Can You Really Live in a Storage Unit? Legal and Practical Considerations


Making a storage unit your home might seem like an inventive solution to housing issues. For individuals grappling with the harsh reality of homelessness, the idea of a storage unit might even seem ideal. 

However, can you actually live in a storage unit? And more importantly, is living in a storage unit safe?

Legal Considerations and Consequences

The answer to whether it is legal to live in a storage unit in the UK is no. Storage facilities are not zoned for residential habitation and lack the basic amenities needed for daily living. Most rental agreements prohibit tenants from sleeping in units overnight or using them as residences.

What are the Consequences?

If you are discovered living in a storage unit, you may face eviction and legal consequences, including civil lawsuits, fines, and criminal charges like trespassing. Local councils may even step in if they receive complaints about someone living onsite. 

The exact consequences depend on the storage company’s response and local regulations. But at minimum, you will likely receive an eviction notice requiring you to vacate the illegally occupied unit.

Practical Considerations and Dangers

Aside from the legal implications, there are numerous hidden dangers of living in storage facilities, including:

  • Extreme temperatures: Most units lack climate control and insulation, which can lead to dangerous temperature fluctuations. Such conditions can result in serious health issues like hypothermia or heatstroke.
  • Security concerns: Storage facilities can be targets for theft and break-ins if they lack robust security. 
  • Sanitation problems: The lack of water, toilets, and waste management facilities can lead to unsanitary conditions that breed disease and infection.

From a practical standpoint, these risk factors make storage units entirely unsuitable for living spaces.

Safer Alternatives to Living in Storage Units 

For those encountering housing difficulties, seeking housing assistance through established channels is crucial rather than resorting to risky and illegal options like residing in storage units. 

These are more viable and safer options than living in unconventional spaces like storage units, such as:

  • Homeless shelters offer temporary refuge and often provide additional support services.
  • Housing charities in the UK, such as Shelter and Crisis, can assist with emergency housing and guide you towards social housing opportunities.
  • Local authorities are legally obligated to assist those facing homelessness, providing assessments and resources based on eligibility.
  • Benefits support from programmes like Universal Credit or Housing Benefit can aid in securing alternative accommodations.

If you are weighing living in a homeless shelter vs. storage unit, keep in mind that the avenues mentioned are not only lawful but also provide a safer and more sustainable living situation.

The Incredible Bulk Difference: Safe Storage, Not Living Spaces

Incredible Bulk provides secure and affordable storage space to help you safely store your extra belongings. Our personal storage and business storage solutions include various sizes to accommodate as much or as little as you need. 

With state-of-the-art security features like CCTV monitoring and ample lighting, you can trust that your possessions are protected. Plus, our flexible lease terms allow you to rent storage for as long as needed.
Our friendly team will happily assist you with choosing the optimal storage solution for your individual requirements. Reach out to us at 01274 975678, or use our convenient Quick Quote tool, and we’ll soon be in touch.

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