for a License

For your own safety and the safety of your belongings, don’t trust any “professional” movers without a license to operate. While the requirements for interstate moving companies differ based on the state, an out-of-state move requires licensing by the federal government and a U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), number, both of which you can confirm online with just the company’s name.

  1. Look for Companies That Haven’t Changed Names

When researching potential moving companies, it’s important to steer clear of companies that have undergone multiple name changes. Many times, this is a sign they’re trying to avoid the Better Business Bureau or stop you from finding customer complaints. If you’re unsure, you can always contact the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to learn more about their history.

  1. Look for a Thorough Estimate

If you’re asking for a quote for moving all of your belongings, they should be asking more questions than “what day?” before they give you a quote. A good moving company will want to know if it’s a house or apartment, how many stories/what floor you live on, whether there’s an elevator, etc. They’ll also want to know how many rooms, whether you’re taking large appliances, what size the beds and furniture are, and much more.

  1. Look in the Mirror!

If you’d rather save yourself the potential aggravation (and expense) that may come with hiring professional movers, you can skip it altogether and do it yourself. This ensures all of your belongings are properly packed, stacked, and safely transported and you can usually enlist the help of a few friends if you spring for the pizza. Moving things into storage and want to save even more? Look for a storage company that provides a free truck on move-in day, like Secure Self Storage.

 

Now that you know how to hire the best movers—or do it yourself for free—it’s time to find the best storage solution too. Contact the professionals at Secure Self Storage to learn more about their affordable, secure, climate-controlled storage units.

 

 


Should You Rent a Room

Should You Rent Out a Room In Your Home?

If you’re fortunate enough to have an extra room or two you never use, renting them out can go a long way in helping you earn some extra money for those mortgage and household bills. However, before you move into storage those little used items from that spare bedroom or attic so you can rent it, there are some important to-dos to take care of first. Below are five to help ensure your move into landlord status is a positive one.

  1. Do the math. Check out online ads in your area on Craigslist to get a ballpark figure of what you can charge for rent based on your zip code and what type of room you’re offering up.
  2. Advertise specifically. Think about what you will and won’t tolerate in a roommate and mention it clearly in the ad. Don’t like smoking? Early riser and need nights to be quiet time? Do you want someone to stay for six months or longer? How do you feel about their canine or feline friends? Establish your boundaries early on to save you both time and headaches.
  3. Get your home renter-ready. To ensure that your home is ready to rent to a stranger, you should let no stone go unturned in securing your (and your tenant’s) safety: Put keyed deadbolts on each bedroom door, remove self-locking doorknobs to prevent lockouts, stash any jewelry or valuables in a fireproof safe or in secure storage, and fix anything that needs some TLC. Broken dishwasher? Use that new rent check to get a new one.
  4. Check their credit report. Once you’ve interviewed and checked references, it’s a good idea to run a soft inquiry credit check on rental candidates, which tenants pay for and share with you. The report will have information that can help you decide if the candidate will be a financially dependable renter or not.
  5. Put it in writing. Use a detailed written rental lease, not an oral agreement because no two people remember verbal agreements in quite the same way (and just try to prove the details in court!). The lease should include rent amount and due date, other deposits and fees (especially if they have a four-legged friend), costs the renter will share (utilities, etc.), how you’ll share common areas, and other concerns like cleaning, parking, quiet time and overnight guests.

So, now you know how to ensure you rent to the right person but what will you do with all those things you moved out of that spare space? For expert advice on storing your valuables and more, contact Secure Self Storage.