Everyone knows someone with a sublet horror story, but most people don’t talk about the real nightmare of leaving campus: finding a place to stow your stuff. Most college storage companies cater to semester schedules, or only offer summer storerooms.
Thankfully, the internet makes finding a place to store extra clothes, furniture and even bikes a little easier. No matter where you’re headed in January, here’s how to figure out your winter quarter storage situation.
First, ask your landlord and your friends if they have anywhere you can store things. Some off-campus buildings include storage rooms, and many houses in Evanston have basements. If you know people who live off-campus, ask nicely if you can keep a few boxes there for the quarter.
Word to the wise: Many houses in Evanston are old and basements are...also old. If you go this route, it’s worth investing in waterproof, plastic storage bins from Target ($9 each, available for pickup in Evanston).
If you still have no place to store and no car…
The easiest, most convenient option is Blue Crates. While most companies who pick up and deliver stored items from colleges only do so during designated moving periods (usually, the beginning and end of the school year), Blue Crates picks up and delivers your items right to your door at any time during the year, for no extra charge. When you sign up, you schedule pick up and they send you the plastic boxes to pack in (they’re blue, of course). They’ll also store oversized items, like bikes and skis.
But beware: the small crates aren’t always practical for storing bulkier items. It’s also a pricier option, coming in at $10 a month per crates for the small size (27" x 17" x 12.5") and $15.50 a month for the wardrobe size (price includes pickup, storage and delivery). For an average amount of storage, total cost ranges from $300 to $500.
If you have a car but no place to store...
A storage unit might be the right call for you. Public Storage on Green Bay Road costs $46 a month for a first floor, 25-square-foot-locker (good for boxes and small furniture). They operate on a month to month basis. You’ll need to buy boxes to pack in ($26 for a set of 10 medium cardboard boxes on Amazon). If you sign up online, three months of storage in the cheapest, smallest option will come out to $114, plus the cost of the boxes. All in, expect to pay between $150 and $200.
If you have a place to store but no car…
Rent a cargo van from U-Haul on Dempster Street for four hours and load up, around $40 including gas.
No driver’s license (or muscle)? Use Dolly to relocate everything, an app for scheduling moving help on-demand. “Book a Dolly,” which can mean anything from an extra set of human hands, a truck with a driver for transport, or both. The company bills based on the number and size of the items you move, but they do charge extra for stairs. A simple curbside to curbside drop of a few boxes, including a helper with a truck, costs around $50 if you book in advance. Check out the app or go online.