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How Much Does a Storage Unit Cost? [2024]

The average cost to rent a storage unit is $120 per month for the standard 10’x10’ size. Prices will vary depending on the unit size, location, and additional features.

surfing gear and other personal items in a storage unit rental

Whether you’re moving to a new state or simply in need of extra, temporary space to keep your belongings, storage units are a popular solution. Over 20 percent of renters in the US use self-storage facilities, where renting the average storage unit costs $120 per month.

If you’re looking into a storage unit for your property, it’s important to know the rates, especially those that offer security and climate-control features. In this guide, we’ll share storage rental prices to expect by size, region, and demand, as well as ways you can save on monthly fees.

Storage Unit Cost Breakdown

What you spend on self-storage rentals will mostly depend on the unit size you request, its availability where you live, and the facility you choose. Here is a breakdown to help you estimate storage unit costs for your individual needs.

By Size 

The most popular and standard size is 10’x10’ (100 square feet), but storage facilities typically have several unit sizes available. The goal is not to pay for more space than you need. Below are common unit sizes and their average cost per month.

  • 5’x5’: $52
  • 5’x10’: $75
  • 10’x10’: $120
  • 10’x15’: $159
  • 10’x20’: $196
  • 10’x30’: $260

Here is a helpful chart size guide to better understand how much space each storage unit size offers.

self-storage unit size guide

By State

The national average price per square foot of storage space is $1.27, but prices will vary by location. Below are the average costs to rent a storage unit in the five most and least expensive states.

Most Expensive StatesLeast Expensive States
Hawaii: $136.14Arkansas: $60.63
California: $110.80Washington D.C.: $60.96
New York: $100.50Indiana: $62.18
Washington: $99.35Oklahoma: $62.66
Connecticut: $98.54Wyoming: $62.75
Source: Sparefoot

Through observation, you can expect storage costs to be higher in bigger cities and metropolitan areas, where storage space is limited but higher in demand than in rural areas.

Additional Fees

It’s also important to know that the “average cost” of a self-storage unit typically refers to the “base rent.” There will be taxes and additional fees that will affect the overall monthly cost. Here are a few common fees to know:

  • Administrative fee: Usually a nonrefundable, one-time fee during the move-in of your storage unit to handle processing and paperwork. Admin fees generally range from $10 to $25.
  • Security deposit: Some facilities charge a security deposit as surety, while others may roll it into overall administration fees. Security deposits typically range from $50 to $100.
  • Insurance: Many facilities also require tenants to purchase insurance to protect their belongings while in storage. Rental insurance premiums range from $8 to $38 per month for $10,000 coverage, depending on the provider.
  • Late payment charges:  These are imposed fees for missed rent and are outlined in the lease agreement. Late payment fees can go up to 20 percent of a tenant’s monthly rent.

Factors Affecting Storage Unit Prices 

In addition to base vs. total monthly costs for storage rentals, there are other factors that can influence the overall price. 

  • Climate Control: Units with HVAC systems will use more energy and, therefore, are more expensive than units without. However, they do help protect items from damage under extreme temperatures and humidity levels.
  • Security Features: To keep valuables safe, storage facilities typically have gated access, security cameras, and individual unit alarms. These amenities will most likely increase the cost.
  • Term Length: Shorter leases often come with a higher monthly rate since storage companies usually profit more from long-term rentals. 
  • Taxes and Laws: Facilities can also legally raise their rates after your contract renewal, which may happen if regional taxes and utilities costs for them rise. 

5 Tips to Save on Storage Unit Costs

Now that you know how much you’ll pay for a storage unit, you can strategize ways to lower your monthly spending. The following hacks can help you budget and save on storage unit expenses.

ways to reduce storage unit costs

1. Shop around and Compare Prices 

Don’t settle for the first facility you find. Instead, get quotes from multiple storage facilities. Many offer online quote tools, allowing you to compare prices for different unit sizes and features. 

When comparing options, consider factors like location, security features, and move-in/move-out fees. Also, check review sites and forums to compare amenities from customers’ perspectives.

2. Choose the Right Size Unit

Remember, be careful not to rent more space than you need. Consider decluttering your garage or closets first to get rid of unused items. You can also take measurements of your furniture and boxes, where many storage facilities offer online sizing tools to help you visualize the right unit size.

3. Negotiate

Try to negotiate a lower rate, especially if you plan on renting a unit for a longer term. Many facilities are willing to offer a lower monthly rate for extended leases. You can also ask about promotions and discounts they may have, such as those for online bookings or discounts for military members, students, and seniors.

It’s also worth asking if the facility accepts proof of homeowners or renters insurance that covers items in storage to waive the insurance fee.

4. Forego Climate-Controlled Units

Climate-controlled units are always the more expensive option, so if your belongings can handle temperature fluctuations, getting a standard unit can help with major savings. This option is best for storing non-sensitive items like outdoor equipment and plastic furniture.

5. Buy a Storage Shed

In some cases, owning a storage shed, like a custom metal shed, is a more convenient and budget-friendly option than renting a storage unit. Depending on the rental rates and length of time you’ll need storage, the upfront cost for purchasing and installing a shed, over time, can be significantly cheaper than paying monthly rent. 

Additionally, having a shed on your property gives you quick and around-the-clock access to your belongings. If you don’t have a garage, a shed is a great alternative for storing items that clutter or don’t quite fit inside your home.

Save Time and Money with a Customized Metal Storage Building

Storage unit rentals can come in handy if you travel often or need a secure space for your belongings temporarily. But if you’ve simply run out of space in your home, monthly storage fees will definitely add up. 

If you need a more permanent solution, owning a storage building saves you money in the long run and helps you reclaim valuable space in your home. Best of all, metal sheds and buildings are durable, low-maintenance, and fire-resistant, offering the best security for your belongings. 

Check out our wide selection of high-quality storage sheds and customize the perfect size and features for your needs.

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Alan Bernau Jr

Alan Bernau Jr. is the founder and owner of Alan’s Factory Outlet. He has helped more than 75,000 homeowners design and install custom carports and garages over the last 20 years.

Alan Bernau Jr. is the founder and owner of Alan’s Factory Outlet. He has helped more than 75,000 homeowners design and install custom carports and garages over the last 20 years.

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