Need A Storage Unit? Look For These Security Features
Before you choose a storage facility, you should look into the security features it offers. You want to feel safe if you go to your unit after dark, and you want peace of mind your belongings will be secure if you don’t go back to the facility for several months.
Here are some of the security features to look for, especially if you will be storing items of value:
Manager On Duty
Storage facilities vary in the way they operate. Some are only open during business hours and have a manager on duty to monitor security and handle customer service issues. Others are open all the time, and are left unattended at night. Having an employee present when the gates are open, and having the facility locked at night, adds a higher level of security.
However, that means you can only visit your unit during business hours. If you choose a facility that is open to you after hours, you’ll want to look for enhanced lighting and alarm systems.
Ideally, the storage facility you choose will have several video cameras positioned around the grounds, so the entire facility can be constantly monitored. This helps the manager watch for suspicious behavior, and it provides police with a video record if a crime is committed. Just having video cameras might be enough to discourage thieves, since they know their actions will be recorded.
If the facility allows access to the storage units after hours, the facility should be gated to keep out people who are not customers. If you choose a facility like this, you’ll be given a code to enter into the gate box, so you can get inside. Some facilities use a security feature that disables the alarm to your individual unit once you enter your code into the keypad at the gate.
When you leave, the alarm is reset, so if anyone tries to get inside your unit while you are gone, it sets off an alarm. Other facilities may only have alarms on the gates, or the doors to interior storage buildings. For enhanced security, some facilities may even hire night patrols from a private security company, so the facility will be checked periodically during the off hours.
If you need to have access to your storage unit after dark when the management is not there, be sure to choose a unit in the most secure location. It should be under bright lights, and close to the street, or in a place that is in plain view of neighbors.
It isn’t a good idea to choose a unit that is buried deep inside rows of storage units, because you will be more vulnerable if thieves can rob you with no one seeing what’s going on. The location of the facility within the city matters too. You don’t want to drive to a bad part of town to an abandoned area by yourself in the dark. A well-lit facility in a busy part of town would be a safer choice.
You may have to pay more for a facility with enhanced security, but it is probably worth it if you want the best protection. It may all depend on what you intend to store, and how often you need to get inside your unit. To learn more, contact a company like J & B Mini Storage with any questions you have.