Whether you’re downsizing into a smaller home or just need to store unused items to free up much-needed space, renting a storage unit is a great way to safely store items you no longer need but aren’t quite ready to give up.

But packing a storage unit wisely is a bit of an art form, and if you don’t do it for a living, it’s easy to pack in a way that is less efficient and could cost you more in the long run. We can’t tell you how many times we’ve seen people upgrade to a larger unit when all they really needed to do was optimise the space they had.

And that’s why today’s blog is dedicated to sharing 5 of our favorite tips for optimising your self-storage space. If you follow these suggestions, you’ll have a perfectly packed unit and everything you need to be able to get your hands on will be perfectly accessible. Let’s dive in!

1. Take Inventory of What’s Going Into the Unit

Too often, renters just give a guess as to what’s going into their newly rented unit. They start taking boxes and furniture items over one load at a time until they suddenly realise the unit they’ve rented is far too small…which means they must start the process all over again and move everything that’s in the too-small unit a second time and into a large space.

Don’t do this.

Instead, start the process by taking careful inventory of everything that needs to go into storage. Create a list of all furniture, seasonal gear, and holiday décor that will be going into the unit. If you don’t have everything packed into boxes, come up with a rough estimate of the number of boxes you’ll be storing. Then check to make sure that what you have will fit into the unit you’ve rented. If you aren’t sure, call your storage facility. Any reputable company will be able to help you determine the best size of unit for your needs.

2. Pack Boxes Thoughtfully

As you pack things away, try to place items of low priority together in the same box. If you are storing items you won’t need to access, pack all of those items together, then list everything that is going into the box on your inventory sheet. Once the box is packed up, label the box with a number and then record the number on your list. This is a lifesaver if you find you need something from a specific box. You’ll have the box number on your list and your boxes clearly marked, allowing you to hunt down exactly what you need.

You can also label boxes with LP for “low priority”, MP for “medium priority”, and HP for…you guessed it…high priority. This will help when it comes time to pack your unit, which brings us to…

3. Pack Your Unit According to Priority

Here’s where those priority labels you carefully added to all your boxes come in handy. As you begin packing your unit, start packing from back to front, with the lowest priority items and boxes taking up the back and working forward with the highest priority items (those you’ll need regular access to) right up front. For example, antiques could likely go in the back of your unit while seasonal clothing and equipment that gets used with more regularity might best be stowed in the middle of the unit. If you’re keeping business inventory in the unit or suitcases you need any time you travel, you’ll be better off keeping those items right up front.

4. Consider Installing Shelving

Shelving is the single best way to maximise space in a storage unit. Unfortunately, many renters try to get by without the expense by stacking terrifyingly tall (and unstable) box towers in their unit.

Don’t do this either.

Invest in quality shelving that reaches the ceiling of your unit. This will allow you to safely stack boxes and items, making the most of the space you’re renting.

5. Stack Boxes from Heavy to Light

If shelving isn’t an option for you and you need to stack boxes on top of one another, be sure to place the boxes with the heaviest items on the bottom and the lightest on top. As a safety measure, avoid stacking boxes higher than eye level, and remember to leave aisles so you can access the boxes and items at the back of your unit.

And so…

If you find yourself in need of storage in or around Sydney, we hope you’ll contact us at Holloway Storage. Whether you’re looking to store a little…or a lot…we have the perfect storage solution for you.

Make sure you’re storing your belongings the right way…with Holloway.