During the celebration of an engagement and wedding, a couple receives a number of gifts from family and friends as they begin their life together. However, many newlyweds don’t have the space for all of the gifts they receive, as they’re either moving in together for the first time or they’re in the process of moving to a larger home.
Fortunately, a self storage unit is a sensible solution for relocating wedding gifts until there’s enough space.
How Self Storage Helps Newlyweds
Newlyweds who live in apartments, townhouses, or condos where space is limited often use self storage to store items they don’t have room for. With wedding gifts, this is especially true, as many gifts can’t be used until the couple has moved to a larger home.
“This helps them declutter their [homes] and makes moving easier,” says Bonnie Joy Dewkett, owner of The Joyful Organizer and certified professional organizer who’s been featured in Better Homes and Gardens, Good Housekeeping, and The Huffington Post. “Living together and spending your first few months to a year as a married [couple] can be stressful and mean big adjustments, so being organized and having a clean space where you can find the things you need and use really makes that adjustment easier.”
Amy Trager, certified professional organizer and President of the NAPO (National Organization of Professional Organizers) Chicago Chapter, agrees. “It’ll make the transition to married life all the easier—less arguments about something that can’t be found or someone misplacing an item,” she says.
For couples who need to leave on a honeymoon directly after getting married or those who plan to move in to a home together, there usually isn’t a place for all of the wedding gifts they receive. “Unless they have twice as much storage space in their home [as] they need, a storage unit can hold those items until more decisions can be made,” adds Trager.
Why Climate Control Is a Good Idea
Wedding gifts that are sensitive—specifically items made out of glass, porcelain, or fabric—need special attention while in storage. By investing in climate control, couples can protect their gifts from conditions outside of the unit. This is helpful in regions that are hot and humid, hot and dry, or cold and wet.
“Climate-controlled storage ensures that the variety of gifts the couple may receive will not be subjected to [damage],” says Al Gardes, Director of Operations at Elmwood Self Storage in Harahan, La., where couples have used units to store wedding gifts in the past.
With climate control, a storage unit is typically kept between 55-85°F in order to maintain a safe environment for storage items. Humidity can be controlled at most facilities as well, which adds another layer of protection for sensitive items. By controlling the temperature and humidity levels in a unit, tenants don’t have to worry about their items cracking, fading, warping, or developing mold while in storage (especially if items are stored long-term).
“Things that are breakable, like china, can break in the cold, so those should be stored in a temperature-controlled facility,” says Dewkett. “Photos should also never be stored in the cold or heat. Other items that could have issues are candles, clothes, and media such as [DVDs].”
Keep Wedding Gifts Organized in Storage
For couples who want to be extra cautious with their gifts, Dewkett suggests using plastic storage tubs, which protect items from moisture. “For self storage…it’s important to use containers that don’t absorb moisture.” Never use cardboard boxes, as these allow moisture to get inside, which can stimulate mold growth on items.
But it’s not just the protection from moisture that Dewkett likes about plastic bins. They also help with organizing. “I prefer clear totes so you can see the contents,” she says. Clear containers make it easier for newlyweds to find items in their storage units without having to open each container to grab what they need.
Trager says couples should consider investing in shelves for their unit to organize gifts as well. “It doesn’t need to be fancy or pretty—just something that will hold [bins],” she says. “Every time I’ve opened a storage unit that has stacks and stacks of items layered on each other, I know we’re in for a good amount of lifting and digging. Having a shelf to load things on to immediately gets rid of that problem.”
Check Out Storage Security Features
It’s important for couples to understand what type of security features local self storage facilities offer in order to confidently leave wedding gifts in a storage unit.
Elmwood Self Storage, for example, takes deliveries to ensure wedding gifts are safely kept. “Couples can use our address and their storage unit for their gift registry,” says Gardes. “Couples sign a key-hold authorization in order to have us accept deliveries. They also list any person who will have access to the unit.”
If packages are delivered to the facility, Gardes says it’s smart to know who will be handling them, too. “Ask about the security of the storage [unit] to know who other than delivery drivers can access the unit.”
Another feature that can protect the gifts in your unit is on-site management. With this amenity, a manager is on the premises during business hours. Some managers may even live at the facility, meaning they’re there around the clock. No matter the type of management, having a constant presence at the facility means there’s always an eye on deliveries and your unit.
Couples may also consider getting a unit at a facility that has gated access and video surveillance. Both of these amenities add a layer of protection for storage items by preventing break-ins.