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Rental Trends: The Demand of Warehousing and Storage

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This biweekly sponsored column is written by the experts at Gordon James Realty, a local property management firm that specializes in residential real estate, commercial real estate and homeowner associations. Please submit any questions in the comments section or via email.

Storage space in the D.C. market is very important. Think about it: you may have heard that D.C.’s population is increasing by approximately 1,000 per month. That’s a true popular statistic. So, where are these people putting all their stuff?

It’s no secret that D.C. has less space than other places that people may be moving from. We will go into the needs of warehousing, and how to increase storage availability across your properties.

One of the worst places to run out of storage space is your bathroom. It’s easy to underestimate bathroom storage needs. I mean, how much room could a few bottles, toilet paper rolls and some towels take up?

Here are a few clever ideas to expand your bathroom space:

  • Don’t underestimate corners: Check out those tiny nooks and crannies. There can be a lot of potential in these spaces. Try installing a ledge or shelf above the toilet or tuck a little stool under the sink to reach shelves that you can install a little higher to save space
  • Create ledges: A window ledge is the perfect place to stock your supplies and it also has that cool DIY vibe to it
  • Get organized with a vanity tray: The amount of clutter in your bathroom could be due to poor use of space. If you have products and junk everywhere, a vanity tray can help to rein them in

Ladies – is your makeup taking over? Use dollar store bins to divide your drawers into smaller sections for a designated type of makeup. This keeps everything organized and it’s inexpensive. It is also satisfying to see all your makeup displayed so neatly.

Use command hooks to hang bins on the inside of your cabinet doors. An organizer that fits over the door and hangs down is another simple solution. Think outside the box and try a spice rack – pull-out style to be exact. It’s the perfect size to hold all your tubes, creams, containers and bottles.

Here are a couple more ideas for carving out storage space in your rentals:

  • Buy extra jars for the kitchen for spatulas, knives, herbs, spices and anything else you can name
  • Attach shower curtain rings to hangers in your closet and use them to hang things like scarves, necklaces and belts. This way, you are hanging a bunch of stuff on just one hanger
  • Get furniture that is multi-purpose. For example, an ottoman that opens up and also acts as a storage cube
  • Use ice cube trays to organize earrings, rings and other small jewelry.
  • The space under your bed can be great for storage. Buy under-the-bed boxes to store sheets, shoes, towels, books, and more.
  • If you have the wall space, mount your TV on the wall. You’ll free up floor space for more storage. You can then put a shelf or cabinet under the TV for game, movie, blanket, etc. storage.
  • Cover cardboard boxes in burlap or pretty wrapping paper for stylish storage bins that you can leave out in the open.

Sometimes, landlords provide separate storage units within the building, but if not, many people turn to storage units and warehousing. Here are some tips for packing away seasonal items safely and retrieving them easily when the time comes.

Now that we have covered storage in the rentals, let’s talk warehousing. Living in a rental has many advantages, but storage is usually not one of them.

Why is warehousing in such high demand? Well, because they are so multi-functional. Go to some hip borough in New York City or some cool neighborhood in San Francisco and you’ll find tons of old warehouses turned restaurant, bar or shop. Warehouses also come in handy when it comes to avoiding issues with inventory management and operations.

Just remember, PHTEOL: Pack, Hang, Take inventory, Elevate, Organize, Label. These are great tips to share with people living in your properties.

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