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loading a storage unit

Here’s Where To Store Your Stuff When Moving To a Small Apartment

If you are planning to shift into a small apartment, you are bound to face a tough time while arranging your belongings in it, especially if you do not want to throw or sell your possessions.  People who have the habit of accumulating different types of stuff in their homes, face more problems while shifting to the new apartment than those who know the art of living with minimum things.

 

 

However, not everyone can be a minimalist; therefore, it’s better to find quality ideas to keep your belongings. One of the best ways to keep your prized possessions safe and secure is to rent an appropriate size storage unit. No matter where you go, your stuff will always remain safe.

 

And the best part is that you can store anything and everything in a storage unit.  Since these units are available in a variety of sizes, you will never confront a problem while securing your valuables.

 

However, if you are someone who wants to create extra space in your home, you can secure some of your valuables in a nearby storage facility. If you store your belongings in a storage facility that’s close to your home, it gives you the opportunity to access them frequently.

 

Since there are several such facilities, finding a good one among them is easier said than done. Yes, you have to put a little effort into figuring out an authentic storage facility, if you want to keep your belongings safe.

 

Taking the help of the internet can make your task easier. In other words, research over the internet to find out a facility that offers storage units at affordable rates.

 

So, if you are shifting to a new apartment, here’s what you can keep in storage units.

 

Furniture

 

If your old furniture is still in good condition, but you don’t want to decorate your new apartment with it, you can book a quality storage unit for it.  Since you are planning to store furniture, it’s better to go for climate controlled units as they help in keeping your belongings safe from the harmful consequences of extreme temperature.

 

These units maintain a consistent temperature in all the seasons so they are perfect for securing temperature sensitive items.  These units also come with a humidity control feature, which protects your belongings even further.

 

So, whether you have wooden furniture or leather furniture, consider climate controlled units.

 

Books

 

If you are a voracious reader, you must have accumulated a lot of books over the years.  And the fact remains, no one feels like selling books because they give you that much-needed company when you are alone. So, if you do not have enough space in your new house to arrange your books, it’s better to secure them in a storage unit.  One of the most crucial advantages of storing your books in a storage unit is that you can access them anytime if you feel like gifting them to your loved ones.

 

Besides, if you feel like reading any of your books over again, you do not have to buy them.

 

Household Appliances

 

Storage units are also an ideal option for storing kitchen appliances. Whether you talk about high-end appliances like TV, microwave, refrigerator, dishwashers or things like washers, and dryers, you can keep them all in storage units.  Again, it’s better to rent climate controlled units for these things.

 

Special Collections

 

If you have collected a lot of valuable things over the years such as souvenirs, a variety of wines, and showpieces, etc., you can keep them in storage units without giving a second thought.

 

Artwork

 

If you are an art lover, you must have a lot of paintings, sculptures, and antiques, etc., in your home. You can secure them in a storage unit if you can’t manage to keep them in your new home.

 

Vehicles

 

Storage units are also ideal for securing vehicles. Whether you are looking forward to storing your car, boat, or an RV, you can rent the right size unit for them. Since buying a parking space can be too expensive, it’s better to rely on storage units.

grow your removal company

5 Proven Ways to Grow Your Removal Company

If you already have an established, successful removal company you may be considering ways to grow your business, expand your customer base and improve your bottom line. These are the ultimate goals for anyone in business; it’s the natural next step once you have proven your business model, and it’s no different for a removals company than for any other type of business.

But just what are the best ways to grow a removal company?

Fortunately, there are many proven ways to reach the next goal in your business expansion, but you will need to carefully consider which is right for you as it very much depends on how your business functions right now and, of course, how much time and money you are willing to spend on your growth plan. Nevertheless, these tips will give you plenty to think about:

 

Open at another location

Many people who are moving house prefer to use a local company as they feel they get a more personalised (not to mention cheaper) service so opening in other locations can help you attract more customers from a wider area. It is very common for business owners to take this approach to growth because, providing you have done your market research right, there is minimal risk because you are simply duplicating a proven business model in a different town or region. However, do remember that your existing location(s) will have to be able to function effectively without you, the business owner, being able to oversee operations as much as before.

 

Collaborate with other relevant businesses

If you currently operate only in one region or one country then a low-cost way to attract more business is to build collaborative relationships with other removal companies that only offer their services in regions or countries that you don’t cover. For instance, if your removals company covers only the UK why not consider a collaboration with international removal companies where you can refer customers to each other when people are moving to/from the UK. This can be a powerful way to quickly earn more business but it is not without risks and relies on each business being equal partners in the agreement.

 

  • Diversifying into other services is a good strategy for growth, because it allows you to have several different streams of income to cover seasonal lulls and changes in customer needs. A removal company is often most dependent on a buoyant housing market but diversifying into different target markets can help increase your sales and your profits. Natural ways for a removal company to diversify include:
  • Target business removals, which are less affected by, and less seasonal than, the housing market.
  • Offer self-storage facilities to the general public if you already have the spare space – self storage is also frequently used by small online retailers, which could provide a new target market altogether.
  • Offer logistics services for the warehousing and distribution of consumer goods. Our modern day shopping habits mean that goods are constantly being moved around the country and since most removals companies already have vehicles and warehousing space this is an ideal way of diversifying.
  • Acquire another business. Many removal companies are a local service with only one location so investigate the possibility of acquiring a smaller company that already has similar services, quality and value as your company. Whilst the initial financial outlay may be higher than other options you will get a ready-made business.
  • Improve your marketing. Before you start thinking of new locations and new target markets first make absolutely sure that you are getting maximum value from the locations(s) you already have. Analyse how you currently acquire most of your customers. Is it word-of-mouth and print advertising? If it is then you could certainly benefit from improving your online presence either with a sponsored ad campaign, focused digital marketing or social media campaigns. Increasingly potential customers are simply turning to the computer or mobile device to search for what they want or need so improvements in this area could help you maximise exposure for your current locations and offerings.
pack wine glasses

How To Pack Wine Glasses For Storage

Packing wine glasses can be tricky, but it’s so important to get it right when you’re moving the glasses to another home or placing them in storage. Here are some tips to help you.

When you have invested in self storage, you want to make sure your items are as safe as possible while they aren’t in your care. By investing in a storage unit you will have already looked into the security at the facility, so the storage company’s part in your items safety is done. The part of it that falls to you is packing the items properly so they are protected from breakages, environmental factors and dirt.

Any type of glass is of packing concern, but the delicate shape of a wine glass makes them particularly tricky to protect.

Here are some tips to help you pack your wine glasses for storage properly:

Buy The Proper Boxes

Lots of places stock proper wine glass boxes, you can even find them in the supermarket. They usually have holes for each wine glass and a handle in the middle of the container. The boxes will not protect your glasses against all the elements, but they do keep them separate and protect them from bashing against each other in transit. Remember to invest in the strongest boxes you can if your wine glasses are really precious and consider asking if your cheap storage company sells these boxes (if you’re short on time).

Focus On Protecting The Weakest Part Of The Glass

The stem of the glass is the weakest part of it, which means it needs additional protection. If the stem is subjected to a lot of pressure, it will break. Thick packaging like bubble wrap should be used to protect the stem. Simply cut a long strip of bubble wrap that measures the same length as the stem. Then wrap it around a couple of times and sellotape it securely.

Fill The Glasses

Unfortunately on this occasion your wine glasses don’t need to be filled with wine. Instead you’re going to need to fill them with paper. This supports the glass and also makes them weigh more which will prevent them from moving around.

Wrap Them Up

When you have added the extra protection to the glass, you will need to wrap it as a whole. You must not wrap the wine glasses together as they will clink against each other. Instead wrap them individually using newspaper, bubble wrap or thick tissue paper. If the glasses are going in a standard box, stuff the gaps between the wrapped glasses with tissue paper or newspaper to stop the objects moving around.

Label, Label, Label!

Always label fragile items as fragile. If they are in a standard box use packing tape to secure the entire box so it won’t fall through when you pick it up. Place labels on all sides of the box if possible so the ‘fragile’ wording can be seen whatever position the box is in. This will also stop anyone putting the box underneath heavier boxes in the self storage facility, or wherever you choose to store your precious glasses,  or in the moving van.

 

These are just a few tips to help you pack your wine glasses properly – remember the more time and effort you put into packing your wine glasses, the more likely you are to get them back unscathed when you remove them from storage or unpack them at your new home.

 

 

 

How Should I Store Electronics

How to Store: Electronics

Have you ever found yourself digging through an old cupboard, tossing aside colourful pieces of ‘80s lycra, vinyl records and unused running gear?

 

I sure have! And almost every time I’ve discovered some hidden gem at the bottom like a mint condition original Gameboy with the Tetris cartridge still inserted. It never works, though. Old electronics stored haphazardly in a cupboard never do.

 

You see, electronic devices are not built for long-term storage.

 

If you stuff a laptop, a television or a mixing desk into a storage unit without proper care, it probably won’t come out in the same condition that it went in.

 

Rust, mold and cracking can all quickly convert a valuable piece of kit into a worthless pile of circuit boards and wire.

 

For this blog, I’ve interviewed all our storage experts to collect some essential tips on storing electronics.

 

If you follow our tips, your laptops should emerge from your storage unit looking great and working just as well as they did when they went in. Let’s get started.

 

Backup Everything

If you prep your electronic devices properly and store them in the right way, they should survive in storage for years.

 

However, climate control systems can malfunction, facilities can flood and electronics can spontaneously pack up. Do not think that your devices are completely safe in storage.

 

It always pays to be prepared and be prepared for the worst case. So, if you want to ensure your data is safe and secure, back it up and store copies across a number of different sites.

 

Clean Off Dirt and Dust

If a couple of crumbs fall off your lunchtime sandwich get lodged in your keyboard, it’s not going to destroy your laptop overnight. (Although it’s still super unhygienic!)

 

However, if left there for months or years, dirt, dust and grime will cause problems.

 

Before you pack away all your devices, dust off any stray contaminants then wipe down all accessible surfaces.

 

This should remove the vast majority of the dirt and grime that could cause problems later on.

 

Remove Batteries

Batteries are little ticking time bombs, just waiting to leak nasty battery acid all over your circuit board.

 

Chances are, you’ve already had to deal with this. I’ve certainly had to spend a few hours nervously cleaning out the battery slot with a paper towel, constantly worrying that I’ve got some of the acid on my hands.

 

Well, the bad news is that batteries and storage really don’t mix. Let me repeat that, batteries and storage do not mix.

 

Seriously, leaving batteries connected to an electronic device and tossing it into storage is a recipe for disaster.

 

While you might get away with high-quality integrated batteries — laptop batteries, camera batteries, etc. — cheap disposable batteries will burst if left connected for any extended period of time.

 

So, before you put any electronics into storage, remember to remove the batteries from them. If they’re disposables, remember to recycle them too!

 

Dig Out the Original Packaging

When it comes to long-term storage, the original packaging is almost always better. I mean, the original box was designed to hold and protect its device during transportation, storage and display.

 

Any makeshift packaging will do what the original did but worse.

 

If you still have it, I strongly recommend you dig out the original boxes and inserts then re-pack your devices the way you got them.

 

Static-Free for Extra Protection

Yes, yes, I know. Static-free packaging materials aren’t exactly easy to get your hands on. Nor are they, strictly speaking, necessary for storing electronics.

 

Like I said, static-free packaging isn’t really necessary when storing everyday electronic devices. Laptops, games consoles and phones are all designed to cope with everyday static shocks and should survive in storage unscathed.

 

Delicate electronics like computer parts, however, are much more susceptible to damage as their inner workings are directly exposed.

 

For delicate devices, static-free packaging is a good idea. Plus it’s not actually that much more expensive.

 

Don’t Use Plastics

Wrapping your devices in waterproof plastic might seem like a great idea but it can easily backfire on you. Yes, plastic will keep water out but it will also trap moisture in.

 

Excess moisture is one of the biggest threats to electronic devices whether they’re in storage or in use. A stray glass of water can turn a television to scrap just as easily as a super humid room.

 

If you have any silica gel packets handy, tossing in a couple of sachets will help soak up excess water in the air, keeping your devices nice and dry.

 

Cables

If you leave cables plugged in, they have an annoying habit of seizing and getting stuck. If it’s just one USB cable stuck in one USB port, that’s okay. You can live with that, right?

 

Well, what about if it’s your only video output or your power cable port? That’s going to be more annoying.

 

To avoid dealing with any seized sockets, unplug all the cables and wires from your devices. For easier storage and easier unpacking, curl each cable into a loop, tie on a label and then store them normally.

 

This is a guest post by Fraser Sutherland, marketing manager at Storage Vault

storage for concealing clutter

Short Term Solutions For Concealing Clutter

When you don’t have time to have a clearout you may have a lot of clutter you don’t know what to do with. Here we look at short term solutions for concealing clutter.

 

The answer to most clutter problems is to get rid of it, but sometimes we can’t. Or perhaps we have a lot of items that aren’t clutter, but they don’t have a ‘home’ within the home. In both instances, there are lots of ways to conceal pesky items that make the room look untidy. This may seem counterproductive, but sometimes clutter isn’t clutter, it is just something we don’t know how to display or make look pretty yet. Sometimes, we just need to make do until we can have a clear out.

Here are some top tips to help you conceal clutter:

 

Always Fully Cover

One of the worst things you can do, is partially conceal something you are trying to hide. Perhaps you have a TV on top of a TV stand that has lots of clutter piled under it. A cool throw will conceal the underneath for now, but only if it fits in full. If it partially exposes the underneath, it will look really messy.

 

Buy Clever Furniture

A foot stool with a concealed storage box inside, a soft with compartment drawers underneath, a bed with storage boxes underneath – you get our drift. Buy clever furniture even if you don’t think you need the storage because the chances are, you will need it at some point.

 

Replace Furniture That Is In Fact Clutter

You may find some of your clutter displaced, when in fact it could easily go in a set of drawers, except you don’t have the set of drawers because you have an old poof in the space instead that serves absolutely no purpose. If you got rid of the poof however, you could fit a set of drawers in. Look at all your furniture and get rid of it if it does not serve a purpose.

 

Look For Storage Where You Hadn’t Thought Of Putting It Before

Maybe there is room next to your sofa for a cool fruit crate that could store magazines, maybe you have room for some shelves that could house some ornaments and books, maybe there is space on the ceiling for storing sports equipment (which looks very cool at the same time). Look for storage space in places you had previously discounted.

 

Tidy It Up

Sometimes it is all about how we display the clutter. A group of vases you don’t know what to do with, might look wonderful with some bamboo and greenery sticking out of them, they might look cool lined up on top of kitchen cupboards, or maybe filled with marbles (if they are glass). A pile of magazines could look like a pile of rubbish, but if you fan them out on the table, or put them in a wicker basket nicely, they suddenly look very inviting.

 

In The Long Run

Clearly, in the long run you will have to think about what to do with having too many items, as there’s only so much a bit of jazzing up can do.

 

Declutter

Decluttering is a really good experience for your home and for your soul. Chuck some clutter, give some away, sell some – just get it out of your home. You will feel better for it.

 

Self storage

Perhaps you are saving for a bigger home where you can spread out all your beloved bits and pieces, in which case, why not get some self storage. You get to enjoy the space in your current home, all whilst paying a minimal amount to look after the items for your new home in secure, safe cheap self storage.

 

 

metal arch buildings

Designing the right metal arch buildings for your specific needs

Okay so you have done your research and have discovered that steel arch building kits are more cost effective and sturdier than traditional structures as well as being maintenance free. Now it is time to decide what type and size and what type of the quonset hut style building and the customizations  you will need. The quonset hut, or steel arch building, can be easily erected without skilled workers and stand up to any severe weather event your region will encounter such as earthquakes, hurricanes and heavy snow loads. Because the entire building is made of 80,000ksi tensile yield carbon steel coated with aluminum-zinc alloy it is also corrosion resistant and should last decades without any maintenance.

 

MODEL TYPES USE AND PURPOSE

The Q model: This model has the shape of a semi-circle – a complete arch from roof to the ground. This model is popular with agriculture storage such as hay and grain and was designed by the British in World War II when it was called the Nissan Hut and later adapted by the United States Military. It is probably the strongest model due to the engineering design without straight side walls. The space becomes more limited as you move closer to the walls however.

The P model: The “P” stands for peaked roof. It also has vertical side walls and a pitched roof and a favorite when adjoined to or beside a home as a workshop, retail store, storage space for equipment, boats or recreational vehicles or a warehouse.

The S model: This model has a rounded roof similar to the Q model but has vertical side walls although they are shorter than the P Model’s side walls. This model is often used for horse barns, warehouses, truck storage, fire departments, construction, equipment storage, airplane hangers, businesses and workshops.

The A model: This model has slightly slanted walls and roof pitch is engineered to withstand the most severe weather conditions including hurricanes, snow storms an earthquakes. Its 4:12 pitched roof is specifically designed for major ice and snow areas in the Northern hemisphere . The “A” model arch building has a minimum yield of 55Ksi and is manufactured to ASTM international standards and ASCE building codes.

Generally, the Q-Model is the cheapest option, with the P-Model being the most expensive of the arch buildings. Buildings made of steel significantly decreases overall construction costs. As steel is prefabricated, there is no wasted materials and requires only the building kit made of arches, walls and end walls along with simple hardware. Erecting steel buildings also requires fewer workers and no skilled professionals decreasing the labor costs. There are no hidden costs or constructional delays. Both the construction process and maintenance are simple and the materials are far less expensive.

 

CUSTOMIZATIONS

End wall entrances: Will you be requiring regular walk in doors, large overhead doors, or both? If overhead doors are needed, then the height of he entrance needs to be determined.

What will the doors be used for? Is heavy machinery using the doors? Will they be loaded higher than the trucks hauling the load? This is a major factor in deciding the size of the building by ensuring there is ample space for all needed entrances.

Decide whether you need to customize it depending on whether these entryways will be in the end walls or side walls. Consider electronic roll up doors if frequent opening and closing will occur from the drivers.

Height and length: Now you need to consider the height of your structure. The best way to calculate this is to consider how much room is required in the interior height of the building. Will you be adding overhead lighting or climate control?

Think of eventual expansion too.  Be careful to consider the width of your building and what equipment will be inside, how much storage is needed, and throughways for vehicles and forklifts. As a rule of thumb it is wise to add 10% to 20% more width than you think you will need. Once the width of arches and structure is constructed it cannot be changed. The length can always be expanded by removing the end walls and adding more arches so if you need to expand at a later date plan on expanding the length not the width.

Ventilation: Determine what type of ventilation if any you will need. Turbine vents are easily installed in the roof line to allow for maximum airflow. Stagnant heat and moisture will be siphoned from your building, airflow is created as outdoor air is pulled into the building, thereby maintaining a constant circulation of air passing through your building.

Louver vents eliminate condensation and maximize air circulation and reduce the heat from within your building at a very low cost to you. They are easily installed into end walls of your building allowing air to flow through from one end to the other.

Lighting: Consider the type of lighting you will need in your building. You can erect interior suspension framing to install overhead lighting and climate control along the roof of the building. You can also add skylights into the upper walls or roof.  Install windows to the end walls or sides of the building.

Insulation: Many customers are surprised to find that they don’t really need insulation for their Metal arch buildings. In extreme climates, however, you may want to consider adding insulation to your building. There are a few very good choices that are appropriate according to your particular climate. Roll insulation, spray foam and insulated panels from the factory all perform well and can achieve a high “R” rating.

Steel Gauges: Depending on your building codes in the location you are in you may need to use a minimum required gauge of steel in your arch building. 26 – 28 gauge steel is the lightest you will need but it is recommended that you choose a heavier gauge steel so you building kit will last longer and have more stability and building integrity.

There are many things to consider so do your homework and make sure you build the best building for your needs, climate and practical purposes.

 

This article was written by the engineers and consultants at Metal Building Kings (https://www.metalgaragekits.com) to help people who are deciding on what type of metal garage kit to buy and how to design it.

 

make decluttering easy

Clever Ideas To Make Decluttering Easy

Is your home stuffed with trinkets, treasures and things you no longer need? Are your shelves and storage cupboards overflowing with who knows what? Are your clothes squashed into your wardrobes and drawers? If this sounds like your home then it could be time to do a spot of decluttering – many of us may hate the idea but we know it makes sense. Most people are natural hoarders and even the neatest home probably has a cupboard, a loft, a garage or garden shed that is their junk room. But if you have less junk in your home your life really will be better. Less stuff means less to clean and keep tidy; it means it is easy to find things in the early morning rush to get to school or work but getting into the decluttering habit is not easy.

So here are some clever ideas to make decluttering easy:

Pick Your Battles Carefully

Start by making a list of each room that is unnecessarily cluttered and the particular parts of that room that need tackling. It could be shelves stacked high or chests of drawers with junk piled on top because all the drawers are full (hang on, that is beginning to sound like my daughter’s room).

Now pick just one room – or just one part of the room if it is particularly bad – this is the clever bit. Work on that area until it is done and then stop. By taking a bite sized chunk of this problem each day or week you can achieve great things after a few days or weeks and not feel as if decluttering has taken over your life.

Bag It Up

Grab a large black bin bag and set yourself a time challenge to see how quickly you can fill it. Decide before you start whether  the content will really go in the bin or whether they are good enough to go to a local charity shop or other good cause. If you do decide to fill a charity bag just make sure you take it to the charity shop the same day – otherwise it will just be clutter in a bag.

 

Box It Up

Find 3 large boxes and label them: Rubbish, Charity, Keep. As you declutter your chosen area pop items in the relevant box. The contents of the Rubbish box can immediately be thrown out or, even better, recycled. The Charity box can be put in the back of the car ready to drop off as soon as you can at the charity shop – in fact, my local recycling centre now has a “pop up” charity shop there so I only have to make one trip with both of my boxes. And the contents of the final Keep box can then  be placed back in/on your clear drawers/shelves/cupboards. Ahh so easy…

 

Colour Coded Hangers

Start by making sure you have a bunch of hangers that are 2 different colours. Put all of one colour in the bottom of the wardrobe and hang all your clothes on hangers the same colour. Each time you wear something then wash and iron it place it back in the wardrobe on a hanger from the wardrobe floor. After a few months you will start to get a pretty good idea of the clothes you never wear as they will be on the original colour hangers. Obviouly there may be some special occasion outfits that you will want to keep even if you haven’t worn them for 6 months but on the whole this is a foolproof way of reminding yourself what you really don’t wear when it comes to everyday clothes. You know really you just need that reminder to get them out of the wardrobe and down to the charity shop or clothes recycling bank. Think of the extra space it will give you – more space for the clothes you do like and do wear and maybe even some more space for new clothes.

Make Use of 5 Minutes

We can all find 5 extra minutes in the day if we really try – in fact, you probably won’t have to try that hard to find a spare 5 minutes. Open up a single drawer or cupboard and just get started – don’t think too hard about it. I probably shouldn’t say this but for my 5 minute declutters I just  dump everything I don’t want straight in the bin – there is simply no time to sort thing sout on one of these ultra fast decluttering sessions and I console myself that when I have more time I do recycle almost everything either via the local recycling centre or via various charity shops.

Tackling small spaces in five minute blasts means decluttering won’t feel like it is taking  over your life and you’ll maintain your motivation for longer. If you really want to think about setting a timer on your watch or phone – there’s nothing like the seconds and minutes ticking away to spur you on to actually achieve something.

The 10-10-10 Challenge

This is one of my personal favourites when it comes to decluttering and great if you have kids – it is just as good and just as much fun for all ages from toddlers to teens. Making decluttering into a game that everyone can play is a great habit to get into. So what is the 10-10-10 challenge? It’s simple everyone in the house has to find amongst their own possessions 10 things to throw away, 10 things to give to charity and 10 things to put back in their correct place.  Just make sure you do actually bin the rubbish straight away before anyone changes their mind.

Decluttering a whole house in a single day or week-end is almost impossible – it is demoralising and often difficult to know where to start. So instead try one of these clever and fun ideas over a few days, weeks or months and then keep them up to prevent the clutter from returning. Tackling only small areas is much more manageable and will help maintain your motivation and see the task through until you eventually have a clutter-free home.