Although self-storage units can be good for anything from antique furniture to personal documents, there are some things you should never keep in a storage unit. Take a look at five items that are not meant for the world of self-storage.

Living things

Nothing that is alive should ever be housed in a self-storage unit — not a plant, not an animal, and definitely not you. The occasional TV show or movie will show a person crashing in their storage unit, but this is not acceptable in real life.

Storage units lack the resources that living things need to thrive — fresh air, sunlight, and water. Never keep an animal in a storage unit, not even for a night. Find a different home for your plants and animals.


Avoid keeping anything liquid or wet in your storage unit. If an item goes in after a wash and before it’s completely dry, it could cause mold and mildew. What’s even worse is that this mold and mildew can spread to other items and potentially ruin more of your belongings.

Hazardous materials

It may go without saying, but it’s worth repeating that hazardous materials are not safe to keep inside a storage unit. Not all hazardous materials are obvious. Some cleaning chemicals and fertilizers can be unsafe if they aren’t stored correctly. You should also avoid bringing batteries, guns and ammo, liquor, and fuels, including what’s left in a small motor.

Irreplaceable items

Climate controlled spaces at Cherokee Self Storage are designed to protect your items from fluctuating temperatures and humidity. Even so, it’s not always best to store your most precious, one-of-a-kind items in a unit away from your home. Something like a family heirloom could be safely kept in the right storage unit for the short term, but in the long term it’s safer to keep irreplaceable items at home with you.

Extremely personal documents

We’ve often expressed how useful a storage unit can be to store documents off-site and save room in your home and office. We still stand by that sentiment, with one exception: the most personal of documents. Anything that’s linked to your identity, such as a social security card, passport, or birth certificate, is best stored close to you at home.