Very Handy Hints For Long-Term Storage

If you are about to put things in storage for a long time, or if your short-term storage solution has suddenly stretched out over several months and shows no sign of ending, you need to make some specific moves to keep your belongings safe. The biggest move is to ensure your belongings are in a reputable storage facility -- that goes a long, long way toward keeping your belongings safe. Still, there are things that even the best facility can't control, so take a few more steps to keep your stuff safe.


Unless you're placing your belongings in a climate-controlled space, you'll have to deal with heat, cold, and humidity. The humidity can be a killer because even a little excess humidity can make cardboard boxes develop mildew spots. When you've placed everything in the unit, add a dehumidification pack. These are available at home improvement stores. They often take the form of a pack that you hang up, or of a plastic container with a mesh lid, into which you pour granules that absorb excess humidity. These do need to be changed every few months, but they can be a godsend even in areas not known for environmental humidity. The close quarters of the storage unit often have higher levels than you realize.

Off the Floors

Get as many boxes off the floor of the unit as possible. Put them on shelves, on pallets, and on plastic if you're truly strapped for cash. If someone spills something in the hallway or outside the unit, or if something in the next unit leaks fluid all over the place, your boxes will be in better shape. Note that simply placing them on a sheet of plastic still leaves them exposed to anything on the floor, just to a lesser extent -- the plastic forms a little barrier, but not much. Do your best to add shelves as you can.

Within Arm's Reach

Be sure everything stacked in the unit is within your reach, or the reach of the person most likely to be the one to unpack the unit. If you have movers place things in high stacks that you can't reach, you could end up hurting yourself. Stepladders aren't that safe.

Advance Warning

Good storage facilities take pains to control pests, but occasionally you'll see a spider web, just as you would anywhere else. If you're trying to access some of the items in the unit after a long time of leaving them alone, you do run the risk of accidentally encountering one of the bugs. Before removing boxes, hit the sides of the stacks of boxes with your hand and make some solid noise. That will send any creepy crawlies running. You should also wear thick gloves, like gardening gloves, and don't reach your hands into dark spaces that you can't see into clearly. It's like dealing with piles of stuff in your garage -- you do what you can to keep it clean, but you still need to take some precautions.

For more tips, talk to a storage facility representative, like those found at Millville Self Storage. They can help you look over what you have and suggest additional ways to keep it safe.