6 Supersized Tips For Downsizing Your Home

Whether you’re trying to save money, at a time in your life where you don’t need as much home anymore, or simply want to simplify your life, there are plenty of reasons to downsize your home. Once you make the decision to downsize your home, you also have to downsize your belongings; after all, what furnished a three-bedroom home with a garage and yard won’t fit in a one-bedroom condo. This can prove difficult to some, so here are some tips to get you started.

1. Start Early

As long as you’re working within your own timeframe, give yourself at least four months before your target move date. Looking for a new home, packing, and moving takes a lot of physical—and mental—effort. If you’re stressed out, you may make rash decisions you’ll end up regretting when it comes to downsizing your possessions. Make sure you give yourself enough time to be confident in your decisions.

2. Go Digital

Do you have a towering bookshelf gathering dust? A movie and TV show collection you never seem to touch? Boxes of pictures and photo albums you don’t want to lose for sentimental reasons, but rarely look at? Save the space and still keep your things by going digital. Scan those pictures, download eBooks, and upload those DVDs and Blu-Rays to the Cloud for the best of both worlds.

3. Pass It Forward

Just because you can’t take all of your belongings with you doesn’t mean they can’t live a second life in another home. Give your friends and family a chance to look at the items you’re not keeping and to take home what catches their eye. Just remember: Once it’s theirs, it’s theirs to do with what they wish. Don’t demand to knows its whereabouts next time you’re over for dinner.

4. Remember You’re Not a Bed and Breakfast

If you live alone or share a room with your partner and have no other household members, there’s no reason for you to pay for a second bedroom. If you have occasional overnight guests, many sleeper couches are just as comfortable as traditional beds and only need to be converted when it’s lights out!

5. Play Favorites

Sure, you may like the variety of 12 sets of sheets and blankets, or the look of three different sets of mixing bowls, or the decision between of a single cup, full pot, or French press cup of coffee, but do you need all these options? Decide which ones you gravitate toward more often and streamline the rest.

6. Say “Yes” to Amenities

Do you need extra space in your home for your treadmill and elliptical machine, a game room with billiards and darts, or a huge yard that requires equipment and tools to maintain? Simplify your home—and life—by downsizing to a community or apartment complex that provides these amenities and handles the yardwork and gardening so you don’t have to. Now you’re ready to downsize your home—but what about the things you couldn’t downsize out of your life too?

Don’t worry, you can still scale back and keep the things most important to you by relocating them to an affordable, secure, climate-controlled storage unit. Contact the professionals at Secure Self Storage to get started.

6 Tips For A Successful Move

There are a lot of things to consider and prepare for when it comes to moving homes. You need to find a new home, sell or rent out your current one, potentially find new employment and new schools for your kids—you may even have to buy a new wardrobe if you’re leaving somewhere warm like Victoria, British Columbia for somewhere as cold as Yellowknife (home to Canada’s coldest winters of -28.9 Celsius)! With all these things to consider, it’s easy to overlook one very important part: The move itself! Moving homes doesn’t have to be stressful and time consuming. Follow these six tips to turn your moving day into a success:

  1. Stock Up First

The key to any successful move is using the proper materials. Start with boxes and tape: Go through each room in your home and estimate how many boxes you’ll need to properly pack your items, if you’ll require any uniquely shaped boxes, and approximate how much tape you’ll use. Then you’ll need cushioning to ensure nothing breaks, as well as labels and markers to make sure each box ends up in the right place. You can buy all this—and more—at your local Secure Self Storage.2

2. Pick the Right Day

Skip the high moving truck or professional movers’ fees charged for the first or last of the month and weekends. Instead, schedule your move for the middle of the week, in the middle of the month. The extra money you save will be well worth it.

3. Don’t Move What You Don’t Want

There’s no sense in packing, moving, then unpacking things you no longer have use for. For sentimental items, you may want to consider investing in a self-storage facility, but everything else should be donated (make sure to hold on to the receipts for tax purposes) or turned into pocket money from a garage or yard sale. Don’t want to move your whole pantry? Contact local food shelters instead of throwing all the food away.

4. Take Time to Count

The last thing you want to discover after you move into your new home is that you’re missing some of your belongings. Whether they were left behind at your old home or overlooked in the moving truck, it can be a hassle to track them down. That’s why you should count and number all your boxes so you can inventory them as you take them off the truck.

5. Hire a Babysitter­­­­–or Pet Sitter

Moving can be confusing, stressful, and exhausting—all of which can be made worse if you’re also worried about your kids or your pets. Young children and animals should be left with a sitter away from the home so you can concentrate on the task at hand.

6. Pack an Essentials Bag

After a long day of moving, you’re going to want to shower, put on clean clothes, and go to sleep. But you’ve packed away your towels and shampoo, all your clothes are mixed together, and you can’t find your sheets! Make things easier on yourself (and your whole family) by packing your day-one must-haves in one convenient place.

Now that you know how to make sure your moving day is a success, it’s time to find a safe, reliable place for the things you weren’t able to take with you, but don’t want to say goodbye to. Contact the storage professionals at Secure Self Storage for an affordable, secure, climate-controlled solution to your storage needs.

5 Tips for Using a Self-Storage Unit in the Winter

Using a self-storage unit for seasonal items can free up more space at your home or office and help keep your seasonal belongings in tip-top shape.

How to keep your self-stored items safe and secure over the winter months:

1. Climate Controlled Storage Units

Certain delicate items are more sensitive to extreme temperatures. Climate-controlled storage units will keep your belongings safe from damage caused by fluctuating temperatures. At Secure Self Storage, all of our storage units are climate-controlled to keep your items safe from cracking, warping, or rotting.

2. Use Insulation

Using insulation to cover your items in the winter is always a good idea. Breathable fabrics like cotton blankets or towels are ideal. Avoid vinyl and plastic covers that can trap moisture.

3. Clean Your Items Before Storing

Cleaning and covering items before storing them in the winter is essential. Dirt and grime can cause deterioration to your belongings over long periods of storage.

4. Prep Items for Storage

Different items require different measures of preparation for storage. Properly preparing for storage will help to protect your belongings from damage.

5. Winterize Vehicles Before Parking Them in Vehicle StorageIf you plan to park your vehicle, RV, or boat in a secure storage lot, be sure to winterize it in advance. Taking the necessary steps to prepare your car for storage will ensure it’s in great shape when the snow melts.

Secure Self Storage offers the most secure, climate-controlled facilities with 24/7 security to protect all of your belongings at an affordable price. Check out our special offers or contact one of our storage experts so you can start storing today.  

5 Reasons Storage Unit Organization Matters

For some people, a storage unit is just a big free-for-all where you can toss anything you’re not using and grab it when you’re ready, but that kind of outlook can cost you big in more than one way. It’s important that you pack and organize your storage unit in the safest, most efficient way so you can maximize its value and convenience.

When you properly organize your storage unit, you can:

1.Create More Room

If you simply load your storage unit with no system, mixing box sizes and furniture based on what you grab first, your unit is going to fill up more quickly than you could have imagined. You’ll find yourself wondering why a unit designed to hold a two-bedroom apartment was only able to fit half of your belongings. By organizing your unit properly based on size and weight, you’ll be able to fit everything you need.

2. Save Money

Many people overestimate how much space they really need and rent units one size larger than recommended. Once they organize their storage unit properly though, they may realize they’ve fit everything with room to spare and are now paying for space they don’t need. Trusting the sizing recommendations of professionals and packing your unit as efficiently as possible can mean big savings for you.

3. Save Time

Once your unit is packed, chances are you’re going to need to visit it at some point. Whether you’re hunting for your favorite Christmas decorations or trying to find your 2007 tax returns in a hurry, it’s important to be able to easily locate and access your belongings. Properly organizing your unit with an efficient system will not only save you time, it will save you aggravation.

4. Protect Your Belongings

If you’ve unpacked all of your belongings into your unit without paying attention to what each was, you may find yourself doing irreparable damage to something. Maybe you accidentally packed Grandma’s good china underneath a box with your old bowling ball or stored your classic vinyl collection face down instead of on its side, but by the time you noticed it was too late to save these irreplaceable items. Proper unit organization ensures everything will come out in the same condition it went it.

5. Protect Yourself

No one wants a huge box of books or other heavy items to fall off an unsteady pile and on their head–but that’s exactly what can happen if you stack boxes without paying attention to their size and weight. Boxes should be organized with the heaviest and largest on the bottom to avoid accidental and potentially dangerous toppling.

Now that you know why proper storage unit organization is important, it’s time to find out why Secure Self Storage is the best storage solution. Contact the professionals at Secure to learn more about their affordable, secure, climate-controlled storage units.

6 Long-Term Storage Tips You’ll Want to Save

Whether you’re always traveling for business, away at university, living in a smaller space, or simply don’t want to be tied down to a permanent address, there’s a solution to your storage needs: Long-term storage. Long-term storage gives you the accessibility to your belongings you want, when you want it, while also affording you a higher level of flexibility when it comes to living arrangements. 

Follow these six long-term storage tips to get the most out of your investment:

  1. Just Say No to Plastic Bags- Contrary to popular belief, loose-plastic bags don’t protect your belongings from moisture. In fact, they encourage moisture-building properties that can damage or destroy your possessions, especially over long-term use.

  2. Prep Furniture Properly- Before going into long-term storage, all furniture should be properly cleaned and, if applicable, treated with polish. Disassemble any furniture you can, like tables and chairs, to get the most out of your space, and then drape a clean, 100% cotton, white sheet over it to keep it clean while also avoiding color transfer stains.  

  3. Invest in Quality Totes or Boxes- It may cost a little now, but in the long run, you’ll be glad that you spent the extra money to keep your belongings safe and organized. This will not only make things easily stackable, but you’ll also be able to label everything for accessibility. 

  4. Elevate or Create a Layer of Protection- Laying a tarp or sheet on the floor or using pallets to elevate your belongings will encourage airflow in your unit and also protect your things from potential moisture. Want even better moisture protection? Consider climate-controlled storage.

  5. Vacuum-Seal Fabric- Keep your wardrobe, curtains, and other fabrics in top shape and save valuable space with vacuum-sealed bags. These affordable packing solutions are simple to use and make a big difference.  

  6. Be Mindful of Placement- When it comes to packing your belongings in your unit, take the time to consider what you’ll need regular access to—like clothes and important documents—and what will remain there until you take it out once and for all—like furniture. Keep important things upfront to avoid digging through all your belongings for your birth certificate or favorite sweater.

Now that you understand how to properly utilize long-term storage, it’s time to find the storage company you can trust to keep your belongings safe while you’re away from them. Contact the storage professionals at Secure Self Storage to give them a climate-controlled, secure and affordable home.