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What Can & Can’t I Store in a Public Storage Unit?

Self-storage is all about convenience and freeing up space. If you’re reading our post, we’re guessing it’s because you did a brief search on what you can and what you can’t store in a public storage unit. It’s a reasonable question to ask before, just like most things in life, there are rules and exceptions -plus usually grey areas between.

No matter your reasons for seeking a public storage unit, we’re speculating you rank somewhere on the scale between info-savvy and street-smart. So, you likely don’t need to be told that you’re not allowed to store stolen items, pets, or things likely to explode in self-sabotage.

As your brief googling probably proved, there are plenty of lists about what you can and can’t store in a self-storage public unit – and most of them are similar, straightforward, and appeal to good, old-fashioned common sense. Think of our post as your common-sense public storage guide.

At a glance

Public storage units have strict rules about what you can keep in a storage unit. You can typically store anything that’s not on a list of prohibited goods – but those things will vary by company. Whether you need storage because you wrap up a remodel or lost your home, double-check to make sure you don’t plan to store any of these things:

  • Firearms
  • Fur clothing
  • Food
  • Hazardous materials
  • Loving and dead things
  • Priceless and irreplaceable items
  • Money
  • Stolen goods
  • Tires

What can you store in a public storage unit?

The best thing about public storage units is that you can store almost anything. As long as the goods fit inside the storage space and aren’t breaking any rules, it’s fair game. The most common possession in storage units are valuables from your home and vehicles.

Here’s a sample list of things you can usually put in a storage container:

  • Books
  • Artwork
  • Dryers
  • Boxes
  • Furniture
  • Electronics
  • Home décor
  • Lamps
  • Mattresses
  • Musical instruments
  • Newspapers
  • Stoves
  • Ovens
  • Tables
  • Sports equipment
  • Wine

The most common things in storage units are household things such as appliances, boxes, and seasonal decorations. Storage firms also provide clients with climate-controlled storage units commonly used to store sensitive goods such as furniture, clothing, and electronics.

Climate-controlled storage units allow you to store anything that’s sensitive to temperature changes. These are ideal for sensitive items like books, furniture, and electronics that don’t resist well in severe temperatures or humidity.

Don’t Leave Your Goods in a Storage Unit

Your possessions may be sold at a storage unit auction if you leave them in public storage units and fail to pay the rent. These companies usually don’t like to hold an auction as they lose capital and feel like jerks, so make sure you contact a site manager to consider your options before it’s too late.

If you’re unsure about whether or not you can store a certain item, don’t hesitate to contact your storage provider and ask. It’s a smart move to get heads up in advance so that you’re not left scrambling later on.


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