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Using temporary storage when moving house

Posted by By Bournes Moves - August 19, 2020


The moving process can be complicated, even more so when you're not moving directly to your new home and need to put your goods in temporary storage between house moves.

Here's our guide to using temporary storage between house moves, including:

  1. Working out what you'll take with you and what needs to be stored
  2. Decluttering
  3. Getting a pre-move survey and quote for storage
  4. Deciding whether to pack your own items
  5. Preparing for the move into storage
  6. Moving day
  7. Moving out of store

1. What do you need to store?

What items will go into a storage facility and what will you take with you?

The first step is to sort through what is going where. Some items will likely be staying with you at your temporary accomodation, including clothes and essentials you use day to day, and others will be taken to the storage facility.

Make a quick list of all the items you'll need for your temporary home and separate them out if you can.

2. Decluttering before storage

It's always a good idea to declutter when you're moving house anyway as it means you only pay for the cost of removals for items you really want to take with you. 

Decluttering ahead of a move via a storage facility is even more important, as weekly storage charges are typically based on the space you need. Decluttering can help keep your storage costs to a minimum.

Here’s a guide to how to declutter for moving house.

3. Getting a pre-move survey and removals & storage quote

Once you have an of what you want to move and store it's time to get a quote from the removals and storage company.

They will evaluate the volume of items going into storage, the volume going to your temporary accomodation (if they are handling that part of the move for you too) as well as the access from both properties.


The surveyor will explain their storage solutions and then you should recieve a fixed quote and move plan. You might be offered storage in wooden containers within a warehouse or in a larger steel container, ask your mover to explain the benefits of the solution they recommend. 

IMPORTANT: You should also remember to ask about costs for moving out of the storage facility when the time comes. 

Get a quote for storage

4. packing services for storage moves

Most companies offer both removals AND packing services, but you might also consider doing your own packing. 

Consider the type of items you have to move, how much time (and motivation!) you have to do the packing, and the length of time your items might be in storage and then weigh up the right option for you. 

If you're doing your own packing find out if packing materials can be provided your quote and arrange for them to be delivered in advance. The packing boxes from removal companies are specially designed for this purpose and are much stronger than the boxes you can pick up at the supermarket.

Check out our guides for how to pack to move house

5. Preparing for moving day

Ask your removal company if they provide labels to help idenfity what items go where. For example at Bournes we provide stickers for ‘storage’ and ‘direct’ which help label furniture and boxes so the crews know what to take to storage and what to deliver directly. 

It's also a great idea to label boxes with the room and rough idea of contents to make unpacking easier.

labelling moving boxes

Make sure you've completed any tasks you are responsible the night before the move, for example dismantling any furniture or taking down pictures. 

6. Moving day

When the crew arrive show them around and talk through their plan of action.

They will make sure they know what is going into storage and what is going direct or with you.  

Depending on the removal company your items might be loaded directly into the storage container if they have special vehicles that carry them. This helps reduce the risk of any damage as the items don't need to be handled again when they get back to the warehouse, the container is simply offloaded into storage until you're ready for delivery. 

containers on lorry

The crew will complete a detailed inventory form including your name, contact details and the container numbers as well as a full list of items loaded and their condition. This means everything was recorded and easy to trace if you need anything whilst your goods are in store and so that you can check everything back off when it's delivered. 

When the crew are finished walk around with them to make sure everything is gone that you want gone, Remember to check for pictures on the wall and any fixtures or fittings you might be taking.

7. Delivery from Storage

When you have an idea of the date you want your items re-delivered get in touch with the removals and storage company ASAP. Many will need a few weeks notice, particularly during busy periods.  

On delivery the crew will check everything off against your original inventory and place the boxes in the rooms you direct them to, which will be a lot easier if you labelled well during packing! 


temporary storage during a move doesn't have to be complicated

A lot of people can feel quite intimidated by the thought of a move with several parts involving temporary storage. The extra steps with a temporary home and short term storage in between (which effectively means it's multiple moves) can be daunting.

Being planned and organised and having a professional removals and storage company who can handle both elements, your storage and when you are ready to move into your new home will be a big help in making sure that everything runs smoothly.  

Get a quote for storage


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Topics: Storage

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