10 Tips to Remember What You Packed in Your Storage Unit

One of the most frustrating parts about packing up your belongings into a storage unit is if you need to find one specific item, but you can’t remember where it is! Worst case scenario you have to unpack a bunch of boxes, or you just give up and buy what you couldn’t find in your boxes in the first place. Here are 10 tips to remember what you packed in your storage unit so that you can find anything in your storage unit more easily.

Tip #1. Clean Up Reused Boxes

For most people they will move more than once in their lifetimes, and that means that they will most likely be reusing some of their boxes from previous moves. I don’t know about you, but I know that we have always labeled our boxes during our moves. What this ends up looking like after 2 or 3 moves is a bunch of scribbled descriptions that you can’t make any sense of at the end of the day.

So one of our first tips to remember what you packed in your storage unit is to make sure that you cross out or scribble out any of the old descriptions that you had written on boxes that you’re reusing. We’d recommend that you use a thick sharpie and scratch out all of the old lines of text that way. Then when you begin packing your boxes you can easily label each of them, and know what is in the boxes quickly when you are in your storage unit.

Tip #2. Date Boxes

A good one of our tips to remember what you packed in your storage unit is to add a date to the boxes so that you know when you packed the box. Writing a date a long with providing a description on the boxes gives that added detail to help you if you are storing years worth of items.

Maybe you want to get to the box that has all of your military uniforms back when you were in the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets and then the Army. You can quickly find that in your storage unit by looking at the dates that you’ve written on the boxes.

Tip #3. Write Descriptions on Boxes

After dating your boxes, make sure to add a description of what you put in the boxes. This is one of our tips to remember what you packed in your storage unit that pays dividends later down the road. Simply write a quick description on the side of each of your boxes with details about what is in the box, or the area of your house where you packed the box. For example if you wrote kitchen on one of your boxes, you would know that you’re not going to find tennis balls in there. This will make it easier when you’re looking for items in your unit, and when you’re unpacking your boxes if you move to a new house or apartment.

Tip #4. Write Descriptions on Multiple Sides of Boxes

This is one of our tips that is overlooked by many people. They write a description on the top or one side of their box, but they don’t write the description on other sides of the box. So what can happen is you store your boxes all with the descriptions all facing out of sight, so you can’t figure out what is in the boxes.

To solve this problem, make sure to write the descriptions on multiple sides of the box so that you can make sure to find the description fairly readily when you are in your storage unit. This can take more time, but it is one of those things that will make your life so much easier later down the road.

Tip #5. Create Master List and Make a Copy

We think that this tip is one of our best tips to remember what you packed in your storage unit. Having a master list of the items in your storage unit is really a next-level type of activity that few people would think about doing. The reason for this is that it takes time, time which many people would rather spend not thinking about packing, storing and organizing their things. So how could we make this tip easier to do?

You could have someone in your family be assigned as the official scribe of the move, someone who had the only job to write down everything that is being packed and stored and the box that it is being packed in. This can be done through labeling, or through a numbering system of the boxes. So for example in Box #1 there are clothes, shoes and sheets, and in Box #2 there are dishes.

Then when you go back to your master list you can see all the boxes, their corresponding numbers and what is in each of the boxes. Finally make sure to make a copy of your master packing storage list, it will come in handy later.

Tip #6. Keep Master List Handy at Storage Unit and at Home

This may seem like one of our obvious tips to remember what you packed in your storage unit, but keep a copy of your master packing storage list in your storage unit and also at home. Many times you may send your son, husband or wife to get something out of the storage unit, but they forget to bring your handy master packing storage list.

So taping a copy of this master list to the wall of your storage unit will help someone in your family who needs to find something quickly and easily. It is always a good idea to have a backup copy at home if you’re trying to remember where something is in your house, which may have been put into storage.

Tip #7. Group Similar Items Together When Packing

By grouping similar items together, you can quickly figure out the right box in your storage unit that has what you’re looking for. Now you can group items together based on different things. For example, you could group everything based on the room that they were in, like “kitchen” or “laundry room”. Or you can group your items based on what the type of item that is in the box, like “maps of Blacksburg, VA” or “Radford University Books”. So if you are looking for your old school books from Radford University you can readily find that box. Now the hard part is being able to move a box full of books!

Tip #8. Lay Out Where Everything Goes in Storage Unit

One of our last tips to remember what you packed in your storage unit is to plan ahead before you start packing your storage unit up. Before you start throwing things into your storage unit, take a minute to map out specific areas where you want to place certain items. For example in the right hand corner place all of your kitchen supplies. When you come back looking for something, you know you can look in a certain place of your storage unit to find what you’re looking for.

Adding to this tip, you can draw out the sections of your storage unit on a piece of paper and attach it to the wall along with your master storage packing list. So that makes it so much easier to get to what you’re looking for fast.

Tip #9. Heavy Items Go To Back

As a rule of thumb, place your heavier items at the back of the unit and your lighter items at the front of the unit. More than likely all of the heavier items, except those Virginia Tech college textbooks, aren’t going to be needed on a weekly or monthly basis.  The lighter items usually would need to be accessible and used more frequently, like beach towels or winter clothes.

Another way to go about this is to put all the heavy items to one side of your storage unit, on the right or left of the unit. Then you will know lighter items on one side and heavier items on the other side, and you can make that mental note when you’re looking for something.

Tip #10. Number Your Boxes

Our final tip of the tips to remember what you packed in your storage unit, corresponds with putting together your master packing storage list. Number your boxes as you pack them up and then write down the numbers and their contents on your master list. So once you are finished packing, you will have a nice list of numbered boxes that you can quickly find.