When you move house, you may find that you have too much stuff to move from place to place. This is when self-storage companies
can come in handy. They provide a unit for you to store any items you don’t need
come moving day, or for the long term.
This could be particularly helpful if you need to move into rented accommodation whilst waiting for your purchase to come through, or dealing with items you might not have room for in your new home (tools when you don’t yet have a garden shed, or a set of collector’s items). This is particularly important when downsizing.
But as with many things when moving house, it’s important to consider affordability and keep an eye on your budget. Knowing how much self-storage will cost you ahead of time can help. Unfortunately, there is not one set price, as your storage quote will depend on a multitude of factors.
Consider these 5 cost factors before deciding how you will make use of self-storage:
Length of time
The cost of your storage will greatly rely on how long you actually want to be using the storage unit for. For example, the price for a week in a 20 square foot unit is commonly between £10-35, whereas a month in the same unit can cost around £50-75. A year can take you over £1,000.
Consider in advance when it comes to how long you’re keeping your items stored. Do you just need them out of the way for moving day, or do you need space in your home for a longer period of time? You should make sure to budget depending on the time you think you’ll need.
Size of unit
As you may have also guessed, the size of the unit you use is also a key factor in the price you will be paying for your storage. Unit sizes can range from 10 square feet up to 200 square feet, depending on the size of the facility you use. As you’d expect, the price will increase along with the size of unit.
A month in a 50 sq. ft. unit can commonly cost around £50-85 whereas the same length of time in a 100 sq. ft. unit can be more like £90-150.
This is why it’s best to do an inventory of what’s in your home, and highlight what you would ideally like to move to self-storage. Take a look at all these items and consider what the minimum amount of space you’ll need is, then use this to estimate your cost.
Make sure to actually measure your items, and create an inventory. It's incredibly easy to underestimate in the hopes of cutting costs. But you don’t want to damage your items by trying to cram them into a space that isn’t workable.
It may or may not surprise you that the location of the facility itself within the UK will influence pricing. Not just whether it’s in a built up or rural area, but also whether it’s in the North or South, or whether it’s in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland or Wales.
The most expensive place to use self-storage is unsurprisingly Central London, with the whole of the south of England being generally more expensive than the North.
While it’s difficult to manipulate this cost yourself, outside of moving to a cheaper area, it is important to be aware of it. If you’re moving within London for example, you need to prepare for much steeper prices when budgeting.
If youare planning to use the storage facility for a while and don’t need access to it, (if you’re in a chain, waiting to move for a few months) you could try using a storage facility further away to save money.. But remember to account for the cost of transporting the items there and back.
While it’s in the storage facility’s interests to keep your belongings as safe and secure as possible, theft and damage aren’t 100% avoidable - accidents do happen. Therefore, most UK self-storage companies will require that you take out an insurance policy out to cover the items you are leaving with them.
Some companies will offer you their own insurance, but in some cases you can provide your own from outside sources if you’d prefer, as long as you can prove you have it. The monthly cost of your insurance will be based on what it would cost to replace the items of they were stolen or damaged. This means, if you would like to have lower cost insurance, you will want to avoid storing anything overly expensive in the facility.
If it’s sounding by now that self-storage might turn into quite the expensive endeavour for you, there is a silver lining. Most UK self-storage companies offer various discounts and special offers, for meeting certain conditions, that can bring down the average quoted price.
Some companies will, for example, offer you a cheaper rate for paying for the term you wish to stay for upfront, rather than in instalments or at the end of your stay. Other firms may offer you cheaper rates for being a new customer or offer to match rates of a competitor if you can find storage cheaper elsewhere.
When choosing a self-storage facility
, make sure to research thoroughly to see what discounts and special offers they may have in place. The price may not change too significantly, but when moving, every little save does help.
As always, the key is research. Investigating any local storage facilities, comparing cost as well as deals and quality of service, will help you make an informed decision about using self-storage.