You're leaving the country for an extended holiday, and you need to decide what to do with your stuff. The main decision facing you is whether you should put it in storage or get rid of it. Work through these questions to help you decide:
Do you have sentimental possessions that you can't imagine living without?
Most people have at least a few items that fall into this category. Identify what falls into this category for you, and realise that you probably just have to keep those things. In some cases, that may warrant hiring a storage locker, but in other cases, those items may fit into a small box that you can leave with family or friends.
Does the storage unit cost more than the value of your things?
Make a list of everything you are considering putting in storage, and estimate how large of a storage locker you would need. Then, call several self storage facilities and ask them for estimates. Calculate how much you will be spending on storage while you are gone.
Add up the value of your possessions that you need to store (exclude sentimental possessions from this calculation), and compare the two numbers. If your stuff is fairly valuable and storage is fairly affordable, it makes sense to put your items in storage. However, if the cost of storage will outweigh the value of your items, it may not be worth investing in a storage locker.
Is replacing things an option?
If storage will cost more than the estimated value of your stuff, estimate what you could sell your stuff for. Then, add that number to the estimated cost of your storage unit. Could you replace all of your possessions with that amount of money when you return home?
If the answer is yes, you may want to sell everything, skip the storage unit and shop for new stuff when you get home from your holiday. If the answer is no, you should choose to store your items even if you are spending slightly more than their value on storage.
Does the storage facility offer a discount for upfront payment?
In many cases, people turn to storage facilities because they don't have enough room in their home to store all of their possessions. In these cases, they may need the unit interminably. If you are travelling, you probably know how long you need the unit. As a result, you can offer to pay upfront, and you may even be able to get a discount. That makes storage more affordable and a great option to consider while you are travelling.
25 April 2016
I'm going on a year of foreign exchange, so I am moving all of my stuff into a storage unit until I get back so I can save money on rent. I don't have much money so I am trying to do this for as little money as possible as I want to make sure that I know the best way to pack things to save space and get the smallest possible unit. This blog has some of the tricks that I have picked up in packing my household in the most space-efficient way and should be useful for anyone else packing up a household for storage.