San Jose, CA: Top Things to Know About Storage

Krista Diamond | May 12, 2016 @ 10:39 AM

Let’s get the obvious joke out the way now: Do you know the way to San Jose? But wait, seriously, do you? Apologies for getting that Dionne Warwick song stuck in your head aside, it’s a real question. Even though it’s just 50 miles from San Francisco, San Jose often goes unnoticed in favor of its more ocean adjacent neighbor. If you’re moving to or already living in the land of tech and you need a little extra space, San Jose’s many facilities (130 and counting) are there for you. Before you toss your stuff into your unit, take a little time to read our tips on storage in San Jose.

Just Keep Reminding Yourself That It's Cheaper Than San Francisco

How much should you pay for a storage unit in San Jose? Typically storage unit prices and availability follow rent trends. For example, in San Francisco affordable housing availability is low (to say the very least) and so is affordable storage availability. Unfortunately, San Jose isn’t that far off when it comes to high prices on rent, storage and well, everything else. Saying that you can expect to pay $2,000 a month for a one bedroom apartment is actually putting it gently. Likewise, you can expect to pay more than $100 for even a 5x5 unit which would cost about half of that in most other cities. Translation: If you can find a unit for under $100 and there isn’t some kind of a catch (like ridiculously limited hours or weak security features in a bad neighborhood) take it and hold onto it for dear life.

There is a silver lining to all of this, however. Did you know that San Jose has the highest median income ($77,000, whew) of any US city with more than 280,000 people? Obviously, residents also have the highest disposable income in the country and as a bonus are reportedly happy at work, though it’s hard to imagination not being happy with a place that funds your non-stop champagne and caviar diet (we’re assuming). This hopefully means that you can afford storage but it also means that as a result of the community’s joint disposable income, more people are buying more things and therefore needing more storage. Don’t let the competition get you down. Reserve a unit before it’s crunch time (i.e. move out day) and consider renting slightly further from your preferred storage facility location to increase your options.

Storing Electronics in the Silicon Valley

Whether you work in tech, attend college or are just a person in this millennium, you probably own electronics. San Jose is the largest city in the Santa Clara Valley which is also known as the Silicon Valley. Other cities have their own versions of this (see Portland’s Silicon Forest or Des Moines’s Silicon Prairie for examples) but you can’t touch the original. Companies like Adobe, Cisco Systems, eBay and PayPal are headquartered in San Jose and IBM and Hewlett-Packard hold offices. Other big companies include Netgear, TiVo and a 40 acre site that will soon be a research campus for Apple (the Cupertino headquarters are just 10 miles away).

If you know technology, you know how quickly it becomes obsolete. Whether it’s a box of old smartphones, a closet full of outdated laptops or that cringeworthy non flat screen television, hanging onto a bunch of electronics can cause clutter. Check out our list of resources in San Jose and find a place to safely recycle them or do yourself and your stuff a favor and learn how to properly store them. Spoiler alert: the trick is to avoid humidity and any other kind of moisture from entering your storage unit by opting for climate control. If you’ve ever spilled a latte on a MacBook Air, you know how much computers don’t love liquids.

The Winchester Mystery House (And Other Winchesters)

So in 1881, a grieving widow named Sarah Winchester (heiress to the rifle fortune) went to see a medium in Boston. That medium told her that she was being haunted by the spirits of everyone who had ever been killed with a Winchester rifle and that the only way to appease them was to start building a house and literally never stop. Luckily, Sarah was crazy rich, so she moved to San Jose and built the weirdest house ever for 38 years straight. She built staircases to nowhere (to confuse the ghosts) and more than 160 rooms with the finest furnishings in the land (to make the confused ghosts feel fancy). If you’re like us, a tour of the Winchester Mystery House makes you think about gun storage.  If you’ve got firearms, don’t plan on putting them in storage without asking the facility manager first. And remember, you’ll never, ever be able to store ammo, so don’t even bother trying. It’s dangerous, against the rules and we’re pretty sure you’ll end up cursed like Sarah Winchester anyway.