Person putting on gloves to clean a storage unit

How to Clean Your Storage Unit

Admin | November 10, 2023 @ 12:00 AM

Alright, folks, whether it's your home or your self storage unit, things tend to get a little messy over time. You might be the type who stashes some stuff away and then, in a rush, moves things around to find what you need. Or perhaps, over the years, you've had a change of heart about some stored items, and now you're thinking of donating or recycling them.

Well, here's the lowdown on cleaning out and decluttering your storage space. And trust me, you'll feel fantastic once you're done. So, let's clean out your storage unit!

Straightening Up Your Storage Unit

First things first, let's talk dust. Dust and debris can pile up in your storage unit, and you might have left bits of cardboard lying around from previous visits. So, grab your trusty duster, broom, dustpan, and a garbage bag. Give the place a good sweep and dust before diving into those boxes. Save your cleaning tools because you'll want to tidy up once you're done with your storage unit, and that garbage bag might come in handy for items you're saying good by too.

Storage Facility Etiquette

Before you embark on your decluttering mission, a little heads-up: it's going to take some time. So, make sure to allocate enough of it for the task at hand. Don't stroll into the storage facility just half an hour before closing time if you can help it. Depending on the size of your stash, plan to spend anywhere from an hour to several.

Once you're in the storage facility, stop by the office and give the friendly staff a heads-up. Let them know you're reorganizing your storage unit. It's just good etiquette and a courteous way to say, "I'm here for a while, but don't worry, I'm on a mission."

Getting into the Nitty-Gritty in Cleaning Your Storage Unit

Now, let's tackle those cardboard boxes. You might already have a game plan for which boxes to inspect and which you can skip. This can save you time, especially if you've kept an inventory listing the contents of each box. But if you're not so lucky, it's time to create one on the fly. Label each box with a matching name and list the contents as you go along.

Sure, it might seem like a bit of work, but having a detailed inventory will help you keep tabs on everything in your storage unit. You can even transfer this information to a handy Excel or Google Sheets spreadsheet later, so you can access it from anywhere, on any device.

Oh, and don't forget to bring some extra boxes or bins, a permanent marker, and packing tape. If you don't have any, ask your friendly storage facility manager.

For taped boxes, use your keys to open them; it's safer than wielding a box cutter, and usually, there's no need to slice through cardboard. Go through each box one by one. If you decide to keep everything inside a particular box, seal it up and set it aside. If you're taking items out, place them in one of those extra boxes or bins, because you're bringing those goodies back home.

As you go along, consider merging boxes. Let's say you've got five boxes of off-season clothes. You decide to part with a few items from each box. After you've gone through all five, consolidate what you're keeping into four boxes, rearrange the clothes to fit, seal them up, and use the fifth for stuff you're taking home or recycling. It's always excited finding treasures in your storage unit.

If you're starting a new inventory, make sure it's only for items you're keeping in storage. But if you're updating an existing one, jot down any changes you make so you can update the spreadsheet file when you get home.

The Final Touch

Once you've sorted out what you're bidding farewell to, load up the boxes or bins with those items into your car. Then, neatly stack the boxes you're leaving in storage. Grab that trusty broom, give the place a final sweep, and voilà, you're done for the day!

Room to Spare?

Have you managed to free up some significant space? Be it a little or a lot, if you've cleared out about a third to half of your unit, you might consider downsizing to a smaller one. Most storage facilities make this process a breeze. You can handle the transfer in person at the office or even online. Once you've picked a smaller spot, you can take your time moving your items and enjoy those reduced monthly rent fees. No need to rush; give yourself a few days to get settled.

Back at Home

We get it; after you've lugged those boxes back home, you might be tempted to take a breather. But don't wait too long. Let's face it; when boxes are left unsorted, it's easy to procrastinate. The next day or so, dive back in.

This is your chance to decide what to sell, donate, recycle, and toss. For items in great condition, selling them can be a good option, so go ahead and list your best finds on eBay, Craigslist, or OfferUp. Most gently used items can find a new home through donations, benefiting both charities and your potential tax deductions.

Old electronics, papers, plastic bottles, fabrics, and metal items can usually be recycled. Stores like Best Buy can handle your old tech, and recycling centers are typically ready to take the rest. While no one may be clamoring to buy these items, recycling them is a responsible choice that benefits the environment. Anything that doesn't fall into the sell, donate, or recycle categories can go straight to the trash or your local landfill.

Store with Superior Storage

At Superior Storage at 13550 US Hwy 69 N in Tyler, TX we have access hours from 6:00AM to 10:00PM. We are more than happy to have tenants cleaning out their storage units.

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