How to Safely Store Books

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Books, we love ‘em but hate how much room they take in our tiny New York living spaces. Some we need to have in our lives every day, some we can put away in storage and retrieve as needed or when we move to a larger apartment. So get rid of the clutter, pack up some of your books and head on to your storage unit. Just make sure you’re storing them properly so they stay in the best shape possible. Here are some tips:
 

Go Climate Control

The last thing you want covering those beloved words—especially if any are collector’s edition or rare—is mold. Climate control will allow you to keep the temperature below 70 and humidity between 30 to 50 percent.  
 

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Clean ‘Em

Vacuum and dust your books before storing them. Any leftover dirt can cause stains and cosmetically damage your books.
 

Add Some Protection

If the books you’re storing are valuable, it’s worth adding a layer of protection around each one—this could be a cloth or paper.
 

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Go Acid Free

Acid can damage paper. Make sure the boxes you use to store your books are acid free.
 

Label Clearly

Whether it’s by author or genre or date, find a way to categorize and box up your books. Then clearly mark each box with a list of what’s inside so when you need a volume, you’ll know where to find it.
 

Keep Off the Ground

Always keep your boxes off the ground in storage units, but especially if they contain vulnerable items like books. Use pellets, bricks or blocks of sorts to elevate what’s precious. The last thing you want is water from a flood or spill to destroy books.
 

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Five Ways To Create More Bedroom storage

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You’re forever looking to give your bedroom a sleek look and to organize your clutter. Those books piled on the desk and clothes on the floor aren’t helping that goal. So where to put those items and how to create more storage? Here are five tips to help you out:
 

Use Shelves

Install shelves along a wall that’s not being utilized and store your books and knick-knacks on it. Not only will shelves give your items a place to live, they can be visually pleasing.
 

Get Rid of Extra Furniture

If you’re housing a random chair that you never sit on in the corner, a file cabinet that’s mostly empty or some other piece of furniture that’s hardly used, consider getting rid of them. It’s the easiest way to gain square footage that you can use for pieces that serve better function.
 

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Use the Space Under the Bed

Otherwise underutilized, the space under the bed is the perfect spot to store boxes of shoes, linens, sweaters and the likes. If you’re bed is too close to the ground consider getting bed risers.
 

Get a Good Hamper

Laundry baskets are usually too wide and often end up looking sloppy—with all the clothes in plain sight. If there’s no space in the closet to store a basket, opt for a nice tall hamper with a cover that will take less floor space but will still hold the abundance of clothes you’ll be wearing each week.
 

Choose Functional Nightstands

Pick nightstands that have drawers and shelves that could be used for storage. If your current nightstands lack these features, switch them out for pieces that will help keep you organized.
 

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Six Items to Put in Storage Now

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Fall is around the corner—yikes, we’re sad too—and soon you won’t have the need for many of your warm weather items. It’s time to schedule a seasonal trip to your storage unit and put away some of your summer items. Here are five things that can be put away until Memorial Day:
 

Beach Supplies

Boogie boards, kayaks, beach towels, umbrellas and the likes will soon need to be retired. Make sure all items are dry before storing them, so they don’t mold or deteriorate while packed away.
 

Gardening Supplies

As soon as temperatures start dipping you’ll need to start ridding yourself of your perennial plants. Recycle the plants and put away the pots, extra soil and all the other tools related to this spring and summertime activity.
 

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Patio Furniture

You will likely have another month or two to use your patio furniture but sooner or later, you won’t be able to sit outside and must prepare to store this stuff.  Clean and dry everything and use dust covers to ensure your furniture stays dirt-free and is ready to go next year when you take it out.
 

Camping Gear

Unless you’re one of those winter camping types—and kudos to you if you are—it’ll soon be time to put away your tent, sleeping bag, lantern, backpack and all the other gear that gets your closer to nature. Putting your camping goods in clearly marked boxes will help you grab them if you decide on a last minute cold-weather trip to the great outdoors.
 

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Summer Shoes

In with the boots and out with the open toed shoes: It’s time to put away our favorite summer footwear. From sandals to water shoes to flip flops, it’s almost time to retire warm weather shoes. We’re sad too, but such is living on the Northeast.  If you have shoeboxes, nicely store your footwear in their own containers so that they stay in good shape for the next several months.
 

Summer Clothes

Goodbye sundresses and shorts. We will miss you and all your fun and happy colors. Put away summer clothes you won’t use. Make sure they are clean and dry and store them in lidded plastic bins to ensure critters or moisture doesn’t damage them.
 

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Six Ways for Businesses to Use Storage Units

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Whether you’re a small business owner or run the operations of a large corporation, storage facilities can be a lifesaver for your organization, especially in our space-starved city. Here are six ways you can use storage units for your business:
 

Inventory

In New York City, commercial rents are high and therefore storefronts tend to be small. A storage unit is the fantastic solution for businesses to use as extra space for rotating inventory, storing new items or stocking duplicates.  
 

Showroom

Some small businesses use storage units as showrooms where they can bring in clients to see their items. This is especially useful for people who make or sell large items such as furniture.
 

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Seasonal Items

Be it for sale or for use around the business, lawnmowers, shovels, snow blowers and the likes are the kinds of equipment that can be rotated seasonally. Use storage to switch out what your business needs depending on the tilt of the Earth.
 

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Decorative Items

Art, holiday decorations, pillows and much more are continually switched out in stores, hotels and restaurants. A storage facility means that you don’t have to constantly wonder where to store decorations when they’re ready to be put away.
 

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Food and Beverage

Businesses can use climate controlled storage units to store edible items, such as wine, that might need to be stored for later use. It’s a simple solution for an ever-shrinking city.
 

Documents

Over the years, businesses tend to accumulate lots of paper—from important tax documents to inventory lists to receipts and much more. An easily organized storage unit will allow your business to have access to the paperwork when you need to and not have to worry about it, when you don’t.

 

Storing Musical Instruments

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You love your stand up bass and shelled out a whole lot of dough for this baby. But now you need to store it while work takes you to Europe for a few months.  How do you properly put away this and other instruments so that they don’t sustain damage? Use this guide to help you:
 

Prep It

Whatever your instrument, learn the proper way to prepare it for storage. For example, clean the instrument, disassemble if need be, release the tension of the strings for stringed instruments, loosen skin on drums and wrap, pad and cover where needed.
 

Transport Right

You can easily transport some of the smaller instruments with no issues. Others, like a piano, are best moved using professionals. If pros are needed, find a company you trust and book them in advance.
 

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Finding the Right Storage

Heat and humidity can affect your instrument. You’re best off using a climate controlled storage unit to ensure instruments don’t snap, break or warp. The ideal temperature and humidity depends on the instrument but a good rule of thumb is to keep the unit between 65 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit with the relative humidity around 50 percent.
 

Keep it Secure

The last thing you want is to have a valuable and loveable instrument stolen while in storage. For that reason, make sure the facility offers good security and that you have chosen a lock that will keep your belongings safe.
 

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Take Out with Care

When you’re ready to remove your instrument from storage, be sure to take extra care. Maybe the wood is brittle or the veneer has stuck to the wrapping. Either way, it’s good to baby the instrument until you know what’s happened while you were away from it.


 

How to Store Wooden Furniture

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If you’re planning to store wooden furniture, there are steps you should take to make sure your belongings stay in good shape while in storage. Here are some tips on how to prepare and store wooden pieces:
 

Treat

Several weeks prior to storing wood furniture, treat the pieces with polish or wax depending on the wood. Providing such protection is important because when you change the environment of your pieces, they become susceptible to damage.
 

Keep it Together

If you are disassembling any of the parts of a piece—such as legs or hardware—make sure you keep all the pieces together. Because in say a year or however long your pieces will be stored away, you likely won’t remember where you put the different pieces. Use clearly marked Ziploc bags and such to keep everything together and if possible tape the bags to the piece it belongs to.
 

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Choose Covers Wisely

Material such as wood should be able to breath. For that reason, choose fabrics such as blankets and sheets when wrapping pieces for storage. If you want to cover them in plastic, make sure the first layer on the wood is some kind of cloth.
 

Control Climate

Climate controlled storage units are best for wood—as both temperature and moisture fluctuations can damage pieces.
 

Keep Pieces Off Ground

It’s always a good idea to keep your pieces elevated. Wood pellets or pieces of brick or cement are a simple way to achieve this. There’s nothing worse than a flood or a neighboring unit’s spill to cause water damage to your belongings.
 

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Five Items to Get Rid of Now!

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You’re forever in need of room and storage around the apartment. We get it, living quarters in New York City can be cramped and no matter how hard you try, you are always running out of space.  Some things, you need to keep but some, you can get rid of today. Here are five items you can either donate or throw out now to whip your apartment back into shape in a jiff:
 

Old Periodicals

Yes, yes, you want to catch up on the last three month’s issues of The New Yorker but the truth is, if you haven’t been able to read them by now, you won’t—sorry, it’s the truth. So recycle old magazines and newspapers and breath a little easier without the dust collectors.
 

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Expired Food

Go through the fridge, cupboard and shelves and ditch that old container of sour cream, expired canned soup and old spices. Now, you can actually see what you actually have in the kitchen.
 

DVDs, Cassette Tapes and the Likes

If you still have a Debbie Gibson tape but no tape player, well then you know what to do. Also, a lot of those DVDs you never watch can be streamed. So say bye bye to the 80s, 90s and early 2000s and do as the Millennials do.
 

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Old Electronics

Old cell phones, iPods, computer screens, and other electronics need to hit a recycling facility. Do yourself a favor and get rid of these space-taking monsters.  
 

Junk Mail

This is an easy purge. Go through the house and get rid of old catalogues, ads and coupons sent to you in the mail. The apartment looks better already, no?
 

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A Self-Storage Guide for Your Wine Collection

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A couple of years ago, you tasted a Pinot Noir from Oregon that was amazing and reasonable and decided to buy a case. Then you visited some local wineries and bought a case of Riesling and so began a beautiful wine collection that quickly started to outgrow your small New York City apartment. Now, you’re desperately looking to store it all somewhere and free up some space in your home. Luckily, you can rent a storage unit. Here are some tips on how to properly store your wine collection and have easy access to when you decide to bring a few bottles home:
 

Storage Location

Find a self-storage location near your home. The accessibility of the unit will allow you to stop by whenever you need to replenish your stock at home.
 

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Climate Control

Make sure you can control the temperature and humidity of the unit. Ideally, wine should be stored at temperatures between 45 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit to avoid accelerated ageing.  Additionally, experts recommend storage humidity levels to be around 70 so the cork doesn’t dry out.  Dry cork can let in air and spoil wine.
 

Bottle Orientation

To keep the cork from drying, it’s best to store bottles on their side. This helps the wine keep the cork moist at all times. In order to achieve this, you might think about investing in a rack that will allow this type of bottle storage.
 

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Light Levels

Pick a unit that doesn’t have a window and keep the lights off.  The sun’s ultra violet rays can prematurely age wine. If your unit has a window, make sure to cover it with something that won’t let in any UV rays.
 

Security

If your wine collection is valuable, make sure the storage facility is secure and that you have invested in a hard to pick lock for your unit.


There are storage facilitates specifically designed for wine. Look for one in your area.

 

Infrequently Used Items To Store now

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There are items we need every day—such as our clothes and toiletries—and those we only use occasionally. For those we seldom reach for, having them in a safe and handy storage space is the perfect solution.  Think of a storage unit as an "external closet" of sorts - kind of like an external hard drive for your computer. You don't want to clutter up your computer so why clutter up your home when there are so many options to choose from in terms of storage solutions. Here are several items that most of us use only occasionally and can easily be placed in storage:
 

Luggage Storage

Unless you’re regularly traveling for business—most folks will only take a handful of trips over the course of a year—why take up closet space for suitcases and luggage? Especially if you have a family, these bulky suitcases really can take up a lot of space you could use for other items. Put these guys away into a storage unit and grab them only when needed.
 

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Large Power Tools - Put them in storage. 

That table you built is beautiful and you plan on making a television stand one of these days, but until that day comes, it’s best to store the circular saw and free up some space around the apartment. Most homes have lots of different power tools taking up space. When you actually take a look at how many you have and how often you actually use them, you'll see it probably makes sense to store them. You'll be amazed at how much more space you have once they're stored away.
 

Extra Seating

Folding chairs are great for that summer barbecue and the holiday party you have every year. But during the other 363 days you can put your extra seating into storage. That also goes for the fold-up tables. Once you rid your home of these unsightly eyesores that have been stacked behind your sofa and closet doors all year, you'll know you made the right decision to store them.
 

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Sports & Camping Gear Storage

Avid campers and backpackers aside, camping gear generally gets a few uses each season at best, and boy can camping gear really take up space! Lanterns, hammocks, sleeping bags, tents, cooking gear, etc - wow! What about those snowboarders and fishers?  Store this stuff now! Pack it away and get it when you fancy climbing Mount Washington next.
 

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Occasional Devices

Remember that time your basement flooded and you frantically bought that large wet vacuum at Home Depot? Well, now you’re stuck with the wet vac and you need to put it somewhere. No sense in storing it in your home. Leave it at your storage space and heavens forbid your water heater bursts again, you know where to grab one. Do you own blow up mattresses and air pumps for when you have the in-laws over for their annual visit? Do you really need those items collecting dust on the bottom of your closet? You can pick up some of those air tight plastic bags, toss in your extra bedding and comforters you only use when you have guests and store those away too.  

Seasonal Items - Store them!

If you were to start stacking all of yours and your families seasonal clothing and shoes on your bed, you would be buried under a mountain of sweaters and puffy vests in no time.  Never mind all the boots and wool socks and hats and gloves. When you live in a city like New York, these things should be stored off-season. Same goes for all your summer items - goggles, swim suits, boogie boards, beach umbrellas, and surfing gear. Do you have a terrace or patio? How about storing outdoor furniture so it isn't blowing about like missiles during the next storm? 

When you start to think about all the things that aren't in use for long periods of time that are taking up your precious space in your home, even if you have the luxury of living in a big space, you'll see it only makes sense to put these items in storage so you have a little room to breathe.  We promise you'll find a self-storage unit near your house, that is safe and climate controlled, and is easy to get in and out of anytime you feel the need. Store things in clear bins and label things clearly and you'll have no problem locating what you need when you need it. See if Moishe's has a facility near you.

Items Which Require Climate Controlled Storage

Storage units are especially useful for making some room in the house, or as temporary holding spots between moves or even as space to hold business inventory. Typically, one can do fine with renting a simple unit but there are times when renters should consider a climate controlled one. Here are five items that are better off in a climate control space:
 

Electronics Storage

Electronics can get damaged with extreme heat and humidity. Humidity can damage the internal wiring and rust the internal parts. Extreme temperatures can cause cracking or rust in electronics. If you’re storing large appliances, you will want to make sure you clean and dry all items. If they have water hoses, make sure they are removed. You don’t want mold or mildew developing in these items.  Furthermore, screens such as those on plasma televisions don’t do well with very high or low temperatures. So if you plan on storing an expensive piece of equipment for more than a couple of weeks, consider a unit whose temperature and humidity you can control. If you decide to get rid of some of your old electronics, check our guide on how to do so properly


Musical Instrument Storage

Fluctuating or extreme temperatures and humidity will damage many musical instruments, especially those constructed of wood, such as a piano or a lute. Most wooden instruments are glued in areas, and left in heat too long will break down and the glue will no longer hold together. Wood expands and contracts in different climates which will cause cracks and warping, ruining any instruments in long term storage that isn’t climate controlled. Brass instruments could corrode due to high temperature and humidity. Instruments with strings aren’t rust proof. Corrosion will occur if left in the wrong temps for too long. 

Storing Artwork

Art experts recommend storing artwork flat in windowless, temperature-controlled units or diameter tubes. The ideal climate for artwork is about 70 degrees Fahrenheit with 50 percent humidity. Consider shelving or palettes for your storage unit to keep art off the ground. If you’re storing paintings that aren’t framed or stretched, roll them with the paint side IN to decrease warping or cracking and put them in sturdy tubes. Layer a soft breathable cloth or tissue paper over canvasses before storing flat. You want to promote air circulation and avoid plastic wrap or bubble wrap as that could trap moisture and destroy your art over a period of time.No matter if your art is precious or just precious to you, keep it, and all your art supplies, protected so you can appreciate it for years to come.

Wine Storage

There are a few key things to know about wine storage - the rules are as follows: Store it sideways, still, dark and cool.  Storing wine on its side allows the cork to stay in contact with the wine, thereby keeping it moist and from drying out. Also, this will make it easier for you to see your inventory and is a great way to save space. Do not keep wine anywhere where it could be shaken or where there are vibrations - this will result in premature aging. Also, it’s best to keep red wine still to avoid shaking the sediment up to the top. You don’t want a glass of gritty liquid when you’re expecting a delicious glass of red. We advise you to store wine in a dark place as the UV rays of the sun cause premature aging. To properly age, most wines should be kept at temperatures around 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Otherwise, most wines should be at temperatures up to 69 degrees Fahrenheit. Improper storage or fluctuating temperatures could result in accelerating the aging process and affecting taste. If the wines you’re storing are of value, they should always be stored in a facility whose climate is controllable. For lovely wine storage racks, check out our blog on that subject.


Safe Photo Storage

Similar to artwork, photos should be stored in a cool and dry place, ideally without light, which can damage them. Temps should stay below 75 degrees, humidity between 15% and 65%, (too low of a humidity will make photos brittle, and too high humidity will promote mold, and photos will stick together). Don’t leave your photos in a place where insects or rodents can get to them either. Renting a climate controlled unit will ensure your memories don’t fade away. Home Storage Solutions offers a little more insight into how to safely store your photos. 

Storing Collectables

We enlisted some advice from About.com about how to safely store collectables. It’s pretty simple - like with your photos, you’ll want to avoid light.  Light can harm almost any collectable - especially those made of wood, fabric or paper.  A limited amount of low light can be helpful with humidity, however. Control Humidity - approximately 50% is usually best. Avoid extreme temperatures that one would see when storing in attics or garages or basements. Keeping collectables stored at about 64 degrees is what is recommended.  If for any reason you need to change the temperature of where you are keeping your items, do so gradually. 

Furniture Storage

Storing furniture - especially pieces with wood and fabric - needs to be done with care as well. Make any necessary repairs to items first. Check to make sure storage area is dust free and not leaking water anywhere. Put wooden pallets or heavy plastic sheets on the floor before storing furniture. If your furniture can be broken down, do so to save space. Tape a baggy with all screws and bolts to the underside of the furniture so you know where to find them later. Cover your delicate pieces with quilts or moving blankets to keep them protected from nicks and dings. Store the heaviest items on the bottom, being careful that things are securely placed on top as you wouldn’t want anything to fall on top of you when shifting things around.

 

Let our experts at Moishe’s Moving & Storage get your valuables to a safe storage unit that is climate controlled. We offer home pick up to make it easy. Check our site for details: http://www.moishesselfstorage.com/

Selecting self-Storage Locks, A Guide


The most important part of keeping your belongings safe in a storage unit is to choose a secure and reputable storage company—one that has security cameras, access gates and a fence.  Moishe’s Self-Storage facilities have many lines of defense set up to protect your belongings, but it’s important to get the best lock you can afford. Select a self-storage lock that will ensure your possessions will be safeguarded against potential thieves that make it into the facility. Know that if your lock is very secure, burglars will likely choose a unit with a less secure lock. If your lock is harder to crack so to speak, security will have more time to catch the culprits and the cameras will have more footage to identify them with. So instead of just selecting any old lock you have lying around in your house or garage, choose wisely. Here are the typical lock types available with tips to help you choose:

Padlocks

Also known as cylinder locks, padlocks work via a pin inside a cylinder that moves with a key. They are simple to use and only require a key, which makes them attractive to many users. However, they are also easily picked by burglars and can also be re-keyed without removing or breaking the lock. You can also get “bump keys” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lock_bumping) easily enough andfor those reasons, a padlock might not be the best choice to secure a storage unit.

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Keyless Locks

Eliminating the use of keys, these locks can be opened with a number combination selected by the user.  These locks are great for those of us who tend to misplace or lose keys and for those who want to give unit access to others. The disadvantages of these locks, however, include forgetting the combination or having others guess the code. However, one quick search on google.com offers a variety of instructional videos with titles like “How to crack a combination lock in 8 tries or less.”  Also, they can be easily cut with tools like bolt cutters. Best to save this type of lock for your kid’s school locker. 

 


Disc Locks

These lock types were specifically designed for storage units and as such are considered industry standards. A burglar can’t remove these with a bolt cutter because the U part of the lock can’t be easily reached and hammers cannot break open the lock.  For a thief to get through disc locks, they would have to invest quite a bit of time and resources, which means they will likely move on to a unit with a less secure lock. Despite its slightly higher cost over the keyless and pad lock, the disc lock is pretty good when it comes to selecting a lock for a storage unit. For a few extra bucks though, we recommend shrouded locks.

 

Shrouded Locks

These may very well be considered the best on the market.  The “shroud” or “shackle cover” hides most of the lock ring, so there is no place for a traditional bolt cutter to latch on, therefore it can’t be cut.

 

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What kind of metal is it made with? The harder the metal, and the heavier the lock, usually means it’s a higher quality and most likely, more secure. Thicker alloy is better than standard hardened steel.

 

Look for an anti-drill plate. This prevents a drill from biting into the metal of the lock - it will only catch on the plate and spin there, unable to break through it to the lock itself. The plates are made of a metal that is usually stronger than typical drill bits.

 

This blog by United Locksmith (and whose opinion is better than a locksmith’s?) gives detailed advice on specific locks and which are the best. Be prepared to break the piggy bank open, but you may find it’s worth it to protect your belongings.

http://united-locksmith.net/blog/9-best-padlocks-of-all-time

 

Other Things You Can Do - Document Storage Items

Photograph each item individually that you plan to store in your storage unit. Make a list of all the serial numbers if possible, and keep this is in a safe place with other important documents. Be careful with what you store in your unit. Make sure you aren’t storing anything that the storage facility does not condone. If you store chemicals or flammables, which are against most storage contracts, this could void your rental agreement and could render you liable if they were to cause a fire. Consider purchasing insurance if your items are valuable to you. We do not offer insurance at Moishe’s Storage, but you can look for a plan that covers you, or see if your homeowner’s insurance covers storage. Often homeowners or renters insurance covers items stored at home, but won’t cover items in a storage facility, or may only cover them up to 10% of their worth so be careful to look over your policy carefully. A call to the insurance agent will probably be well worth your time.

Finally - Check our "Specials" page - We offer various deals and discounts on self-storage frequently.

How to Store a Mattress

 

We spend a third of our time sleeping and likely shell out a good amount of dough on the mattress we sleep on. A quality mattress like Sealy, Simmons or Serta are good brands and will treat us right. As such, we need to do the same and make sure we keep what we sleep on in tiptop shape. For that reason it’s important to know how to properly put away a mattress and boxspring in a self storage unit. Protect your investment and your health with these tips:

Opt for Climate Control    

When picking out a storage unit facility, go for a climate controlled one. All mattresses are prone to mold, not just memory foam ones and if you’re thinking of storing it for longer than a few days you want give your mattress a fighting chance against those pesky microorganisms that could be harmful to your health.  Anything else you're storing like clothing, books, furniture, and electronics will benefit from a climate controlled unit as well. These units are usually indoors and will protect your valuables from flooding, pests and rodents.  Disassemble your bed. Put all nuts and bolts in a plastic baggy and tape to the underside of your frame for safe keeping. Once your bed is disassembled, cover the headboard and frame with moving blankets to protect them from nicks and dust. Clean your mattress before storing. You can use an upholstery cleaner if you like, or Baking soda. Vacuum your mattress after cleaning it, as well. It’s amazing what comes up from your mattress with a good vacuuming. 

 

If you do see mold on the outside of your mattress, do not make the mistake of thinking that if you clean what you see your mattress will be safe.  Mold moves quickly and will form in the pockets of the fibers inside your mattress. Even if the outside is “clean” the inside may not be, and you can still get ill from sleeping on a mattress with mold on the interior.  Since mold is a spore-forming organism, the spores become airborne and end up in our lungs. There is no way to safely eradicate mold that forms on the foam inside your mattress, so you would have to throw it away and get a new mattress if not stored correctly. Nest Bedding has a wonderful blog on what to do if you find mold on your mattress.

Transporting Your Mattress

Do yourself and your valuable mattress a favor and do not tie it to the top of your car. If you tie it too tightly, you will warp your mattress. If you do not tie it tightly enough, you will have the horror of watching it fly off your car and likely cause some serious damage to pedestrians or cars behind you. We recommend transporting your mattress via truck. Once your bed is disassembled, cover the headboard and frame with moving blankets to protect them from nicks and dust. This way, it travels safely and is protected from the elements. If you choose Moishe’s self-storage, we will pick up items for free (http://www.moishesselfstorage.com/nyc-freemove/) for you. Read about our specials here.

Store it Flat

Mattresses are made up of coils, springs, padding and other components. Leaving them on their side means these components can shift and settle differently than they were intended. True mattress professionals will tell you to never store your mattress on its side.  Gravity is not doing your mattress any favors. Store mattresses flat on the ground or flat on top of the boxspring. Even if your mattress is in a waterproof protective bag, you may want to lay a tarp down first if storing on the ground. This may mean a larger storage unit, as some find that setting up the bed as it would be at home in the unit to be the best for their mattress. If you have spent upwards of a thousand dollars for your mattress, you certainly do not want to destroy it by storing it unevenly or in a way that will dislodge the coils and padding.

Don’t Stack Anything on Top

Unless you have people sleeping on a mattress, there should be no boxes or any other objects on top of your mattress. That’s because they will push down on specific regions of the mattress and likely change its shape. This goes for plopping the mattress down on top of uneven surfaces. We know this sounds impossible, but if you want to protect your investment, you’ll heed this advice. Good mattresses are expensive!

Get a Cover

Most moving facilities and even truck rental companies sell inexpensive plastic covers for mattresses. They not only protect your mattress during transport from dirt but can also shield it at the storage facility from dust and moisture. Even the best storage units have some dust so keep it clean. Sites like target.com and here at overstock.com offer sealable storage bags for all mattress sizes. You can even pick up storage bags for comforters, pillows and other bedding as well. If you’re using a used mattress protector, make sure to tape it up securely and cover any holes or tears with tape as well. It should be absolutely air-tight.

Freshen it Up

When you’re ready to take the mattress out of storage, remove the plastic cover and let it breathe to remove the plastic smell. You can further freshen it by sprinkling baking soda on it, front and back, which will absorb any odors, then vacuum. Lay it on a great boxspring that allows some air to circulate under the mattress or on a bed frame that does the same and relax and sleep deeply knowing you did well by your mattress that will now continue to do well by you.

Storage Solution for Handbags

 

We love our handbags and often have several for different occasions and needs.  It’s so difficult to let go of old bags because trends tend to come and go and what was once old eventually becomes new again so we find that our bag collection grows monumentally from season to season. What we don’t love is storing them, especially in our teeny weeny New York City apartments. They’re often shoved into little corners of the closet or thrown onto a tall shelf or on the floor somewhere. But even for us apartment dwellers there are creative ways to store bags. Here are some of them:

 

 

Hooks and Racks

Use hooks to hang your purses and bags. You can group the hooks in one spot, such as in the entryway, closet or bedroom or split them and use in different locations if you have many bags. You can also use a freestanding coat rack. We’ve always loved this classic, colorful rack from Design Within Reach by Eames. Anthropologie.com has an amazing House & Home section and is known for their beautiful knobs and hooks. You can group a cluster of different ones with enough space between them for your bags to hang. Viola. Pretty and functional.
 

Shelves

Designate a shelf to store your purses and handbags. This can be an already existing shelf in the closet or on a wall or one that you can install yourself.  You can use dividers to hold and separate the bags. There are so many beautiful little storage boxes you can buy and stack creatively to make it look nice. ikea.com has zillions of brightly colored shelves you can install directly into the wall. We also like their different shelf units as well for an affordable way to stack light items like handbags.
 

Under Bed Storage

Plastic bins under the bed could be an easy way to have your bags organized and out of sight. There is a decent selection of low flat plastic bins that will slide comfortably under most beds, you could always consider bed risers to lift your bed to allow more storage underneath and there are many beds with built in storage on the market these days.
 

Magazine Holders

Magazine holders are for more than just storing publications—they’re great for bags too.  They’re especially good for slim bags. You can use them on shelves or in cubbies. Those lightweight cardboard ones that fold flat for storage often come in gorgeous prints and will fit nicely on a top shelf in your closet.

They sell nice colorful ones that are quite inexpensive here at Walmart. If you’re looking for actual magazine racks for magazines, our blog on our favorites can be found here: Magazine Rack Roundup 


 

handbag-storage-solution
 

Chests

A chest is a great place to store many bags. To keep your bags in good shape, you can use cloth protectors and stack them on top of each other. We are really digging the options for sale at Restoration Hardware. Another good site to explore is chairish.com - their trunk selection, both vintage and used is really excellent. 


 

 

Hanging Organizers

There are different hanging organizers you can use to keep your bags in the closet.  You can purchase these from retailers such as Amazon and the Container Store. We are particularly fond of this one pictured here for hanging over the door. It holds 24 smaller bags, or scarves or belts. We also use this type of hanging storage bag on the inside of the bathroom closet door for all our cleaning supplies, but that’s a whole other blog!
 

Purse Racks

Over door or wall purse racks allow you to use vertical space and store multiple bags without taking up too much room. We like the idea of using out of sight areas like behind a door or in the entry way by the front door.  Bed, Bath and Beyond has some interesting choices here - Let us know what you think if you try one of their options.
 

Super Cheapy Cheap Solutions

We’ve learned a few things from our friends in the city who are stylists and have huge collections of everything from handbags to jewelry and belts to scarves. Shoe boxes can be used for almost everything. Our friends have them stacked neatly on the bottom on the their closet with a polaroid taped to the front of the contents inside. Nothing is cheaper or easier. If you don’t have a polaroid camera, a simple list written in colorful Sharpie’s on an index card and stapled to the front will do the trick. Some of our more industrious friends have even gone to great lengths to cover these shoe boxes in colorful paper, magazine spreads, painted them with spray paint in metallic shades and even glittered the heck out of them. This could be a fun project to do with your kids. Let them have total control over how they’re decorated and then you can just affix the label to the front of each box once they’re done. No money spent and everyone has fun.
 

If You’re One of Those Zealous ebay.com Types

And you have a sizable collection of handbags, we highly recommend renting a www.moishesselfstorage.com unit. You can’t go wrong with climate controlled, safe and secure storage. We would suggest you snapping shots of each bag so you have an easy way to reference which bags are stored in the unit and in which container. We offer units in all different sizes and we bet that once you make the decision to store your bags with us, you’ll find other things in your home that you can store off season so your home will be nice and clutter free. Visit http://www.moishesselfstorage.com/nyc-freemove/ and see all the many locations we can serve you and we also offer free pick up!

How to Throw A Stoop Sale

 

Whether you’re de-cluttering, moving or just not interested in storing some of your items any longer, a stoop sale might just be your ticket. For those that aren’t familiar with the term or are city newbies, stoop sales are urban versions of what’s known in the suburbs or the country as garage or tag sales. To have a successful stoop sale, it’s good to have a plan and lucky for you we have some guidelines to help:
 

Make a List

Prepare a list of items you will be selling and how much you plan to charge for each one. This list helps you have a strategy and will also be your guide on the day of the sale as an inventory and price sheet.
 

Pick a Date

Weekends are obvious candidates for stoop sales. Check the forecast to see what the weather will be on a particular day and if it looks to be a pleasant one your chances of foot traffic will be higher.
 

Advertise

Once you pick a date email your friends and family and let them know the location, date and time of the sale. Use your social media to let your other contacts know. To advertise to strangers post the info on classified sites like Craigslist. Be sure to include the description and maybe photos of a few choice items that could woo customers.  Also, post signs around the neighborhood with arrows directing folks to your sale.
 

Think of Product Placement

Have a plan of where each item will go. Decide if you’ll need display tables, hangers and such to showcase your goods.
 

Get Change

Small bills and coins will come in handy when you’re making a sale. Sometimes not having enough change will mean your potential customer will walk away as they don’t want to deal with the hassle of breaking larger bills at a nearby store.
 

Have a Plan for Leftovers

Be it renting a storage unit, tossing or donating the items that didn’t sell, be sure you know what you’ll do with the leftovers after the sale.  
 

Have Fun

At the end of the day, having a stoop sale is part of the New York City experience so plan to have fun. Maybe ask friends to stop by and hang out or make it a day to people watch. Either way, it’s a day outside!

Pitfalls to Avoid When Renting Storage Space

 

Obtaining storage seems simple enough: You find a place that rents units and you move your stuff in. Well, it’s almost that easy, as long as you keep a few things in mind and are smart about the process. Avoid some common pitfalls by using our handy little guide:
 

Calculating Needed Space

Figure out what you plan on storing—specifically, calculate the number and size of your boxes and the total volume of your items. You can do this by multiplying the height by the width by the length of each box. Then multiply that by the number of same-sized boxes.  Do this for every size category and then add all the numbers up to get a total volume. The result will be the minimum size your storage unit should be.
 

Vet Out Storage Facility

The last thing you want is to get yourself into a storage facility that is not reputable, safe or simply does not meet your needs. Read reviews, carefully examine contracts beforehand and do a walk through of the facility. If everything checks out, then that facility might be the one for you.
 

Know Exactly the Type of Storage Needed

Some storage facilities are drive-ups, some are climate controlled, some are indoors, some outdoors—all of these are considerations for the renter. Figure out what you prefer and the type of storage best suited for your items.
 

Take into Account Cost of Transport

When calculating the cost of storage, remember to account for transportation. What would it cost to rent a truck, if needed? Does the facility offer free pickup and drop off? If you don’t have a car, how much in public transport does it cost to get there when you need to stop by and pick up an item?
 

Consider Getting Insurance

The last thing any renter wants is to have valuables stolen or damaged while in storage. If you are storing anything expensive, look at insurance options and consider purchasing a plan that would cover the cost of valuables.
 

Put Together a Storage System

Have a system in place for storing and retrieving your items. Think of things you might need for the duration of your contract. Make sure you have those items in a place with easy access within the unit.  Ideally, put together a map of what’s where (and leave that by the entrance) and have your boxes clearly labeled.

Summer Storage Solution for the College Student

 

Whether you’re a college student or the parent of one, you know the time has come to haul out the contents of that dorm room for the summer. For those of you that live close to the school and have room at home, the storage solution is easy. For those students that live far, it doesn’t make sense to bring, or ship, everything back home. Why not rent a storage unit for the summer months and save yourself the headache and cost of dragging your, or your child’s, goods around? Here’s a guide to help you do just that:
 

Summer Needs

Decide what you need for the summer—be it things like study material you might want for a project you’ll be working on, or clothes—and things, which might be too precious to put into storage (like an instrument or a laptop). Make a list of those items.
 

Find Storage Facility

Research storage facilities in your area to find one that fits your needs and budget. Think of size, price and proximity when making a decision. Also, read reviews online to make sure that the company is reputable. Don’t forget to get an estimate in writing and read the terms before signing anything.
 

Pack it Up

The more organized you are in packing, the easier it will be on moving day in the fall when you go to open those boxes that will be just a distant memory evaporated by the summer heat! For example, put all bedding in one box, clothes in their own boxes, school supplies in their own and so on. Label everything clearly.
 

How to Transport

Once you know how many boxes you have, you’ll need to find a way to transport your stuff. You will either rent a car or truck or have the storage facility pick up your stuff—which many companies do for free. The pickup option may also affect your decision on selecting a storage facility.
 

Store Neatly

If you plan on going back to the unit to grab things while on summer vacation, it’ll be important to store everything with some kind of order in mind. Make sure you have labels on the sides of boxes where you can see them. Also put things like bedding or shower supplies—which you likely won’t need—in the back of storage, while keeping items like clothing in the front, making it easy to get to if needed.

Four Litter Box Hiders, a Roundup

 

We love our furry feline friends, but we don’t always love their litter pans—typically unattractive plastic boxes that stick out like sore thumbs in the confines of a New York City dwelling.  For those reasons we’ve decided to round up some of our favorite litter box hiders which can house the kitty potty and look attractive in a small apartment. Here’s our list:
 

Modern Cat Designs Litter Box Hider

This is probably our favorite of the bunch. It’s made of laminate, comes in a brown wood color and white, hides a litter box beautifully and fits contemporary designs very nicely.
 

Merry Pet White Hooded Litter Box

This side table, nightstand looking hider looks best in homes that have a more country or shabby chic feel.  It fits larger litter boxes and comes with a shelf and a towel bar, which means extra storage for things like books, remote controls or your kitty’s toys or other supplies.
 

The MINI Cabinet

The priciest of the bunch, this side-table and litter hider has a walnut finish. It can be customized to have a pet entrance on either side of the cabinet. So once you decide where it’s going and where you’ll be getting $475 to buy this with, you can let the manufacturers know where to cut the hole for your furry friend.
 

Kitty Condo Bench

This MDF hider is also a bench—which can work nicely in an entryway. With a hole for chords in the back, it can work well for automated litter boxes. The unit provides ample space inside for extra storage and you can have the cat entrance on either side depending on your preference

Five Low Key Things to Do This Memorial Day

 

The unofficial beginning of summer is around the corner and it’s one of the best times to be in New York City, mostly because like many other holidays, it’s quiet. For those of us who inhabit this great city on regular days with millions of others, it’s nice to have a good portion of them out of town. So what to do if you’re staying around? Here are a few ideas:
 

Eat at Smogasburg

It’s a flea market for food and it’s so freaking good—a gastronomer’s heaven of sorts. Think ramen burgers, tacos, decadent doughnuts, and Japanese water cake (yeah that’s a thing and all the rage). Head on over to either the Williamsburg or Prospect Park location (depending on which weekend day you plan your visit) and enjoy tasting different foods under hopefully rays of sun.
 

Have a Picnic

Life can be a picnic, at least for a few hours. Lucky for us, our city has a lot of green space—from Central Park to Transmitter Park to many more. Pack yourself a basket or a tote bag and read a book, snack a little and take a nap.
 

Have a Drink    

Pick a rooftop or a sidewalk bar, sip on something you enjoy and people watch, or not. It’s your day.
 

See a Flick

Enjoy the semi-empty theatres and catch a flick in the evening—you know you’ve been meaning to see a few new movies lately and just haven’t been able to take the time off.
 

Walk a Bridge

Be it the Brooklyn, George Washington or Manhattan bridge—you know you’ve been meaning to, so get up and do the touristy thing and you’ll see why millions come from all over the world to cross our city’s surrounding waters.  

File Backup and Storage

 

We often focus on storage in New York for physical items but given today’s reliance on technology it’s important to know how to back up and store data as well. This is especially important as computers can crash and are vulnerable to Ransomeware—where hackers will lock your data and demand a ransom in order to release your files back to you.  No matter the reasons, we encourage everyone to store their electronic data periodically in more than one place and here are some ways to do so:
 

External Hard Drive

With external drives, you can either manually back up data or use the computer’s automatic processes for doing so—for Mac computers, you can set Time Machine to do this, for PC’s you can use Windows Backup.
 

Online    

There are many different online services which allow you to store your data on their servers. The one you choose depends on the level of comfort you have with their security (remember the iCloud breach in 2014?), cost and options. Some notable services are Google Drive, Apple’s iCloud or Carbonite.  Similar to an external drive, you can automate the backup process.
 

Flash Drive

These nifty, thumb sized storage drives have come a long way. Nowadays you can get them with up to a Terabyte capacity.  But for most folks a 256 Megabyte will be enough to store thousands of files and photos. They can be good backups to your backups. Because, it’s really important to save your most important data in multiple places.
 

Computer

If you have multiple computers in a home, you can always save copies of your most important files on different machines. This way, if one fails, the other can serve as a backup.  

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Storage Auctions: How they work and should you go to one?

 

You might have seen it on television—when storage owners don’t pay their dues or skip town and their unit contents are put up for sale. But did you know that storage auctions can be found throughout the country? Here’s a guide to those of you interested in learning more:
 

How to find a New York Storage auction?

Storage auctions can be found in local newspapers. If you know of a storage facility near you, you can call them and ask when their next auction will be. Sites like http://www.storagetreasures.com will allow you to punch in your zip code and bid on units from the comfort of your home.


Are they worth it?

This is a tough question to answer. You can generally take a peak at the entrance of the unit to get an indication of what might be inside the unit. But there’s no way to really know if there’s anything valuable that will make it worth your bid. Here’s the thing though, there’s likely something of value in each unit—because why else store it?
 

What to take to the bidding?

Take cash and a credit card for if you decide to make a bid and a flashlight to peak inside the unit.


What if the items are not in good shape?

Good or bad, priceless or worthless, the contents of the storage are sold in an as is condition and are yours if you win the auction. Know that going in and you won’t be disappointed.
 

How long before the unit needs to be cleared?

Once you win a bid, you’ll usually have a full business day to clear out the storage unit. Check with the facility beforehand to ensure you leave yourself enough time to do this. |
 

What to do with the items?

Once you take stock of the items, make a list and write down the description and the condition of each one. Then decide if and where you might be selling each piece. You can utilize online sites, such as ebay, to sell your goods or find local NY stores that take will sell them for you.

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