What you cannot put in a storage unit
All storage facilities have their own rules, and that includes guidelines on prohibited items. Here are the 10 items you likely can’t put in a storage unit, regardless of who you’re renting from:
· Stolen and illegal goods
· Weapons and ammunition
· Hazardous materials
· Priceless and irreplaceable items
· Live or dead animals
· Wet items
Here is what to know about each of the items on this list, including the reasoning behind why they are not allowed in self storage.
Perishable food items are magnets for attracting rodents, bugs, ants, roaches, mold, and mildew, and even in a climate controlled unit they are not going to stay fresh for very long.
Always assume that perishable items aren’t allowed in your storage unit, and if you have a question about storing a non-perishable items and your rental agreement is unclear regarding this, ask the storage operator to find out what their policies are and what they recommend. You may be able to store certain shelf stable food items if they are kept in tightly sealed containers, but it’s best to know ahead of time.
2. Stolen and illegal property
If you are in possession of stolen property or illegal goods, you are not going to have any luck keeping it in your storage unit. Not only are self-storage facilities well-monitored, but their employees are also liable to call the police if they suspect that there is something suspicious going on. Most rental agreements contain language that will allow the storage facility to enter the storage unit if illegal activity is suspected.
3. Weapons and ammunition
Firearms, ammunition, and other weaponry are almost always on the list of items you cannot put in a storage unit. That’s because there are a lot of liability issues involved on the part of the facility, plus the obvious safety issues. It can also create a number of issues for the facility if your unit goes up for auction.
4. Hazardous materials
If an item is toxic, flammable, or combustible, then you are not going to be able to keep it in a storage unit. This includes:
· Paint thinner
· Chlorine bleach
· Propane tanks
· Compressed gas
· Radioactive materials
Some storage facilities will allow household chemicals in household quantities, such as cleaners and pesticides. Be sure to check your rental agreement or ask the facility operator.
5. Priceless and irreplaceable items
If you can’t live without it, it should not go in your storage unit, period. While it’s not a matter of safety or liability, there are always some risks taken when you put an item in storage, including the possibility that you will face some sort of hardship later on that will lead to your belongings being sold at auction. Likewise, while it’s unlikely, unfortunate events could also take place on the premises that destroy your items, such as a fire, flooding, or theft. Remember there are a lot of tenants in and out of the facility and they may not all be honest.
But if it’s truly irreplaceable to you, you are better off keeping it nearby. Some facilities have a maximum property value limit in their rental agreements.
6. Live or dead animals
It probably goes without saying that, live or dead, animals cannot be kept in storage units. While this may seem like common sense, you would be surprised what some people will put in their storage unit.
If you have cash or other types of currency to store, opt for a bank safe deposit box instead of stashing it away in a self storage unit. You will simply have more protection for these items in a bank than you would through a storage facility.
Fur clothing requires very specific climate conditions in order to be properly preserved, including strict requirements around temperature and light. As such, many storage companies put furs on the list of items you can’t put in a storage unit. If you need to store fur, look for a specialty storage provider instead, since they can ensure that the right conditions will be met.
Tires often on the banned list of storage items, and for two goods reasons: one, tire fires are intense and extremely hazardous, and two, if the storage company gets stuck dealing with left behind tires, they face steep disposal fees.
10. Wet items
You can store items that are intended to get wet, such as kayaks, boats and scuba gear, but they are going to need to be dry before you shut the door. That’s because wet items tend to grow mold and mildew in dark, closed off spaces, which is exactly what your storage unit is. Be sure to allow refrigerators and freezers to defrost and dry before going into storage. Once you close that door with your items wet, mold and mildew will grow and spread to everything you own in that unit. Worse, it may spread to your neighbor’s unit and you could be liable.