By Ritehly Quimbo. Posted on August 17th, 2023 in Self Storage Facilities and Units.

If you are surrounded by clutter or struggling to find space for your belongings, it might be time to consider a self-storage solution.

However, determining the right size for a self-storage unit can be a bit challenging. No one wants to pay for extra space they don’t need or be stuck with a unit that’s too small to fit their belongings.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through the factors to consider and help you determine what size self-storage unit you actually need.


Self-storage units provide a convenient way to store items you don’t currently have space for, whether due to downsizing, moving, or simply decluttering. Choosing the right size unit is crucial to ensure your belongings remain safe and secure.

Assessing Your Storage Needs

Understanding Your Belongings

Begin by taking an inventory of the items you intend to store. Categorize them into groups like furniture, boxes, electronics, and fragile items. This will help you estimate the space required.

Future Storage Needs

Consider your future storage needs as well. If you anticipate acquiring more items, it’s wise to opt for a slightly larger unit now to avoid having to rent additional space later.

Accessibility Requirements

Think about how often you’ll need access to your items. If you’ll be frequently retrieving things, ensure that you have enough space to move around comfortably.

Types of Storage Units

There are various unit sizes available to cater to different storage needs:

Small Units

Small units are ideal for storing a few boxes, small furniture, or seasonal items. They are cost-effective and suitable for those with minimal storage requirements.

Medium Units

Medium-sized units can accommodate furniture from a one-bedroom apartment along with some boxes. They are suitable for individuals who need a bit more space.

 Large Units

Large units can store the contents of a multi-bedroom house. A large unit might be the right choice if you move or renovate your home.

Calculating the Right Size

car inside the container van

Using Online Storage Calculators

Many storage facilities offer online calculators that can help you estimate the unit size based on your stored items. These tools are a great starting point.

Visualizing Your Space

If possible, visit the facility and visualize the space. It’s easier to gauge the size when you’re physically present.

Seeking Professional Advice

Don’t hesitate to ask the facility manager for advice. They have experience in helping customers choose the right size.

Packing Efficiently

Organizing Your Items

Keep frequently accessed items at the front and leave pathways to the back when packing. This makes retrieval more convenient.

Using Proper Packing Techniques

Use appropriate packing materials to prevent damage. Label boxes clearly to easily locate items later.

Tips to Maximize Space

Utilizing Shelving and Racks

Shelving and racks can help you take advantage of vertical space, leaving more room on the floor.

Creating Aisle Space

Leave aisles between stacks of boxes and furniture to access items without moving everything around.

Security Measures

Facility Security

Choose a facility with adequate security measures such as surveillance cameras, gated access, and onsite personnel.

Personal Locks and Security

Use a sturdy lock to secure your unit. This adds an extra layer of protection to your belongings.

See Also: How Safe is Self Storage?


Comparing Costs

Price Factors

Storage unit costs vary based on factors like location, unit size, and amenities. Compare different facilities to find the best deal.

Additional Costs to Consider

Factor in costs such as insurance, administration fees, and possible late fees when budgeting for storage.

See Also: How Much Does Self Storage Cost?


Signing the Lease

Reading the Terms and Conditions

Before signing the lease, carefully read and understand the terms and conditions. Be aware of rental duration, payment schedule, and cancellation policies.

Understanding Rental Agreements

Ask about flexible lease options and potential discounts for long-term rentals.



Choosing the right size self-storage unit requires thoughtful consideration of your storage needs, the types of items you’ll be storing, and your budget. Following the steps outlined in this guide, you can select a storage unit that fits your requirements confidently.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. Can I change my storage unit size later if needed?

    Many storage facilities allow you to switch to a different unit size if your needs change.

  2. Are there items I can’t store in a self-storage unit?

    Yes, items like perishables, flammable materials, and hazardous substances are typically prohibited from storing in self-storage units. Always check with the facility for a complete list of restricted items.

  3. How do I prevent my belongings from getting damaged in storage?

    To prevent damage, ensure items are properly packed and organized. Use packing materials like bubble wrap, packing paper, and furniture covers. Avoid stacking heavy items on fragile ones.

  4. Is insurance necessary for items in a self-storage unit?

    While storage facilities have security measures in place, it’s advisable to have insurance coverage for added protection. Some facilities offer insurance options, or you can check with your existing insurance provider.

  5. What security measures should I look for when choosing a storage facility?

    When choosing a facility, look for features like 24/7 surveillance, secure access control, well-lit premises, and on-site staff. These security measures ensure the safety of your stored items.