Being an entrepreneur is difficult as there are so many things to do, and when you are starting your business it is critical to manage your inventory carefully. Often this often is pushed aside in favour of tasks like making sales and taking care of customers, but this is a mistake.
Your inventory needs to be well organised, and we hope that we can give you some tips to make this important task easier. Sometimes this is difficult as many businesses start out at home and quite often space is limited.
Organise your inventory carefully
Organize products by type, and group them together in the same place, so they’re easy to find. If funds permit, purchase racking and label the shelves. If the items are in boxes and are har to identify, you can take digital photos and place them on the outside of the boxes. It is important to know your best sellers and keep them in a prominent position so that they can be easily accessed.
Get rid of old stock
This is hard as no business owner wants to write off inventory. However, you don’t want to clutter your limited space with “dead” stock. Consider selling it at a discount or donating it to a worthy cause if you have to.
Get Quickbooks or an inventory management app
Quickbooks is a great accounting software programme and it makes inventory management easy. There are also some good inventory management apps that you can pay for monthly.
Below are some popular inventory management apps:
Hire staff to help you as your business grows
This is always a difficult step. However, as the business grows you have to avoid burnout and you sometimes have to hire extra help. You will wonder if the time is right and if you can afford it, but at some point you will have to bite the bullet so that you don’t spend all of your time managing inventory and you can focus on growing your business and doing the myriad of administrative tasks that you have to do. As the business grows, make a list of what you want to do, and what you want to delegate, and prioritize as you may not be able to hire all of the help that you need at once.
Move your inventory to a storage facility
Self-storage is an excellent alternative to renting a warehouse, when you run out of space at home. As your business grows, you can authorize other people to retrieve items from storage without giving them the key to your house. You only pay for the space you need, and you can easily upsize to a larger unit when you need to. If you have heavy items, consider renting a drive-up unit so that you can drive right up to the unit and offload your stock. If you have items that are heat sensitive, you can rent a temperature controlled unit in which to store them. You will store your precious stock in a secure environment, and you won’t have to invest in expensive CCTV and motion detectors. You can purchase tenant insurance for additional peace of mind. Also, we can change the code for you if an employee leaves your business
If you’re going on a long trip, secure, affordable storage for your belongings will give you peace of mind. At Store All our storage units range in size from as little as 2 square feet to over 300 square feet, so you only pay for the space you need. They are available for as long as you need, and if you have to extend your trip that’s perfectly fine.
Once you lock your unit only you have access to it, and for your peace of mind we offer coded electronic access, CCTV (recording 24 hours per day), motion and smoke detectors, a monitored security system, security fencing and a security guard at night (Pine Commercial only).
Temperature controlled storage units are also available if you have any items that are sensitive to heat.
Store All sells a wide range of packing supplies for your convenience, and you can also buy a lock for your unit.
When you are abroad you can easily pay online through our web site using your credit card. After all, we want you to avoid any unnecessary stress and enjoy your trip.
So, you need storage. Whatever your reason, you have the choice of self-storage, or valet storage at Store All. To help you to choose the option best for you, please see the following.
Self-Storage – The Process
You first choose the Store All location closest to you, and then the size of unit you need, based on the items that you need to store. Our storage experts will be happy to guide you so that you only pay for the space you use. Then you need to take the items to your unit, where they are stored securely at Store All for as long as you require. You can access your items and remove some or all of them at any time, and you can change the unit size if you need to do so.
Easy Access: You can access your items at Store All 24 hours per day (drive-up storage) and from 6.00 am to 8.00 pm (indoor storage), every day of the week. We have two convenient locations at Pine Commercial, St. Michael and Gibbons, Christ Church.
Security: Our units are clean, dry and secure. Once you lock your unit only you have access to it, and for your peace of mind we offer coded electronic access, CCTV (recording 24 hours per day), motion and smoke detectors, a monitored security system, a security guard at night (Pine Commercial only) and security fencing.
You need to transport your items to and from your self-storage unit. We can suggest a freighter for you based on your needs. We also provide trolleys and pallet jacks.
Valet Storage – The Process
Store All delivers sturdy, plastic storage bins to your door and you pack them. Store All then picks up the packed bins and stores them at the secure facility. When you want something back you contact Store All and to have the bin(s) delivered to you.
Convenience: You don’t have to travel back and forth to the storage facility. In fact, you never have to leave home as the storage bins are delivered to you, where you can pack at your leisure. They are then picked up for free and taken to the storage facility, and delivered back to you upon request. The bins also don’t require assembly or tape, like cardboard boxes. Store All also has a wide range of packing materials for purchase, and these can be delivered to you along with the bins. This is a great option for people who live only for part of the year in Barbados.
Price: This is a great option if you have a small number of items and you can’t fill a storage unit, as you pay for each storage bin stored at Store All (minimum of three bins).
Security: As in the case of self-storage, the same level of security is offered, with CCTV (recording 24 hours per day), motion and smoke detectors, a monitored security system, a security guard at night (Pine Commercial only) and security fencing. The commercial-grade storage bins are also durable, stackable and water-resistant. They are also secured by tie-wraps.
You won’t be able to go and see your items when in storage.
You will also have to pay a delivery fee to get your items delivered back to you.
In summary, Store All Valet is a better option if you have a small number of items and don’t want the hassle of moving them. Otherwise self-storage is you better option.
Donate clothes that you won’t wear again to charity
If you haven’t worn something for a long time, you should consider donating it to a charity like the Salvation Army of the Barbados Alliance to End Homelessness. This is often hard to do, because you often think that you may that piece of clothing again, but in reality you probably won’t, so be decisive. Chances are you won’t miss the old clothes when they are gone.
Repair any damaged clothing
Check your clothes for damage and do any repairs before you store them. When you take your clothes out of storage you will be happy that you sewed on that missing button or mended that hole, so that you can wear your clothes right away.
Wash and dry your clothes properly
Before you put your clothes into storage, you really should wash and dry them thoroughly. Ironing them before you store them is unnecessary, as you will have to iron them again once you get them out of storage, which is double work.
Pack your clothes properly
Use boxes or plastic bins instead of bags, as many bags break down over time leaving a mess of small pieces of plastic all over your clothes. Boxes and plastic bins can be purchased at all Store All locations. Heavier items of clothing should be placed at the bottom of the box, and lighter, delicate clothing at the top. If you roll your clothes rather than folding them, you may be able to fit more clothes into the box. If you have items that should be hung rather than rolled or folded, consider purchasing a wardrobe box that has a hanging rail. Be careful of using vacuum storage bags for long term storage, as although they save a great deal of space, keeping items made from natural fibres, such as wool and silk in a plastic bag can damage them and make them lose shape over time. Vacuum bags are fine for short term storage, but if you are storing for a long time, we suggest using plastic storage bins or boxes.
Store them in the right location
When storing clothes, you need somewhere dry, clean and not too hot. Store All has secure storage units of various sizes, which are clean, dry and cool. Temperature controlled units are also offered at the Pine Commercial location.
So, you want to sell your home, and you want to do it quickly. Well, you first need to declutter your house.
Let the buyers picture themselves in the home
Most of us have too much stuff, and you want the potential buyers not to be distracted by your personal items, and to fall in love with your house. You need to let them imagine their personal possessions in the home, and their photos of loved ones, and not be distracted by yours.
Highlight the storage spaces in the house
Like you, the potential buyers probably have a lot of stuff, and you want to be able to show off your cupboards, closets and storage spaces when showing the house. You don’t want the buyers to open cupboards and storage spaces that are full of old clothes and your personal items.
Make the house feel cleaner and well maintained
Perception is key, and a decluttered house simply looks better cared for and cleaner, than one full of personal possessions.
Make the house feel bigger
A decluttered house feels much bigger than if it is full of furniture, knickknacks, and photos. This will increase the perceived size of the house and make it more appealing to the buyers.
Store All can help with your decluttering, as we sell boxes and packing supplies, and can provide storage units of all sizes for your personal items.
Let’s face it, when you’re at work it’s easy for your office to become cluttered. You accumulate more and more paper, which goes into your filing cabinets and eventually into file boxes. You buy new furniture and equipment, and don’t want to get rid of the existing items, as they may come in handy in the future. You get samples of new products and increase your inventory of items for sale, and sometimes have nowhere to store the items besides your office.
If you want to keep your office free of clutter and easily accessible self-storage may be your solution.
At Store All your items are extremely secure and you have access to them seven days a week, sometimes 24 hours a day depending on the type of storage that you choose. You can use our free trolleys and pallet jacks to make unloading of heavy items easier. There is no long-term commitment and you pay only for the space you use, as you can change the size of your storage unit based on your needs.
So, give yourself some room and store archived documents and files, office furniture and equipment, and inventory – there is also temperature controlled storage for items that are heat-sensitive.
Take back your office space today.
At Store All we realize that packing your personal items and furniture in order to move into a self storage unit can be very time consuming and frustrating. Therefore, in order to make it easier for you we have put together the following list:
BEFORE YOU START PACKING
Set up an appointment to visit us so that you can select the size unit that suits your needs.
As a rough guide, a 5’ X 8’ unit will store furniture from one bedroom or a small apartment; a 10’ X 8’ unit will store furniture from two bedrooms; and a 20’ X 8’ unit will store furniture from three bedrooms and so on. However, don’t overpack your unit, as a little extra space can give you room for a walkway through the middle of your unit for easy access to your items.
Do not forget to ask about our discounts for longer rentals or larger units. Get as many boxes that you think you will need, along with tape, markers and bubble wrap, foam chips/noodles etc. These are sold at Store All’s office and we will buy back any unused boxes. Try to use the same size of box, as they will be much easier to stack. Small or medium boxes are ideal for most of your items, and large boxes are good for items that aren’t very heavy, but they may not stand up well at the bottom of stack of boxes, and they may be difficult to remove if you need something out of them.
Before you start packing give each box a number and record it along with the contents of the box, and decide on a sequence for packing. Then decide on how you will get your items moved to our facility.
IT’S PACKING TIME
Label the boxes on as many sides as possible for easy identification.
Colour code and/or label all boxes e.g. by room or category.
Group items together that are normally associated with one another i.e. small kitchen appliances, pots and pans, cutlery and so on.
Pack fragile items carefully and fill the extra space in boxes with newspaper to prevent collapsing and to stop breakage.
Furniture with drawers can be utilized as storage places for pictures, knick-knacks, silverware, small items, etc. Wrap them in tablecloths, towels or blankets to prevent breakage. Use Partition/Protection Kits for china and glassware. These are sold at Store All.
Use shrink wrap to secure drawers and cabinet doors, so that they don’t slide out/open and hit you. This is sold at Store All.
Fill suitcases and bags with clothing, sheets, towels and so on.
Shovels, hoes, rakes and hoses can be stored together in empty garbage cans. Stack extra cans inside of each other.
Do not over-pack the boxes and seal them with packing tape.
Do not pack the boxes so that they are too heavy to carry them.
Do not place sharp or heavy items on top of upholstered furniture as this may lead to damage.
When you disassemble electronics with numerous cords place a small, coloured sticker on each cord and the same colour sticker where the cord goes.
Use the inside of appliances for extra storage and leave the fridge door wedged open to provide circulation. Do not forget to clean out appliances thoroughly before storing them.
Pack books in small boxes lined with plastic and fill the empty spaces with newspaper.
Tie bed frames together and package all the small pieces together and label them.
Wrap paper around chair and legs and cover the seats with plastic.
Consider purchasing covers for your mattresses and furniture (available at Store All).
Wrap paintings and carefully and do not store them flat. Mark “FRAGILE” on them.
To prevent rust run some machine oil on metal tools, bicycles and equipment.
Pack glassware and dishes with foam or wrap with bubble wrap. At the very least wrap them with newspaper. Store All sells bubble wrap, dish pack kits and protection kits.
Pack each lamp shade in its own box with padding.
Do a basic drawing showing the location of items that you will need to find easily, and stick it to the wall of the storage unit.
Record an inventory of your stored items and keep it in a safe place.
MAXIMIZE YOUR STORAGE SPACE AT STORE ALL
Stack boxes of equal size to shoulder height. Place heavy items at the bottom to form a stable base. Place fragile items on top.
Leave space down the centre of the unit so that all items can be accessed. Turn the boxes so that you can read the labels on them.
Please use pallets to raise your items off of the ground.
Leave a little space between the items stored and the walls of the storage unit to provide ventilation.
Place smaller, lighter items at the back of the storage unit and larger, heavier items to the front.
Place TV’s and electronics at the back of the unit on top of heavy pieces of furniture and cover them.
Place frequently used items to the front.
If possible, take apart tables and beds to save space. Tape all screws and small parts to the item.
Place couches and mattresses on end and stack chairs seat to seat to maximize space. Cover them with a dust cover.
Separate with the headboard and upright bed rails to maintain straightness. Cover mattresses with mattress covers, store them flat if possible, and elevate them off the floor.
STORE SAFELY AT STORE ALL
Use a high-quality lock on your unit door, preferable a cylindrical lock. These are available at Store All. Remember the location of the key.
Do not assume that your homeowner’s insurance will cover your items when in storage. If you confirm that it does not Store All can sell you insurance. If it’s worth storing, it’s worth insuring.
Do not give out your gate code to anyone that is not listed as having access.
Be sure to check your storage unit once a month.
If you see a potential security threat or anything suspicious please notify the office.
PLEASE NOTE THAT WE DO NOT PERMIT COMBUSTIBLE (LIKE PAINT, OIL OR GASOLINE) OR PERISHABLE ITEMS (LIKE FOOD) IN STORAGE!
Get as many boxes as you think you will need, along with tape, markers and bubble wrap, etc. Boxes of the same size help with stacking and accessibility. These are sold in Store All’s office and we will buy back any unused boxes.
Make an inventory of your items and keep it in a safe place away from the unit. Also, consider creating a map of your items and place a copy inside the unit where you can see it.
Please use pallets to raise your items off of the ground.
Plan your storage space. Place those items that you may need to access often at the front. Allow for walkways.
Do not store anything combustible (i.e. paint thinners, gasoline, solvents, paints, etc.).
Do not store food as this encourages insects and rodents.
Be sure your boxes are strong enough to hold 25 to 30 lbs. and do not over pack your boxes. Stack lighter boxes on top of heavier boxes and try to use uniform boxes for easy stacking.
List the contents of boxes on all four sides; number the boxes and seal with tape.
Dishes and glasses should be wrapped in paper and packed in sturdy boxes. Stack them on top.
Pictures and mirrors should be wrapped in bubble wrap and cardboard, marked “FRAGILE” and stacked on end.
Furniture with drawers can be utilized as storage places for pictures, knick-knacks, silverware, small items, etc. Wrap them in tablecloths, towels or blankets to prevent breakage. Use Partition/Protection Kits for china and glassware. These are sold in Store All’s office.
Larger appliances make excellent “packing cases” for blankets, towels, tablecloths and clothes.
Shovels, hoes, rakes and hoses can be stored together in empty garbage cans. Stack extra cans inside of each other.
Tables with removable legs should be broken down to save space.
Sofas and mattresses can sometimes be stored on end to save space. Always place a protective cover under the item. Wrap cushions in plastic and place on top, or you can use a jumbo plastic storage bag to store them.
If you stand mattresses on their side, prop them straight up. They may bend out of shape and become lumpy if at an angle. Separate with the headboard and upright bed rails to maintain straightness.
Cover stuffed furniture with cardboard or blankets to protect against dust.
Do not place heavy or sharp objects on top of upholstered furniture. Loosely cover all upholstery. If sealed include a few scented dryer sheets for freshness. Use these for linens as well.
Put TV’s and electronics at the back of the unit on top of heavy pieces of furniture and cover them.
Use a good quality lock on your unit door, preferable a cylindrical lock. Remember the location of the key.
Many people are first-time renters of self-storage, so we put together a few basic tips to help you choose exactly what you need.
Determine the Correct Size Storage Unit for Your Items
Quite often renters of self-storage will make a mental estimation of the size of the unit needed, but this can often be an underestimation, which leads to problems when moving in, or an overestimation, which leads to more space than is needed i.e. wasted money. We don’t want you to pay for more space than you need, so please give us a call and tell us what you need to store, and one of our storage specialists will guide you accordingly. Alternatively, go to our web site and use our Size Estimator www.storeallbds.com/booking to get an idea of the size of storage unit that you will need.
Determine Which Location Suits You Best
Store All has two locations (Pine Commercial, St. Michael and Gibbons, Christ Church), so depending on where you live or work, you can choose the location that best suits you.
Do You Want Indoor or Drive-Up Storage?
Some people prefer indoor storage, while some like to drive right up to their storage unit. Indoor storage is only available at Pine Commercial, while drive-up storage is available at both locations. Access to the indoor storage units is 6.00 am to 8.00 pm daily, while access to the drive-up storage is 24 hours daily. Both options have advantages, and it is up to you to determine which is the better option.
Do You Need Temperature-Controlled Storage?
Temperature controlled storage is kept at approximately 25 degrees Celsius, which is ideal for fine furniture, electronics, musical equipment and heat-sensitive inventory. This storage option also provides comfort for tenants who visit their storage units often.
Are Your Items Insured?
Store All offers special tenant insurance through ICBL with a low deductible. At times your insurance company will extend your homeowner’s coverage to your units in storage, but you must check with them first, and also check the deductible as it may be nearly as much as the items in storage. Turning a blind eye to insurance of items is storage is not recommended as catastrophes can happen no matter how many precautions are taken.
Will Your Items Be Safe?
Once you lock your unit only you have access to it, and for your peace of mind we offer coded electronic access, CCTV (recording 24 hours per day), motion and smoke detectors (indoor storage), a monitored security system, a security guard at night (Pine Commercial only) and security fencing.
Do You Need Packing Supplies?
Store All offers one stop shopping for all your moving and packing supplies for your convenience. You can also buy a lock for your unit.
Who Will Move Your Items?
Although Store All doesn’t offer a moving service, freighters can be recommended who can move your items for you.
How To Pay For The Storage
You can pay Store All online through the web site, or authorize us to charge your credit card monthly. You can also pay online through CIBC First Caribbean’s or Republic Bank’s online banking websites, or give us post-dated cheques. We also have a drop-box at each location for cheque payments, or you can come into to our office and pay us with cash.
We hope this has helped, but you probably will have other questions so please call us – 429-7428.
Discarding sentimental items is much harder than discarding regular clutter, as they often bring back lots of memories. However, at times these items stop giving you joy and just take up space, and therefore must go, although it won’t be easy. Here are some tips to help.
Determine a Timeframe
This task may seem overwhelming, but there is no point getting stressed out over it. So, give yourself a generous timeframe, and break up the task into chunks so that it doesn’t overwhelm you.
Ask for Help
Sometimes sorting through sentimental items is emotionally draining, so consider asking a family member or a friend to help, and give another view of the process.
Just Make a Start
Even if you start with non-sentimental items first (to get you into the right mindset) the key is to make a start. Start with the items that you no longer value or no longer make you happy, and set them aside.
Give Sentimental Items to Family or Friends
Sometimes an item is not only sentimental to you, and it may bring happiness to a family member or a friend. Ask them if they would like the item before discarding it. This may make it easier to part with it.
Limit the Items Associated with a Memory
Sometimes you have several items from an event or a trip. Why not choose your favourite item and get rid of the rest?
Don’t Feel Bad About Getting Rid of Gifts
Quite often guilt creeps in if you want to get rid of a gift that someone has given you. However, chances are that they won’t know or notice, and if it doesn’t make you feel good any longer, it is yours to do what you like with.
Scan and Save
The cloud is a great place to save old photos, children’s artwork and other printed items. When you want to look at them, they will be easy to retrieve, without taking up precious space at your home.
Get a Designated Space for Sentimental Items
If you simply can’t part with some of the items, get a container or a box in which to store them. This will help de-clutter, but you will still have access to the items when you want to look at them.
Please remember that although this task is hard, you will create space for new memories to be made.