If you rent a self storage unit, then you probably already know the importance of organizing your belongings and labeling your boxes in order to easily find what you need at a later date. However, labeling doesn't need to be boring or tedious. If you find yourself getting a headache from spreadsheets or a cramped hand from writing out labels, here are a few creative labeling systems that will help you keep track of your belongings.
Instead of listing the contents of a box, take a picture of the contents of a box and tape or glue it to the side of the box. You can take a picture after the box has been packed, but for the best inventory system, consider laying out all of the items before packing them and taking multiple pictures to make a photo collage on the side of the box. As a bonus, you can take pictures of how items look while they are assembled and then break them down for more compact storage. The photos will help you assemble the items at a later date.
To have an idea of what is in your storage unit at any time, you can upload your photo inventory to your smartphone or computer. This way you can visually search through your belongings instead of relying on a written description of what you have stored.
A photo essay of your belongings can make your storage unit look both neat and interesting. It is also a good way to stay inspired while you are going through your belongings and labeling them for storage.
Color Code With Decorative Tape
Placing colored duct tape, gaffer tape, or electrical tape on the side and top of your boxes is a good way to know what type of contents are in a box with a quick glance. For example, you can use different colors for kitchen supplies, books, and toys. You can even purchase holiday-themed tape to mark boxes that hold decorations for each holiday.
If you make a large X across the middle of each box or a square around the edge of each box, the colors will be easy to see and will give your storage unit a neat splash of color.
Go High-Tech With QR Codes
If you want to make your storage inventory list a bit more high tech, consider creating and printing individual quick response (QR) codes for each of your boxes. You can print the codes onto stickers or you can simply tape a code to each box. Then, link each QR code to an individual, private blog post with a description and photographs of the contents. This way you can quickly scan your boxes with a smart phone to know what is in each box. You can also update each of the blog posts associated with your QR codes as you remove or add items to individual boxes.
While this is a great way to stay organized and may look sleeker than handwriting on your boxes, you may want to include a simple number system as well, to be able to find each box easily and quickly. You can write the number on the box or print it on the same label as the QR code.
There is no reason that your storage unit has to be messy, unorganized, or unpleasant to look at. If you turn your labeling and packing into an art project, then you will likely be more meticulous and careful about your labeling. It will also be easier and faster to find the items you need when you need them.