How much is your storage space costing you?
And no, I’m not talking about the storage unit you may or may not have. That’s an easy price to name. You get a bill for it every month.
I’m talking about the storage space in your home. However, keep the storage facility bill handy too! You can add it to the next calculation and get your real number.
The Average Home Size
I’m talking about the storage space in your home.
in 2017, the average new build home size in America was 2,426 square feet (source).
In the US, for those who rent a self storage unit, 65% have a garage.
Forty-seven percent of self-storage renters have an attic, and 33% have a basement (source).
More than half of Americans believe their homes are cluttered, and of those, more than 60% believe that moving will be the cure to clutter (source).
If you are one of those people who think moving would be the answer, are you planning on a bigger home?
I used to think a big home was the answer to my clutter problems. I assure you, I was wrong.
How much is the storage in your home costing you?
Have you ever thought about it? How much you are paying for space in your home.
I want you to actually figure it out.
You know how much you paid for your home. If you are renting, you know how much you pay per month in rent.
We are going to do a little math here. Don’t be scared. 🙂
Take the amount you paid for your home and divide it by the square footage of your home.
For example, if you paid $250,000 for your home and it is 2000 square feet, the cost per square foot is $125/square foot.
If you pay $2000 per month in rent for your home, and it is 1000 square feet, the cost per square foot is $2/square foot per month or $24/square foot per year. At five years, you are looking at $120/square foot.
Keep that number handy for later.
Think back to your empty home before moving in
Remember the first time you entered your home?
Think back to how excited you were, the potential you saw with every room, and ALL THE SPACE in your closets, cabinets, and drawers.
It was a blank space, and it seemed like it could hold it all. Maybe it did hold it all for a while.
We go shopping. We outgrow items. We buy useless items we think will look good in our home, and then we change our minds, sometimes even before using something.
I used to think we needed a bigger house. In fact, we were working very hard to move up in our careers to get that bigger house before I simplified my life.
The houses we were looking at could probably house two to three families. That’s absurd. We had a perfectly acceptable 1600 square foot home.
How on earth could a family of four’s belongings not fit in a 1600 square foot home?!
Don’t even get me started on the two-car garage we couldn’t walk in other than on a small path we made between the boxes.
No, our cars did not fit in there.
Measure your storage space in your home
Have you ever measured your closet?
If not, go do that real fast. Really, go do it! Grab a tape measure and get some rough estimates. You don’t have to be exact here. We just need some rough numbers.
Typically, you are working with four equal-ish long walls.
Measure two walls. Then, multiple those two numbers (length x width) together. That gives you the square footage of that room or space.
Now, go measure all your storage spaces. Here are some common spaces you might want to consider:
- Master closet
- Entry-way closet
- Linen closet
- Storage closet(s)
- Extra bedrooms
Technically, your entire home is a storage space and living space for you and your stuff, but let’s stick with the glaringly obvious for now !
Write down your storage costs!
Remember that number you saved earlier, the cost per square foot. Time to use it now!
My small-ish walk-in closet was 12 square feet. If I were paying $125/square foot, that closet cost me $1,500!
My basement had a storage closet that was 105 square feet. If I were paying $125/square foot, that storage closet cost me $13,125!!!!!!!!!!!
Y’all, that’s a lot of money for a closet. And it was so full, my stuff was overflowing to the next room.
I’ve been there. I’ve paid for a storage unit. I’ve paid for a two car garage.
I’ve paid for extra closets and extra bedrooms…for all our stuff that probably wasn’t even valued at the amount I was paying in “storage”.
Getting rid of stuff can make your house bigger!
If you don’t believe me when I say we were a hot mess before, check out this photo.
This is was our basement before decluttering. This was AFTER “organizing” the mess:
Then, we started to declutter and get rid of stuff. This is the same basement after we got rid of stuff:
The change was life-changing. That sounds dramatic, but really, it was.
The basement was no longer a storage unit. Instead, we created a guest room (the sofa unfolded into a bed), a playroom, and an office. This was all done in a half basement!
What kind of space and use of your home could you get if you got rid of stuff you don’t even really need?!
I always thought, what you have in storage not as valuable as what you are paying for a storage unit month after month. Using a unit for only a couple months while in the middle of a move makes sense, but months and years is very expensive.