Keeping items in a storage unit can make your life much easier. You can give yourself much-needed added space at home while retaining valuable items that you do not want to sell or throw away. The rate of theft at these units has actually gone down in recent years, but taking extra precautions will buy you added peace-of-mind.
The facility you choose should have video cameras covering the outdoor spaces. Often these systems serve as a deterrent to possible thieves. If your unit is broken into anyway, at least the cameras give law enforcement a chance to catch the perpetrators.
Although your storage unit should have keypad access to make sure no unauthorized people can get into the facility, you should also choose a good lock for your own unit. If you are planning to store your items for one lengthy period and do not plan to enter the unit until you are ready to clean it out, consider a one-time padlock. These locks can only be cut off, so they may be less tempting to thieves who prefer to jimmy or pick locks instead of using unwieldy bold cutters. Another good choice is the cylinder lock, often used as the front-door lock on homes. They can't be cut by bolt cutters and require a key to gain access.
One of the best safety measures is making certain your items are covered by an insurance policy. You will need to check your homeowners or renters policy to see if it covers your property when it is off-site. In some instances, your regular policy may only cover up to ten percent of the insured value when the items are not stored in the home. You also need to be certain that your items are covered for theft, windstorms, and fire. If you are worried about flooding and other dangers, you may need to acquire additional coverage. If you don't have a current policy, you can usually buy insurance through the storage facility. Just make certain your items are covered by some policy.
Storage units are in general quite safe, but some facilities have better security than others. Make sure yours is well lit and requires a code to enter. Invest in a good lock and adequate insurance. Once you have taken all reasonable steps, relax. Self-storage theft is relatively rare, so the chance that you will be a victim of thieves is small.