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A Beginner’s Guide to Container Storage: Understanding the Basics

Whether you’re moving house and your new home won’t be ready to move into yet, or you need to make space for a relative or new addition to the family in your home, running out of room is a universal experience that most people deal with at some point throughout their lives. Thankfully, there is a solution to this that doesn’t require you having to say goodbye to your prized possessions: container storage.

Container storage is an excellent option for temporarily storing your belongings for however long you may need, giving you peace of mind that they will be safe and secure ready for when you have the space to take them back. If this sounds useful to you and you’d like to learn more about it, then read on below as we tell you all you need to know in this comprehensive guide.

What is Container Storage?

As its name suggests, container storage is where items are stored in a secure container (or multiple containers). Typically, your items will be stored in an individual wooden container that is then stored inside a warehouse, or a large steel container that is kept at a secure compound.

Container storage facilities are typically operated by removal companies, since many people who are moving home will also require temporary storage. As opposed to self-storage facilities, it is typical for collection and delivery services to be offered, though you should be able to access your belongings at such a facility yourself by prior arrangement.

These containers are locked with a padlock and are only accessible to warehouse staff, often with a high-tech alarm system and/or 24-hour CCTV in place, ensuring that all your belongings are safe and secure.

Pros & Cons


There are numerous benefits of using container storage, though it does also fall short in some aspects depending on your needs and requirements.

Starting with the benefits, container storage is a great affordable option for storing your belongings. The costs tend to be much cheaper than self-storage facilities, which charge a premium price for the ease of access to your belongings. Furthermore, you will receive an individual quote based on how much you need to store and for how long rather than having to pay a flat fee, meaning you will only be paying for what you need instead of paying more than your money’s worth.

Another advantage of container storage is the convenience of having a removals company sorting your storage on your behalf. Most removal companies, such as Essex Removals, will arrange the collection and delivery of your items for you and may even offer optional packing services. This means that not only will you not need to worry about sourcing your own packing supplies, but the stress of packing all your belongings and taking them to/from the storage facility is all handled for you.

This is especially useful if you have lots of items that need moving into storage or have anything that is particularly heavy or awkward to lift, especially so if you have no one to help you or are a bit older and may physically struggle doing such a laborious task. By relying on a professional service, the process will be managed carefully and properly to ensure no damage comes to your items.

As we’ve already mentioned, these storage facilities are also extremely secure, with only staff having access to your container and the facility having high security and surveillance measures in place.


One of the perceivable downsides of container storage is that you cannot self-access them. Whilst self-storage facilities allow instant self-access to your items during opening hours, if you wish to access your belongings at a container facility then this can only be done by pre-arrangement – usually of at least 24 hours beforehand.

This means that if you have any items that you’d require urgent access to or would want to take out of storage as and when you need, then container storage probably wouldn’t be the best solution for you. Although, with that said, you don’t have to worry about looking after a key and not losing it (which would result in a fee) as you do with self-storage.

Another potential disadvantage is that the storage containers are one specific size, unlike self-storage where there are multiple container sizes depending on your storage needs. However, it is possible to hire multiple containers, so you won’t have to worry about not being able to store all your belongings somewhere. A standard wooden container is 250 square feet, though there are also larger steel containers that are 20 feet, so there are different options depending on your needs.

Why Choose Container Storage?

There are a plethora of reasons why you should invest in the use of container storage to store your belongings. Firstly, they are extremely convenient in many different ways, the main one being that they free up space in your home without you needing to sacrifice any of your possessions.

When you need to free up space but simply have nowhere to relocate your items to within your property, many people spend a lot of time and stress having a clear out, sorting through their belongings and arranging them into piles to keep, donate, sell and throw away. Not only is this a time-consuming process, but it can be rather stressful and even upsetting, especially when you have to make tough decisions on whether or not you can keep sentimental or valuable items when this is not feasible spatially.

Putting said items and more into container storage takes away the need for you to make these compromises and is a much easier, faster process, thus allowing you to focus on organising the free space you now have for whatever purpose it is needed.

Another reason to choose this type of storage service is that they are great for storing oversized items when you’re in the process of moving. When moving home, some people like to move out in one go, whilst others may prefer to do this gradually. If the place you are moving into is not yet ready, but you want to be organised and have as much out of your current property sooner rather than later, then container storage is a great solution.

They allow you to store any large or oversized items until you are ready for these to be delivered to your new property as soon as it’s ready, leaving you free to worry about your smaller belongings that can more easily be organised.

How Do Storage Container Services Work?

When using storage container services, you can expect the removals company who you’ll be storing your belongings with to come to your house and carefully pack all the belongings you will be putting into storage for you, using their own reliable packing materials to ensure that everything is protected and will stay safe during transportation. Once these are packed and loaded ready for transport, they will then take them straight to their storage facility.

Some companies will load your belongings into a van/lorry, then transfer these into their container once at the facility, whilst others may load them directly onto the container, then transport this to the facility. Either way, once at the storage warehouse, they will then stack the container securely with their other containers, keeping record of this so that it can be identifiable as yours.

If you do need to arrange to access your container, then a warehouse operator will bring it to a safe viewing area for you to do so.

When you’re ready for your belongings to be delivered, they will handle this for you, too, storing your belongings for as little or long as you need, then delivering them directly to your new location when you require.

Removals Services in Essex

Are you looking to move home or relocate your business, or simply need to free up some space and need somewhere to temporarily store your belongings? At Essex Removals, we make this simple with container storage in Romford, Essex.

We can tailor a bespoke storage solution to suit your particular needs, whether you need to protect a single family heirloom, a few large belongings or an entire office’s worth of furniture. You can rest assured that you won’t be paying for any wasted space, whilst knowing that your goods are safe and secure at all times.

Get in touch with us today to discuss the storage solutions that you require and receive your free, no obligation quote.


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