When you're considering using a self storage facility or a mini storage facility, you're probably
wondering if it's really worth the time and money that it's going to take to store your belongings
or if you'd be better off ditching the items that you're considering storing.
Sell or Donate Your Belongings?
There are two ways to look at this: (1) selling, donating or simply throwing things away is one option
that can certainly save you money. However, how much time and money is it going to cost you down the
road to replace the items that you sell, donate or even throw away? (2) Your other option is taking
a longer term outlook and storing these items in self storage, as long as their long term value outweighs
the storage cost (which it often does).
A Real World Self Storage Case Study
This is a real quandary for many of us and one that must be carefully explored when you're considering
storage of any items. Let's look at a real life scenario and what can happen if you decide to not
invest in storage.
You've recently divorced and you've moved into an apartment with literally nothing except a few
personal belongings. Fortunately, your finances are in great shape and you're able to invest in new
furnishings for your apartment and you set about methodically purchasing just the right pieces to
add to the decor of your new home.
Sadly, a year later you've lost your job and you're collecting unemployment insurance and fortunately
it's sufficient to continue to cover your rent but now you're dipping into your savings for every day
living expenses, but you're determined to fight on until you find another job. Like so many of us
however, you're battling an extremely competitive job market and slowly your savings is dwindling
and unfortunately your last possible date to collect unemployment is approaching.
Now you're in panic mode and you realize that before you find yourself sinking into further debt,
you decide that the time has come to move in with a friend until you can get back on your
"financial feet" but that creates an entirely new set of problems that you haven't even
considered - what do you do with all of the furniture that you've just purchased, not to mention your
personal belongings? In this instance, self storage is probably the best answer for you.
Despite The Challenges, Self Storage Is Probably The Best Option
Let's face it, you invested heavily in furniture at a time when your finances were in good shape and
now you've found the pieces you really like and they're brand new. If you try to sell these pieces
you're certainly not going to recoup your investment and when you do get yourself re-established,
you're going to have to reinvest in purchasing all new furniture and you remember only too well the
time it took for you to find all these pieces. Under these circumstances it simply isn't prudent to
sell all of your belongings and start over again from scratch.
This is clearly a worst case scenario, but unfortunately it happens every single day. In today's
economic times we no longer have the benefit of assuming that our current financial status is going
to be that way a year, five years or even six months from now.
Important Factors To Consider When Deciding If Self Storage Is Right For You
Before you consider selling your belongings versus putting them into self storage, you will want to
carefully evaluate a number of factors including:
A) How new are your belongings? The newer your belongings are the greater reason
for storing them versus selling them. The money that you've invested in purchasing them will not be
recaptured by a "fire sale" and you'll simply have to reinvest as much (or more) money to
B) How much time am I going to need to replace my belongings? This is a hidden cost
of selling furniture. If you've invested time in buying furniture and other belongings then you're
actually "spending" a valuable asset, your time. Saving time when you move into another
home is a valuable asset to have on your side.
C) What's the "intrinsic" value of your property? Forget how much money
you've invested in various items, there is a personal value to items as well. If you've collected
belongings that you simply can't bear to part with, you're going to want to store them. Often when
we're looking at self storage options we're going through an emotionally charged period in our lives.
Often, knowing that your personal property is safe and accessible can help your peace of mind.
You're encouraged to not make a snap decision about selling off your belongings versus storing them.
Storage charges can be costly but the fact of the matter is relieving yourself of your belongings can
cost you time, money and peace of mind. Want to learn even more? You may wish to check out our article
about saving money on self storage.