When Self-Storage Auctions Go Wrong

When most people think of self-storage, they think of furniture, clothes or even business inventory. And that’s true for majority of people who use self-storage. Typically, there are restrictions on storing hazardous materials, illegal items, perishable goods, and living organisms. All of which will be listed under the Limits On Use part of any contract. It is always best to check with the specific self storage facility for their list of prohibited items. However, every now and then, self-storage is used for something more menacing. Some of these things found in units include human remains, haunted dolls, illegal drugs, weapons, and even live animals. It’s important to remember that storing illegal or dangerous items in a unit is not only strange but also illegal. The following stories you can find with just a simple Google search or you can click on the title of each Auction story.

A Meth Lab

If you are a fan of the reality TV shows for storage Auctions; then you probably have seen just how these types of Auctions are done. Majority of Storage auctions are public sales of abandoned storage units by storage facility owners. Just like those shows, you never know what you could get buried in the units once the lock is removed. Back in 2015, a South California man and his uncle got more than they imagine with a unit they won. Although, one of their units made them a profit, the other one caused a commotion. Unknowingly, the second unit turned out to be boxes filled with equipment and chemicals for a crystal meth lab. The findings were so toxic, that Hazmat had to be called out to clear the unit.

Photo courtesy of KCRA 3

Grandma’s Body

Losing a loved one is hard, and sometimes it can be difficult to let go. There have been dozens of cases of people keeping the ashes of their loved ones in their storage units. When a Florida unit was set for auction back in 2012, the Manager of the facility reached out in hopes to obtain payment. During this call, is when the family’s morbid secret came to light. Apparently, a grandmother who passed away in 1995 was stored in the unit for over 17 years in a homemade casket. The Police were called to the unit and found nothing else suspicious. After which, Largo chapel of A Life Tribute took possession of the grandmother’s remains.

Photo courtesy of Tampa Bay Times

Suitcases filled with body parts

In August 2022, an unsuspected New Zealand family won a unit auction that would cause nightmares. The family loaded up the unit in a trailer and brought all the contents home for them to inventory. Once they started to unload the items, the smell from the suitcases started to get stronger. Upon opening them, they were startled to find what looked like human body parts. They quickly called the Authorities to their home, where it was determine the suitcases contained multiple sets of human remains.

Photo courtesy of New York Post

A Human Leg (Wrapped In Tin Foil)

Shannon Whisnant got more than he bargained for when he bought a grill at storage auction. Taking ownership of all the items only to discover a human leg, nestled inside a gas BBQ. As many of us, Shannon had a lot of questions but didn’t stop him from trying to become famous on finding the mummified human foot! While Shannon was living in his 15 minutes of fame for his find, it grab the attention of the original owner, John Wood. John did in fact come forwarded requesting his leg back. Unfortunately, due to the possession is nine-tenths of the law, Whisnant had the right to refuse causing a custody battle to begin. After a f few years, and life style changes the original tenant was finally reunited by court ordered with his missing leg. If you would like to know more about the amputee, check out this Finders Keepers (2015 film) article on Wikipedia.

Movie Posters from IMDB Finders Keepers

How about those intense auction stories?!? Even more of a reason to always make sure to carefully review any contracts or agreements before agreeing to them. Especially when it comes to storing items or information. Storage units have always been convenient for people who need the extra space. However, many of the items in the articles above are not permissible! But they are the perfect examples of what not to store in self storages! Luckily here at Belton Self Storage we’ve never had anything like this, and we hope we never will. But if you would like to know some of the weirdest things we’ve seen or experience, contact us today.

Tips to declutter your garage

Declutter your garage with ease. Garages tend to collect items you don’t use or don’t need, which makes them a pain to organize. With a little bit of effort, you’ll have a neat and organized garage in no time! Take everything out of your garage and sweep it thoroughly. Sort through what you have and […]

How to pick the right size self storage for your needs

Choosing the right size self storage unit can be tricky. Here are some tips to help you select the best size for your needs:

  • Make a list of items you plan to store. This will help you gauge the amount of space you need and determine the size of the unit.
  • Measure the items you plan to store. This will give you an idea of the size of unit you need.
  • Consider your budget. The size of the unit will impact the cost of your rental.
  • Consider any special needs you may have. If you plan to store sensitive items, you may need climate control or other features which will affect the size of the unit you select.
  • Visit the self storage facility. Seeing the units in person will give you a better idea of the size and features that will work for you.

By following these tips, you can ensure that you select the right size self storage unit for your needs.

A 5×10 self storage unit is a 5 feet wide and 10 feet long. For comparison, a 5×10 space is a small storage unit that’s about the size of an average walk-in closet.

A 10×10 self storage unit is 10 feet wide and 10 feet long. When visualizing the size of a 10×10 storage unit, it can be helpful to picture an average small bedroom or half of a one-car garage. 

A 10×15 storage unit are 10 feet wide and 15 feet long. Ideal for storing items from a two-bedroom house or apartment.

A 10×20 storage unit are 10 feet wide and 20 feet long. Is great for storing contents of a multi-bedroom home, about up to five rooms of space.

Need a lock for your storage unit? Or want additional packing supplies for your move?

For your convenience, we offer small, medium and large moving boxes for purchase in the office, along with other moving supplies that you may need.

See us at Budget Self Storage as we sell moving boxes, packing supplies, locks, and more.

6 Quick Tips To Stop Paper Clutter

Do you ever feel like you’re drowning in paper?

Is your husband’s wallet is overflowing with receipts? Are your desk drawers crammed with wedding invitations and old Christmas cards? Or maybe you have piles of kids’ school artwork and math homework shoved in the far corner of your kitchen counter.

Let’s face it: Paper clutter is one of the worst offenders to make a messy home. It accumulates quickly and can be totally overwhelming if you don’t deal with it on a daily basis.

Here are some tips I got from a website called makespace to help banish paper clutter from your home.

1.Go Paperless – Bills and bank statements are common offenders for paper buildup. If you stop them from coming in the mail at all you are cutting the paper off at the helm. Most banks and utility companies now offer email statements. Cloud storage is free or cheap these days. You can even take it a step further and pay bills online too, skipping the need for checks, envelopes, and stamps.

2. Purge your paper – Gather it all up in one area such as your kitchen table. Then sort them – recycle, scan or save. Scan any important documents like tax returns, lease agreements, insurance information. You can also scan those Christmas Cards or sentimental papers and keep them on your computer or external hard drive for safekeeping. Recycle everything else.

3. Recycle Magazines and Newspapers – Let’s Be Honest – those magazines you kept because you were going to try that recipe or future craft project isn’t going to happen. If you really want to keep it. Scan the article and recycle the magazine. While your at it, cancel those subscriptions and save money too.

4. Designate a “Take Action” Spot – Put papers like RSVP cards or forms that need filled out in a high traffic area of your house. I use my refrigerator in the kitchen. Those papers are at eye level so I see them multiple times a day and it prompts me to complete the task and clear that space. It’s also useful to not let it grow too much, so make sure you take action on at least a weekly basis.

5. Shred personal documents – Anything that has your address, social security number, phone number, or bank account number should be shredded to protect yourself from identity theft. If the shred pile is too big to do yourself there are companies out there that offer paper shredding. If you are in the Kansas City area, I recommend Access Records Management. They are a locally owned family business that offer drop off paper shredding for a small fee.

6. Use Binders – Binders aren’t just for middle schoolers any more. Use binders to keep your receipts, coupons, or papers you still want to keep a hard copy of. You can use labels or tabs to organize them and make it easier to locate what you need faster.

For other useful tips and tricks head to abudgetselfstorage.com/blog

7 Easy Tips to Organize The Bathroom

I’ve never been a morning person, so I’m all in when it comes to anything that will help make our morning routines run smoother. Having 2 kids making messes along the way, an organized bathroom can really help speed things up when it comes to getting ready. My favorite saying is “A place for everything, and everything in it’s place”. These days there are so many products to organize in every room in your house. I hope you find something in this list that can help. Feel free to comment any ideas that you have as well. Enjoy!

  1. Declutter First – With any organizing project, you should always start with Decluttering. There is no point wasting time organizing stuff that you don’t use or need. Purge first – then organize.
  1. Keep the Counters Clutter Free – Keep as few items out on the counters as possible and use a tray to corral any products that you do want out. This creates a tidier look and makes it easier to clear off your counter for cleaning. A good rule of thumb is to only use 1/3rd of the counter space so you have more room to get ready.
  1. Use The Inside of Cabinet Doors For Storage – You can gain a TON of extra storage in your bathroom by using the inside of your cabinet doors. I saw a study about the germs that get on your toothbrush from flushing the toilet.(Click For Article) Trust me, you want to start storing your toothbrush behind a closed door. You can use over the door organizers or clear organizers stuck to the door with command hooks work great.
  1. Hang Towels From Hooks – It’s much easier to hang up bath towels on a hook than it is to hang them on a towel bar. Plus it allows the towel to dry better. As a family of 4, you can hang up 4 towels at once and take up much less space than a bar. Depending on the bathroom size, every inch can count. This is a great space saver suggestion. If you don’t want to install or make holes in the wall, or perhaps you don’t have the wall space, a great option is over the door hooks.

5. Use Drawer Dividers – There are so many little items that can get lost in those cluttered bathroom drawers. Using a divider to give everything a “home” will make it much quicker and easier to find what you are looking for. If you are extra fancy and crafty you can add a drawer liner.

  1. Use Clear Containers – Another great idea to store medicine, sunscreen, deodorant, q-tips, etc is to use a clear container to be able to see what’s inside. I have a few with drawers and they are stack-able. It makes things so much easier to find and looks much cleaner.
  1. Label, Label, Label – Labels make it easier to find what you are looking for and, even more importantly, where to put it back. Now your kids (and husband) can’t tell you they didn’t know where to look for something. A label maker is a cheap and easy way to not only find items but to personalize them as well.

For more ideas, head to www.abudgetselfstorage.com/blog

Top Tips for Organizing Your Storage Unit

We know that there are many reasons people need storage units. One of the most common reasons is lack of space to store at home.  In the heat of summer, there is no need for sweaters, coats and gloves taking up crucial space in your house. But what happens when a fluke weather pattern comes out of nowhere. We do live in Missouri where weather change happens quickly. No time to waste you drive up to your unit and start ripping through boxes and totes, trying to find those much needed coats, and snow supplies. The weather gets worse so fast, now you are in the middle of a storm, stuck in a storage unit searching and searching, getting more buried in snow….and boxes by the minute. It’s cold and now you are not sure how to even re-pack everything to be able to get out of the unit, much less get back home to the family.

Here are a few tips to prevent this chaos from happening to you.

  1. Create A Master Contents List – You might think you will remember what you packed in a box marked “Kitchen supplies”. Lets say you need a specific cake pan 6 months later, for a birthday party. You have 4 boxes named “Kitchen”.  If you don’t make a list of items in the boxes, odds are you are going to have to go through all 4 boxes to find the pan you are looking for. It takes more time at first, but will save you in the end if you know that pan you are looking for is in Kitchen box #2 of 4 thanks to your hard work setting up.
  2. Use Similar Box Sizes – You remember when you were a kid and you made pyramids or towers with blocks? The biggest cube went on bottom and the cubes got smaller as the tower got bigger. The same concept applies with boxes. When you have several different size boxes you inadvertently make more work for yourself. What if what you need is in a bigger box that’s on the bottom? It won’t fit on top of a smaller box, or it will get crushed or topple over. In turn, it makes it harder to get to the bigger boxes. Keep in mind not to get boxes that are too big to pick up and carry when they are full. Clear totes are also a good idea making it easier to identify what’s inside.
  3. Location Zones – Try to keep all the like-minded boxes together. Remember, we labeled everything and made a list: Such as, Kitchen boxes 1-4. They all go in the same area, kid’s clothes, Christmas items, etc. Again, it might take more time up front but will save a ton of time on the back end. Something else to consider is items used more frequently go in the front and boxes only in and out once a year or less, going towards the back of the unit.
  4. Plan a Layout – Furniture or bulky items you won’t need access to go in the back. Boxes on each side. Another option is furniture on one side and boxes on the other. Always try to leave space in the middle to work and move around. If you must use the middle for storage, make sure it’s for small items that can easily be moved out and back in when done.

While we know that taking these steps takes more time at first, it is well worth the effort for the ease of access in the future. You will be able to find exactly what you need in a matter of seconds, instead of minutes or even hours. Leaving more time for you to spend with family and friends.

If you are in need of a storage unit, look no further. Give us a call at 816-318-7867 or stop on by at 128 E Hargis St in Belton, Missouri – For more information check out our website at www.abudgetselfstorage.com

Self Storage in Belton, MO

What’s In A Name?

Budget Self-Storage is the new name of our company. I want to ensure all of our current customers that Belton Mini Storage and Budget Self-Storage are just names. We are still the same small business with the same ownership. We are trying to improve our online presence and our community. We are hoping with the new name comes new customers and hopefully a way to find our location.

There have been some minor staffing changes, but that has nothing to do with the name change. Judy and Ron wish to take a step back from running the mini storage to focus on spreading God’s word and enjoying their grandchildren. They still own the business along with Brian and Stacie, and will be around occasionally.

We have also hired two part time employees to help with the day-to-day operations at the improved mini storage facility. Mandy and Andy will be available to answer any U-Haul or storage unit questions you might have. Please welcome them to the team when you get a chance.

Our phone number remains the same, 816-318-STOR (7867) and we still believe in operating our business with honesty and integrity. Stop by and check out Budget Self-Storage and see the improvements as they arise.

We still offer competitive rates for our storage units and still offer U-Haul trucks and trailer rentals. We are adding to our inventory of storage supplies. If you are moving or know someone who is moving, have them stop by to get moving boxes, packing tape or other moving supplies.