As a Professional Organizer, I hear a lot of people talk about their shame for having a storage unit. Pop culture has created a stigma around storage units. There’s so much societal shaming that gets done about how people have “too much stuff”. There are “socially acceptable” reasons for getting a storage unit: when you’re remodeling your house, temporarily living out of the state/country, or you’re putting your home on the market and need a place to stash your stuff while you’re in between homes. The Huffington Post did an article entitled: “America has more self-storage facilities than McDonald’s, because apparently we’re all hoarders.” They say, “Turns out the only thing Americans may love more than Big Macs is hoarding.” The article goes on to scold the 65% of people who rent a storage unit AND have a garage. Sure, American’s do love to buy stuff and keep it around “just in case”, but I am an advocate for storage units, if that’s what makes the most sense for you. Are you considering renting a storage unit? Ask yourself the following questions to help you determine if getting (or keeping) a storage unit is right for you.
A few extra tips for storage units: Once you know what size unit you’ll be renting, purchase shelving so that you can store and retrieve your bins easily, without having to take everything down to get what you want. I’m a big fan of the wire shelving from Uline. It’s a little more expensive, but they have the best selection of sizes and incredible customer service! Take photos of what you have in your storage unit, and keep these photos in a separate “storage unit” album on your phone. You may also want to create a digital note on your phone that lists what you have in your storage unit.
I’ve recently helped several clients who have made the decision that getting a storage unit is what’s best for them. Once they make this decision, I can see their energy lift! Their eyes glow, they smile, and they have more of a bounce in their step. It’s so great to see! Instead of deciding to continue to feel stifled and cramped, I can see their creativity expanding greatly. This inspiration will take them far! If you’re thinking about getting a storage unit, I’d love to help you plan out what goes to the storage unit versus what stays at home, and help you optimize how you use the space in your storage unit.
Do you have any storage unit tips? Please share in the comments!
By Jean Prominski, Certified Professional Organizer
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Image Credit: Joshua Coleman