6 Things to Look Out for When Choosing a Commercial Storage Location

6 Things to Look Out for When Choosing a Commercial Storage Location

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You will run into a lot of options with commercial storage. While some of the features are hard to pass up, there are six core things that you should always prioritize. Heavy equipment storage isn’t cheap, and some companies are built better than others for your usage. Use the below tips to familiarize yourself with the most important features of a commercial storage location. 

6. Cost Per Square Foot

Instead of looking at overall price, pay close attention to the cost per square foot. This is better than looking at the full price of storage after taxes. With the square foot price, you’ll get a much better deal since it considers how much space is needed. Contracts that allow you to specify a size for storage can have surprising upsides when looking at their average values. Companies can also accurately predict how much expanded storage will run if their operation grows. 

Without going by cost per square foot, you are limited to sizes that may not be compatible with what you need. On top of that, any type of expansion will cost more than it should upfront. Sometimes storage companies don’t offer price per square foot, but that doesn’t mean it’s not available. Always inquire about this so that you gain an advantage in negotiations. 

5. Security

There is no point in storing goods if they are not secure. A place that looks secure doesn’t always have the guarantee of being protective. Instead of going by looks, check the company out. Have there been any reports against the company for losing goods? Have any break-ins been attempted in the past year? The idea is to find out if the place you plan on storing your goods is a common target to criminals. 

Once you get that out of the way, now it’s time to check out the location itself. Are there cameras in key areas? Are there secure check-ins for all storage units? The staff is the last line of defense, so their competence will go a long way in guaranteeing that your goods are safe. If the staff does not look professional, then no amount of hardware security will protect your goods from potential thieves. 

4. Accessibility

Accessibility can mean multiple things. The first is whether the facility has drive-up storage units or areas where trucks can unload. This is a huge time saver for companies of all sizes. Even if you don’t make frequent trips to the facility, this is a valuable feature that shouldn’t be overlooked. Security needs to be tight for this feature, so cross-reference it with #5 on this guide. All pick ups need to be screened by trained personnel before access is allowed. 

The second part of accessibility comes down to hours of operation. Companies on a specific schedule will find this the most important feature of any commercial storage location. When your pickup and drop off times are the same, then having a facility with normal business hours is fine. If your company keeps irregular times, then a 24-hour storage facility is a luxury that is too good to pass up. Sometimes a truck that is running behind can throw everything off. With a 24-hour window, that is no longer a concern. While having this option isn’t mandatory, it offers a level of flexibility that every business should consider. 

3. Protection Against Natural Elements

Storage that protects against theft can still be susceptible to natural elements. Facilities need to be setup to protect items against damage from outside weather. This is a little more complicated than it sounds, and usually falls under climate-controlled storage. With this feature, businesses can store documents, furniture, files and other important items. So even in a humid or cold environment, the contents of storage will stay at a safe temperature. There are a few additional benefits to having climate-controlled storage.

Items of different types can be placed together without worry in climate-controlled storage. This helps maximize space when you need to store items of irregular size. In some cases, insurance won’t cover items lost in storage if the facility doesn’t have climate-controlled space. With a combo of theft and natural element protection, you get the best of both worlds. Your profits are protected in the easiest way possible while they’re in storage. Pay attention to any additional costs associated with this feature and determine whether it is worth the uptick in price per square footage. 

2. Extras

It’s always nice to have a storage facility that provides extras. Small things like boxes, moving supplies and a consistent layout are fantastic feature additions. These extras are also helpful in a pinch when you are low on supplies and short on time. When a box of documents breaks open before they make it to storage, having additional boxes available for purchase is a lifesaver. Extras are a small convenience that won’t add to the price of storage. They are available when you need them but won’t make the price of the contract outrageous. 

1. Software Additions

Commercial storage facilities are now offering an easy way to manage account and storage information online. Whether through a mobile website or a branded app, both offer the information you need on the go. This is an invaluable feature that should be prioritized since it saves time and puts you in full control of all products. For facilities that support it, on the fly changes can be seen in real time. The level of control offered with software will be dependent on the storage facilities current setup. Since it is unlikely that a storage company will implement software additions in the middle of a contract, make the choice early on whether this is a necessary feature. 

Wrap Up

Take your time when finding the right place to store your goods. Sometimes it takes a little more research than normal, but in the end the time is well worth it. Business storage requires professionalism from top to bottom. Whether large or small, your options should meet all of your storage needs.

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