Start by gathering as many boxes as you think you will need as well as tape, markers, and packing material (e.g., foam shipping noodles, bubble wrap, packing paper or towels).
If possible, try to use uniformly sized boxes for easy stacking.
Make up an inventory list of your items and keep it in a safe place (at home or in a safe deposit box) away from the unit.
Prepare your space by placing a protective cover on the floor under your goods.
If renting a drive up/exterior unit, place your storage items on 2x4 boards or on pallets to guard against dampness. The concrete floor may become cold and damp.
Plan your storage space. Place items that you may need to access often in the front of the unit.
Do not store anything COMBUSTIBLE (e.g., paint thinner, gasoline, solvents, or paint).
Try to leave an aisle down the center of the storage unit for easier access. Leave a small space between the walls and boxes to allow for air circulation.
Stack heavier boxes on the bottom and lighter boxes on top.
Be sure your boxes are strong enough to hold 25-30 pounds (although we suggest not putting too much in each box).
List contents of boxes on all four sides; number the boxes and seal with tape.
Wrap It Up
Dishes and glasses should be wrapped in paper and packed in sturdy boxes. Stack them on top.
Pictures and mirrors should be wrapped in cardboard, marked “FRAGILE” and stacked on end.
Furniture with drawers can be utilized as storage places for pictures, knick-knacks, china, silverware, small items, etc. Wrap them in tablecloths, towels, or blankets to prevent breakage.
Larger appliances make excellent “packaging cases” for blankets, towels, tablecloths and clothes.
Put TVs and other electronics in the rear of your unit.
Shovels, hoes, rakes, and hoses can be stored together in empty trash cans. Stack extra cans inside each other.
Tables that have removable legs should be broken down to save space.
Sofas and Loveseats
Sofas and loveseats can be stored on end to save floor space. Wrap cushions in plastic and place on top of sofas.
Sharp or Heavy Objects
Avoid placing sharp or heavy objects on top of upholstered furniture.
Cover stuffed furniture with cardboard or blankets to protect against dust.
If you stand mattresses on their sides, prop them up so they stand straight. Otherwise, they tend to bend out of shape and become lumpy.
Wipe any items made of metal - bikes, metal tables, tools, etc. - with machine oil to prevent rusting.