The Importance of Using Good Packing Materials

man taping a box to moveGetting ready to move out at the end of the semester is a process, to say the least. Between organizing items to take with you or put into storage, you may be looking for ways to make the process easier. Making sure you are using sturdy and protective packing materials will go a long way in making sure your belongings are kept safe.

Use the right moving boxes

Local supermarkets and big box stores may sell or even give away used boxes for people looking for packing materials. These boxes can cause problems during your move. Produce boxes are designed to handle less weight than regular moving boxes and are prone to tearing along the edges and buckling during the moving process. Using a variety of different-sized boxes can also make it difficult to stack without boxes hanging over edges or weaker boxes collapsing under the weight. If you moved into school with large plastic bins, making sure they are packed evenly and not overweighed is vital to keeping the bin stable. Moving and storage companies often sell specialty boxes designed for moving and heavy items for less than $2 per box.

Label each box clearly

You might not need to unpack each box immediately after moving into your new dorm or apartment. Make sure each box is labeled with its designated room on at least three sides with brief descriptions of the contents, such as “KITCHEN- pots, pans, and silverware” or “BEDROOM- books.” This will make unloading your items and unpacking each box more efficient because there’s less of a chance you will forget where a specific thing is packed.

Filling the empty spaces

It’s highly unlikely that your things will perfectly stack up and fill the entirety of a box. To keep delicate items safe, it’s important to make sure the gaps are filled with paper. It provides a layer of protection from scratching and keeps each item firmly in place during transport.  Adding paper to your box will also make sure you do not overpack, keeping each at a reasonable weight.

Packing Materials for Students at ODS Box Days

If you are still figuring out what to do with your belongings this summer, contact OnDemand Storage today! We are still accepting signups from schools across the East Coast and provide packing materials to students signed up on ODS Box Days, conveniently timed before finals begin. To sign up, OnDemand can be reached by calling 1.855.216.6617 or by filling out our signup form.

Decluttering During Spring Cleaning

woman packing a trunk of clothesSpring is finally here! Now that it’s finally nice enough to open some windows, you may start to feel a little overwhelmed by the sheer amount of stuff in your home. While you go about disinfecting surfaces and dusting corners, this is the perfect opportunity to de-clutter your living area so you have more space!

Begin with a strategy

Contrary to popular belief, decluttering doesn’t need to be done in just one day. In order to chip away at your piles and see gradual results, throw away or donate one thing each day for 30 days. This will remove the stress of the situation while slowly and surely showing results. If you want to see a difference sooner, do this with the number of items in the number of the day- one on the first day, three on the third day. By the end of the month, your home will be unrecognizable!

Go through your closet

You probably have clothes you haven’t worn in some time. If you haven’t worn something in the last year, put it in a pile for donation. If you have a lot of clothes hanging in your closet, flip each hanger so they are facing the same direction. When you where the article of clothing, flip the hanger. At the end of the month, donate whatever has not been flipped. If the clothes you are not wearing are out of season, pack them up for storage to conserve space.

Remove duplicate items from your home

At some point, you may have gone to the store and bought something you already had but forgotten about. Whether it’s a set of pots and pans or a few extra blankets stacked up on the couch, these items will take up valuable room in your home. It’s always good to have a backup just in case, so pack up any new or gently used duplicates and put them into storage. Duplicates that are overworn and at the end of their lifespan should be properly disposed of.

Residential & Student Storage in Boston

If you are trying to make room in your home and don’t have time to do a ton of research on self-storage facilities, contact OnDemand Storage today! We offer virtual storage with pickup and delivery, so you won’t ever have to go to your unit! You will be able to view every item you have stored with us online and request delivery whenever you want. Your belongings will be back in your possession within 24 hours! For more information on our virtual storage units, OnDemand Storage can be reached by calling (855)215-6617 or by filling out our online contact form.

Estate Sales

Estate Sales: The Do's and Dont's

People accumulate a lot “stuff” over the course of their life and will often leave many things behind. One way to make the most of an unfortunate situation is to have an estate sale. Estate sales are an effective way to liquidate some of the possessions of a person who has recently deceased. Sometimes people have valuable belongings and if an item is sold the money can be split up between the beneficiaries of that person’s will.

Mementos

Most importantly make sure that the people closest to the person who has passed away have the opportunity to take mementos or other meaningful items that have value to that person. The worst-case scenario is siblings or friends become bitter over how to handle the belongings of the deceased. Ideally, you’ll make a plan and everyone will have an equal opportunity to take something meaningful.

Get an Appraiser

For anywhere between $75 and $500 per hour a professional appraiser can look at different artifacts, jewelry, furniture, art, etc. to determine the value. Some items may be valuable enough to go to auction where they can be sold for large sums of money.

Yard Sale – Is it worth it?

A yard sale is hardly worth the trouble as often you’ll get people looking to get treasures for rock bottom prices. Furthermore, you’ll likely save more money from donating everything that isn’t worth big money and getting the tax deduction.

Transitional Experts

Hire transitional experts, like  Lifecycle Transitions to help make transitioning from one location to another easy and pain free. They can help set you up with a variety of different services from packing to moving to real estate sales.

Storage

Maybe you aren’t ready to make a final decision regarding some of the items or you want to clear some excess furniture and boxes out to stage a house for a sale. Getting set up in a self-storage unit can be a lot of work when you consider renting a truck, finding a unit, and getting everything there. Instead, call OnDemand Storage to provide convenient pickup, storage, and re-delivery on-demand. OnDemand creates a virtual storage unit so you can request items back at any time! Lastly, ODS can help you sell your items via their robust network of buyers and sellers!

Planning Timeline for Your Summer Move Out

people packing up a boxSpring break is finally here, and before you know it, it’ll be time to leave school for the summer! Whether you are going to work a summer job in your hometown or interning somewhere new, you’ll need to make sure you have your dorm or apartment ready for move-out day. Follow this timeline to make sure you get everything done on time!

Two Months Out

If you live in an apartment and have not done so already, make sure you give your landlord at least two months’ notice that you will be leaving, whether just for the summer or ending your lease entirely. Beginning packing up things you don’t use as often: seasonal clothing, cookware you don’t anticipate using. Start making piles for what you are planning on donating or getting rid of at the end of the year. Make sure you have secured a place to live come September.

Six Weeks Out

You might not want to bring all of your belongings with you this summer. Six weeks before your expected move date, make arrangements to have your things stored. Come up with a budget and an estimated list of what you are storing, from your bike to bins of books and clothing. If you don’t want to spend money on lost space you don’t need, contact OnDemand Storage. Our virtual storage units ensure that you only pay for the space that you need without leaving room to move around, and our tiered pricing structure is perfect for students!

Four Weeks Out

One month before you move out, start packing up your things. Start with what you know you will not be using before you move out. As it gets closer to your moving date, pack more and more. If you need packing materials, check out your schedule for your school’s ODS Box Day! On Box Days, the team at OnDemand will come to your school and distribute free boxes, tape, labels and markers to students signed up for storage units. New signups will also be welcomed that day.

Two Weeks Out

Check your calendar for pickup day! This will occur just before the end of the year before finals begin. Make sure your packing is done so you can have your things picked up and delivered to your storage unit without worrying on top of exams, papers, and final projects!

Student Storage Across the East Coast

If you are looking to make the end of the semester a little easier, contact OnDemand Storage today! We will pick up your belongs at the end of the school year and deliver them back to your new residence next fall! For more information on student storage, contact OnDemand by calling (855) 216-6617 or by filling out our online contact form.

Luggage storage Boston

Luggage Storage Boston

Are you traveling Boston? Do you need short term luggage storage? Long term luggage storage? OnDemand Storage can help you with your luggage storage needs!

Whether you’re coming to Boston by train, plane, or bus sometimes during travel you’ll have a layover and need to find short term luggage storage options in Boston. If you can find a place to ditch the luggage in the mean time you can go explore all the great things Boston has to offer. Trying to walk the Freedom Trail or shop in Faneuil Hall will be difficult with a 40lb suitcase and will surely ruin a nice day in Boston!

Short term luggage storage in Boston can be found at South Station or Rowe’s Warf Water Taxi. South Station, a major hub of train transportation has space to store luggage and other bags for $10/bag in the package express room. If you’re planning on taking the Amtrak and have a ticket with you then you’ll able to store your luggage in the Amtrak storage locker for only $3/bag. Furthermore, the Rowe’s Warf Water Taxi will store your luggage for free if you use their services.

So, you’re not at South Station or Rowe’s Warf, or need long term storage, where can you store luggage?

If you need a Boston luggage storage service for longer than a day or two your best option in OnDemand Storage who will provide full service pickup, storage, and delivery of luggage. OnDemand is changing the way storage works, you don’t have to do anything except provide pickup details and ODS sends a truck or van to grab your luggage.

Once your item is in storage, OnDemand uploads a photo inventory so you’ll always have eyes on your valuables. Need it back? Simply, log into your account and request on demand delivery anywhere! If you need something shipped internationally, we provide discounted shipping to any country in the world through our partnership with DHL.

OnDemand Storage pricing plans start at $10/month so depending on the number of items you’ll be storing you get great savings!

Dorm Room Checklist

Dorm Room Checklist

Going to college is an exciting and stressful time for students and their families. In most cases it’s the first time a child is going to be away from his or her parents for an extended period of time. Even more stressful for parents it’s the first time you will not have a daily influence on your child’s actions and decisions. If you’re looking to calm your nerves about sending your kid(s) to college then use this move-in checklist as a way to make sure they have everything they need!

Depending on where/how far your kids’ college is it could make sense to purchase some items close to the school (save on shipping costs) or pack seasonally to make travel easier. Also, if you want to ship items to meet you at your residence hall door contact OnDemand Storage. They’ll provide pickup at your home and then affordable and reliable shipping to your son or daughter’s college no matter where it is.

Dorm Room Necessities:

  • Bedding (2 sets)
  • Drying Rack (for clothing)
  • Trash can
  • Cork Board (to pin important things)
  • Dry Erase Calendar
  • Double Sides Tape (Posters)
  • Toolbox
  • Desk Chair
  • Lamp
  • TV
  • Extension Cord
  • Multi- Input Plug
  • Mini Fridge
  • Microwave

Dorm Room Storage Ideas:

  • Storage Bins
  • Plastic Drawers
  • Bed Risers (creates space under bed)
  • Hamper (dirty clothes)
  • Jewelry Case
  • Shower Caddy
  • Coat Rack
  • Extra Pole for Closet (create a second level for hangers)
  • Backpack

Bedding

  • Pillows (and cases)
  • 2 Comforters
  • 2 Sets of linens
  • 5 Towels
  • Mattress Pad (you’ll definitely want this!)

Household Items

  • Trash Bags
  • Sandwich Bags
  • Storage bags
  • Soap
  • Bowls/Plates/Cups (plastic)
  • Paper Towels
  • Tissues
  • Water Bottles
  • Plastic Silverware
  • Food Storage (plastic container)

Desk Items

  • Stapler
  • Stick Notes/ Post Cards
  • Highlighters
  • Pens/Pencils
  • Folders
  • Binders (three ring)
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Flash Drive
  • Stamps
  • Envelopes
  • Bookcase/Hutch
  • Printer

 

Electronics

  • Laptop
  • Speakers
  • Camera
  • Nice Headphones
  • Surge Protector

 

Toiletries

  • Aspirin
  • Vitamins
  • Toothbrush/Paste
  • Flossers
  • Tweezers
  • Nail Clippers
  • Hair Dryer
  • Straightener
  • Soap/Shampoo/Conditioner
  • Comb
  • Shaving Kit

In reality this list could on forever and many campuses have easy access to stores like CVS and Walgreen's making it easy to get most of the everyday items so don’t stress too much. Many items are often overlooked as they are taken for granted as things we just have around the house. Additionally, there are some other categories to consider like items you may share with roommates. Furthermore, always check with your individual college or university as some items are restricted at different schools (hot plates, coffee pots, etc.).

One other thing to think about, especially if you go to school further than an hour or two from school is where you are going put everything at the end of the year. One great solution is OnDemand Storage, who provides student storage shipping services nationwide. OnDemand provides free packing boxes, which are distributed at an “ODS Box Day”, typically a week before finals begin. On your scheduled pickup day ODS crew members come to your residence hall or off campus apartment and retrieve items you want to put into summer storage. When the new semester begins ODS will deliver your items to your new location!

Find your school to see the college student summer storage prices at your college!

 

Downsizing

5 Reasons to Downsize Now

Everyone dreams of living in a giant 6,00 sf house with a sprawling foyer, pool house, and huge backyard, but it may not be worth the hassle. Many families are choosing to downsize to increase their quality of life and lower their expenses. Read our 5 reasons why it may be worth it considering downsizing more than just your home.

 

Time

When you choose to downsize you have more time to focus on what matters to you. To some it may be their children, to others their friends or pets. Whatever you care about, life is short and you should be able to spend time on it. When we have too much space to take care of we easily get side tracked and lose focus.

Decrease Stress

Downsizing means cutting more than square footage. Try to find areas of your life that aren’t necessary. If you volunteer in 3-4 groups, pick your two favorites. The benefits of cutting stress are endless. This will trickle into other areas of your life making it easier to be healthy and happy.

Health

You’re already cutting stress, so with more time and less space to care for you can focus on eating healthy and exercising. Both of these dramatically improve your quality of life and are two of the largest benefits of downsizing everything in your life.

Money

Downsizing your costs is important when cutting stress and being happier. Downsizing your home and getting a smaller (or no) mortgage is a great start. Likely, that’s your largest expense so making it smaller will make you feel like the weight of the world is lifted off of your shoulders. Also, cutting obligations inevitably reduces cost because most likely groups or activities you’re involved in have a cost associated with them.

Freedom

Paying off debt and lowering expenses is a great way to achieve freedom. When you don’t owe banks money or people your time you have time and money to do what you want to do. Downsizing in all areas of your life is the best way to create a stress-free life that you’ll enjoy – which is the whole point!

If you decide to downsize your home and need extra space to keep some of the extra things you have, learn about OnDemand Storage. OnDemand provides a 21st century take on self-storage giving you the ability to get the benefits of a self-storage facility without any of the hassle. ODS will pick up belongings at your home, store them, and then deliver them on-demand when you request them from your cloud-based storage unit. ODS uploads photographs of items so you can easily see, manage, and request items in storage at any time!

Home Staging: The Why

Home Staging: The Why

The real estate market is competitive for both buyers and sellers. In many markets there are only a limited number of buyers for the qualities your home has, so you have to be able to separate your property from the rest. There is a way to do this – home staging. Home staging has become increasingly popular in recent years. For those who aren’t familiar, essentially, a staging professional orders all your old, dingy, and out-of-style furniture out and brings in stylish furniture, accents, etc. that compliment your home.  

More Money

According to a survey by Coldwell banker, a leading real residential real estate seller, disclosed that staged homes sell for an average of 6% higher. For your reference on a $500,000 home that’s an extra $30,000 in your pocket—I’ll take that!

Sell Faster

Selling a home is typically a bittersweet and horribly stressful process so there is no need to extend it longer. The National Association of Realtors discovered the longer a home is on the market the more the price declines. Also, Coldwell Banker estimated a 50% faster sale when a home is staged by a staging professional.

Better Pictures

We live in the age of the internet - 90% of buyers research a home online first. Obviously, a stylish décor will help your home stand out from the rest.

Be Proactive

According to the NAR, homes that went on the market staged spent and average of 42 days on the market. Homes that decided to stage once on the market took and average of 196 days. The average ROI on a home staging is between 8-10% - a good investment!

Summary

In real estate markets, like Boston, Brookline, Braintree, Wellesley, Hingham, and many more in Massachusetts to get top dollar and sell in a timely fashion your best chance is hire a professional stager who get the most out of your before it hits the market.

If you’re considering selling your home in the Greater Boston Area be sure to check out Laura Graziano Staging & Interiors. Laura is a 5-star professional who does high quality staging and consistently helps homes sell for above asking price.

If you’re using a home staging professional in Boston and need temporary storage call OnDemand Storage. We provide pickup, secure storage, and return all while allowing you to control your storage unit from your phone. When you get your new home, we’ll deliver your stuff there!

How to Buy a Foreclosed Home

Many OnDemand Storage clients are apartment dwellers looking to purchase a piece of real estate in the not-so-distant-future. The vast majority of people purchase a home from a seller who is currently living at the property. However, buying a foreclosed home is a different method, that if done properly, can help you end up with a steal.

Buying a foreclosed home is different than a typical real estate transaction involving two individual sellers, rather the owner of the property is the lender (a bank) who has seized the property. This creates different levels of checks and balances when it comes to negotiating, approving the sale, etc.

How to Buy A Foreclosed home

There are typically two ways one can purchase a foreclosed property either through a real estate agent or through a public auction.

Differences

A bank will often set the price of the home low so it can move quickly because in an ideal world the bank does not have to hold onto the property long. Obviously, this creates an opportunity to have instant equity in the property. The downside is that the bank has not been taking care of the property on a regular basis so the condition can be unknown. Sometimes in an auction sale an inspection and walk through are not allowed but they are mandatory in a regular transaction. If you have an appetite for risk and want a chance to make instant money this is definitely a route to explore.

Work with an Expert

To increase your chance of success you should work with a real estate agent that specializes in foreclosures. There is additional paperwork and information you’ll need as a buyer that working with a traditional real estate agent with no foreclosure experience could leave you exposed.

Financing Options

After the home is inspected (if allowed) you can talk with experts to determine the cost of necessary repairs. If you decide to proceed you should look into securing a FHA 203(k) loan covering the purchase price of the home plus renovations.

If you find a foreclosed home and decide to make renovations call OnDemand Storage to store your household goods long or short term. ODS provides convenient pickup, storage, and creates you a virtual unit allowing you to request anything back at anytime via delivery!

 

Breaking Apartment Lease Early

Renting a new apartment is an exciting time, it is a new chapter that includes new daily routines, new neighborhoods, restaurants, etc. However, life moves quickly and apartment leases do not. Most likely you’re going to be committed to signing a one-year lease. As we know, opportunities at work and in your private life come quickly and often don’t stay present for a whole year. If you find yourself in a position where an external factor is forcing (or inviting) you to a new living situation – here’s what you need to know about breaking your apartment lease agreement.

First, lets outline the potential consequences that can have short-term and long-term effects on you and your financial well-being.

Civil Suit

Technically speaking, you did sign a legally binding contractual agreement. Skipping rent payments is not a great strategy because eventually you will be forced to answer the bell on those missed payments. In all likelihood any judge will rule that you owe missed payments.

Credit Judgement

Your credit score is your life line. It’s the metric that gives you access to money, low interest rates, and anytime you’re making an obligation to pay someone back in the future, a judgment will negatively impact you. This derogatory mark will stay on your credit report for seven years so a short-sighted decision now can really impact you long-term. Check out Credit Karma to learn more!

Renting Again

The aforementioned credit report may come back to haunt you when you go to sign a new lease. Landlords have the right to ask for your credit report to make sure they are renting to a trustworthy lessee. This will also impact you if you decide to try and purchase a property or receive any other sort of financing.

Ok, enough will all the negativity. Like anything else, there are ways to get out of a lease unscathed.

Be Honest

Landlords are people too. They understand life happens and that a renter may have to break their apartment lease early. Let them know, offer to help find them a new roommate. There is a plethora of applications that make finding off season renters significantly easier than in years past. Having a conversation open and honestly is your best bet to get out of your lease early without penalty.

Early Termination Clause

This very issue is commonly addressed in leases. Make sure to read your lease thoroughly before you sign it initially. If you do not see a clause to break the apartment lease early then you may suggest amendments to the contract to include this language. The most common scenario is a one-month penalty. All things considered, to pay one month and be out unscathed is good!

 Contract Breach

If you got unlucky and have the worst landlord ever, a great option to look for a breach of contract. Landlords, while in a position of power, have very strict guidelines for keeping their properties safe for their renters. Maybe there is a broken door, the heater is broken, or the outside lights don’t work at night – something along these lines may help you get out for free.

Security Deposit

When breaking the news to your landlord suggest that you are not interested in recouping your security deposit. This may open negotiations on a good note and allow the landlord to let you off penalty free.

 

In short, if you signed a legally binding agreement you have no real power in the situation. Realize the likelihood of you breaking the apartment lease early and not paying any sort of financial restitution is very low. However, it is a far better option than getting sued or a derogatory mark on y