Need a Storage Unit in the UAE? Here Are Some Tips to Make It More Affordable

There are a number of situations in which it makes sense to get a storage unit for your belongings, whether moving to a new home, or travelling for a few months to a different city. But many UAE residents have second thoughts on whether or not they should get a storage unit because they either don’t understand how it works or are afraid that it’s going to break their bank. Contrary to what you might expect, the process of using a storage facility is usually very straightforward and doesn’t cost a fortune, especially if you’re looking for a short-term storage solution. ServiceMarket, the UAE’s leading online marketplace for storage services, has put together this guide to help you cut down your storage expenses.

Opt for shared storage: If you don’t need a lockable self-storage unit, then you should opt for shared storage because it’s more affordable. It would cost you approximately AED 250 to rent 10 square feet (sqft) of an air conditioned shared storage unit in the UAE. On the other hand, 10 sqft of lockable self-storage costs closer to AED 350-400 per month. The following table can help you figure out how much it would cost you to store your belongings.   

Table 1: Cost of storage in the UAE per month (AED)
Cubic Meters (CBM) SQFT Self-storage Shared storage
1 to 2 10 300 – 400   200 – 300
3 to 5 25 600 – 800 400 – 600
6 to 10 50 800 – 1000 500 – 700
11 to 15 75 1000 – 1400 700 – 1100
16 to 20 100 1300 – 1700 1000 – 1400

Choose a storage facility that’s farther away: You can cut down your storage cost significantly by selecting a warehouse which is farther out. Of course, by taking this approach you’d be compromising accessibility. However, that’s recommended because accessibility comes at a very high cost. Storage facilities in city centers are likely to be more expensive.

Frequent access will cost you more: If you need to access your items frequently, then you need to opt for a self-storage unit, but don’t forget that it’s more expensive than shared storage space.  In addition, some storage companies will charge you for accessing your items or delivering your items to you.

Only store the essential items: Since you should try to use every inch of the storage unit to save money, consider selling, donating or discarding everything you don’t need. It’s always a good idea to make a list of all items that are going into the storage unit and then decide whether or not you’d be using each of these in the future. You’d be surprised by how many useless items you’ve been hoarding over the years. You can also cut down your cost by rotating the items you store in the unit. For example, when it’s summer you can store the things you only need during winter and vice versa.

Book a long-term contract: Those who plan to keep their belongings in a storage unit for a very long time can get a discount if they sign up for a long-term contract. UAE residents often underestimate the number of months for which they’ll be needing a storage facility. You might start with a 3-month contract, but then keep extending it, and before you know it, you’ll have rented a unit for a whole year. So, it’s important to accurately estimate how long you need the storage for because you can save a lot of money upfront by booking a 1-year contract. Many storage companies will give up to 2 months of storage for free if you commit to a whole year.

Let professionals pack your belongings: Trying to pack your belongings yourself to save money is a big mistake as you can end up losing more money by damaging your belongings. Packing for storage is a highly specialized task, so it’s better to ask your storage company to pack your belongings to avoid damage costs. They use sturdy packaging materials, know how to pack items in the right way, and will typically itemize your belongings in every box as part of their service.

With so many ways to make storage more affordable, it’s hardly surprising that a lot of UAE residents are now choosing to rent storage space. After all, renting a storage unit is much cheaper than moving to a bigger house and it’s a great way to declutter your home. You can also save a lot of money by requesting and comparing quotes from multiple storage facilities in the UAE through ServiceMarket.

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