Tag Archives: Lifestyle

Minimalist Living: How To Get Started

Whether you have a big move on the horizon, are sick of constantly fighting through clutter in your house, or just want to make a change, adopting a minimalist lifestyle could benefit you greatly. By opening up your physical space you will also open up your mental space, and from there the possibilities are endless. Here are some tips to get you started.

Make a minimalist plan.

Before you do anything at all, imagine what you want your space to look like. Perhaps look for minimalist living inspiration online, in magazines, blogs, or other places. Write it down if you want, but definitely spend some time planning your attack before you dive in.

Start small.

Since you’re new to this lifestyle, start with something small and easy to handle before you tear apart your entire house. The desk in your office, the kitchen counter, the nightstand by your bed – something easy to get your feet wet.

Identify what “essential” really means.

Depending on the degree of minimalism you want to be, decide what you really need and what you don’t. Perhaps you really only need a lamp on your nightstand, and a notebook and pen on your desk. Everything not in the essential category is in the nonessential category, and minimalists eliminate nonessentials.

Decide how to eliminate the nonessentials.

Now that you’ve started to clear your space, you have to decide whether to get rid of or keep the nonessentials. Some of the stuff you can either toss, donate, or sell, and some you may want to hang on to. Most of us aren’t ready to get rid of our precious belongings but still want a clean and tidy space, which is why self storage is a minimalist’s best friend. Take the nonessentials that you want to keep and organize them into clearly labeled boxes or bins, and put them in a space where they are still there if you need them, but aren’t cluttering your space.

Pursuing a minimalist lifestyle and using space more efficiently can open up your home, office, or yard while at the same time relieving anxiety, stress, and mental clutter.

Auburn Gresham: How to Prepare for a Road Trip

It’s summertime in Auburn Gresham and you know what that means! Time to plan a road trip. Road trips are an essential part of the American lifestyle, so grab some friends and family and head in whichever direction you please. Wait! I wish it was that simple…but like with all fun getaways, it requires some time and effort to prepare. Here’s a short guide to help you prepare for driving to that special place across the country you’ve always dreamed of visiting.

1) Plan your Road Trip Route

This is obviously one of the most essential preparations to make. In the end, it comes down to how you want to spend your time on the way to your final destination. Are you trying to get there as quick as possible? Are you trying to save money? Do you not care about time, and just want to take the most scenic routes?

If your priority is to save money on gas along the way, be sure to check out GasBuddy.com. This is a great tool for finding the cheapest gas stations along your route from start to destination. If your priority is instead to find interesting stops along the way, check out RoadTrippers.com. This is a great website for making the best of your journey along the way.

2) Schedule and Plan your Hotel Stops

Auburn Gresham, Storage, Road Trip

To save you the hassle and worry along the way, it might be a good idea to make hotel reservations prior to leaving (if you know how long and far you’ll be driving each day). There are several websites out there, like Hotels.com, that can help you find good deals at nice places during your road trip journey.

3) Stay Entertained in the Car

Let’s face it, sometimes the long drives on road trips can get a little (I mean really) boring. One way to prevent this kind of boredom from bringing down your level of hype and excitement is to plan for some fun activities with your buds in the car. Here’s a few ideas:
– Listen to music. Nothing says peace and elation like listening to some good music.
– Play the license plate game. This classic road trip game will keep everyone entertained and busy along the way.
– Bring Mad Libs! This is something that would keep my family and I laughing and entertained on our several past road trips.
4) Schedule and Stop at Tasty Restaurants

Auburn Gresham, Storage, Road Trip, Food

Don’t be surprised, sitting in a car all day (especially if you’re driving) can still build up quite a nice appetite. If you’re a foodie like I am, take a look at your route prior to leaving and research some of the best restaurants that happen to be located on or near your road trip route. The best resource I can recommend is Yelp for this task.

5) A Clean Car and a Safe Car is a Happy Car

One last thing. Before departing with your friends or your family on the trip, make sure to give it a good clean on the inside, because nobody wants to sit in a dirty car for several days in a row. Secondly, the last thing you want is for your car to break down in the middle of nowhere. To prevent this from happening, get a quick checkup on your vehicle before the big day.

That’s it, you’re all set for a road trip of a lifetime! Have a great time and remember to be safe. Remember to follow our blogs for more lifestyle tips and tricks and click here for more info on our storage options at our Auburn Gresham location.

Auburn Gresham Living: Moving from Apartment to House

Moving to your first house after living in apartment complexes for your whole life is an exciting new chapter to begin. More space, privacy, and your own parking spot is a lot to be excited about. Unfortunately with all of this excitement, also comes overwhelming pressure on how to make it work. Here’s a few tips that will help you settle into that new dream home of yours in Auburn Gresham with ease.

1) Furnishing the New Space

While it may be exciting to see how much more space you have, it will definitely take some work to fill up all that extra space that you didn’t have in your old apartment. If the furniture you had in your last apartment all shared a consistent style and theme, be sure to stay consistent with that look in your new home when looking for new furniture to add. This will ensure that the overall finished interior design of your home looks crisp. Here’s a few ideas for how to find furniture at a favorable price:
Ikea is always an option. The quality of the products may not be the best and they may deteriorate over time, but you can count on finding some modern designs that may just suit the style of your new home in Auburn Gresham. You can always count on package sets and other deals that make a trip to Ikea a great idea when shopping on a budget.
Craigslist. With this option, you are guaranteed to find the cheapest prices out there from second hand sellers, all in your local area.
Check with friends and family if they have furniture they no longer need. There’s no better price than free!

2) Hire Movers

Auburn Gresham, Self-Storage, Movers, Storage, Chicago

This is almost a necessity. It takes a lot of hard, physical work to move your belongings into a home, especially if there are multiple floors. By hiring movers, it will make the moving process much faster, while also probably saving you from pulling a muscle at some point.

3) Prepare for Yardwork

A major perk of moving into a house is having that lawn space you’ve always dreamed about. Whether it’s used for outdoor games, gardening, or relaxing, it’s important to know that it requires constant upkeep. A trip to Lowe’s or Home Depot might be a good idea so you can stock up on lawn mowers, lawn care products, and outdoor furniture. Also, be sure to have a general idea of what kind of insects populate your area so you know what insect repellants to buy. The last thing you want are ants invading your new home!

4) Meet your Neighbors

Socialize! Another great thing about moving into a residential neighborhood is the opportunity it provides you with meeting new people and making new friends who live around you. This will make you feel more comfortable adjusting to living there, knowing who is a part of your community. Who knows, some of them may even offer to help with your move.

You’re now ready to move into your new home in Auburn Gresham! Enjoy that new dream home of yours and don’t forget to check back here for more blogs to come. To learn more about our availability with storage units at our Auburn Gresham location, click here.

Carol Stream Apartments: Studio Apartment Tips

Here is U-Stor-It’s Guide to Carol Stream Apartments

Step 1: Create your own mini-living areas

Okay, so lets face facts. Studios are one big room, so you don’t get the luxury of walls dividing your living space. It may be weird at first, but the best way to create an illusion of rooms at your new studio apartment in Carol Stream is to arrange and store your furnishings in an organized way that create small, “wall-free” living spaces. For example create a designated work area, sleep area, eating area, and relaxing/living area.

Step 2: Natural Sunlight Exposure

If possible, choose an apartment in the complex that has good exposure to sunlight. This is a great trick for making your small apartment feel a little bigger, by creating an illusion of more depth and space.

Step 3: Utilize Storage-Friendly Furniture

Given that you’ll probably be tight on space, depending on the size of some Carol Stream apartments, or on how many things you own, one great way of saving space is to invest in a pull-out couch that transforms to a bed. It may not be the most comfortable mattress, but at least it will give you a lot more space to work with when decorating.

Step 4: Store the things you don’t need

This is when we come in to help! Don’t let those big items you use once a year (i.e. holiday decorations) get in the way of your living. Our Carol Stream location will be able to make this as simple and safe as it gets. Some of the features include drive-in loading docks to minimize any heavy lifting, and ground floor rentals to make the move even easier. To ensure that your belongings stay in good shape, we also provide climate-controlled storage units. For more information on the variety of units we offer, click here.

Step 5: Enjoy your new home in Carol Stream!

If you have checked off all the items above when moving in to your new apartment, then you’re all set. Enjoy your stylish and spacious studio!

The Benefits of Being Well-Organized

Being organized has many benefits, which go past just having a tidy looking area. It includes peace of mind, increased productivity, and a general sense of happiness.  Here at U-Stor-It, we composed a list of why it’s good to be well organized.

Less Stress

There’s a reason why this is at the top of our list. If there was any single reason to keep things neat and tidy, it would be to reduce the levels of stress in your life. After all, who wants to come back to a  home  where everything is cluttered and it’s hard to find the important items you were looking for, specifically the remote.

More time

This leads us into the second benefit of being well organized. When you know where everything is, you are able to efficiently find items instead of stressing out and making a mess of things. I know because this happens to me too… If searching for an item takes an average of 10 minutes, those are 10 minutes of ‘free time’ that we can spend in numerous other ways. I would much rather spend that time doing something fun instead of having to clean up the mess we just made looking around for something in a pile of items.

Saves Money

The worst feeling in the world is when you know you have something, somewhere, hidden in your home. You look around helplessly trying to find it, only to admit defeat and buy it again. Eventually after you buy it and the return date expires you find the original item you were looking for! By being better organized, you won’t have to waste money in a situation like this since you will know where everything is.

Improved Health and Happiness

Remember earlier when I mentioned the reason why less stress is at the top of this list? With less stress in your life comes improved health. There are numerous studies that cite weight loss, increased happiness, increased immunity, longer life longevity, better relationships, and a healthier heart.

“Even if you usually eat well and exercise, chronic high stress can prevent you from losing weight—or even add pounds,” says Pamela Peeke, MD, author of Body for Life for Women.

Source: LiveStrong, Mayo Clinic, Prevention Magazine

If you need more space to get started on a happier and healthier life style check out any of our U-Stor-It locations.

88th/Ashland
Beverely
Carol Stream
Lisle
Streamwood

The Age of the Apartments

A trend we are seeing in the marketplace in major cities across the U.S. are  as more and more millennials continue to gravitate towards convenience and location of living in desirable areas, are small urban dwellings under 400 sqft. While living in these micro apartments may give you savings in your bank account along with conveniences to be in the new hippest neighborhood in town, you may be leaving things behind which cause a larger financial impact in the long run. Aside from the fact you can pick up and leave in a moments notice to a new city, vacation or travel, throwing out these goods may not be the answer to a carefree, minimalist life in a big city.

A reality that comes along with living in these micro apartments and tossing out couches, tables, chairs, desks so you can into an overpriced condo is that you will eventually need all of these things again.

This causes a financial impact on young adults who will eventually need most of these items again if they ever decide to move into an apartment with that extra 200sqft or den, or office.

Millennial’s have all been actively endorsing vintage items, re-usable goods, and stylish family heirlooms over the years, but have consistently been eliminating these possessions from moves, travels, and new roommates.

A great solution to think about is self-storage in larger cities, with the option to avoid a financial burden later on and still have access to items which can help fill your new place when your done traveling, or have kids, even moving into a cheaper neighborhood with a larger place.An excellent option to keep these items at a minimal cost with a potentially huge reward later on and hopefully vintage items to pass onto the next generation!