Storage Guide: Restrictions

Items you cannot or should not put into storage

Nearly all storage companies will have restrictions on what they will allow you to store on their premises. These restrictions are to protect both the storage company and the items being stored. Storage companies will vary in what they allow so just because one storage company does not allow you to store expensive jewelry for example, this does not mean that you will not find a storage company that will allow you to store these items. When you visit or phone the storage company for the first time, ask them what items they do not allow. Generally they will have a published list that you can take home with you to review. The list of items a storage company will not allow you to store is very often similar to the list of items a moving company will not transport for you.

Read this section before doing your own packing and loading so that you do not arrive at the warehouse and find out you are not allowed to store some or all of the items you have carefully packed. It is important that you understand which items you can and cannot store. There are also items you should not pack yourself, for example you may need professionals to pack up your exercise equipment correctly. The following list serves as a guide only on what not to put in to storage. If you have any specific questions contact your storage facility directly.

  • Hazardous Materials / Combustible Materials / Aerosols
It makes sense that the storage company does not want items in storage that can potentially combust or explode and destroy everything in the warehouse.

Flammable, corrosive or explosive items including:

  • Acid / Gasoline Poisons / Charcoal / Lighter Fluid
  • Fertilizer / Paints / Car Batteries / Matches
  • Nail Polish & Remover / Ammunition / Liquid Bleach / Stern
  • Aerosols / Kerosene / Pool Chemicals / Chemistry Sets
  • Fireworks / Pesticides / Motor Oil / Paint Thinner
  • Batteries / Loaded Weapons / Weed Killer / Ammonia
  • Lamp Oil / Propane Tanks / Cleaning Fluid

Perishables such as food - There are specialized warehouses that store perishable food items for short periods of time in conditioned storage however warehouses that store personal belongings will not allow this practice. Food items can attract vermin and rodents, pests and bugs and infestation can occur. Infestation can cause a large amount of damage and the cost of the damage can be enormous. Most insurance companies will not insure your goods if they are stored with perishable food products.

Plants - Plants are notorious for not traveling very well and often die in transit .Plants also do not survive well when moved from one location to another and are thus not generally stored. Some plants also attract pest such as insects so most storage facilities will not allow them to be stored on site. Contact the department of agriculture before moving any plants across state lines as many states have rules and regulations that prohibit the entry of plants. This is to minimize the risk of bringing new pests in to the state which can quickly grow in numbers. Most importantly these can also destroy cash crops.

There are some articles that you will need to check to see if your storage facility will allow you to store. You may find it difficult to have these items moved by a mover also. The van line agent assumes no responsibility should these items come into his/her possession without his/her knowledge. Although these articles do not create a physical threat, it can create problems if your shipment is delayed or items lost while in transit to the storage facility or while in storage. Some of the items such as computer disks may be stored in specialized storage which is designed to store these items safely and securely.

Examples of items you may not want to store are as follows:

  • Address Books / Files / Personal Video Tapes
  • Air Line Tickets / Financial Statements / Photos and Albums
  • Car Keys /Furs /Research Projects
  • Bond /Deeds/Tax Records / School Records
  • Check Books / Jewelry / Sterling Silver
  • Coins / Letters / Stocks / Stamp Collection
  • Computer Software/Disks / Medicine

High Value Ordinary Value Items

It is not advisable to store items of extraordinary value items in a storage facility unless the facility specializes in storing these items. For example furs may be stored in cold dark fur vaults during the summer months and jewelry can be stored in safety deposit boxes or safes in banks. Items over $100.00 per pound per article are generally defined as extraordinary or high value items value items. Your specific storage company may have a different definition of high value so be sure to ask.

Examples include:

  • Antiques / Crystal / Precious Stones or Gems
  • Art Collections / Currency / Silver and Silverware
  • Cameras / Figurines / Video Cameras
  • Computer Software / Furs
  • Coin Collection / Oriental Rugs

Firearms- Generally storage companies will not allow you to store guns or ammunition. There are some facilities that will allow you to store these items however you will be required to follow strict security guidelines.

Stolen goods - As you might expect illegal or stolen goods are not welcome in storage facilities.