When starting to work with clients, the first thing we do together is look for easy ways to cut spending. Since I’ve been doing this for a long time, I can quickly identify a few things we can discuss with the potential to save hundreds or thousands of dollars per year with minimal impact on their lifestyle (or sometimes no impact at all!). One category that fits into this first round of discussion is the storage unit line item.
There can be legitimate reasons for having a storage unit. For example, storing items that are used frequently but don’t fit at home, or storing items that have strong sentimental value. Unfortunately, I have found that, most often, people can’t recall most of what is in it. Yet they are paying between $100-300/month ($1,200-3,600 a year!) to store this stuff. Because it’s a recurring charge, it sometimes seems easier to continue paying it than to deal with the stuff and cancel the storage unit. Usually though, once a client identifies their financial goal and they see that the storage unit doesn’t support that goal, it’s easy to set aside some time to empty it out and deal with the stuff so they can put that money toward their financial goal.
If you have a storage unit, I’d like you to consider this:
- How much do you spend on that storage unit per month? (Actually look at your statement to find out, don’t just guess!)
- How much is that per year?
- What are you storing in it?
- What is your most important financial goal?
- Do you get the same value out of your storage unit as you would if you were to put that money toward that financial goal?
If you don’t yet have a strong financial goal, here are some things that cost about the same as a storage unit that might bring you more joy:
- A monthly house cleaning service
- Activities for your kids (soccer, dance, music)
- A monthly massage
- Extra money to put toward debt or savings
In addition to the money savings, dealing with the stuff and canceling your storage unit can have other benefits too. You can have a garage sale and make some extra money. You can donate items to a shelter or school that can really use them. And, if you feel you are wasting money every month storing your stuff, you can release the guilt and stress you might have associated with paying to store things you probably don’t even need. Let it go!
As always, we’d love to help you achieve your financial goals. If this gets you excited to start working toward achieving your financial goals, click here to schedule your complimentary consultation!