Storage units are a popular option for small businesses that need extra space to store inventory, supplies, records, and other items. They provide you with flexibility, particularly if your business grows faster than you anticipated or has a large inventory to keep track of. Using them is also less expensive than renting or buying an additional building for storage purposes.
Choosing the proper units means considering some factors, including location and cost. You’ll need to look into materials as well, such as steel and metal, for your storage needs. If you’re thinking about renting stores or self-storing for your business, here’s what you need to take account of:
You’ll likely need to access your storage unit from time to time. Hence, the location of the storage unit is critical. Ideally, you want the storage unit to be as close to your business as possible, so you can access it quickly and easily. The closer the unit is, the more you’ll use it and the better value for money your business enjoys. But if the unit is too far away, there’s a good chance you won’t use it to its full potential because you’ll find it an inconvenience.
While it’s essential to think about the cost of a storage unit before signing the lease or self-storing, the cost isn’t always the most crucial factor. Keep in mind that while some storage units offer low prices, it’s unlikely these will offer you the same level of service or convenience. As with all things in life, you generally get what you pay for.
If your budget doesn’t allow for an expensive storage unit, however, you can still make it work. The trick is to shop around and negotiate.
If you’re leasing and a particular facility has a price that seems too high, but you still love everything else about them, such as their location, cleanliness, ask if they’re willing to lower their price. Moreover, you can ask storage stores if they have any special offers or discounts on self-storing items. Taking advantage of these perks will save you hundreds of dollars over time, so don’t hesitate to do your research and ask questions.
Security is something you should be thinking about for your small business. Thus, it’s another factor to consider when choosing storage units.
If security is a high priority, look for features, like 24/7 video monitoring and alarm systems. Many facilities have either one or the other but not both. For self-storage, you can get these products and hire an installer to help.
You may also choose a facility that only allows access through keyless entry codes instead of padlocks or keys. This kind of locking system makes it easy to change access settings if someone leaves the company or loses their code. Alternatively, you can set your own access settings if you’re building your facilities.
The storage facility’s accessibility is vital to take into consideration as well. You can ask yourself the following questions to determine accessibility:
- Will the unit be easily accessible?
- How often will you need to access your storage unit?
- Is there guaranteed access?
- Are you flexible with access times, like during evenings and holidays?
- What is the cancellation policy?
- Is there a minimum rental period? (Note that some storage facilities require a six-month commitment.)
By answering these questions, you’ll easily find out just how accessible the storage unit is. If possible, put into writing what kind of guarantees are offered on accessibility and at what times.
If you need a storage unit that allows you to expand your business, it’s best to get the largest one available. You’re saving money in the long run by paying for space you’ll use later. However, if you’re storing supplies for your small business or a few pieces of equipment, getting a smaller storage unit will be a practical option.
Don’t underestimate how much stuff can fit into a storage space. Storage units come in all sizes, ranging from 5×5 feet to 60×60 feet. When picking the right size for your business, ask yourself these questions:
- How large is my business?
- How much space do I need right now?
- Do I need a unit that’s suitable for business expansion?
The storage unit you opt for is unique to your business and dependent on the goals you have for your company, so take the time to consider your options carefully. The most important thing is to avoid making a hasty decision. Assess what you’re looking for, then find a storage facility that meets your requirements.