When venturing into something different, such as storing your things in an unknown place for an undetermined amount of time, you want to make sure you know and understand all the terminology involved. In every industry there is a certain protocol, and the self-storage industry is no different. Being on top of everything is key in making sure you have all the information you need. Here are some terms that you will find very useful in dealing with a self-storage facility:
Access – most facilities have early and late access through key codes or key fobs that will allow you to enter only on your floor.
Automobile Storage – This allows your vehicles to be safely stored in indoor or outdoor facilities, based on weather conditions and preference.
Auction – This occurs once a month at a facility and allows outside customers the chance to bid on the contents of a unit sight unseen.
Boat Storage – These facilities are usually outside and covered with security personnel on hand around-the-clock to man the spaces. They are built to house all sizes and types of boats and boating equipment.
Contract – This is the document between the customer and the facility that guarantees the use of the space for a certain amount of time.
Carts – These are usually flat-bed carts that are available for customer use during business hours.
Clean-out – Every unit must be returned clean by the customer prior to vacating.
Climate-controlled units – These are inside storage units that are climate controlled to avoid humidity and exposure to the elements.
Drive-up Units – These units are usually found outside or have outside access and may or may not be climate-controlled.
Dollies – These may or may not be available at the facility for customer use.
Exterior Lighting – All facilities should have an exterior lighting system in place for added protection and for customers arriving after regular business hours.
Exterior security – Most facilities should have exterior security systems, either by camera or security personnel.
Exits – All facilities should have numerous well lighted and easily located exits.
Insurance – Each facility usually gives you the option of purchasing insurance to protect your belongings while they are being stored at the facility.
Inventory – Each customer should have a personal inventory of all their items.
Keypad access – Some facilities have keypad codes which much be used to gain access into your unit.
Moving supplies – Each facility office carries a variety of moving supplies including boxes, locks, wrapping paper, tape and more.
Multi-floor facilities – These are facilities that have more than one floor and are generally climate-controlled units.
Outside units – These are drive-up units that are generally used for outside tools, etc. These units allow some access to outside elements.
Online access – Many facilities are upgrading their systems to allow online access which will show your payment history, account information and more.
Payment – There are a number of options available, including online, in person, by mail and by phone.
Roll-up doors – Most units have roll-up garage-style doors for convenience and complete access of all the space without interference from a traditional door.
Security cameras – Almost all facilities have a security system that includes outside and inside cameras.
Wine storage – This is a specialized unit that is climate-controlled and specially designated for the storage of wine.
These terms should help you get started in knowing the world of self-storage just a little bit better. Good luck!