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Downsizing Your Home: How Self Storage Helps You Move and Maximize Your Space

Bill Gassett's picture
Self-storage makes your move easier

Maximizing Your Homes Space With Self-Storage

Moving to a new home can be stressful, especially when downsizing to a smaller place, as it may not have enough room for everything you own.

Fortunately, self-storage comes to the rescue, providing invaluable extra space for your belongings during the moving process and beyond and helping you live well in your smaller accommodation.

You might downsize for various reasons, and it is an economic reality for many in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. Renting a self-storage unit makes the transition easier. It also enables you to make renovations to your new property unhindered. It provides extra space on a more permanent basis for items you still need for the lifestyle you enjoy — including vehicles — which frees up valuable living space in your new home.

To find a storage unit nearby, you'll want to do a search such as a storage facility near me. Using Google should provide you with plenty of options for great storage companies to choose from. Just make sure that once you've got a few storage facilities to choose from that, you do some vetting. Checking reviews and previous custom feedback is always helpful.

Downsizing Can Be Necessary and Desirable

Maybe you are downsizing to smaller living quarters to fulfill a long-awaited retirement dream or to move to a better — which often means more expensive — neighborhood. A transfer to one of the US’s more celebrated cities, not to mention divorce and bereavement, can also send people from larger to smaller residences. Reduced living space is the result, but this can also make starting afresh — not to mention housework — more manageable.

The economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have meant that many households need to economize, which often involves swapping a house or a spacious apartment for somewhere smaller with lower expenses. And downsizing may continue to be a good option for many Americans.

Decreasing Apartment Sizes and Increasing Households Impact Downsizing

Property sizes vary across geographical regions and over time. STORAGECafé looked at the average sizes of new-built residential properties during the last decade, finding that while new houses grew somewhat nationwide, apartments decreased by about 90 square feet, the size of a small bedroom. This reduces the average apartment size in the overall inventory, meaning that anyone downsizing may experience more space constraints now than they would have done in the past.

The trend for multigeneration living has also increased, with twice as many 25- to 34-year-olds now living with their parents as did so 50 years ago. If you are in this situation, you may find you can earn a salary there due to the increased working from home opportunities. There are psychological benefits too in terms of sharing responsibilities. But an increase in the size of a household will mean that any necessary downsizing needs to be done with even greater care.

Making the Downsizing Process Go Smoothly

De-cluttering your existing home will surely be one of the first steps to take when you know you have to downsize. Excess belongings can be put into four categories: keep, sell, donate and throw. Some possessions that don’t make the cut can be sold, perhaps via classified advertisements. Others, however, may be too worn, and you could consider donating them to a charity. In all cases, it can often be arranged to have them collected from your home.

When you have decided on the belongings you want to have with you in your new, smaller home; the move can be organized — just make sure you choose a reliable company. Renting a self-storage unit near your new location will make this process go smoother. Keep your possessions there until the new place is completely ready after all redecorating and refurbishments have been done, and this will also help if the move-in date gets delayed.

Self Storage Reduces the Impact of Downsizing

Even when your move to a smaller residence goes smoothly, there may still be a feeling of loss about having to jettison some possessions, especially if they provided you with an enjoyable lifestyle — your ‘keep’ category might be rather overflowing! Bulky equipment for sports such as fishing, golf, or windsurfing would take up a lot of space in your new place but can easily be kept in your storage unit and picked up whenever you need it.

The overwhelming feeling of remorse is especially true with seniors who are downsizing into a retirement community. The longer you've held onto your things, the harder they are to let go.

The same is true for clothes that only get used for part of the year and yet take up several wardrobes, which may no longer be a possibility. You can keep winter coats and summer dresses in your self-storage unit until their season comes around — a climate-controlled unit is preferable as it protects them against damage from humidity.

In all cases, self-storage space is generally much cheaper than residential space, making it a cost-effective way to keep many items.

Self Storage Keeps You Mobile After Downsizing

Moving from a house to an apartment often creates a transportation dilemma, and the car that once had a home at your old place may now be out on the street. However, it can be cheaper and safer to keep it at a storage facility. There are garage-sized 10x20 storage units available for regular cars and even larger ones for recreational vehicles and trailers. Simple parking places are also available at facilities and at lower costs.

Bicycles and motorbikes can be easily kept in relatively small storage lockers, and there are even units for boats. There is no reason why an entire family who has to move to smaller premises cannot have easy access to all the personal transportation they require, both for regular usage and for recreation. A storage unit close to home will probably be an advantage in the case of housing your vehicles.

While downsizing can be disruptive and regarded with trepidation, you can make the process less stressful with careful planning. Renting self-storage will help both your move and any renovation projects, and it can also mean you don’t have to give up as many things as you thought you might.

Clothes and recreational gear can be kept in your unit for when they are needed, and all manner of vehicles can be stored there too. In this way, even somebody transferring to a small apartment can enjoy the lifestyle they have gotten used to and without breaking the bank.

Final Thoughts

The reasons that self-storage has become a booming business are readily apparent. One of the best, of course, is when you are relocating from one home to another. The first step in your plans will more than likely be selling your home, and renting from a storage facility offers the opportunity to make your property look its best.

Hopefully, you have enjoyed these tips on maximizing the space around your home with storage.

About the author: The above article on how self-storage helps you maximize the space around your home was written by Francis Chantree. Francis is a senior editor and writer for the US-based self-storage search portal STORAGECafé. He has extensive experience writing for various publications about issues related to economics, lifestyle, and the real estate industry.

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