The rapid development of new technologies and the app-based “gig economy” means that on-demand services are expanding into every aspect of human life. Be it short-term car or bike rental, grocery or take-out delivery, pet-walking services, or any of the myriad music, television, and movie streaming platforms, modern life is full of ways to get just what you need right when you need it.
The success of these services can generally be explained by two simple and related ideas: people only want to pay for what they need, and they don’t want to pay for it when they aren’t using it. After all, why shell out significant cash for something you will rarely use or that you need only in small quantities?
It was inevitable that this ethos would eventually revolutionize the self-storage industry. For many consumers, it makes no financial sense to sign long-term contracts for giant storage units when they only need to store a small number of things for a short amount of time. If this applies to you, then read on to learn how on-demand storage can fulfil your storage needs at a fraction of the cost of traditional self-storage.
How It Works
Think of the advent of on-demand storage the way you think of the phenomenon of “cord-cutting” in the world of cable television. It’s far cheaper to pay a small monthly fee for the few channels you actually watch rather than a hefty cable bill for hundreds of channels you’ll never use.
Traditional storage units are just like old-school cable packages. You’re obligated to pay for an expensive long-term contract for a bunch of stuff you don’t need or want just to get the few things you do.
By contrast, on-demand storage is just like a streaming media service. You start paying when you start storing, you get everything returned to you whenever you need it back, and you don’t pay for more time or space than you use. It’s that simple.
Five Reasons On-Demand Storage Is Better than Self Storage
#1 — It Saves You Money
With on-demand storage, you pay only for what you store and just for the amount of time you store it. Remember the old adage that a penny saved is a penny earned? When you choose on-demand storage there are no long-term contracts, meaning you don’t pay for time you don’t need (money saved), no requirements to rent a vast storage unit when you need just a fraction of that space (more money saved), and no cancellation fees or other hidden costs (yet more money saved).
What else don’t you pay for? Boxes and packing materials you will only use once. Most on-demand storage facilities will provide you with sturdy, secure, and reusable packing materials. That is not only great for your wallet but also a greener option for the planet.
#2 — It Saves You Time
With traditional self-storage, you have to buy packing materials, pack up all your stuff, rent a vehicle if you don’t have one, load your stuff into the vehicle, haul it to the storage facility, transfer it all into the storage unit, and return the vehicle. That can easily take an entire day and then some. Then, you have to repeat the whole process in reverse in order to get your stuff back. That’s yet another day wasted hauling and storing stuff.
With on-demand storage, all you have to do is prepare your belongings for pick-up. The storage company will come to your home, pick up your belongings, pack them up for you in materials they provide, take them to the storage facility, and bring them back to you whenever and wherever you need them. No need for you to buy boxes and packing materials, no need to find a vehicle, and no need to spend your precious time packing, loading, and unloading. It’s all done for you.
We just saw how on-demand storage can save you time. It’s also convenient. You can manage your personal storage anytime from anywhere. With on-demand storage, you can arrange for everything to be packed and moved for you with just a few clicks. Plus, you can inventory the items you have stored, manage your rental, and schedule return delivery all from your phone. You don’t have to go anywhere or wait to talk to an employee during regular business hours.
#4 — You Don’t Need a Car
As we’ve seen, there’s no need to leave home with all of your belongings in tow, so you don’t have to rent a car or van or pay for the gas to get everything there and back. Even more, money saved!
#5 — It’s Better for the Environment
With traditional self-storage, you have to buy lots of cardboard boxes and packing material, much of it made from compounds that are difficult to recycle (if they can be recycled at all). Then, as soon as you are done storing everything, that material gets discarded. Most on-demand storage facilities provide durable, reusable bins and packing materials, saving trees and precious resources. And because they can store more in less space, they save on energy costs and have a reduced carbon footprint compared to traditional self-storage.
Who Can Benefit from On-Demand Storage?
Families — Store seasonal items or things you rarely use, creating more living space (and freeing up room for new additions to the family!).
Students — Don’t haul everything home for the summer, only to bring it all back three months later. On-demand storage is your answer!
Businesses — Store documents, inventory, seasonal items, excess furniture, and marketing materials you use only occasionally.
Everyone — Anybody who merely wants to declutter to create a calmer, more peaceful living space.
Is On-Demand Storage for You?
Is traditional self-storage a thing of the past? Well, if you prefer the time, hassle, and expense required to pack, load, and haul your stuff off to a self-storage facility, and you want to lock yourself into a long-term contract on an oversized storage unit that charges hefty fees if you try to cancel your contract early, then traditional self-storage is for you.
If, instead, you prefer the convenience of arranging for somebody else to do all of this for you—all from your phone in a matter of minutes—and you only want to pay for the time and space that you actually use while decreasing your impact on the environment, then on-demand storage is your answer.