Decluttering your home can be a daunting task, but it can also be incredibly rewarding. Not only can it help you make money by selling unwanted items, but it can also improve your wellbeing and mental health.
Decluttering is a great way to reduce stress and create a more organised living space. In this article, we will discuss the benefits of decluttering and how to get started on the process.
One great benefit of decluttering is that it can help you make some spare cash. By selling unwanted items, you can make a nice profit and use the money to buy something new or save for a rainy day.
Usually you won’t make much money on any one individual item, but taken altogether your clutter can be worth a healthy amount.
One survey found that more than a third of Irish adults admitted to having up to €1,000 worth of clutter stashed away in their house. A couple of popular ways of making money from your clutter are selling it on marketplace apps, or taking it to a car boot sale.
Decluttering can also improve your wellbeing and mental health. By getting rid of clutter, you can create a more organised living space that is easier to keep clean and tidy. This can reduce stress and help you feel more relaxed in your home. It can also help you focus on the things that are important to you, rather than being distracted by all the clutter.
You can increase your productivity by having all your items organised into their proper place – this means you won’t have to keep searching for things every time you need them, and won’t have the thing you need being hidden under a pile of clutter.
Finally, by decluttering you can make your home feel more welcoming to guests. It’s unlikely a guest would tell you to your face that they think your house is untidy, but they might feel it – you can avoid this by doing a quick sort out of all your junk.
The first step in decluttering is to make a list of all the things you want to sort out. This includes items you want to keep, items you want to sell, to donate, throw away etc. It’s often easiest to do this on a room by room basis, so it isn’t too big of a job to handle.
The second step is to get rid of the items you’ve decided you’re not going to keep. The quickest way to do this is all in one go, which is either donating all of it to a charity shop, or throwing it all out (which isn’t recommended).
A slightly slower option is selling your items, this might involve listing everything on marketplace apps, or taking it down to your local car boot sale. If you have anything truly valuable you might want to find a seller directly, or take it to auction.
The third step, once you’ve got rid of everything you’ve planned to, is to tidy away what’s left. Don’t just move these things from one place to another, you have to find a place for everything. That’s how you’ll know where to find it later. Preferably if you can find cabinets, or storage containers, then your items will be stored away neatly, and you won’t have to look at them until you need them. Furniture with storage inside such as an ottoman or a coffee table with drawers are perfect for this.
If you can’t find a space for everything, then you can always rent a storage unit. This can be especially useful for when you have items you want to sell. While you’re waiting for a buyer, or for the item to go to auction, then you can have peace of mind with the item stored safely away in your local self storage facility.
Now we’ve entered the off-season for camping the hills and campsites are only occupied with the hardcore campers willing to brave the cold, wet, winter weather.
However, for the rest of us, it means our camping gear is getting packed away, not to be touched again for months. Storing your camping gear for long periods of time is not as simple as you might think, and if you get it wrong there is the potential to cause damage to your equipment.
So in this article we’ll take you through how you should be storing your camping gear in the off-season.
Moisture is probably the most common way camping gear is damaged during storage. Whether this is mould and mildew on your fabrics, or rust on your pots and pans, moisture will find a way to damage your gear.
This is particularly common with camping equipment, as it is so often slightly wet from the elements last time you packed it away.
For this reason, the most important thing you can do before storing your equipment is to make sure it has been left out to dry completely before storing. For a tent, this will often mean pitching it out on a dry surface and leaving it to dry, or hanging it up, making sure that all parts of the tent are getting airflow, and space to dry properly.
Dirt and grime can also degrade your fabrics and zips over time, so it’s important to keep your gear clean. We don’t need to tell you how to wash your pots, pans, and plates after use. However, a lot of your other gear will be using technical fabrics, which will need some special care.
For this reason you should check your labels, or care instructions for each individual item you’re cleaning. When cleaning anything waterproof (e.g. a tent or clothing) you shouldn’t wring out the fabric or use hot water to wash it or put it in the tumble dryer. All of this can damage the waterproofing.
If you have a down sleeping bag, or jacket then this will need special care. You can’t use your normal detergent as this will strip out natural oils on the feathers, which will in turn make them more susceptible to moisture, and will mean the down doesn’t insulate as well. Unless your down item is smelling bad, or has visible dirt, then not washing it might cause less harm than washing it.
Pretty much all camping gear should be stored in a cool (but not too cold), dry, dark place. Under your bed, or in a cupboard are fine places, and if your loft doesn’t have dramatic temperature swings this should also be fine most of the time.
If you don’t have space in the loft then a storage unit is a perfect place to keep your gear out of the way. Just remember you can’t store camping fuel in a storage unit!
The general advice for technical fabrics is to not store them compressed for long periods of time. This is especially true of items which have down or other fill materials, as these can lose their loft if they’re compressed for months on end.
For down sleeping bags you will often get a box or sack that you can store them in loosely. For both jackets and sleeping bags you can also store these just hanging on a rail if you want, and not in a storage box.
For other items with technical fabrics, like tents, compression is still an issue though not as much as with filled-items. Check to see if the manufacturer has provided any storage instructions, but you can’t go wrong with loosely folding / rolling up these fabrics. What you don’t want to do is put undue strain on the fabrics, or have wear / friction on one place repeatedly.
That’s our guide on how to store your camping gear for the off season. If you look after your gear like this it should do you well for years of adventuring. And don’t forget that if you don’t have enough space for your gear in the house, you can always rent a storage unit to keep it protected.
The leaves are falling from the trees, the weather is getting colder and the first Christmas decorations in the shops are going up. This can only mean one thing, it’s time to get ready for the winter.
Prepping for winter often means putting away all the things you’re not going to touch again until the weather starts getting warmer next year.
Self storage is a fantastic help when it comes to packing away your summer gear. In this guide on how to get prepped for winter we’ll walk you through what to store and how to store it.
One of the most obvious things to store is your summer wardrobe. Self Storage is a fantastic help when it comes to clothing, as you can pack away all your big coats and scarves when the winter ends, and then when summer is over you can quickly collect all your winter essentials and in their place pack away the summer clothes you aren’t going to wear until next year.
This way you get to have a seasonal wardrobe without having your cupboards taking up all the space in your house.
Another thing to store over winter is any sports equipment that won’t be relevant over the winter time. If you participate in any summer sports like surfing, or cricket you can pack this away.
Similarly, you might not see yourself cycling at all over the winter period, so you could pack your bike away, rather than have it clutter up your house.
Self storage is particularly useful for packing away garden equipment that you won’t be using over the winter time. Once you’ve finished off the last bits of gardening for the year your plants are likely going to be dormant over the winter, and so it is unlikely you will be needing all your garden tools like a lawn mower, strimmer, shears, chainsaws and anything else you might have stored in your shed for those ‘just in case’ tasks.
You should check with your storage unit whether you can store any petrol or diesel powered items, and if you are storing these, make sure you have emptied out the tank first.
Similarly you might want to pack away your garden furniture. You likely won’t be using your furniture during the winter time where it’s dark before you arrive home from work and too cold to enjoy sitting out on the patio.
During this time your furniture might be exposed to the elements and get damaged by the frost and moisture. You can prevent some of this damage by packing away your furniture into a temperature controlled storage unit.
The first, and most important thing is to make sure that your items are clean. If your items aren’t clean then you’re asking for mould or corrosion or, depending on the item, pests.
If you’re putting your bike away for the winter, it’s important that you’ve cleaned off all the mud and grime, and performed vital bike maintenance, otherwise you could come back to your bike next year only to find parts corroded or seized.
Once you’ve cleaned all your items the next most important thing is to make sure they are dry. Mould can spread extremely quickly and can affect and ruin almost anything you want to store.
If you’re storing electronics you should either look for a climate controlled storage unit, or make sure that you’re not storing these electronics on the floor, as the cold can negatively affect certain electronics, and especially batteries.
Again, depending on the unit you’re storing your items in, and whether you’re storing at home, you may want to consider covering up your items to prevent them from getting dusty. This might be by putting them in boxes, or by covering them with a linen sheet.
If there is a chance of moisture being in your items you don’t want to cover these with plastic covers, as these can trap and condense moisture.
Now you’re all set for the winter you can relax under a warm, cosy blanket with a hot cup of tea, knowing that all your items are decluttered and safely packed away.
We’ve all been there – you go to pack away your latest clothing purchases only to realise they won’t fit in the draw you’re trying to stuff them in. Not only that, but there’s no room in your wardrobe either. Unless your new jeans are going to spend their life on the floor, something is going to have to be done.
Obviously your first choice should be to clear out some of your current clothes. Especially if you have lots of clothes that you no longer wear, or that no longer fit you. These should go to charity, or if they’re in poor condition, should be thrown out or recycled.
However, if you’re still left with too many clothes. Here are our best tips for how to deal with storing them all.
You might have already filled up the obvious places like your closets, and drawers, but you likely have plenty more spaces that you can store items. Try under your bed, or in your loft. If this is going to be a long term storage solution you’ll need to think about packing these clothes up so they don’t get damaged over time.
The backs of your doors are perfect places to store some more clothes. What most people do is put hooks on doors to hang clothes from. However, something that’s becoming more common these days is over door storage racks.
These are perfect for storing all your shoes, but also for placing boxes of accessories, scarves, or anything else that might be taking up space in your wardrobe or chest of drawers, freeing up vital space for your new clothes.
Most houses have awkward nooks and crannies that won’t fit any wardrobes or chests. This doesn’t mean these have to be wasted space though. Often you can fit attractive storage boxes or chests in these spaces.
You can also put closet rods or rails in these spaces without trying to fit a whole closet. This way you can still hang your clothes up.
If you can’t find any more space to fit your clothes, and you can’t get rid of them, you can always use self storage.
At Space Self Storage we offer secure, clean, dry and temperature controlled storage, perfect for storing items of clothing.
It’s easy to access your storage unit, making self storage a great solution for packing away your seasonal items and collecting them when you need them.
Perfume and deodorant can damage your clothes if left on over time, so it’s important to wash these off. But even more important is to make sure your clothes are fully dried before packing them away. You don’t want to come back to find a mountain of mould all over your clothes.
Vacuum sealed bags are a great way to cut down on the amount of space that clothes take up, if you have a lot of clothes this can become a real space saver.
However, there are certain fabrics that don’t do well in vacuum sealed bags, which brings us on to the next point.
There are many items of clothing that don’t do well in vacuum bags, such as wool, fur, leather, and down. These items will lose their shape if stored in a vacuum bag too long.
Any items that have inserts to keep rigid shapes will also door poorly in vacuum bags, This includes hats, suits, and shoes.
As long as you have the space, you can’t go very wrong with a storage box, whereas you can damage your clothes if you use a vacuum bag when it’s not appropriate.
Labelling your boxes takes so little time but can save you so much frustration rummaging through all your boxes just to find the one thing you need.
This probably isn’t something you need to worry about unless you’ve had issues with moths in your current wardrobes. The last thing you want is to transport your moths to your storage unit and come back to find holes in all your clothes.
So those are our storage tips for when you have too many clothes, let us know if you have any other ideas, and if you need extra storage space, don’t hesitate to get a free quote from Space Self Storage today.
Wedding planning is one of the most stressful things you’ll have to do in your life, along with moving house.
However, there are some ways you can make things easier on yourself. One of the best things you can do might surprise you – hire out a storage unit!
If you’re wondering how hiring a storage unit will help with your wedding then read on.
Depending on where you find your perfect dress you may have to pick it up immediately. You obviously don’t want to store this at home where your partner might be able to see it. A storage unit makes the perfect place to store your dress as it is climate controlled, secure, and most importantly – not in your house.
Make sure you get advice on how best to store your particular dress, it might need protection if it’s folded in case any parts of it snag.
One of the best ways you can save money on a wedding is to purchase alcohol in bulk, so you’re only paying for corkage rather than paying the venue’s rates for alcohol.
The major downside of this is that you’re going to end up with a brewery’s worth of booze cluttering up your whole house. Or, you could stick it in your storage unit, to keep it out of the way. In a climate controlled environment your wine will store perfectly, and you don’t have to think about it until the big day arrives.
Wedding decorations are such a personal thing and the perfect way to show off who you are as a couple. You might have many ideas, or pinterest boards of the type of decorations you want in your wedding. But what happens when you spot those decorations coming up on eBay, Gumtree, or on special offer in the shops many months before the wedding?
You don’t want to let the opportunity slip by. This is why storage units can be so handy, you don’t have to worry about missing out on getting the perfect decorations for your wedding, you can pick them up and drop them off in your unit.
Depending on the venue you’ve chosen you might need to provide your own furniture. Often, if this is the case you can hire tables and chairs just for the day. However, if you have spotted the perfect wooden furniture to go with your barn wedding, or the best benches that will go amazingly with your festival theme then you might not be able to hire them in for the day.
In this case you can store your furniture in your unit, and you can also keep it there until the time comes where you want to sell it on.
Once all the wedding is over you’ve likely been left with gifts from all your friends and family, and not necessarily the space to keep them. Or maybe you need a bit of time to sort out your place before you can fit them all in. Again, this is the perfect time for your storage unit to help relieve you of stress.
What are your thoughts, have you used a storage unit to help with your wedding planning, or do you have a wedding coming up, and have the perfect use for a storage unit?
No matter how big or small your garden is, there are ways to make the most of it. By using creative planting and landscaping techniques, you can turn even the tiniest yard into a beautiful and productive space. In this article, we will discuss some of the best methods to do so.
Vertical gardening is a great way to maximise the amount of growing space in your garden. You can use trellises, arbors, and other structures to create vertical gardens that are perfect for growing vegetables, fruits, and flowers. Vertical gardens can be used to grow herbs, such as basil, or other vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers.
If you’re lucky enough to have a porch or balcony, you can use that extra space to grow flowers, herbs, or vegetables. You can either use pots and planters or plant directly into the ground (if your porch or balcony is large enough).
One of the benefits of gardening on a porch or balcony is that you can control the environment – you can make it as sunny or shady as you want, and you can keep out pests and animals.
When planning your garden, it is important to choose plants that will thrive in the conditions of your space and in the season of year during which you are planting. Some plants fare better in direct sunlight while others prefer shaded areas. Some plants need a lot of water while others can survive with little irrigation.
Consider the size of your garden when selecting plants. Some plants grow tall and need a lot of space, while others are smaller and can be planted in clusters or rows. If you have a limited amount of space, consider choosing plants that have a compact growth habit.
Think about the time of year when you want to enjoy your garden. Certain flowers bloom only during certain seasons, so it is important to select plants that will bloom at the right time. There are also trees and shrubs that provide beautiful foliage colour during different seasons.
No matter what time of year it is, garden maintenance is important. In the spring, you should clean up any debris from the winter, plant new flowers and plants, and water your garden regularly. During the summer, make sure to continue watering your plants and to remove any dead leaves or branches. In the fall, you should rake up any leaves that have fallen, add some compost to your garden, and water everything well. And in the winter, you should make sure that your garden is covered with a layer of mulch to protect it from the cold weather.
Gardening is a fun and rewarding hobby, but it can also be a lot of work. Between the planting, weeding, and watering, there’s a lot to keep track of. That’s why it’s important to make sure you have enough space to store all your gardening equipment and furniture.
If you don’t have much space in your garden or garage, consider investing in some storage sheds or containers. This will allow you to keep all your equipment in one place and free up some space in your home.
Another option is to use self storage to store your gardening equipment and furniture seasonally. For example, you can put your tools away during the winter and bring them back out when the weather starts to warm up.
In conclusion, there are many ways to make the most out of your garden space. By using creativity and some simple tips, you can have a thriving garden that you can be proud of. Whether you have a small patio or a large yard, there is no reason why you can’t enjoy gardening. So get outside and start planting!
When it comes to storing items in a self storage unit, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind. First and foremost, you should always check with your storage facility to see what items they do and do not allow. This is because different facilities have different policies when it comes to what can and cannot be stored on their property. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us if you have any questions about storing any particular item at our facility.
That being said there are a few items that are a perfect use case for storing in a self storage unit.
There are many reasons why you might want to store furniture during a house move. Maybe you don’t have enough space in your new home for all of your furniture, or maybe you need to wait until your new home is ready before you can move in. Whatever the reason, storing your furniture can be a great way to make the moving process a little bit easier.
When packed correctly, you will be surprised at just how much you can get into a unit. For example, the contents of a 2 bedroom flat can often fit into a 100 sq ft unit!
Are you downsizing your office and don’t have room to keep all of your files? Maybe you’re starting a new business and need to keep some records off-site until you get your own office. Or maybe you just need to free up some space in your home or office for other purposes.
Whatever the reason, self storage is a great option for storing business documents. It’s affordable, convenient, and secure, and it gives you the flexibility to access your documents whenever you need them. Plus, if you choose a climate-controlled unit, you can rest assured that your documents will be safe and protected from the elements.
Maybe you’re a collector and have accumulated items over the years, or maybe you’ve just been holding on to artwork for sentimental reasons. Whatever the case may be, a self-storage unit can be a safe place to ensure the items are protected from accidental damage and kept in good condition.
While you could use your garage or loft, those spaces aren’t always the ideal environment for artwork, this is where a storage unit can help.
If you’ve recently had a death in the family you might have inherited some items that you don’t have space for yet. This could be something you think would be perfect for your next house, or for your children when they get a place for themselves.
It could also be that the family have inherited a lot of items that need to be stored before they are handed out to their respective new owners. It’s always stressful dealing with a death in the family, and anything that can reduce this stress can be a blessing.
There are many things you’ll own that will only be used at one time of year and then be hidden away for the rest of it, such as christmas or halloween decorations, gardening equipment a BBQ etc.
Or maybe you just like to switch your wardrobe up and want to put your winter clothes away until next year.
No matter the reason, self storage is a great option for storing seasonal items. You can choose a unit that’s the right size for your needs, and you can rest assured that your belongings will be safe and secure. Plus, if you ever need to access your items during the off-season, you can always do so with ease.
Perhaps you have a large wine collection and don’t have enough space in your home to store it all. Maybe you’re going on vacation and don’t want your wine collection to be vulnerable to theft or damage. Or maybe you’re starting a wine business and need a place to store your inventory. Whatever the reason, self storage is a great option for storing wine. It’s safe, secure, and affordable, and it gives you the peace of mind knowing that your wine is in good hands.
With all that being said, there are some general things that you should keep in mind when storing items in a self storage unit. For example, you should never store anything flammable or combustible in your unit, as this could pose a safety hazard. Additionally, you should avoid storing any hazardous materials in your unit, as these could also be dangerous.
Some other things that you should avoid storing in your self storage unit include food items (which can attract pests), live animals, plants, and any item that is perishable.
Ultimately, it is important to check with your storage facility to see what their policies are when it comes to what can and cannot be stored on their property. This will help ensure that you are storing your items in a safe and secure manner.
Spring is in the air, the birds are singing and the daffodils are out. The longer, warmer afternoons also mean that your social calendar is going to start filling up again and guests will be coming round to your place.
That can only mean one thing – it’s spring cleaning time!
It can often be daunting to start a spring clean, as the task can often be so big it seems overwhelming. The simple solution is to break it down into smaller tasks. Make a list of all the things that need to be done and you can tick these off one by one giving you a sense of accomplishment with each tick.
You can also start small, with things you don’t mind as much – just to get you going. Starting can often be the hardest part, and once you’re in the middle it doesn’t seem so bad.
This fills two functions: first it’s more efficient, rather than flitting from one end of the house to the other, you stay in one place and so don’t move around as much. Second, it gives you little boosts of accomplishment after each room. You can use this as an opportunity to have a break with a cup of tea, and congratulate yourself on what you’ve done so far.
This is going to be a big job, it will be possible to do it in the evenings after work, but you might find it easier to get it all done in one big day of deep cleaning.
When you dust, no matter how good your duster is, you will be throwing more dust around the room. There’s nothing worse than doing the vacuuming only to find that you have to do it all over again an hour later once you’ve thrown dust on the floor.
The dusting is also a great time to do any re-organising you need to do. If your shelves are looking a bit untidy, or your countertops or furniture is looking cluttered then now is the perfect time to tidy these up.
When dusting make sure you dust all the things you might not do in your normal cleaning, this is a deep clean after all.
Make sure you wipe down doors, electrical sockets, light switches, lamp shades, windows, skirting boards, and all the little nooks and crannies you don’t normally get to.
Air vents are a prime candidate for being missed in a normal clean, and over time these can get seriously clogged, so don’t miss these.
When you’re moving your furniture to get a better clean behind them you might need to consider putting something under the feet of your sofa or coffee table so you don’t scratch the floor, if you have a hard floor.
This isn’t only the perfect time for cleaning, but is great for doing a bit of a tidy up.
Over time your wardrobes, drawers and cupboards will get messy, with things not being put back in the order they should be, or not as neatly as they should be.
Taking some time to empty your drawers and put everything away in its place will make a big difference to how you feel, as well as making it easier to find what you need next time you open the drawer.
Tidying will also allow you to do a clear out. If you haven’t used or worn something since the last time you spring cleaned a year ago then it’s a sign you either need to send that thing to a charity shop, or if it’s something you only use infrequently you might need to put it in storage to prevent your house from getting cluttered.
If you decide you need storage we have different sized storage units at Space Self Storage, so we can help no matter how much space you need.
Once you’ve done the dusting and polishing, and vacuumed behind the furniture it’s time to do the last mop and vacuum before putting it all back together. Then you can finish off with a nice room scent to complete the spring feeling.
You can now sit back and relax knowing your house is ready for a summer of hosting and parties.
Across the world, many people are opting to downsize their houses and choose something far more manageable. Living in a smaller space can be an excellent opportunity to re-evaluate your possessions and streamline your lifestyle, and in this post we’ll share with you some handy tips to help make the most out of whatever size house you’re living in.
The first place to start is by deciding which of your possessions you actually need, and which of those you are holding on to unnecessarily.
Whether it’s old clothes that you no longer wear, or kitchen gadgets that you never use, a large percentage of your stuff is likely rarely used.
The more things you can remove from your life at this point the less you’ll have to deal with when it comes to storing and organising it all.
This can also be a great time to separate out all of the things which you need to keep, but rarely use – things like camping equipment, skiing equipment or festive decorations – stuff that may be better off being stored in a storage unit.
We’re living in a digital world, and chances are that a lot of things you own could be put into a digital format – whether it’s old photo albums, receipts and documents, or just your vast collection of books.
When going through your possessions, be mindful of anything you could move onto a digital format as this could help free up a lot of potential spare room.
When living in a smaller space, the furniture you choose will have a massive impact on your available space.
Using furniture that doubles up or has additional storage can be extremely helpful. Some great examples of this might be a coffee table that has internal storage space, or a bed that has storage underneath – even a loft bed if you’re looking to really max out space. If you’re struggling for ideas, a trip to IKEA (or just browsing the website) can be great for inspiration.
If you’re really tight for space you can take this even further and get furniture that’s designed to be multi purpose. Things such as a pull out sofa bed, or fold out desks and kitchen tables.
As well as the bigger pieces of furniture, there’s also smaller items that can free up essential space around the house. Using over the door shoe racks or hooks on the inside of the doors can help you fill space that would otherwise be left empty.
One of the biggest areas where you can free up more space is in the kitchen. So many kitchens are filled with unused appliances and multiple different sizes of the same utensils.
Figuring out what you actually use on a regular basis can help you clear up a lot of space in your kitchen. You may think you need all of the different gadgets to help you get by, but in reality there are going to be a few key items you use to cook the majority of your meals.
You can also get creative and use some of the empty wall space for hanging pots and pans, utensils and even consider a wall mounted knife rack.
Once you have removed all the things you don’t need and have invested in some storage friendly furniture, the next step is to get everything organised.
Ensuring there is a place for everything will help you to keep on top of things and stop you from getting overwhelmed. There’s so many options out there to help you with organising whatever room it is, whether it’s filing boxes for the office, storage boxes for the kids rooms, or food storage for the kitchen, all of these tools can help keep you organised.
This is especially important when you’re living in a smaller space. Keeping clutter to a minimum and tidying up as you go will help to make everything seem as spacious as possible.
Even if you’ve followed all the areas we’ve covered in this post, there’s still likely to be items you’ll want to keep but don’t have the room for. Whether it’s treasured heirlooms, that box of camping equipment you use once a year, or that piece of furniture you can’t bear to part with but simply have no space for at the moment.
That’s where self storage can help. A little bit of extra space can help you look after these possessions, without them encroaching on your everyday life. Not only will they be securely stored, but you’ll be able to access them conveniently whenever you need them.
Here at Space Self Storage we have a wide selection of different sized rooms available to rent for as long as you need them. If you’re looking to free up some space then why not get in touch and find out how we can help you.
One of the most important legal obligations a company has is to keep records of their business activities.
The exact amount of time you’re required to keep documents for depends on the country you’re in, and the type of document e.g. accounting documents or due diligence documents.
It’s recommended that you check your local laws on how long you’ll need to store your documents for, but it can often be up to 10 years depending on the nature of the records.
As it’s a legal requirement to keep these documents you’ll want to make sure they’re kept securely stored so they aren’t lost, stolen or damaged in all the years you need to store them.
The exact methods of storing documents will depend on the type of document you need to store, we’ll break it down into digital and paper document storage.
Storing important documents on your own computer(s) is fraught with danger. There could be any number of ways those documents get lost.
You could have a coworker accidentally delete the files, or a computer crash, or the hard drive could suffer physical damage from a flood or a fire.
This isn’t easily solved by having backups either. Firstly you have to remember to back up the files, which might go well for the first few months, but over time will likely start to be left later and later.
Then if anything does go wrong with your original files you might lose months worth of important documents if you haven’t backed them up regularly.
You’ll also need to keep your backups in a safe and separate location. There’s no point in having a physical backup that gets destroyed in the same flood the original files are damaged in.
Cloud storage solves these issues by having your files either existing wholly on the cloud or being regularly backed up to the cloud giving you peace of mind.
Secure file storage isn’t just about protecting the files from damage or loss. You also need to protect the data from being stolen in a data breach.
This is now a legal obligation with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which requires you to protect personal data you’ve collected.
It’s important to have some sort of encryption on files that are confidential that way even if you do have a data breach the thief won’t be able to read the information they stole.
Once you’ve encrypted your data you’ll need to remember the passwords to unencrypt it. This is much better done with a password manager. Not only will this allow you to use different passwords for different storage locations, but you can control who has access to different documents by granting them access to the passwords through the password manager.
An important part of document security is only allowing people to access the files they need to access and only granting access to your most sensitive files to trusted individuals.
No matter how much a business tries to move digital there’s still cases where important documents exist in physical form, and while they have different requirements it’s just as important to keep these files secure.
While documents are more recent you might need them close to hand, as it’s much more likely that someone will query an invoice sent two months ago than it is that they’ll query an invoice sent five years ago.
For this reason you’ll probably want to keep recent files somewhere close to hand for easy retrieval and inspection.
However, keeping older files close to hand comes with the huge downside that they will all quickly build up taking up vital space.
Much better would be to move these files off site, as the cost per square foot of renting a storage space will be cheaper than the cost per square foot of your office space.
Not only is this cheaper per square foot, but you get the added benefit of a more secure location where fewer people have access to your sensitive files.
It’s no good having all your files securely stored if you don’t know how to find them when you need them.
The exact method of organisation will depend on what sort of information you want to organise, it might make sense to organise the files alphabetically, by client, by date, or some other way. The important thing is just to have them organised so you can quickly retrieve them.
In the same way you need to have backups of your digital files it’s important to scan in your paper files and have a copy of your physical files in case anything happens to them.
Once the documents are old enough that you don’t have to legally keep them / have no more use of them you should securely destroy them, this usually means taking them to a location that does confidential document shredding.
Securing your documents isn’t something to put off until it’s too late. If you need help with storing your documents safely then why not get in touch with us here at Space Storage, our professional and flexible business storage solutions will be just what you are looking for.