Are You Paying for a Storage Unit Each Month?

June 25, 2015
Renee Ory

Reducing clutter from your life might seem like a no-brainer, but many consumers invest in storage facilities believe that the contents will lead to savings in the future.

According to the Self Storage Association, approximately 7.0 sq. ft. of self storage space exists for every person in the nation and that “it is physically possible that every American could stand – all at the same time – under the total canopy of self-storage roofing.” 

  • The self storage industry has been one of the fastest-growing sectors of the US commercial real estate industry over the period of the last 40 years
  • There are more than 48,500 self storage facilities in the US as of 2014
  • 8.96% of all American households currently rent a self storage unit (10.85 million of the 113.3 million US households in 2013)
  • Total self storage rentable space in the US is just above 2.3 billion square feet. That figure represents more than 78 square miles of rentable self storage space or an area approximately twice the size of Lafayette.

The common misconception is that by storing old furniture, clothing and other belongings, you can save money by not having to repurchase these items when/if you need them in the future. Unlike storing extra belongings in your garage, keeping units at storage facilities cost money.

Storage unit prices are determined based on the size of the unit, the location of the storage facility and other special storage unit features. Prices can become very costly per month:

  • Small storage unit (5 ft. x 5 ft.): $55
  • Medium storage unit (10 ft. x 10 ft.): $125
  • Large storage unit (20 ft. x 20 ft.): About $445

The most common storage unit size is the medium storage capacities, which can hold enough items to fill three rooms in a house. Considering that Americans often pay for years of storage space, the convenience that this service provides can lead to thousands of dollars in losses. This expense can equate to a car payment or monthly grocery bill for many households.

People choose to pay for storage facilities for many reasons:


You may have a large collection that, 10 years ago, promised to make you a profit. It’s not worth the thousands of dollars you’ll spend on storing these items long term.


If you’ve moved into a smaller home, but feel the need to keep the dining room set that doesn’t fit in your new home “just in case,” you’ve probably considered renting a storage unit. Do you really want to keep that outdated dining set from 12 years ago? That’s $21,600 you’ve spent to save money on a $700 dining room set. 


You might have been reluctant to donate, so you’ve decided it’s smarter to keep old junk in hopes of reselling it in a garage sale. The fact is you won’t be getting near the cost of a month’s storage unit rent for that outdated item.


By saying you don’t have time to clean out your storage unit, you’re really saying you have money to waste. Most people simply need to get motivated to organize, sort, sell or donate the items contained in storage facilities. It’s easy to forget that your $100 per month rental adds up quickly into thousands.

If you need help clearing your items from a storage unit, give us a call at (337) 296-5506.

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