The Paradox of Self Storage

Photo by Roger Schrenk
How much are sentimental things costing you?
How much are sentimental things costing you?

Don’t worry! This isn’t another article meant to shame storage renters or skewer a legitimate and necessary industry; instead, it’s an honest look at what renters (and often their families) are left with at the end of their storage experience. 

Are you spending money to save money? (Photo by: Roger Schrenk) Are you spending money to save money?

The purpose of storage has always been straightforward—to gather and protect your stuff until you need it in the future. But when exactly is the future, and will your needs be the same then as they are now? 

 

After more than 15 years of handling the liquidation of estates in the DC area, there hasn’t been a single time we’ve emptied a storage unit in which the content value was greater than the expense paid to store it. In fact there is a direct correlation between a renter’s perceived value of the items (financially and emotionally) and how long he/she chooses to store them—one always justifies the other. Eventually though, time does runs out, and renters can either no longer afford the monthly expense or they die leaving their families with the burden. So what was once valuable for whatever reason is now either worthless or an additional headache for loved ones. 

If you can't see it, do you need it? (Photo by: Roger Schrenk) If you can't see it, do you need it?

The only way to avoid this outcome is to be realistic about your stuff—what’s it worth and when will you need it. If the numbers don't add up, consider selling now!