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Portable Storage vs Traditional Storage - Which is better?

Posted by Carreen Gibbons on February 22, 2019 at 3:36 PM
Carreen Gibbons
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Portable storage has been popular among many businesses – such as construction companies and retailers - to keep things secure at their sites. They're able to use containers right on site, for a specific use period, sometimes indefinitely.

Here are some of the critical differences between onsite portable storage and what is offered by a traditional storage facility:

Accessibility

One of the most significant problems with traditional storage is that it is set up in building that is remote to your location. This makes it so that if anything is needed from the unit, someone has to drive there and get it. Then, when the item is no longer in use, it storage facilityhas to be taken back to the storage facility. This can add up to hours' worth of drive time per week if an on-site location can't be found for an item – a common problem with large pieces of equipment.

Portable storage is set up on the same property where the items are being used. This completely eliminates drive time in most cases. Even on large construction sites covering acres, any driving is limited to a couple of minutes rather than hours. Using this system dramatically enhances security since items are far more likely to be put back into a locked container when doing so doesn't mean spending hours on the road.

Hours of Operation

With a portable storage container, there are no such things as hours of operation. The container is available 24/7/365 to meet your needs. If your company runs on extended hours, this availability is critical.

At most traditional storage facilities, there are no provisions for night access. Some even close so early that you'd have a hard time getting to them after standard business hours. This significantly limits your ability to keep working past a particular time, and this can lead to missed deadlines.

Site Safety and Security

Keeping dangerous equipment locked away when it's not in use can significantly reduce the risk of injury. It's easy to observe this safety protocol when the lockable unit is right at the site where the tools are being used.

Security against theft is also increased in these circumstances. People are more likely to obey lock-up directives when it's simple and easy to do so.

Remote storage facilities are inconvenient. It is human nature to put off doing inconvenient tasks, and this inevitably leads to equipment being left unsecured for longer than it should be. At a construction site, this can result in equipment being left out all night long. By the time morning comes, someone could easily have gotten to it and either hurt themselves or stolen an expensive piece of equipment.

General Security

When you have control over your storage solution, you also have control over its security. You can assign your general security personnel to make sure that it is locked when it should be and to keep an eye out for anyone prowling around the unit.

With traditional storage solutions, you may or may not get good security. You have to trust that they will have attentive guards and working cameras. Sometimes, this works out fine. At other times, it does not.

The problem with an offsite storage solution is that there is no way to know which security level you'll actually get until it's too late.

Ease of Adding Space

With portable storage, getting more space is easy as long as you have room for another container storageunit. Just call the company and have it deliver another container! You can also have the containers set up in ways that are convenient for you, sometimes they can even be stacked. If you only have room for two containers in one area, it's a simple matter to have a third set up somewhere else on your project's property.

Traditional building-based storage is rarely that easy to work with. Chances are that after you rented your first unit, the adjacent ones were leased to other tenants. This makes it so that if you want to add another, it may be on the other side of a large complex. If the facility is near capacity, it's possible that there won't be any additional space left. Then, your next unit may have to be across town in a different facility altogether. This makes renting multiple units a pain when you need to add them over time.

Cost

Container storage is usually far more affordable than building-based alternatives. This is because there is no building overhead for the storage company to pay for. It also doesn't have to hire security personnel or other peripheral employees to do business. Your existing staff handles basic cleaning and security needs for your portable storage container.

Configurability

Storage containers can be set up to handle a vast variety of needs. Whether you need a basic rectangular box or one that has been converted to an office, portable storage companies can usually accommodate.

With traditional storage, you typically have only a few options – and the difference between them is merely size. You are presented with an empty cubicle, and that's it. While this can be fine for basic storage, you're out of luck if you need anything special. And good luck turning a storage unit into an office! 

Scalability

If you have seasonal business needs, you have to think about scaling down as well as up. Portable storage makes it easy to do – just have unneeded containers hauled away when you don't have as many items to store.

This is great for retailers, who may store layaway items or bring in extra stock during the holiday season. It's also good for construction companies who need to store things over the winter but will have them out and in use during the warmer months.

With some traditional storage facilities, scaling is hard because they demand longer-term leasing commitments. If your business is seasonal, this means that you end up wasting money on empty units part of the year.

Wrapping It All Up

As you can see, there are many advantages to using portable storage over a traditional storage facility. But, while we think portable storage is clearly the winner, that decision is ultimately up to you. 

SiteBox Storage is an industry leader in portable storage in Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, and Missouri. To find out the logistics of using portable storage on your site, just reach out. We'll make doing business easy.

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