For soldiers and civilians alike, Washington DC is synonymous with military. Not only does every branch have a massive presence, but historical and cultural sites throughout the city serve as a constant reminder (and tourist attraction) to those wanting to honor or simply learn about the military. If you’ve been relocated to DC for military reasons, storage is an important tool that can help ease the transition and provide you with some much needed extra space. Because of the huge government operation that in fact is Washington DC, it’s nearly impossible to estimate the city’s military population on a given day but it’s safe to say that the number is higher than almost anywhere else in the country, which means lots of competition for storage. Here’s what you need to know when choosing a unit.
Consider Your Housing Situation
Most bases offer privatized housing (or barracks if you’re a lower rank). If you’re at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling
you can find housing through Bolling Family Housing
. However, while there are various options available for both small and large families, you might have to wait for your desired spot to become available. While temporary housing at the Navy Lodge
can ease the problem of finding a place to sleep in the meantime, you can’t be expected to keep all of your furniture in such a small space. Fortunately, most storage facilities offer flexible leases, so even if you’re not sure how long you’ll be waiting to move into a house, you can keep your belongings safe, secure and out of your way for as long as you need to. If you’re at Joint Base-Myer Henderson Hall
, your base itself won’t offer you housing but you can apply to live at a nearby base or go through the housing office for help finding an affordable apartment or home around DC. Affordable is the key word. In DC, a one bedroom apartment will run you at least $1,700 a month and a two bedroom home usually goes for about $620,000. Unless you’re relocating from an expensive city like San Francisco or New York City, these prices might force you into a smaller home than you’re used to living in. We don’t think you should have to put all of your stuff on Craigslist or force it into a small space. Instead, you can save money on rent by living in a smaller apartment and store your items until the day comes when you’re comfortable enough to move into a larger place. Military discounts will help out with the cost of storage, so bring your ID with you and ask your facility manager about perks. If you’re one of the 23,000 military members and civilians working at The Pentagon
, you’ll have to find housing in the city. Don’t be afraid to opt for storage outside of the city as availability is better and prices are lower. Some facilities can even be accessed by public transportation, so if you don’t have a vehicle, this is still an option for you. And if you’re only going to access your storage on a seasonal basis, the extra time spent traveling to your unit won’t be a huge hassle.
Most storage facilities don’t allow you to store firearms, but some do. If you’re looking to store weapons
, always be sure to ask your facility manager what the rules are. While some storage facilities are okay with you storing guns, you won’t be able to store ammunition. If you can’t find a storage facility that allows you to store guns, find out about storage options on either your military base or one that’s nearby. You can also typically find storage at stores that sell guns. If you can find storage for your weapon, remember that DC’s humid climate can have detrimental effects on it, so it’s important to store it in an indoor space that offers climate control
. This typically costs extra but is worth it in the long run when you factor in the preservation of your weapon. Climate control is also an important consideration if you’re storing leather furniture or other sensitive goods, especially if you’re facing deployment. You shouldn’t have to worry about items in an outdoor unit while you’re overseas. Instead, put your items somewhere that’s safe from the elements and keep them literally out of sight and out of mind. And speaking of deployment, remember that the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act
protects the contents of your storage unit from being auctioned off if you miss payments during a deployment.