Storage Units in Boston

Boston, MA: Top Things to Know About Storage

You Can’t Get There From Here (But You Can Still Get to Your Storage Unit)

The street system of Boston evolved organically, when means, to put it politely, that it makes no sense. Thanks to the fact that Boston has been around since just about forever, the streets are also a part of living history. That’s

You Can’t Get There From Here (But You Can Still Get to Your Storage Unit)

The street system of Boston evolved organically, when means, to put it politely, that it makes no sense. Thanks to the fact that Boston has been around since just about forever, the streets are also a part of living history. That’s great news when you’re looking to spend a sunny Saturday exploring the Freedom Trail. It’s not such great news when you’re trying to navigate a vehicle through narrow streets with uneven surfaces that often dead end in places where turning around seems impossible (that guy in the Red Sox hat who’s yelling at you should help motivate you). This is an important consideration if you’re searching for RV or boat storage in Boston as these vehicles face unique challenges due to low clearance tunnels with propane restrictions, lack of parking and the aforementioned headache inducing streets themselves. The solution? Opt for this specialized type of storage on the outskirts of the city and enjoy reduced traffic and easier access. If you’re storing a boat or RV, you probably want to be closer to nature anyway.

A College Town Means College Storage

Boston has a population of 655,884. With schools like Boston University, Boston College, Suffolk University, Emerson College, UMass Boston and a little place called Harvard, you can imagine how much those numbers swell and shrink according to the beginning and end of the school year. Consider the fact that we didn’t even come close to naming all of the 100 colleges in the Boston area, and it’s easy to understand the large impact that students have on storage in Boston. There are an estimated 152,000 college students in the city itself (that’s not counting the surrounding suburbs and any neighborhood that isn’t technically Boston). In Boston proper there are 11 storage facilities, but if you count the surrounding area, the options grow. This means that even if you’re not a college student, you could be facing stiff competition when it comes to locking down a storage unit in your chosen location. For example, in Cambridge, where Harvard is located, there are seven storage facilities. That’s roughly 3,850 units. Harvard enrolls 21,000 students. You don’t have to major in math to know that any smart Bostonian will reserve a storage unit early.

In The Walking City, Facilities that Rent Trucks are Your Friend

Boston is a pedestrian’s dream, but that doesn’t mean you should be expected to carry that couch from your storage unit all the way to your new apartment. Part of living in the city means finding your perfect neighborhood. During your time in Boston, you’ll probably bounce between a few until you find your perfect fit. If you’re transitioning from a roommate situation to your own place or shacking up with a significant other, you can plan on utilizing a storage unit. But what are you supposed to do if you don’t own a car and neither do any of your friends? Include truck rental availability in your search for a storage unit. Sure, you can hire an independent mover if you want (check out our Boston self storage resource list ?for some great options), but isn’t life easier when the things you need are all in one place? Another option to consider if you’re carless in Boston is mobile self storage. Check out PODS if this sounds good to you. They’ve got three locations across Boston and they’ll drop off your portable storage unit whenever you want and let you take your sweet time loading it up. When you’re ready, they’ll move it for you. It sure beats strapping that mattress to your friend’s car and praying it makes it to your new place.

Keep Your Stuff Wicked Safe When it’s Wicked Cold

If you’ve never experienced below freezing temperatures, icy sidewalks and snow banks taller than your car, you’re in for a treat (and by treat, we mean at least five months of hibernation and enough Sam Adams to get you through it). When planning your life around the harsh Boston winter, don’t forget about your storage facility. If you’re not planning on investing in snow tires for your car or you just want to minimize going outside in general, plan on making a big trip to your storage unit before the flakes start falling that way you can make the swap between summer items and winter items before it’s too late. Besides frosty winters, Boston also has hot, humid summers, so we suggest organizing and labeling items accordingly.

If You Work in Tech, Consider Climate Control

We know, we know. Almost every city considers itself the next Silicon Valley. But Boston really might be. The city’s job market is booming and a large part of that is the emerging tech industry. If you’re in tech or you’re a Boston university student with a dorm full of electronics, you might benefit from climate controlled storage. This is crucial for commercial storage renters who work in tech and might be storing items which can be negatively impacted by drastic temperatures (aka Boston winters) and humidity (aka Boston summers). If you’re not storing electronics, antique furniture, a musical instrument or delicate clothing, you probably don’t need climate controlled storage. But if it’s within your budget, it’s definitely better to be safe than sorry.

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Storage FAQ's

  • Do I need insurance for my storage unit?

    We recommend that you get insurance for your belongings because the contents of the units are not insured through storage facilities.

  • Do you have advice on how to pack my storage space?

    Yes, storage managers can provide you with tips and techniques on how to most efficiently utilize your storage space. Their hope is that you can have easy access to your items and that your storage space is worth every penny of your money.

  • Do you accept deliveries for customers?

    Most storage facilities in Boston accept deliveries for their customers so that they don't have to go through the process of moving every time they need something to be placed in their storage units. They will keep your items in the office and will inform you when they arrive so that you can place them in your storage unit at your convenience.

  • What access will I have to my belongings?

    You have 11 facilities to choose from in Boston. Access hours range from 8 to 24 hours a day. Please contact your local facility for more specific information about your unit.

  • What security measures are taken to protect the storage units?

    Security is every storage operator's priority. Speak with the storage manager of a facility of your liking in Boston to find out what security measures they take to protect your belongings.

  • Is there anything unique to keep in mind when choosing a storage facility in Boston?

    Some factors to keep in mind when choosing a storage facility in Boston are: weather, peak rush hour times, items that you will be storing, and location within Boston.

  • How long is the lease and what are its terms?

    Storage companies in Boston offer a month-to-month lease. If for some reason you would like to cancel your lease during a particular month, please contact one of the facility managers to assist you.

  • What options do I have for payments? What forms of payment do you accept?

    Most storage facilities accept cash, credit cards, or checks. Always ask about autopay, it's faster and much more convenient.

  • What if I need more or less space after I move in?

    Once you move in and feel that you need to move into a smaller or bigger space, storage facilities are happy to accommodate your move. Before renting a space, it is recommended that you speak to a storage facility representative to help you find the best sized unit for your needs. If things change through the course of your lease, they will help make the transition to your next unit as efficient and simple as possible. We also have a size guide that may answer some preliminary questions you may have.

  • Do you sell boxes and moving supplies?

    Yes, most storage facilities sell boxes of various sizes, tape, bubble wrap, labels, and other items for your packing and moving needs.

  • Will the company have access to my space?

    No, no one in the storage facilities has access to your space unless you specifically ask them or give them the right to do so. For example, you may want them to have access to your unit for things you may want delivered directly to your unit.

  • What storage space sizes are available?

    In Boston, there are 11 storage facilities, with a total of 0 storage units. Storage unit sizes generally range from N/A to N/A. Call one of your local facilities to have a representative find what size unit is best for you.

  • What are the prices of the storage spaces? Are prices based on the square footage of the storage space?

    Generally the prices of storage units in Boston vary based on the size of the storage unit and the location of the unit in the facility. Prices range between N/A and N/A, but representatives can better assist you once they have the details of your storage needs.

  • Do you have different policies and prices for students or active military members?

    Students and active military members are clients that have unique needs because of the nature of their schedules. Most storage facilities in Boston offer discounts to students, and discounts and different policies for active military members. Please call your local facility or see our students and active military members pages to get detailed and updated information.

  • Can I rent climate-controlled spaces in Boston?

    Yes, climate-controlled spaces are available in Boston due to the varying weather. Temperatures range from 28.4 to 39.2, which can dramatically affect things in your storage unit. For storing items such as wine, wooden items, electronics, metals, artwork, etc. storage facilities recommend that you rent a climate-controlled unit. For questions and more details, please contact a local facility.

  • Will I receive a monthly invoice?

    Most storage companies in Boston only provide invoices upon request.

  • Do you have pest control?

    Most facilities in Boston schedule professional pest control services every month, and twice a month during summer months.

  • Should I rent a drive-up or interior storage unit?

    Drive-up storage units are typically more expensive and not as clean as interior units. Drive-up units are more exposed to the elements (water, dust, etc.) and are therefore not as clean as interior units. Interior units, on the other hand, have a much better climate. Essentially, the desire to rent a drive-up unit comes from clients thinking that they will be visiting their unit very frequently, which is surprisingly not the case. Most people don't come to their units as often as they think they will, so given the cost and cleanliness issues, it's better to rent an interior storage unit.

  • Do you provide your customers with movers?

    No, storage facilities do not provide movers. However, managers and team members would be happy to provide you with a list of reliable and reasonably priced movers in Boston. See our resource guide for movers in Boston.

  • If I lose my key, can you provide another one?

    No, storage facility employees do not have copies of the keys used for the units. If you lose your key, check with the facility for lock cutting fees. They may also be able to sell another lock and key to you.

  • How do I know what size storage I need?

    Storage managers would be happy to help you determine which size unit is best for you so that you're not paying for a N/A unit when you really need a N/A unit. Please reference our size guide for more information.

Boston, MA University StorageViewHide

Boston, MA University Storage

With more than 250,000 college students in the city, walking around Boston can sometimes feel like walking around one big campus. The compact, walkable city is home to large, legendary universities and small but mighty schools that you’ve probably never heard of. It’s a place where law students mingle with musicians in the park and future teachers attend Red Sox games with their pre-med buddies. There are 43 storage facilities in Boston, but if you’re unfamiliar with the city, you should be aware that when most people refer to Boston, they’re actually referring to the city and surrounding suburbs like Allston and Brighton. Also, some schools like Boston College, which has its main campus in Newton, are often located in these areas rather than the city’s urban core. Plan accordingly when choosing your facility and your Boston student storage needs will be a breeze. Here are a few other things to keep in mind:

You Don’t Need a Car in Boston

Some people might even argue that you shouldn’t have a car in Boston. The city’s layout doesn’t make much sense, streets are narrow and parking is the most expensive nightmare you’ll ever have. Because so many of Boston’s college students come from all over the world and student parking is basically a legend that only exists in fairy tales, if you don’t have a car, don’t count on friends to give you rides to and from your storage unit. Luckily, this is where Boston’s reputation as a highly walkable city is on your side, that is, if you’re not opposed to slightly longer walks. Storage facilities in Boston tend to be located outside of the more congested parts of the city. If you’re attending Boston University, you can rent a unit just two miles away at Castle Self Storage. It’s not a bad walk (especially if you’re looking to stave off the Freshman 15), but if you’re not into journeys on foot, you can take advantage of Boston’s awesome subway system, The T. Obviously this won’t work if you’re transporting large or heavy items to and from your storage unit. If you know this is going to be the case for you, look for storage facilities that offer truck rental, consider portable storage or just become best friends with the one person on campus who owns a car.

Boston Weather Can Prevent Storage Access

Winter in Boston is a force to be reckoned with. If you’re up for the challenge, make sure your storage facility is too. Expect below freezing temperatures to occur as early as November and as late as March. The same goes for snowfall. You can expect streets to be totally iced over in January which will definitely impede plans to get to and from your storage unit. As for the facility itself, make sure to ask management about plans for snow removal. If you’ve opted for a drive up unit, you want to be able to actually drive up to it. If you can, avoid a move or a big trip to your storage unit during winter months. If that’s not possible, remember the unofficial rules for spot saving in the winter. If you move the chair someone is using to save a space, your windows will get smashed. Have an energy drink, listen to “Eye of the Tiger,” and prepare for battle. You were warned.

Storing Musical Instruments

We know, we know, everyone thinks about Hahhvahhhd when they think about Boston schools. If you’re into the performing arts, you know that schools like Berklee College of Music, Boston Conservatory and Emerson College are serious destinations for future artists, especially musicians. If you’re a music student at one of these schools, you’re going to want to pay special attention to the conditions of your storage unit. You already know that Boston is cold during the winter, but you should also keep in mind that it’s humid in the summer, especially if you’re planning on leaving an instrument in storage during this time. The major factors that can totally ruin instruments are drastic temperatures, humidity and dust. In the summer, moisture on something made of metal (like a flute, trumpet, saxophone or drumkit) can turn into some seriously destructive rust. This is especially dangerous for older instruments. We’re not asking you to fly home for the summer with a huge piano on tow. We’re just suggesting that you consider climate control so that your road to becoming a rock star isn’t sidetracked by the purchase of an expensive new violin.

Security Considerations

Student musicians aren’t the only ones with valuable items in storage. We know that whether you’re storing antique furniture or priceless memories in the form of photo albums, your stuff has value. Always remember what you shouldn't put in storage and look for a secure facility when it comes to choosing your unit. A safe facility should be well-lit, gated and only accessible to employees and renters. Ask your facility manager what additional measures are in place, as some facilities offer security guards or at least security cameras that are monitored on a regular basis. Remember, if you’re planning on accessing your unit late at night, security is especially important as you’re accounting for your own safety as well as the safety of your belongings.

Boston, MA Military StorageViewHide

Boston, MA Military Storage

There aren’t any major military bases directly in Boston, but it’s still an important city for New England’s active duty soldiers, veterans and their families. With six Massachusetts bases close by and a smattering of military population spread across town, Boston is proud to serve the troops that call The Bay State home. Whether you’re a reserve soldier who lives in the area or someone stationed at a nearby base, there are plenty of reasons to choose self storage in Boston and plenty of things you need to know as a military member. Let’s dive in.

Why Boston?

If your military assignment takes you to Fort Devens, you’ll be 40 miles away from Boston in an area that’s mostly residential. The closest towns to Fort Devens are Ayer and Shirley. Ayer has just three storage facilities and Shirley has none. If you consider the fact that Fort Devens serves more than 130,000 service members and associated personnel every year, the estimated 1,650 individual units that make up Ayer’s three facilities probably aren’t going to cut it. If you don’t mind the half hour drive to Worcester, there are 11 storage facilities there. Of course, if you’re not training at Fort Devens and you’d prefer to commute from Boston or one of its surrounding suburbs, you should look for storage in the greater Boston area. This includes Boston itself, which has 11 storage facilities, as well as neighborhoods and suburbs like Brighton (9 facilities), Brockton (17 facilities), Cambridge (7 facilities) and Medford (6 facilities). That’s 27,500 individual units in those places alone, which certainly gives us hope that there’s plenty of storage for everybody. If you’re commuting from Boston to Fort Devens, consider searching for storage in a neighborhood that you pass through on the drive. Uncle Bob’s Self Storage is a great option if your normal route takes you through Somerville.

Military Housing and Storage

If you’re training at Fort Devens, you’ve already been warned of the spartan conditions that barracks afford, which is a great reason to consider self storage. There’s no way you can get away with sneaking extra clothes for that rare night out into your bunk. Once you’re through training, if your military career puts you in the Boston area, it’s smart to factor in self storage when you’re thinking about housing options. If you’re working at the Boston Military Entrance Processing Station, which is one of 65 processing stations nationwide, you’ll be on your own, and the cost of an apartment or home is well above the national average. If the sticker shock gets you and you find yourself forced to choose a smaller apartment than you’d prefer, self storage can help make your cramped space feel a little less cluttered. If you’re working at Coast Guard Base Boston, you’ll be required to live in government housing if it’s available. The “if” factor means that you might find yourself subject to a move, which is a great time to utilize self storage. As for Fort Devens, there’s not only no housing for officers, there’s no temporary lodging either. Housing is available at the nearby Hanscom Air Force Base, so if you opt for this, you should look for storage in the town of Bedford. Keep in mind that this housing is only available to Fort Devens soldiers on a first come first serve basis and commute times and ranking play a role in the decision as well. We suggest self storage if your time on the waitlist forces you to temporarily live out of a hotel.

Why Military Storage is Different

Luckily, most storage leases run on a month-to-month basis, which is perfect for military members who travel regularly as a result of new assignments and deployment. As a military member, you should make sure to get the most flexible lease possible as well as the best military discount possible. In addition to this, you should make your storage facility based on your needs. Every soldier’s journey is different, and we think your storage unit should make your life easier. If you’re a drill sergeant who travels to facilitate basic training or you’re an active duty soldier facing deployment, consider a storage unit with great security features. Gated access, on site management and security cameras should be up to the challenge of protecting your stuff while you’re protecting your country. If you’re looking to store guns, know the facts about gun storage and find a facility that understands the unique needs that gun owners have. You don’t necessarily have to turn to a pawn shop or shooting range for gun storage (although these are both options) and you can’t legally leave a weapon with a friend, so finding a storage facility to do the job right, especially while you’re overseas and unable to check on the storage unit in person, is crucial.

Boston, MA RV and Boat StorageViewHide

Boston, MA RV and Boat Storage

Boston may be a pedestrian’s dream, but it can be an RV or boat owner’s nightmare. But wait! Before you throw down your keys and curse the day you ever decided to take your road trips or sea voyages to the next level, hear this: it’s totally possible to be a big rig lover and a Bostonian (yep, even if you’ve got a tiny apartment with no driveway and no hope for street parking). You just need to get hooked up with the right kind of self storage. Did you know that Boston is the only capital city in the lower 48 with an ocean coastline? Did you know that it’s just a day trip away from the highest mountain in the northeast? If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, a storage unit for your RV or boat can help you live your dreams. Here’s the lowdown on this specialized type of storage in Boston:

Boston’s Unique Challenges

Driving an RV or towing a boat can be a tall order in any city, but in Boston, it’s especially tricky. Obstacles include tunnels with propane restrictions, parking garages with low clearance, and terrifyingly narrow streets. Unlike Boston’s more famous neighbor of Manhattan, the city is not on a grid system, so even navigating a regular vehicle around town can be frustrating. Through StorageFront, you can search and compare 8 storage facilities that offer RV and boat storage within the city. The small number is directly related to the notorious difficulties that RV and boat owners of Beantown face. We’d love it if you could park your boat in Harvard Yard too, but unfortunately that’s just not the case. If you’re not living right in the heart of the city, or you’re open to commuting to your storage unit, expand your search to include units up to 20 miles outside of Boston and your options for RV and boat storage double. As an added bonus, nearby suburbs tend to offer a respite from Boston traffic, though they certainly don’t offer a respite from Boston drivers, so the next time someone with a Massachusetts license plate is honking at you because your RV doesn’t go about 65 miles per hour, try not to take it personally.

Storage as an Alternative to Parking

Boston has a very high walk to work and bike to work rate when compared to other cities. In almost every one of the city’s neighborhoods, it’s possible to commute from home to work and then to happy hour and shopping all on foot. In addition to this, Boston landlords are wont to laugh in the face of renters who dare to ask about included parking. If you’re lucky enough to find and pay for pricey street parking, driving around during a tough Boston winter can be a nightmare. So what’s a Bostonian with a car to do? If you know that your car is going to be snowed in all winter and you’re able to commute to work on foot and via public transportation, car storage is a great option. Instead of spending money on a street parking spot where your vehicle will be susceptible to snow plow damage, excited Bruins fan damage or a thing we call carsicle-syndrome (that thing where you car gets covered in ice), opt for a storage unit to keep your baby safe from the elements. Plus, in a city where parking spaces can rent for well over $100 a month (and buying one is akin to purchasing a fancy house), opting for car storage can actually save you some serious cash. Month-to-month leases make this a perfect temporary solution so that once the city thaws out, you can start planning those trips to the Cape.

Seasonal RV and Boat Concerns

Winter comes early in Boston, and once it shows up, it sure likes to stick around for a while. The November chill can often signal the end of RV adventures in the Appalachians and beach trips with your boat. We recommend searching for storage in Boston once your summer adventures wind down. You should also be sure to winterize your RV or winterize your boat before you put it into hibernation. For both vehicles, this is going to involve some heavy duty cleaning along with the removal of all of those items you don’t want to inadvertantly put into storage. And hey, if your outdoor activities extend into the winter months, keep your storage unit year round so that you can swap skis and snowmobiles for your boat or RV as the seasons change. Ideally, you should be able to put your RV or boat into storage for the winter season and forget about it until spring. Online bill pay helps with this, as does the security of knowing that your chosen storage facility has, well, security. RV and boat storage units can range from glorified parking lots to garage style units. Opt for the latter and your vehicle will be safe from harsh weather and crime.
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Boston SunsetPhoto by: Instagram user @chris_cartaya
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