If you're short on space or want a secure way to store your boat, a self storage facility may have the answer. Storage companies that accept vehicles are an alternative to dry storage, giving you easy access to your boat when you want to use it. Before choosing a facility, make sure that your boat will be secure and accessible by running through a site checklist.
Where Is the Self Storage Site?
Not all self storage companies have the space to store boats or vehicles, so you may not be able to find a local company that offers the service. If you're storing the boat over winter, you may not mind a longer drive to pick it up and get it to the water when the weather gets warmer. However, if you want to store the boat in self storage permanently, you may get tired of having to make a long drive every time you want to use it.
What Are the Available Storage Options?
Not all self storage companies offer the same storage options for boats. For example, some simply reserve open yard space for vehicles; others provide covered or indoor options. To protect your boat from the elements and to get more security, avoid outdoor storage that doesn't offer any protection and look for a site with an indoor garage or warehouse. For a more secure option, it's worth investigating sites that allow you to store your boat in an individual locked space that only you can access.
When Can You Access Your Boat?
Access hours may vary on self storage sites. Some companies have 24/7 access, but others may restrict access from early morning to late evening. If the site has limited access, make sure that you're happy with the hours, as this may limit when you can take your boat out of the unit and put it back in.
What Security Does the Site Have?
It's important to choose a self storage company that takes security seriously. If you hire lockable storage for your boat, you're typically responsible for providing the lock, but the site should also have general security measures in place. For example, look for sites that provide the following:
- Robust perimeter fencing, security lighting, alarms and video security systems.
- Restricted access to the site and storage units.
- Regular security patrols or on-site guards when the unit is closed.
Does the Site Have Insurance?
Self storage companies typically don't cover insurance costs. Even if a site has basic insurance, this is not likely to cover your boat, and you need to arrange your own coverage. In some cases, you may be able to extend existing coverage to protect the boat in storage; however, you may need to pay for a separate policy, either through the storage company or through your insurance company.