Choosing to use self-storage is a smart move when you need some extra space, but can't afford to buy a bigger place. Once you decide to store some items and have found a unit, you need to pack them carefully and store them in an organized way. Proper packing of items is essential - it can save you lots of space and therefore money. Many people think that a storage unit is just a place where you can throw everything and make a mess, but this usually costs a lot. Rent only the size of unit you actually need. This can be determined by packing and preparing all your items for storing. Once you do that and you are ready to go, you should also think how to organize the space you will use. If you have to go often to the storage unit, you need perfect organization inside, no matter what you are storing. You don't want to get lost in a pile of things every time you enter the space. All your items need to be arranged in an accessible way so that you'll always know where to find them. The first step of packing the storage unit is to put your items in categories. Kitchen items should be in a box labeled accordingly. Don't mix items inside the boxes - you never know what you may need at some point. Opening every single box, searching for a specific thing will cost you time and effort. One way to keep track of the categories of items is by using numbers. Draw a map of your self-storage unit and number the sports where the different boxes are. This is a great way to keep track of how much space you are actually using, in case you decide to downsize. When you start packing the unit itself, arrange your boxes along the walls, but leave some space between each box and the wall. One way is to put the bulkiest items in the middle of the unit. You can also arrange the heavier boxes and items at the rear of the space, allowing enough walking space and ideally a space for using a dolly. Use boxes that are similar in size and put the ones you will be accessing more often close to the entrance. Place lighter boxes on heavier ones and utilize the height of the space. Choose only sturdy moving boxes for the storage unit. Even if you find used ones, make sure they are in perfect condition, can be sealed and are stain and moisture free. Some self-storage companies could offer you quality boxes if you don't have any. Most moving boxes come in three sizes: medium, large and extra-large. The medium boxes are 18x14x12 inches, the large ones are 20x20x15 inches and the extra-large ones are 23x23x16 inches. You can also use plastic containers for some items, but they are more expensive because they protect your items from moisture for longer. If you are storing cars or motorbikes, cover them with protective canvas sheeting and make sure you have enough space between them. When you store items for longer you can use bubble wrap. Since it is transparent, it also makes identifying the items easier. For storing clothes invest in proper wardrobe boxes, which have bars inside, allowing you to hang your clothes. You can also make use of vacuum-sealed bags for linen, blankets and other similar items. If you have lots of items to store, use the space as efficiently as possible.