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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Saving Money On Self Storage

By Alicia Sarge

Contrary to what's happening in many industries, self storage companies are getting more and more business because of the deepening recession. After all, there are scores of people who have lost their homes or have had to leave their big apartments; they have had to downsize and need a place to store a lot of their belongings. Many look to friends' houses or similar arrangements while they could simply put them in storage. They don't do so because they think it's more expensive than it really is.

First of all, we're talking about an industry where pretty much everybody offers the same thing, making it tough for one company to differentiate itself from another. To solve this, storage unit companies have adjusted their service offerings so that they can ultimately cater to all kinds of needs. So you don't have to overpay for something that you don't need. Their services can be customized to meet your specific needs, at reasonable costs.

Being competitive also entails getting new customers. The best way to reel them in is through generous discounts, and that's what every company seems to be doing. So as a smart consumer, all you have to do is perform some comparison shopping, specify what kind of storage term you're looking for, and you'll most likely find a great deal that fits you and your budget best.

You get a good amount of space versus the price you're being charged. You might be able to get a 100 square feet of space for approximately $100/month. That's a very reasonable amount to pay, considering that your belongings will be protected from theft, pest damage, humidity, and fire. Compared to what those belongings are worth to you, the price might even be a non-factor. Verify that whatever company you sign with, your items will be adequately protected.

If what you need is a long term contract, then you'll be able to save even more money. Of course, it makes no sense to sign up for long term storage if you're not going to need it (not to mention that it would hardly be a money-saving move). But if you really anticipate that your needs are of the long term variety, then by all means mention it, you will most likely get a great deal on your monthly fee.

Finally, the service is very practical. Some companies include the free use of a forklift on the premises. Others offer packaging and shipping services, included in your monthly fee. Those value-added services can go a long way toward making your self storage deal a value-packed one.

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