TIPS FOR PACKING BOXES
If you’re about to put some of your possessions in storage, knowing how to store your things for the duration is important: it’s not rocket science, but neither is it as simple as throwing your stuff into a couple of boxes that you’ve picked up from the supermarket! Read on for a few tips.
COVER UP & FILL UP
Putting a lid on your box is vital if you don’t want the contents to wind up covered in dust. It will also help keep the box from collapsing if it’s half empty during transportation. Not able to fill your carton completely? Pack foam peanuts in any gaps to keep the things inside from moving around when being carried.
WHAT’S IN A NAME?
There’s nothing worse than going to your storage unit to fetch something and having to search through every box there. When packing your boxes, make sure you label them with the contents. There’s no need to itemise everything inside (unless you’re one of those super organised people!) but you’ll thank your lucky stars you scrawled a quick “Kitchen Goods” or “DVD’s” in marker pen on the side. Extra tip: mark all the sides, as well as the lid, as you never know which way a box might be facing when it comes to the crunch!
A WEIGHTY ISSUE
Make sure that the weight in a box is distributed evenly. Ensuring that cartons are not going to give whoever is lifting them chronic back pain is pretty important too.
PLAY IT SAFE
Items that are fragile should be packed together. Don’t be tempted to get away with bubble wrapping one china ornament and putting it in a box with heavier non-breakables as these could shift and damage it. Delicate objects should be tightly packed, with peanuts or paper filling the gaps, placed in boxes that are stronger than average and marked as “Fragile.”
HOW TO STORE FURNITURE
You’ve paid good money for your furniture, home furnishings and accessories – and the fact you’re storing them says that you want to enjoy them at some point in the future. Here are some tips for protecting your investment – and that favourite saggy old armchair – while the pieces are in storage.
PROTECTING SOFAS AND CHAIRS IN STORAGE
Tip 1: You can purchase bags to protect sofas and upholstered chairs while they’re in storage. Ask a Duffy Self Storage expert if you’d like more information or search online for bags to suit your needs. Tip 2: To make the most out of the available space in your storage unit, stand sofas on their end. This will also avoid the temptation to stack piles of goods and boxes on the sofa, leading to possible damage. Tip 3: If the dining table hasn’t been disassembled chairs should be placed upside down on it. If the chairs legs can be removed, do so and wrap them in bubble wrap or a cloth.
PROTECTING BEDS IN STORAGE
Tip 1: Disassemble beds wherever possible. Wrap all parts in moving blankets or bubble wrap. Tip 2: It’s a fantastic idea to tape screws and washers etc to the frame so you know where they are when it’s time to reassemble your bed. BUT don’t use a tape that will tarnish the finish when you take it off. Tip 3: Store mattresses on one side to maximise storage space.
PROTECTING TABLES IN STORAGE
Tip 1: If a table is able to be disassembled, place the table top flat on a blanket and wrap the legs either in bubble wrap or cloth. Tip 2: If it’s not possible to take a table apart, lay a blanket down and place the table top on that so that the legs are pointing upwards.
PROTECTING CUPBOARDS, DRESSERS AND CABINETS IN STORAGE
Tip 1: Make use of chest of drawers or dresser tops by stacking lightweight and non-scratch boxes on them. Tip 2: The drawers in stored furniture are ideal for safely storing small and delicate objects. Tip 3: Use stretch wrap to make sure drawers and doors don’t slide or swing open during transportation.
PROTECTING TELEVISIONS AND MONITORS IN STORAGE
Tip 1: Your super duper wide, flat, or curved screen TV may well be one of the most expensive items you are placing in storage. Protect it by wrapping it in bubble wrap, protective plastic, or bed sheets and/or a duvet. The same goes for PC monitors.
PROTECTING DECORATIVE GOODS IN STORAGE
Tip 1: Lamp bases are best wrapped in a moving blanket or bubble wrap then packed together in a carton. Remove shades and place inside cotton covers, such as pillow cases, or loosely cover with plastic wrap and then box. Tip 2: Use cardboard corners to protect picture frames and mirrors. These are best stored upright as lying them flat on a surface can cause them to collapse under their own weight. Don’t forget to mark them “Fragile!”
GENERAL TIPS FOR STORING HOUSEHOLD FURNISHINGS
Tip 1: It’s a good idea to clean furniture before you place it in storage, but allow ample time for sprays and polishes to try beforehand as any remaining moisture will encourage the growth of mould. Tip 2: Check that no material from your furniture – i.e. sofa covers, mattress – is touching the floor. Tip 3: Wrapping furniture in plastic may trap moisture – leading to mildew, mould and rotting. Instead use canvass tarps or cotton drop cloths to keep dust from settling. These fabrics are also breathable so will allow air to circulate.
TIPS FOR ANYONE SELLING THEIR HOME
If you’re trying to sell your home, did you know that using self storage could help you not only sell more quickly, but possibly sell for a higher price? Think about it – as a prospective buyer, what would you prefer to see? An uncluttered home that’s ready to put your stamp on it, or somewhere filled to the brim with knick knacks and room-shrinking furniture that’s only there because there’s nowhere else to put it?
Read on for our guide of things it’s well worth considering putting into self storage for the duration of your sell.
Be honest – if there’s anything literally just sitting there because you have nowhere else for it to go – whether it’s an extra sofa someone gave you that’s been shoehorned into the lounge, or a side table that’s just, well, hanging around, it’s time to hit the self storage. Be ruthless too – is there anything that’s seen its best days that, even though you have an emotional attachment to, may just look a bit unappealing to a potential buyer? Store it. You can always find a special place for it in your new home later.
COUNTER-TOP KITCHEN APPLIANCES
Think rice cookers, slow cookers, bread makers, blenders…anything you may not use on a daily basis. The problem is, unless you’re lucky enough to be selling a large kitchen these appliances eat up space (no pun intended), making your kitchen worktops look cramped. While you’re trying to sell, they’d be better off placed in storage. (And don’t be tempted to put them in a kitchen cupboard – if your buyer looks, they’ll just assume you don’t have the counter space for them!)
OUT OF SEASON CLOTHES
Potential buyers WILL look in wardrobes and cupboards. After all, it’s only natural to see how much storage space they’re going to get in their new property. But if your shelves, drawers and hanging areas are packed full of clothes, shoes and accessories, you’re making storage space look cluttered and unmanageable. Store anything that’s out of season and you’re likely not be wearing for a few months, as well as all those old garments that you’ve been meaning to take to the charity shop.
FAMILY PHOTOS AND TRAVEL SOUVENIRS
We know you love being surrounded by reminders of loved ones and dream holidays…but the reality is, they don’t appeal to anyone else – particularly not prospective buyers. We’re not suggesting getting rid of everything personal; creating a warm and welcoming environment is crucial but buyers would rather view a home they can imagine themselves living in rather than one filled with souvenirs of your life. Special items can easily be placed in storage until you’re ready to reintroduce them in your own new home.
We’re not suggesting you par back your belongings so you’re sitting on deck chairs and eating take away every night for the period it takes you to sell your property, but bear in mind that you are trying to market and sell your house and buyers want to visualise how their things will look in your home. And the less furniture, ornaments, bicycles, and unused breadmakers in the way of them doing that, the better! Good luck!
TIPS FOR PLACING CLOTHING IN SELF STORAGE
Maybe you’ve got a shopping habit, you have a lot of specialist sportswear that’s only used at certain times of the year, or you’re just fed up of not being able to find the right clothes for the right season. Whatever the reason, if your clothes and accessories are putting your home storage solutions under some serious pressure, it’s time to tackle the problem.
The issue with seasonal clothing is (despite it being necessary to drag out the woolly jumpers in June more often than not) is that lightweight spring/summer clothes are easy to get mislaid (where are those shorts you lived in last summer?!), where as sweaters and coats can become out-of-shape and even fall prey to mould or moth attacks when shoved on the top shelf of a wardrobe or bundled up and stuffed under a bed.
Self storage is the answer…but how do you make sure your clothes will come out of storage looking just as good when you put them there? Here are a few tips:
WASH CLOTHES BEFORE YOU STORE THEM
Whether your garments are washing machine friendly or dry clean only, this is an essential step before you place clothes into storage. Hate ironing? Don’t worry – you can skip it as they’ll only need ironing once you get them out. Think an item of clothing can get away without a wash? Bear in mind there may be embedded dust or dirt in the fabric and that perfumes, oils and deodorant can stain over time.
A STITCH IN TIME…
Trust us, you really will thank us for suggesting that any little repair jobs that need doing, you do them now before you put your clothes into storage. Fix dropping hems, sew on missing buttons and repair snags and split seams.
Vacuum bags are a fantastic way of storing chunky items for far less space BUT they are only really a viable option if you’re only using storage for a few weeks. That’s because clothing made from silk, wool and other natural fibres can lose their shape in vacuum packs. For longer periods, plastic boxes are the way to go. Ensure lids are airtight so that clothes keep dry (no mildew or mould) and pests don’t get in. (For both of these reasons cardboard boxes are a big no-no).
The same principles apply to packing a suitcase. Pack heavier clothes, such as coats, jeans, jumpers etc, at the bottom of the boxes and lightweight garments on top of them. Rolling clothes can help fit more into your box, but don’t over pack as it may cause them to lose shape (and make them a nightmare to iron) when you get them out.
IF THE SHOE FITS
Shoes and boots take up a good deal of space and if it’s time to say a temporary goodbye to summer sandals or winter boots, these too need to be cared for pre-storage. Clean all footwear and oil leather items. Use tissue paper (not newspaper) to stuff boots and shoes so that they keep their shape better.
There you have it; a few simple tips to make storing your clothes and shoes fuss-free. Your wardrobe will stop groaning under the weight of so many items, and who knows, it may even make getting up in the mornings and finding the right outfit easier!”
HOW TO FIND THE RIGHT SELF STORAGE UNIT
If you’re in the process of selling your home and need to de-clutter to impress potential buyers, are a student who doesn’t know where to store your stuff over the holidays, a contractor who can’t fit all your tools and equipment in your vehicle, or a business owner desperately trying to find space for archived files or unused fixtures and fittings, self storage could be the answer.
We could all use a helping hand sometimes when it comes to storage, and although begging and borrowing spare bedroom, attic or cellar space from friends and family might be cheaper, it’s not a great long term solution. It can put others in an awkward position if they feel they can’t say no to your storage requests, and let’s face it – accidents can and do happen and no home is immune to fire or flood.
Placing goods in self storage is far more secure, easier to access at all hours – and you won’t have anyone harbouring feelings of resentment towards you as you offload another box onto them. On the contrary, we’ll be happy to see you! So with that in mind, let’s take a look at a couple of things you might be wondering if you’re considering self storage.
WILL I BE TIED INTO A CONTRACT?
While some storage facilities might make you sign your life away, many others don’t. For example, we offer a simple pay-as-you-go month by month structure. Rent a unit for just a month, or stay as long as you like!
HOW DO I KNOW WHAT SIZE UNIT I’LL NEED?
Our storage units and containers come in a wide range of sizes, from telephone box up to a large double garage. However which unit is right for you depends not just on how much you’re storing, but on how you want to store it. For example, do you want to pack everything in as tightly as possible – which should be fine if you only need to access your possessions when you’re ready to take them out of storage, or will you need space to move around – i.e. if you’re storing archived files, or you know you’ll need to go in and find something such as sporting equipment.
WILL MY ITEMS FIT?
Good point! Once you’ve settled on the right sized unit, don’t forget to check door measurements, if need be, especially if it’s a smaller unit. If you have bulky pieces of furniture or large equipment, the last thing you want is to turn up and find you can’t actually fit them through the doorway!
WHAT CAN AND CAN’T I STORE?
For obvious reasons, some items are not suitable for storage – for example, flammable liquids. Make sure you know exactly what you are able to store in your unit by asking site staff beforehand.
HOW CAN I GET THE MOST OF MY UNIT?
Just as rolling t-shirts up and stuffing socks into shoes when you’re packing your suitcase to go on a trip helps maximise space, using the same tactics when packing your storage unit is a wise move. It might feel like a hassle at the time, but you’ll get far more out of your space by taking the legs off tables and disassembling beds. Pack small and fragile objects carefully in drawers, stack boxes in wardrobes and on top of chests or dressers. Shelving will also usually be available to really help make the most of space.
WILL MY POSSESSIONS BE SAFE?
Probably the number one question for most people looking for self storage. Visit your facility, talk to the staff, and ask about on-site security. Things to look for are a secure, well-protected site, CCTV / security cameras, and on-site staff who are clearly conscientious, knowledgeable and reliable.”