Compare Self Storage & Mobile Storage

An outdoor self storage facility

Self Storage: Self storage facilities offer storage units available for rent. Storage units range in size typically from a 5x5 to a 10x30 or maybe even larger. Most often storage units are rented on a month to month basis by homeowners, businesses, college students, military personnel, etc. When renting from a self storage facility, you must take your belongings to the facility, unload them in your storage unit, and provide your own lock for the door. You are the only person that has access to your belongings. Typically storage facilities have many additional security features including computer controlled access onto the premises and security cameras.

A portable storage unit outside

Mobile Storage: Mobile storage, also called portable storage, offers a convenient alternative to traditional self storage. It is often used in times of moving or remodeling. With mobile storage a mobile or portable storage container is delivered right to your home or place of business. You then fill the container at your convenience. Once the container is full, you can either store it at your home or office or call the company to come and pick it up. If you choose to have them pick it up they will store the container at their warehouse. When you are ready to unload the container you simply call the company and they will deliver your container right to your door again. If you are using mobile storage during a move, they will actually deliver your container to your new place of residence whether down the street or across the country.

Which option is more secure?

Both options are very secure. Self storage facilities typically have security measures such as security cameras, gated properties, and computer controlled access; however you are responsible for securing your unit with a secure lock. Indoor units are more secure than outdoor units because they are inside of a locked building after office hours. Mobile storage always resides in a secure warehouse when it is not with you; therefore it has security equal to an indoor self storage unit. In both cases it is a good idea to insure the contents of your unit in case something would happen.

I’m storing long term, what is my best option?

That depends on how much you have to store and how often you will want access to your belongings. If you are storing a lot of items and/or are going to want frequent access to your belongings then you might want to consider self storage. Most self storage facilities offer extended access hours seven days a week and there is no fee to access your belongings. In addition renting a larger self storage unit is most likely going to be cheaper than renting multiple mobile storage containers.

If you will not need frequent access to your belongings and can fit them into one or two mobile containers mobile storage might be your best option. Many times the monthly charge to store your mobile container will be less than the monthly charge to rent a storage unit. Also, once filled, your mobile storage containers will be stored in the company’s secure warehouse. Because of this they’ll be secure, but accessing your unit may be more difficult as you will need to call ahead of time and some companies may charge you a fee to do so.

I’m storing short term, what is my best option?

Again, that depends on how often you will want access to your belongings. It may be more difficult and you may be charged a fee to access your belongings when using mobile storage. In addition, when using mobile storage you may pay a pickup and delivery fee for the mobile storage unit. This fee along with the monthly cost to store the unit may add up to be more expensive than self storage in the short term. However, mobile storage offers the added convenience of not having to rent a truck, load your belongings, take them down to the storage facility, and unload them into the unit. Saving the cost of the truck and the hassle of the move may make mobile storage a viable option for you even if it is more expensive.

I’m moving, what is my best option?

Many people choose mobile storage when they are moving for its convenience. The fact that they can load the container at their current residence and have it dropped off at their new residence without having to rent a truck or pay a moving company appeals to many movers. However, some people shy away from using mobile storage because it may be more expensive or they fear that their belongings may get damaged. Mobile storage companies vary in their fees and will sometimes waive pickup and delivery fees. Also, some mobile storage companies have new lift technology that allows them to lift your unit onto their trucks without tipping the unit. This helps protect your belongings from damage. If you’re considering mobile storage for your move contact one of the providers listed on our website and they’d be happy to answer all of your questions.

Others prefer self storage when they are moving because they prefer to keep their belongings in their possession at all times. You may find that self storage is a much more affordable option when moving across town or to a nearby city.

Which option is cheaper?

Many times you’ll find self storage to be less expensive than mobile storage; however you must ask yourself what you are storing, how long you’ll be storing, and whether the convenience of mobile storage is worth the added expense. Many times for longer term storage or during a long distance move you’ll find mobile storage to be similar in cost to self storage.

What items are best stored in mobile storage?

Smaller, non-breakable items are best stored in mobile storage. Mobile storage containers range in size depending on the company but generally are about 5x8x8. Larger items may take up too much room in the mobile storage container and may require you to purchase multiple containers which may get expensive. Because mobile storage containers need to be put on a truck and moved to your new destination there is a chance that things can get shifted and broken; therefore you may not want to use mobile storage for extremely valuable items or things that can’t be replaced.

Also, because the mobile storage container is stored in a secure, climate controlled warehouse you are safe to put items such as furniture and electronics that may require climate control.

What items are best stored in self storage?

Larger items, autos, and items that you’ll need frequent access to are better stored in self storage. Because you can visit your unit any time you want and have plenty of space to move around in the unit, self storage is best used when you need frequent access to your belongings. Self storage units range in size from 5x5 all the way up to 10x30 or larger so you can choose which size of unit best fits your needs.

I need climate controlled storage, what is my best option?

Both options offer climate controlled. Because mobile storage containers are stored in a secure, climate controlled warehouse you are safe to put items such as furniture and electronics that may require climate control. Also most self storage facilities offer climate controlled units.

Which option is available in my area?

We’re here to help you quickly find the self storage and mobile storage options available in your area. Begin your search for either mobile storage or self storage by entering your zip code or city in the blue boxes to the left.

We’ll show you quality storage companies that offer self storage and mobile storage in your local area. You can contact the company of your choice for more information. In some cases you can even reserve your self storage or mobile storage unit right here on our website!