After winning your first storage auction, you’ll need to invest some of your time and energy into cleaning it out. Most self-storage facilities require winning bidders to remove all of the unit’s contents — whether it’s valuable or not — within 24-48 hours (see the facility’s rules for more information). Failure to do so could result in your name being blacklisted, which means you can not participate in future auctions.
But cleaning out a self-storage unit doesn’t have to be a painstakingly laborious task. With the right tools and a little bit of planning, you can streamline the process so you can get back to focusing on what really matters: running your business.
First and foremost, try to get into the habit of bringing all of the necessary cleaning supplies to storage auctions. This includes a push broom, dustpan, paper towels, trash bags (several), a pair of gloves, flashlight, and an all-purpose cleaner of your choosing. It’s not a bad idea to have a box filled with these items already prepared and ready for use inside your vehicle. Even if you visit a self-storage facility with the intentions of scouting it out for a later time, you may find yourself on the winning end of an auction, at which point you’ll be glad these items are stored inside your vehicle.
If you asked ten different storage hunters what the best way is to clean a unit, you would probably get ten different answers. With that said, I’ve found that it’s usually best to remove any large-sized items of value first, transporting them to your car or truck. Doing so will reduce the risk of damage while giving you more room to clean. Because each and every self-storage unit is packed differently, however, this may or may not be an option. If the unit is filled mostly with small items, you’ll want to transport them to your vehicle.
After moving items of value to your vehicle, go through the remaining boxes and cases to determine what needs to be tosses in the trash. If you aren’t sure if an item is valuable, it’s usually a good idea to keep it just in case. Lastly, sweep the unit to clean any remaining dirt and debris. Assuming the unit is clean and contains no remaining items or trash, you should be good to go!