Self Storage: What NOT To StoreSelf Storage: What NOT To Store

Self Storage: The Rules

Remember that the owner of a self storage unit has ownership rights over every storage unit on the premises, including the one that you may be renting. That means that most of the rights, as well as the responsibilities, of ownership still belong to that owner. When you rent a self storage unit, you are agreeing to abide by all the rules of that self storage company. Every storage location is different, so be certain to check the regulations at your individual storage facility. Here are some of the basic items your storage unit company is likely to prohibit:

• Animals (including pets): While this would seem to be pretty obvious, you'd be shocked at what some people try to store. Despite being outright cruel and irresponsible, keeping animals in storage units is very likely to kill them, and at minimum the animals are likely to severely damage the units.

• Firearms and ammunition: There are a few problems with storing firearms or ammunition in a storage unit. The first problem is that in the event of a fire these items can be explosive, endangering the lives of rescue workers and others. The second problem is that these items invite potential theft. The third issue is that many state and local laws expressly prohibit these items from storage units.

• Flammable liquids: Again, fire is the main concern here, and therefore all kinds of flammable liquids (gasoline, kerosene, diesel, motor oil, turpentine, oil paints, etc.) are prohibited, and usually by law as well as your rental contract.

• Perishable items: Food is the most obvious culprit in the perishable items category, but it also includes beverages and plants.

• Hazardous items or waste: While I am a bit puzzled as to why someone would risk storing hazardous waste in a self storage unit, it does bear to keep in mind that anything that might be hazardous is likely to be prohibited from being stored. A general rule of thumb is that if an item can cause harm if someone is exposed to it, it isn't allowed to be stored in a storage unit.

• Illegal items: While I would think that this would be obvious to everyone, I include this for the sake of completeness. Illegal items such as drugs, drugs paraphernalia, stolen items, or any other property that is illegal to own may not be stored in a storage unit. You'll want to check with the manager of your specific storage unit for a complete list; however, if you're in doubt, you should assume that you shouldn't be putting it in your self storage unit.

• Objectionable items: The objectionable items category is a broad one, and includes anything that they produce undesired odors or sounds, especially if those odors or sounds can be detected outside of the storage unit. The storage unit owner may expand this category to include other items.

• Items prohibited in your contract: As you have probably gathered by now, self storage unit owners have a wide berth in terms of determining what can't be stored. That's why it's a good idea to read the contract in detail, even though most of us just race to sign on the dotted line. Not knowing what's prohibited could end up causing your items to be left on the street- so please be careful!

And there you have it- the items to avoid storing in your self storage unit.

Good luck with your move!
by Timothy Clendaniel
References and Bibliography
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