How to Pick the Right Size Self-Storage Unit

Liz Wolf
December 10, 2020
Find Self-Storage

Choosing a self-storage unit doesn’t have to be like “Goldilocks and the Three Bears,” where you try out every size unit before finally finding one that suits your needs.

Whether you’re looking to store the contents of an entire four-bedroom home or just your seasonal clothing, there’s a unit that’s just right for you. Picking the right storage unit size from the get go will save you time and money. Otherwise you may end up paying for more space than you need, or end up renting a second storage unit because you filled up the first one.

So, how do you determine what size you need? Check out quick answers below and keep reading for a more detailed explanation of storage unit sizes.

  • How big is a 5×5 storage unit?
  • How big is a 5×10 storage unit?
  • How big is a 10×10 storage unit?
  • How big is a 10×15 storage unit?
  • How big is a 10×20 storage unit?
  • How big is a 10×30 storage unit?

Storage Unit Size Guide

Keep in mind that most self-storage units are about eight feet from floor to ceiling. Sizes for various units are identified by length and width.

5’x5’ Storage Unit

Size: 25 square feet, about the size of a small walk in closet.
What fits: A dresser, small mattress set and several boxes. Other uses include seasonal decorations, personal items, gardening equipment, camping gear, children’s toys or off-season clothing.

5’x10’ Storage Unit

Size: 50 square feet, equivalent to a walk-in closet.
What fits: Furniture from a one-bedroom apartment or dorm room including a queen-sized mattress set, love seat, dresser, TV, bike and several storage boxes.

10’x10’ Storage Unit (the most popular size)

Size: 100 square feet, equivalent to half of a standard one-car garage. Think of it as an extra bedroom since most are about 10’x12’.
What fits: Items from two bedrooms (mattresses sets, dressers, nightstands) and an entire family room (sofa, chairs, coffee table, book shelves).

10’x15’ Storage Unit

Size: 150 square feet, slightly smaller than the size of a standard one-car garage.
What fits: Items from three bedrooms and other large items like big-screen TVs, couches, pianos, tables or appliances.

10’x20’ Storage Unit

Size: 200 square feet, the size of a standard one-car garage.
What fits: Items from a three- or four-bedroom house or apartment, including couches, mattress sets, a dining room set, workout equipment, a refrigerator and washer and dryer.

This size is also ideal for your classic car over the winter.

10’x30’ Storage Unit

Size: 300 square feet, or the size of a one-and-a-half-car garage so you can store pretty much anything you need including vehicles or boats. It’s the largest unit at most facilities.
What fits: Items from a fully furnished five-bedroom house including mattress sets, dressers, couches, dining room set, entertainment center, major appliances, seasonal items, outdoor equipment and bikes.

10’x30’s are for a huge family house when all of the kids have full bedrooms.

Recommended Storage Unit Sizes

Number of Bedrooms Recommended Size
1-Bedroom Apartment 5’x10′ or 10’x10′
2-Bedroom Home 10’x10′ or 10’x15′
3-Bedroom Home 10’x15′ or 10’x20′
4-Bedroom Home 10’x20′ or 10’x30′


How to Pick the Right Size Storage Unit Step-by-Step


1. Take Stock of Your Stuff

Take a quick inventory of items including furniture and appliances and estimate the number of boxes and/or totes. You can use a tape measure for the larger items. Consider whether you have irregular-shaped items that can’t be boxed or stacked like lamps or bikes.

2. Use Size Guides

Our storage unit size guide can help you figure out how big, or small, of a storage unit you need.

Other examples: – Storage Unit Size Guide – Storage Unit Size Overview

For another visual representation, check out our YouTube video showing what fits in the various self-storage unit sizes.

3. Gauge Space Using a Moving Truck

If you’re using a moving truck, the truck’s dimensions can help you estimate how much total storage space you’ll need. The truck size is typically one size larger than the unit size you’ll need.

If you have a 25-foot moving truck, you can fit your items into a 10’x20’. If you have a 20-foot truck, you need a 10’x15.’ If you have a 15-foot truck, you need a 10’x10.’

4. When in Doubt, Go Big

Many new customers underestimate their needs and choose a unit that’s too small. He recommends inquiring about the price of the next larger size. Sometimes it’s only a few bucks more. If you want to get to your stuff easily, go with a unit one size larger and leave a path. This makes it easier to retrieve items from the back of the unit if you need to.

5. Visit the Unit Before Reserving

Before making that final decision, visit the facility to tour a unit that’s the same size as the one you’re planning to rent. Seeing it might be easier than trying to picture it in your head. You could also use painter’s tape and a tape measure to mark out the dimensions outside to give you a visual representation of how much space a unit provides.

6. Understand Storage Unit Dimensions

Typically, units are sized by length times width, giving you an estimated floor space square footage. You can calculate your needs by square footage or the number of rooms you’ll be storing.

But remember units typically have a ceiling height of 8 feet; so a little space goes a long way.

Storage renters can stack safely a number of boxes and tubs, and turn couches and beds sideways to easily accommodate furniture. One normally thinks [furniture] has to rest in a unit in the same position it rests at home. Sometimes that realization is an ‘ah-ha’ moment.

City, State Unit Size Avg. Price Per Month
New York, NY 5’x5′ $61.10
Dallas, TX 5’x10′ $42.62
Los Angeles, CA 5’x5′ $92.33
Chicago, IL 5’x10′ $56.61
Denver, CO 5’x10′ $52.22
Houston, TX 10’x10′ $64.84
San Antonio, TX 5’x10′ $46.80
Atlanta, GA 5’x5′ $43.07
Austin, TX 5’x10′ $45.68
Phoenix, AZ 5’x10′ $57.46
San Diego, CA 5’x10′ $75.43
Las Vegas, NV 10’x10′ $101.06
Miami, FL 5’x10′ $59.60
Washington, D.C. 5’x5′ $46.59
Philadelphia, PA 5’x5′ $51.76



Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Storage Sizes

What is the most popular storage unit size?

A 10'x10' (100 sq. ft.) is the most popular storage unit size. This size is perfect for a 2 bedroom house or apartment and costs about $95 per month.

What size storage unit do I need for a 1 bedroom apartment?

A 5'x10' (50 sq. ft.) storage unit is ideal for a 1 bedroom apartment. It's great for furniture like a queen-sized mattress set, dresser, couch, TV, bike and several boxes.

What size storage unit should I get for a 2 bedroom house?

A 10'x10' (100 sq. ft.) storage unit is great for a 2 bedroom house. It's ideal for items from two bedrooms (mattresses sets, dressers, nightstands) and an entire family room (sofa, chairs, coffee table, book shelves).

How tall is a storage unit?

A typical storage unit has an 8 foot ceiling height, but storage lockers are around 5' tall or less. Vehicle storage units have higher ceilings to accommodate RVs and boats.

How big of a storage unit do I need for 3 bedroom house?

A 10'x20' (200 sq. ft.) storage unit is perfect for a 3-4 bedroom house. It'll fit items like couches, multiple mattress sets, a dining room set, workout equipment, a refrigerator and washer and dryer.