When, Why And Why Not To Use A Self-Storage Unit

- ORGANIZING TIPS AND TOOLS, Disaster and Preparation, Sorting, Storage, Stress Management, Time and Money Management 2 Comments »

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During our recent, devastating and historic floods in northern Colorado, over 20,000 homes were destroyed or damaged. Not included in this number were self-storage units, lined up like horse-race gates waiting for nervous horses to jump out and race down the track. Unfortunately, thousands of dollars of short and long-kept items and memorabilia, in paid storage, were lost to the rushing waters.

Amber Genova, of Spring Gulch, a neighborhood near Lyons, CO removes flood damaged belongings while clearing out her storage unit, Monday, Sept. 23, 2013, at Storage West Self Storage in Longmont. The Genova’s home near Lyons was not damaged by the flood. (Matthew Jonas/Times-Call Newspaper)


When is a good time to use storage facilities? Sometimes the answer is never, but sometimes the answer makes sense.

Before you start making monthly payments on self storage space (on items you don’t remember you even have and for decades!), ask yourself:

1. Why do I need to keep it in the first place?

DECIDE: Sometimes people use “storage” as a way to ignore items and put off decisions on what to do with their, or other’s, stuff and things.

Ask yourself, “If my house burned down, and this item was gone forever, would I even remember I’d had it or would I miss it?” If the answer is no, then just move it out now – donate, sell or give away.

EVERYTHING HAS A SHELF LIFE: Also, realize that some things, left too long in outdoor, non-controlled climate storage, don’t last that long. Rubber, plastic, wax, fabric, even wood changes, and not in a good way!

DON’T PACK YOUR EMOTIONS IN STORAGE: If you’re keeping it purely due to sentimental value, or emotions, maybe take a photo of it, but let the item go. Keep the photo, display it well to remember the memory.

So, if you reeeeeeeeally think you have to keep it, keep asking yourself more questions to decide.

2. Can I wait and just keep it in the basement or garage and make other decisions on it soon?

3. Is the cost–often $100 or more a month– justified for what I want to store?

Old furniture with little value, for example, can be replaced with new pieces for the cost of a year or two of self storage. If you have too much clutter in your home, consider getting rid of things rather than paying to keep clutter out of sight. However, self storage does make sense in certain circumstances.

4. Add up the numbers. How much will this have cost me in 12 months from now? Could I have used that money for something better?


1. You’re Between Houses or Work Being Done

  • Sometimes people must move out of one place before their new permanent residence is ready.
  • Maybe the new house is under construction.
  • You don’t have time to shop for a house before relocating.
  • You have a small fire or water break in our home and need to be out for a while to have it repaired, carpets torn up, etc.

While temporarily living in a small apartment, a hotel or with friends or family, self storage is an option that allows you to keep your furniture and belongings during the transition.

2. Someone Dies, or a Settlement of an Estate

  • When there is a death in the family, sometimes the deceased’s belongings need to be stored while the Will and legalities are settled.
  • Sometimes the home simply needs to be emptied to sell or be passed down, and the contents need a temporary place to go.

3. You Have a Small Living Space

If you don’t have a garage, attic or basement, storage can be a legitimate issue, especially if you have sports equipment and other items that are only used seasonally. If you are a long-term dweller of a small apartment, condo or house, self storage may be a worth the cost for keeping things that are used every year, such as ski equipment, bikes, surfing gear and holiday decorations. Self storage may even be a necessity if you have big toys such as jet skis, ATVs, RVs, boats, snowmobiles and motorcycles.

4. You’re Trying to Sell Your Home

Staging is always a necessity when selling a home. So, when your home needs to look like a model home, that’s inviting and not too “lived in,” it’s recommended that the contents of your home are reduced to a bare minimum so the space looks open and uncluttered. Prospective buyers will be looking at the basement and garage, too, so a temporary solution is to box toys, knick-knacks and small appliances and stash them in a self storage unit.


Sometimes storage units are helpful and maybe necessary. But really think it through so that you’re not just paying for nothing and dumping it all in the trash in years or decades to come, or worse yet, your stuff ends up on a TV show like Storage Wars and someone else makes money on it! That’s just kind of crazy!




How Boulder Flood Victim Opens Up The Crises To Breathe Music

Change and Transition, Disaster and Preparation, Inner Clutter: Consciousness Building and Self-Care, Stress Management No Comments »

See the full report and his home/water flowing here:


How to Rescue Water Logged or Muddy Photos or Video, Lesson From the Colorado Floods

- ORGANIZING TIPS AND TOOLS, Disaster and Preparation, Environment: Green, Sustainable, Recycle, Reuse, Memorabilia, Sorting No Comments »

flood - memory rescue

The Colorado epic flood of September 2013 has taken away homes, roads, bridges, lives and memories. But, day by day new rescue efforts show up to help people save what they can.

As people begin sifting through their flooded homes, most will inevitably come across precious memories—photos, slides, videos and other memorabilia—that are waterlogged, buried in mud or have otherwise been damaged in the disaster.

“The most important thing right now is to get the word out that wet or muddy memories are not necessarily lost and that people should not throw them away,” said Gwen Scherer, owner of the Boulder County company, Memories to Digital, and co-founder of The Memory Preservation Coalition. “Many of these priceless items can be saved, and we’re here to help.”

Don’t throw away priceless memories, even if they appear ruined. Wet and dirty photos and videos can often be salvaged, and the recently opened Memory Rescue Centers across the greater Denver area and in Fort Collins will do just that—at no cost to flood victims from Colorado Springs to the Wyoming border.

The centers will have free on-site wash-and-dry stations, free information on how to salvage photos and home movies, Flip-Pal mobile scanners free for use, as well as extensive services to digitize photos, slides, videos, film and other memorabilia at a discount.

THIS ARTICLE IS PACKED WITH GREAT INFORMATON: http://www.flip-pal.com/memory-rescue-centers/




During A Disaster, Question Early Solicitors – Advice From Longmont, CO Police During Recent Flood

Disaster and Preparation, Safety and Security No Comments »

salesman - illustration

During a disaster there is enough stress, worry and fear, we don’t need people “coming to our rescue” with great deals on home repair or whatever.

Due to our devastating flood this past week in 15 northern Colorado counties, the vultures are out and scouting weak prey. So very sad.

But, you can guard against them and take care of yourself and your bank account. This information is relevant anywhere.

First, please be cautious. You don’t have to make rash decisions.

Here is what else our Longmont Police Department shared in our newspaper this week to do to be safe.

LONGMONT POLICE: Be cautious about solicitors entering their neighborhoods.

Solicitors are required to possess an active City of Longmont sales and use tax license, Cmdr. Jeff Satur said. He said that any resident who has questions about whether a solicitor has a tax license may call 303-651-8672.

Satur reminded residents that it is unlawful to solicit from any private residence where a sign is conspicuously displayed with the words “NO SOLICITORS” or “NO SOLICITING.”

“It is also unlawful for a solicitor to remain and refuse to leave immediately after being requested by the resident to leave, whether or not any signs are displayed,” Satur said in a press release.

“If someone at your door is suspicious, ask for a business card and get a description of the person and any vehicle, if you can safely obtain one,” Satur said. “Call the police non-emergency number at 303-651-8501. Try to provide height, build, hair color, and clothing above and below the waist, license plate, type and color of a car — any details that allow the police to pick out the person from everyone else out there.

“It is always a good practice not to open the door to someone you are unfamiliar with. If you have a screen door, leave it locked. Do not invite anyone into your residence.”

Satur said it might be necessary for the resident to testify in court if a ticket is issued for a violation that occurs before police are called.

Article here.

How To Replace Important Papers Lost In The St. Vrain River and Boulder Creek Floods

Disaster and Preparation, Office, Paper, Safety and Security No Comments »

org - social security card

If you’ve ever lost your driver’s license, you know how frustrating and stressful it can be to a) realize it, but b) to get another made.

Now, add to that all of your important documents, like birth certificates, social security card, insurance papers, credit cards, passport and more.

No matter where you live, if you go through a flood, hurricane, tornado, fire or other disaster where you can’t retrieve your important documents, it can feel overwhelming.

How To Replace Important Papers Lost In The St. Vrain River and Boulder Creek Floods

The Longmont Times-Call Newspaper ran an article to help you out.

Go to the link below for the article to help make this process much easier.


My prayers and thoughts go out to you and all in 15 counties devastated by the flood waters this past week.

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