Keep Your Belongings Safe in Storage
Over the years, you accumulate all sorts of possessions that have sentimental value – treasured holiday ornaments handed down through families, prized stamp collections that have been a hobby of yours since you were young, and photos and videos that preserve some of your favorite memories. These items must sometimes be stored in basements, attics, and/or storage units as it’s not always feasible to display them in your home.
However, storing these items can often leave them subject to damage from water or high temperatures. Here are a few tips for keeping your beloved belongings safe from these perils.
Invest in Reliable Containers
With the holiday season quickly approaching, you’ll be digging out decorations – for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day, Saint Patrick’s Day, etc. – and storing one after another for the next few months.
Plus, storing important documents such as birth certificates, passports, Social Security cards, the deed to your home, a home inventory, and a copy of your insurance policy is a best practice. If you keep these items – along with photos and videos, you must make sure they’re stored properly.
Basements in particular are at risk for sump pump failures, bursting pipes, flooding, and so on. Severe weather and power outages only increase the probability of these events taking place.
Place your valuable items in sealed, waterproof containers and place them high on shelving units in your storage space – albeit not on a shelf against a concrete wall or one near an exterior door, which could leave your items vulnerable to leaks, humidity, and high temperatures. High temperatures can cause photos, documents, and decorations to stick together, leaving them susceptible to damage when you attempt to pull them apart.
Take the Safe Route
If you want to feel most confident in your method of storing valuable documents, opt for a safe. Some safes can be more resistant to high temperatures. Plus the lock-and-key or confidential combination aspect can keep you at ease knowing your valuables are secure from potential thieves.
If you choose this route, it’s still wise to place the safe on a higher shelf.
Consider Storing Valuables at Other Locations
If you’re too worried that your basement or attic could mean ruin for your treasured possessions, consider moving them to a storage unit or safe deposit box.
You can also upload photos and videos to websites like Flickr, which will allow them to always be accessed, even if the originals are harmed or destroyed.
Maintain Your Storage Space
Conduct annual inspections of your sump pump and check it when severe weather is rolling through your area to help prevent water damage to your basement. And keep an eye on the exterior of your abode so that you know when to replace roof shingles to protect your attic and its contents.
Make sure all storage areas are kept as clean as possible to keep pests from ruining important decorations and documents.
If your home insurance policy doesn’t include protection for your rare coin collection that you’ve stowed, call your agent and ask about upping your coverage limits or scheduling an endorsement.