How Big is a 40 Square Foot Self Storage Unit or Room?

By Anna Roberts

Published 5 months ago

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An open cardboard box with scissors at the side waiting to be packed

Welcome to the Fundamentals Series on the advice centre giving you all the tips and advice you need for choosing the best self storage for you. 

Understanding the Size of a 40 Square Foot Self Storage Unit

In this article, we are going to discuss some relative examples of what you can store in a 40-square-foot self storage unit or room. In a nutshell, a 40 square foot self storage unit is equivalent to approximately the size of a transit van. We've all seen them zooming up and down motorways delivering our precious cargo at the last minute. Imagine one of those vans when they pull up at your house and open the back doors to see all the parcels and then imagine your stuff inside that van! 

Maximizing Space in Your 40 Square Foot Self Storage Unit

You can get quite a fair amount of stuff in there. It's important to remember that when you rent self storage, you don't just rent the floor space. To get the most value out of it stack things on top of each other and if you have bulkier items consider standing them on end to make sure you can fit them in. You can check out our full article on the importance of maximising air space here

Self Storage Measurements: Square Feet and Metric Equivalents

When we rent self storage in the UK, we usually rent it by square feet. For example, if you had a 10-foot long by 10-foot wide room this would give you 100 square feet. In metres, for our friends more familiar with the metric system, a 40 square foot self storage unit would give you the equivalent of 4 square metres. 

Types of Self Storage Facilities

Indoor Self Storage

A 40 square foot self storage unit or room would be most commonly found in an indoor self storage facility which is kind of like a hotel for your possessions. It is a warehouse subdivided into individual rooms with communal corridors where you have your private room. These types of self storage spaces genuinely have the most variety in the different sizes of self storage units that are available and they are most commonly found in large towns and cities. 

External Self Storage

The other type of self storage is external self storage, storage or container-based self storage. This is effectively a secure yard with rows upon rows of what looks like shipping containers, or they might even be shipping containers, where you can drive up to your container and load and unload as you need. 

These shipping containers come in standard sizes of 160 square feet, however many external self storage operators do have half sizes of around 80 square feet and some even have quarter sizes of 40 square feet which are subdivided into larger containers to give a smaller size. The main advantage of external self storage sites is that they are often quite a cost-effective alternative, so you can afford to be a bit more generous with the amount of space that you need. 

Warehouse Storage

There is also warehouse storage if you are happy to store for a longer term and don't need access to your things. They have wooden crates which are typically 35 square feet and you can take as many or as few as you like. You drop your things off at the warehouse, into the wooden crate, and then the operators on site will forklift it into position. When you need to access it again just make an appointment to come back and get your things and there will be a small charge for doing it. 

Mobile Storage Services

Finally, there are mobile storage companies that do a similar thing, usually with 35-square-foot wooden crates. Mobile storage operators come to your house and they will load and unload for you which is ideal if you don't have access to a vehicle. This is also quite economical, and you can check out a range of mobile storage operators, as well as other types of self storage operators at 

Contact Information and Customer Support

If you have any questions or comments on this article, get in touch by sending an email to If you need any help or want to discuss your self storage options, get in touch with our friendly Welsh team on 08000988864 or We are always happy to offer free and impartial advice 24/7. Happy Storing :) 


A 40 Square Foot Self Storage Unit with a teddy, small sofa, fridge, stack of boxes and surf board inside turned on its side flat.

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