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Self Storage vs. Portable Storage

General Tips

January 31, 2018

If you’re looking for additional storage outside of your home, it’s important to understand the differences between two of the most common options: self-storage and portable storage. No matter your reason for needing the extra space – preparing for a move, putting seasonal items away, downsizing, cleaning out a loved one’s home, storing excess business inventory or other reasons, there are many benefits of self-storage and portable storage services. Before you make your decision, read on to learn exactly what each option entails, including key features and benefits of both.

What is self-storage?

Self-storage facilities offer many options for keeping your belongings safe. You can choose a specific sized unit based on how much stuff you want to store, from small lockers to units big enough to store the furniture from a four bedroom home. You’ll have access to your unit which is secured with a lock, and a key which only you possess. There may be additional security surrounding the facility such as a gate and keypad entry. Access to units will vary facility to facility, with some available 24/7 and some limited to specific hours. Depending on your needs, you can even select a climate-controlled, drive-up or interior unit. Generally, you’ll sign a month-to-month lease and stay there for as many months as you need the storage.

What is portable storage?

Unlike self-storage units that are located at a facility, portable storage units are located on-site at your home or business for packing. You can keep these personal storage units onsite as needed, filling them up and emptying them out as you choose. Once the unit is fully packed, it is typically moved to a portable storage container facility or to a desired location like your new home. Lease options are flexible and you’ll need to inquire about costs for delivery and pick up and any interim visits you want to make once the unit has been picked up.

What are the benefits of self-storage and portable storage?

Self-storage is almost always a better long-term solution, especially if you are staying local as it is cost effective i.e, no pick up and delivery charges and no up charges each time you want to access portable storage after it has been picked up. For those planning a move across country, portable storage services may be a better option since the unit can be transported to your new home.

While portable storage can be convenient (your unit might be located just steps from your door for packing) many customers prefer a self-storage facility for several reasons. Some don’t like the eyesore of keeping a portable unit in their driveway or at their business particularly since the units only security is the lock placed on them (no cameras or security systems). They prefer packing their belongings into a unit that is out of sight. Consider how often you’ll need to gain access to your stored items, too. If you’ll need access often, self-storage might make more sense since your unit won’t be tucked away in a portable storage container facility which will charge you extra for access.

Besides aesthetics and access, safety is a major factor in deciding between the two. A storage facility offers added security benefits that you won’t get with a portable unit. In addition to gated entry ways, most facilities have security cameras and ample lighting. Many have individually alarmed units, and they may even have a resident manager onsite at all time.

In addition, if you are storing anything that might need climate control, you won’t find this option in a portable storage unit, but you can take advantage of this feature at a self-storage facility. Keep in mind that certain items require climate control and may not be suitable for self-storage or portable storage so be sure to discuss any concerns before signing your rental lease.

ezStorage currently offers self-storage units only.

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What size home are you storing?

1 Bedroom Apartment

2 Bedroom Apartment

2-3 Bedroom House

4+ Bedroom House

Single Dorm Room

Studio Apartment

5x5 locker

5' x 5' (25 sq ft) (Locker)

Half the height of our standard 5' x 5', our lockers will hold personal items, clothes boxes, business records and sale rep materials. This is our smallest storage unit. Available at most locations.

5x5 unit size

5' x 5' Storage Unit (25 Sq. Ft.) (standard closet size)

How big is a 5x5? A 5x5 will hold personal items, clothes, boxes, small furniture items, business records and sales rep materials.

5x10 unit size

5' x 10' Storage Units (50 Sq. Ft.) (walk-in closet size)

Will hold small amounts of furniture, boxspring and mattress, business records and other small items.

10x10 unit size

10' x 10' Storage Units (100 Sq. Ft.) (standard bedroom size)

Will hold a 1 bedroom apartment w/major appliances, other furniture and supplies.

10x15 unit size

10' x 15' Storage Unit (150 Sq. Ft.) (1/2 standard one-car garage size)

What will fit in a 10x15? This size storage-unit will hold contents of a 2 bedroom apartment or house including appliances and boxes, or commercial storage inventory.

10x20 unit size

10' x 20' Storage Unit (200 Sq. Ft.) (standard one-car garage size)

Will hold contents of a 3 bedroom apartment or house plus major appliances and lots of boxes. Business storage, ideal for storage racks.

10x30 unit size

10' x 30' Storage Unit (300 Sq. Ft.) (standard two-car garage size)

Will hold contents of a 4 to 5 bedroom house with major appliances and room for boxes. Business storage for files, equipment and permanent records.

Renting Online is Simple

  1. Select the storage unit size you’re interested in.
  2. Click on “Rent Now” and follow the steps.
  3. Select the autopay option.
  4. Once completed, you will receive an email with your storage unit number and access code.
  5. To reduce person-to-person contact, don’t forget to bring your own lock. Don’t already have a lock? No problem you can stop by the rental office to buy one on your first visit!