By Glenna MacDougal

June 16, 2020

Self-Storage Near Me

If you’re looking for self-storage, you know how tough it can be to find an affordable facility that’s near your home. That’s why you owe it to yourself to check out the 21stcentury solution to self-storage: space sharing! This convenient and cost-effective method for storing your items can cost up to 50% less than traditional self-storage – and you will probably be able to find storage right in your own neighbourhood!

In fact, one of the benefits of the sharing economy is community-building. Finding space in a neighbour’s shed or garage for some of your belongings helps to build trust and connections in your neighbourhood, and leads to strong relationships where none existed before. Another of the benefits is that space sharing is environmentally-friendly. No need to build more storage units in a facility, which have large environmental footprints. You aren’t adding anything new to the ecosystem, you’re merely using a previously unused resource.

How It Works

Space sharing uses technology to match people who can provide goods and services to those who need them. Examples in the current sharing economy include big companies such as Über and Airbnb, as well as smaller volunteer-driven enterprises such as Toronto’s Library of Things and Makerspace. Other successful “sharing” companies include DogVacay, TaskRabbit, and PoshMark. 

When you are looking for storage space, make sure you choose a company that specializes in space sharing, not a more general platform that deals with various goods and services. A good space sharing company has experience with matching hosts and renters, and uses various ways to support the process.

The procedure is relatively simple: find a company platform online, and register (for free), outlining the type of storage space you’re looking for. The platform will find spaces in your area that are currently available. Once you and the host mutually agree to the arrangement, the company will ensure that both of you sign a legal document that spells out the terms of your agreement. The host ask you to submit a list of the items that you’ll be storing, for example, and you’ll want to specify how you’ll obtain access to the site. The company helps to ensure that your possessions are stored safely, and that monthly payments are processed through a secure system, such as PayPal.

Of course, one of the great advantages of this type of storage space is that it is much cheaper than conventional storage. By using a neighbour’s garage or shed or spare bedroom to store your “stuff,” you can save up to 50% of the price of a traditional storage unit!

Storage Tips

Here are a few tips for packing your items for storage:

  • Pallets. In garage or shed environments, you can place boxes on top of a pallet. This ensures that any dampness from the floor won’t come in contact with your items.
  • Boxes. Using boxes of uniform size allows you to stack them more easily. Don’t under- or over-pack the boxes. Tape each box shut with heavy-duty tape.
  • Wrapping. Before packing, wrap each item in heavy plastic wrap. Wrap fragile items in bubble wrap.
  • Covers. Use tight-fitting but breathable covers for furniture or vehicles.
  • Label everything! Label boxes accurately. You may even want to attach a checklist of items on each box.