When looking for a new home, many people focus on their primary needs—number of bedrooms, how many bathrooms, neighborhood, schools, and yard. Depending on the size of your family, these are the non-negotiable aspects of finding the perfect place to live. In some circumstances, you get lucky and end up with an ample amount of storage. This could be in the form of an attic, a basement, a garage that’s bigger than your vehicle needs, or all three. If you have the extra storage space, that’s great. You can use your extra rooms for strategic storage to keep things out of the way and declutter your home. Unfortunately, not everything can be stored in these rooms. Due to the fluctuating temperatures and inconsistent humidity levels, some things will get ruined in these areas of your home. In this article, we’ll go over what to store in your attic, basement, and garage and what you should store in a climate controlled environment.
Consider Each Type of Storage Option
Your attic, basement, and garage all have different environments and are subject to different problems. Because of this, we encourage you to double check the conditions prior to putting anything of value away. For example, your attic is less likely to expose your things to water damage (unless you have a leak) than your basement is. So, the first step in this process is considering each type of storage option and what should go where.
Your attic storage is likely going to be the safest place to keep extra belongings. As we mentioned, you won’t have to worry about water damages and the ventilation will keep things from getting musty or moldy. However, attic storage can be subject to some intense temperature changes and most people tend to forget about things they put up there after a while. To keep your belongings safe, reserve your attic storage for decorations, travel accessories and bags, and durable fabrics.
It’s important to clarify that when we’re talking about basement storage, we’re talking about unfinished basements. If you have a finished basement, you can store just about anything down there as it has the same climate controls as the rest of your home. Just make sure that you keep things away from the furnace or water heater and try to store things off the ground just in case. If you have an unfurnished basement, your things will be more susceptible to mold and mildew, which can damage delicate items. Reserve your basement storage for toys, plastic furniture, and excess kitchen supplies.
If your garage is bigger than what you need for your car, it makes a great place to keep a few excess items that you use regularly. Just make sure that you don’t overcrowd your space, as it will become frustrating quickly if you’re parking your car inside. We recommend reserving your garage storage for things you use more frequently such as gardening tools, any work tools, and sports equipment.
Best Things to Store in Your Attic, Basement, and Garage
Once you’ve considered each of the different types of storage areas in your home, it’s important to double check your things to make sure they will withhold the climate. The first step is to make a plan and analyze your things for storage. Which items do you want to put into storage, regardless of where they go? Create separate piles for each and then place them in the following categories.
If you have seasonal or holiday decorations that aren’t made of paint or soft fabrics, you can store them in your attic, basement, or garage. While we recommend storing them in your attic, durable, synthetic materials will hold up in the varying environments. If you have decorations that are paintings or artwork, it’s probably a good idea to reserve those for climate controlled storage.
If you have a big family and you like to take trips often, you probably have a serious conglomerate of suitcases and travel bags. These can take up serious amounts of space, especially if they’re hard shell bags. To get them out of the way, throw them in your attic. The durable fabrics will keep them safe and reduce the chances of environmental damages.
With that being said, if you have any other durable fabrics that you need to get out of the way, they can go in your attic, basement, or garage as well. This means polyester material, crafting fabric, or even certain cotton materials are okay to store. If you’re going to be storing clothing, just make sure it’s properly protected to avoid any pests or exposure to dust/dirt.
Children’s toys are often quite durable, so they’re fine to store in places around your home. If you have a child actively playing with the toys, you’ll probably want to keep them in an easily accessible area like your basement, garage, or a playroom. If you’re saving them for another child or are holding on to the nostalgia, go ahead and transfer them to the attic.
Plastic furniture such as children’s furniture or patio furniture can easily be stored in your attic, basement, or garage without any risk. Just be careful as this usually takes up a lot of room and can make it difficult to access the other things in your home storage areas.
If you have any extra glass cups, pots, pans, dinner plates, bowls, or any other dish sets, they’re safe to store in uncontrolled environments. The materials aren’t subject to warping or molding and will be just as you left them. Just make sure that they’re properly padded and boxed away to avoid any breakage or accidents. This is also a great option if you’re looking at re-organizing your kitchen and need a little extra space to do so.
Gardening tools are durable and often used frequently throughout the year—depending on your garden. Keep them in your garage for easy access and to avoid bringing dirt inside your home.
If you have a tool bench or are constantly doing projects around your home, store your work tools in your garage. As with gardening tools, these are often durable and created for harsher environments. Just try to keep them organized to give yourself the most space and easily find them when you need.
If anyone in your family plays sports, you know how much equipment can start to build up. It’s usually bulky and dirty and needs a home of its own. The garage is a perfect place to keep your sports equipment. There are plenty of great ways to organize sporting equipment in your garage, you just have to get a little creative.
If you have other items that you want to store and they don’t fall into one of the categories above, make sure that you cross reference them with things that you should never store in your attic, basement, or garage.
Things You Should Never Store in Your Attic, Basement, or Garage
The following items should be reserved for climate controlled self storage units or kept inside your home—never stored in your attic, basement, or garage. These things are made of porous materials that are often easily damaged in high levels of humidity, fluctuating temperatures, or from dust accumulation over time.
- Pictures or Documents
- Delicate Fabrics
If you have any flammable or hazardous materials, make sure that you read the proper storage instructions for each item. Most self storage facilities do not allow the storage of flammable or hazardous materials, so you need to make sure that you take the proper precaution to avoid serious accident or injury.
If you have an attic, basement, or garage that you want to use for some extra self storage, great! It’s a good way to keep certain things close and easy to access. However, as we mentioned, make sure that you’re storing the appropriate things in these spaces. If you don’t have a climate controlled room it makes your things far more susceptible to damages—especially if you live in an area that experiences extreme seasons. To avoid clutter from piling up, or if you simply need more space, contact the professionals at The Lock Up Self Storage today. We offer temperature controlled self storage units in a variety of sizes to fit all of your needs and stay within budget. At The Lock Up Self Storage, we have all the amenities you’d expect in a premium self storage facility. Since all of our units are climate controlled, you don’t have to worry about anything losing value or getting ruined. We also offer flexible leasing options so you can feel confident that you’re only paying for what you need. To give you even more peace of mind, all of our locations are equipped with top-of-the-line security features including security-controlled gate access, motion-sensitive lighting, 24-hour camera monitoring, and perimeter alarms. Many of our locations offer electronic coded access specific to each tenant. To find a self storage unit, contact one of the representatives at The Lock Up Self Storage today. Give us a call at 1-866-327-LOCK or find a unit online today!