The Big Apple's notorious for its small apartments, so you will be more likely to need a storage unit in New York City than if you were moving elsewhere in the country.

And because you'll be using it more like a large garage for storage items you might use frequently, you'll want to make sure you're entirely comfortable with it. We'll help you by telling you what to look for; what questions to ask; and what items to store.

Your Options
Many New York City movers offer storage services. It can save you time and effort, but it usually costs more.

You can also choose a self-storage facility, where you do the loading and unloading.

With mobile storage, a large, portable container is dropped off at your place, you load it, and the container is stored on your property, or at a large facility with other storage containers.

Investigate the security measures for the facility you wish to choose. Are the security measures different during regular business hours versus after-hours? What kind of neighborhood is the storage facility in? Would you feel comfortable visiting at off-hours? Do they have closed-circuit TV?

Location Location Location
It might seem obvious, but consider using a facility close to home, particularly if you can foresee needing access to it frequently.

Whatever you choose, take note of access times. Some have 24-hour access, others have more normal business hours, and some facilities, like mobile storage centers, require 24-hour notice to access your unit.

Discuss your specific current and future needs with the storage facility. This will help companies offer you the most suitable unit for your stuff and your budget.

The price range depends on size, storage period and any special needs. Special offers and discounts from the storage facilities will be fewer during busy periods, and storage companies will try to offer incentives to persuade you to commit to a longer rental period. You'll often find deals for the first month free, so look around.

Don't choose solely on price; security and other factors are key as well. Get recommendations from friends and family, and check with the Better Business Bureau for any complaints about a specific company.

Insurance is an important issue to investigate, especially if you plan to store high-value items. Storage companies offer their own insurance, and it is recommended to find out about the facility's procedures in cases such as fire, flood, etc. Make sure you fully understand how the insurance they are offering will cover any potential damage. Also, check with your own agent to see if you renters insurance or homeowners insurance will cover you.

Special Needs
You may be looking for a storage unit that provides climate control and/or other special storage accessories and needs – humidity and extreme temperatures can wreck havoc with some of your goods, like furs. When you speak with the company's sales representatives, state your specific requirements so that they can find the best option.

Do I Really It?
When deciding whether to store your items, consider what you really need to keep, what can go and what may be needed some day. Keeping only what you really need will reduce storage costs and you won't have to move them again later. Here are some of the questions you should ask yourself:

Do I need the item?

Will I ever use this item again?

When did I use it last?

Does it have sentimental value?

Will you really ever repair the items that need to be repaired?

Clothing items -- if you have not worn a specific garment, will you ever wear it?

Throw It Away, Give It Away, or Sell It
After you have made your final decisions regarding all the items, think about how to dispose of everything you have decided you don't need and will not store. Throw the items out, give them away, or donate them to various charities.

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