Storage Unit Size Guide
Find Out Which Storage Unit Size Is Best For You
Storage unit sizes vary from small units for those who just want to put aside a few boxes of extra stuff to medium and large storage units, which can be used in the process of moving house or for storing vehicles such as cars, boats and RVs. Essentially, there is a storage unit perfect for your every need.
If you're wondering “What size storage unit do I need?”, this storage unit size guide will help you to both identify the ideal unit size among the storage unit sizes available and to budget accordingly. It's important that you rent just the right unit size for your needs, to make the most of the space and your budget. Renting a storage unit that's too small can make it difficult to organize your belongings in the unit. Booking one that's too big for your needs, on the other hand, means you are paying for a service you are not actually using at full capacity.
How tall are storage units?
Storage units are usually 8' high, so multiply this by the square footage to get the cubic volume of the unit. For example, a 10'x10' storage unit, which is one of the most popular unit sizes, has a total volume of 800 cubic square feet. Calculating the total volume of a storage unit helps you better understand how much stuff you can actually store.
Small self storage units
The storage units at the lower end of the range that is available tend to have floor spaces of 5'x5' or 5'x10'. However, units as small as 4'x4' and even 2'x2' can also sometimes be found, especially in facilities in urban areas. A roll-up metal door is usually the means of access. These types of units are very useful for people who need to store a limited number of items, such as, for example, golfing or sports gear, a few boxes with holiday decorations or books, seasonal clothing, small pieces of furniture, and so on.
Medium self storage units
The storage unit sizes most often classed as 'medium' are the 10'x10' and 10'x15' types. Sometimes there are also 5'x15' units available, which provide extra depth and are useful for storing especially long items. Medium-sized units are among the most popular types of units and the most commonly used ones when moving house. Also, medium self storage units are very popular with homeowners that need to store various household goods long-term, such as extra furniture and appliances, tools, or small vehicles (ATVs, snowmobiles or compact cars).
Large self storage units
Storage units that are classified as 'large' can come in a variety of different sizes. The most common one is the 10'x20' — this is the lock-up garage size that is seen everywhere. But other sizes are available, some much larger, such as 20'x30' and 20'x50', and sometimes these are used for specialist purposes such as for storing boats, RVs or even helicopters.
Businesses can also make use of large self storage units, as they can hold plenty of items, including large pieces of equipment or machinery.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you're new to using self storage, you probably have a lot of questions related to the service. We've tried to identify the most common self storage questions, and here are the answers to help you make informed decisions about renting self storage.
How do I choose a storage unit size?
You should choose your unit size based on the quantity of items you need to store. However, your first step should be sorting out those items and making sure they are actually worth storing. Things like furniture that you replaced in your home because you needed something else, broken/old electronics or appliances, clothing that doesn't fit you anymore or is out of style, and so on, should be recycled or donated and not put into self storage.
Once you have made sure that everything you want to store is in good shape and is something you'll be needing again in the future, you can do a rough estimate of how much space those items take up. Calculate the volume of the big pieces of furniture and appliances by multiplying the depth by the width by the height. Add up the boxes and other items you intend to store. Make sure the volume of the storage unit you rent is at least 30% bigger than the approximate volume you calculated for your belongings — you need space to walk around the unit, and not all belongings can be stacked on top of one another.
What storage unit is the most popular?
The 10'x10' storage unit is frequently the most popular unit size available in a self storage facility. The average rent for this unit size hovers around $132 nationally. It is a versatile and convenient size that allows people to store a wide assortment of stuff, from boxes with small items to pieces of furniture or large appliances.
How big a storage unit do I need for a queen-size bed?
Mattresses need to be stored lying flat on a straight surface — storing them upright, against the wall or against a piece of furniture, can damage them. Seeing that a queen-size mattress is roughly 5 feet by over 6 feet, the smallest unit size you can consider for storing a queen-size mattress is the 5'x10' storage unit — but you should know that the mattress will cover the entire width of the unit. So, in case you need to store other belongings along with the mattress, your best bet is a 10'x10' unit.
What is the smallest storage unit you can rent?
The most common small unit size you can rent is the 5'x5' storage unit, which is about the same size as a regular home closet. However, there are facilities that rent smaller lockers — for example, 4'x4' or 2'x2' — which are suitable for people who need to store specific things like a golfing set or tennis equipment, or maybe a couple of boxes with books and papers.
What is the biggest storage unit available?
The largest standard storage unit is the 10'x30' one, which provides 300 square feet of floor space and has a volume of 2,400 cubic feet, assuming the usual 8' height. This unit is big enough to hold all the items in a 4+ bedroom home. You can also use it to store an RV, truck, trailer or boat. Some facilities might also have units that are even bigger than the 10'x30', but they are not so common.
Before signing a self storage contract, calculate carefully how much space you will need. Remember, boxes of papers stack easily, but fragile things don't, and while a single bed could be stood vertically, other pieces of furniture can't. There are many guides to help you pack your things sensibly and efficiently, meaning that you can maybe choose a smaller unit size than you thought, saving you money. And be sure to declutter before you decide — maybe there are things you'll never need, so you can rent a smaller size. Taking all these tips into account, you should be able to find just the right size storage unit that fits everything you need to store and yet doesn't break the bank!
Self storage unit size chart
Whether you're renting self storage for the first time or you've used this service before, knowing the unit size you need is not always easy. The guide below will help you quickly decide which unit size is best suited for your current needs.
<a href="https://www.storagecafe.com/storage-unit-size-guide/" target="_blank"> <img src="https://cdngeneral.storagecafe.com/Content/images/unit-size-guide/usg-size-chart.png" alt="Storage Unit Size Guide Infographic" width="928" height="892" /></a>
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All data related to self storage was compiled by StorageCafe, an online self storage search portal featuring more than 25,000 listings across the U.S.
The self storage statistics on this page were sourced from our sister company, Yardi Matrix, the industry's most comprehensive market intelligence tool for investment professionals, equity investors, lenders and property managers who underwrite and manage investments in the multifamily, student housing, self storage, office and industrial sectors. Yardi Matrix maintains operational profiles for over 30,000 self storage facilities across the U.S.