Because of the upcoming big move to Palau, I have been in the market for a storage unit for all of my precious things. On Sunday, my hysterical sister Krishelle suggested that when contacting a storage unit company, I request a unit with certain special accommodations. The following email exchange resulted yesterday. Enjoy, and please Like us on Facebook.

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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

I am looking for a storage unit for one year but I need to know how  often you check on the spaces. I'm worried about leaving them unattended  for too long a period.

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From: Storage Salt Lake
To: Jane Driggles
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Checks on our units are done at least once a day, What size of unit are you looking for?

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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Great. What size? It sort of depends. Do any of them come with pet  doors? If so, I really don't need a unit that is very large. There  aren't that many of them and their furniture won't take up much room. If  there isn't a pet door, that's a little trickier. I would probably want  something bigger so they would have some room to move around a bit. I  would probably also need one with interior lights, if available and not  too expensive. What sizes do you have available?


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From: Storage Salt Lake
To: Jane Driggles
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Forgive me, we are a self storage facility, we do not permit "living" things in our units.

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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Wow, my apologies. I am really embarrassed. I am actually looking for  storage for furniture while I am living abroad for the next year, as  well as storage for my cats. I was hoping to find something that could  accommodate both needs but I am finding that to be a rather difficult  pursuit. If I don't include any of my active cats in this unit, I really  only need one large enough for 2 arm chairs, a water bed, and about 40  or 50 Brita filters in boxes. Do you have something that size? Also, is  your unit appropriate for stuffed felines? I can't bare the thought of  burying them when they pass so I typically have them stuffed. There are a  couple dozen of them at this time but I really don't believe they  would be any trouble. I think they appreciate some human interaction,  but being deceased, they don't necessarily need it.

Thank you for your speedy responses.

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From: Storage Salt Lake
To: Jane Driggles
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

without the living cats, and depending on the size of the arm chairs I  would recommend a 5 X 10 or 5 X 15, and on the outside a 10 X 10, you  are free to come and take a look and see if any of these meets your  needs.

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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Wonderful. I'm out of town now and will only be around for about 2 days  before moving. This is why I'm emailing rather than just stopping by. I  really appreciate your patience. It sounds like the 5 X 10 is going to  be just right. Just a couple more quick questions:

I completely understand that you are unable to accommodate active  cats, of course. I will probably have a handful of the more aggressive  cats tranquilized before I leave and the kennel I am intending to use  refuses to accept them in that state. I will likely have to store them  in the storage unit, but being tranquilized I am certain they won't  cause you any trouble. I will need someone to pop open the door to  re-tranquilize and feed them through feeding tubes about once a week.  What would your fee be for something like this? And do any of the  employees have any special animal care certification? No offense, but  I'm a little hesitant to leave them in the care of individuals who  aren't prepared to approach the task with some responsibility.

I understand that I'm asking for something that is probably a little  unordinary. You would, of course, be welcome to borrow a couple of the  Brita filters while I'm away as a special thank you. I had planned to  take all of the filters with me but shipping them is quite expensive so  I'm going to have to take what I can and send for the others as needed.

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From: Storage Salt Lake
To: Jane Driggles
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

We are unequipped to deal with living things in the units, and unable to  rent the units knowing that there is something living in them,  tranquilized or otherwise. we require that all units be secured, and as  such the cats would be deceased in short order.  No employee here has  any training or certifications to work with animals.

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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Then I'm very glad I asked about this. I can see about having someone  else stop by to take care of any animal maintenance so you don't have to  trouble yourselves with it. As I'm sure you understand, I will also  have to retract my offer for you to borrow any of the Brita filters.

One more question, how much do you charge for cleaning the arm  chairs upon my return? It would certainly be convenient to have you take  care of it there but if it's too expensive, I will probably need to  forgo the cleaning service and take them elsewhere when I get back. I  wouldn't bother having them cleaned at all, but you know how it is when  you leave stuff in storage units. You never know who has used it last.

Thank you again for your help!

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From: Storage Salt Lake
To: Jane Driggles
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Unfortunately we are also unequipped to clean upholstery, so if it is in  need of cleaning it would need to be taken somewhere else to be  cleaned.

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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

If I put the Brita filter offer back on the table, would this make a  difference? I certainly don't need a professional job on them. They are  old chairs that I found in someone's house last year.

Also, I  understand now that the reason you typical don't allow active cats in  your units is because you do not have a certified animal care  professional on staff. I have a friend who is currently playing music on  street corners for a living and would love a place to stay. He is  responsible with cats and would be willing to stay in the storage unit  with them to make sure they are fed. Since my water bed and arm chairs  will already be in there, he will have all of the accommodations needed  and will not need you to provide any others. Would this type of  situation be agreeable to you? Also, how much would this save me on  security fees, since I wouldn't need you to check on my unit?

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From: Storage Salt Lake
To: Jane Driggles
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Again, we do not permit living things to stay in the unit, that would  include the cats, and the friend, they would need to make alternate  arrangements, as they could not stay here.  No, the Brita filters   being on the table would not make any difference.

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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Well it seems that you are unwilling to make exceptions to that policy,  and I respect that. Without the live cats or Willow (the friend), I will  just have the filters, the bed, the arm chairs, the stuffed cats, and  the frozen fish. This is my first time leaving items in a storage unit  so I'm very unfamiliar with what kind of prices are fair. I planned to  charge you $25 per month for the 12 months. I'm willing to negotiate if  you think you won't use the bed. Because the frozen fish are perishable  items (particularly once they are thawed), I must insist they be  factored into the rental price, even if you don't plan on using them. Is  this price agreeable to you?

Again, the Brita filters will have to stay off limits.

Thank you.

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From: Storage Salt Lake
To: Jane Driggles
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Frozen fish?  Since this is the first time mentioning them, they will  not be allowed, as they would require additional equipment, and  electricity which our units do not have.  So they will need to be  excluded from further negotiations.
Since you might be storing  the filters, the bed, the arm chairs, the stuffed cats, and none of  these things will see any use while stored here, either by you nor us,  It is not appropriate that we should pay you for the items to be stored  here since, it will occupy one of our units that would then become  unusable for our needs.
Again we want to be clear, the fish will not be allowed here.
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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Well this is awkward. One of us has to pay for this and it seems we both  believe the financial obligation belongs to the other person. I suggest  we call it a wash and neither of us pays the other. You store the items  we agreed upon and I will not charge you for use, since you apparently  don't plan on using them. I must insist that you do pay if ever you  start to use the items. Because I will be out of the country, we will  have to do this by the honors system.

As to the fish, I am happy to offer them to you, free of charge. It  seems nobody wants to buy them and I certainly can't transport them with  me.

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From: Storage Salt Lake
To: Jane Driggles
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

We have been thinking, that if you wanted the fish we could contact our  electrician and have him install appropriate equipment to store them,  however, we would insist on splitting the cost of the work, since he  normally charges between $ 4K and $5K for work on our units I propose  that we split with $2.4K for you and we would take the remaining balance  owed for the work.  We would even provide you with the option of even  payments over the year you were out of the country, say $200 per month.   This arrangement would facilitate the need for you to provide a freezer  to store the fish in, since neither of us want the fish to thaw.

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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Good news! I'm an electrician! I will charge you $4k for the work, but  will gladly take half the cost, since this is being done for my benefit.

But one final option:

The  thing is, this whole situation could be entirely avoided if you would  simply allow the cats in the unit. The fish could thaw, the cats could  eat the fish, etc.  Nobody would have to be there to feed the cats, and  it wouldn't matter that the fish thaw. It's a win/win. After one year,  we would open the unit and see which cats survived. I would probably  charge you for any that didn't make it, but it sounds like that would  even out with the cost of the rental unit.

As always, I will need my Brita filters to be completely in tact by the end of the year.

Thank  you. I'm very pleased we were able to come to an agreement on this. I  will have the animals and things delivered on Thursday.

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From: Storage Salt Lake
To: Jane Driggles
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

I would love to allow you to do the electrical work, however, you are  not on our approved vendors list.  You are more than welcome to inspect  the work once it is done though.

Once again, we can  not permit living things to stay in the unit, so that would negate the  cats from eating the fish once they thawed, and the worry that any of  the cats did not survive as they would not be there.
I would recommend that you acquire insurance for  everything you store, as that would give you something should anything  fail to survive for the year you are away.  This would allow you to  replace any Brita filters that did not make it.
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From: Jane Driggles
To: Storage Salt Lake
Date: July 30
Subject: Need Answer Right Away!!!

Fine. But I'm keeping the water bed. I regret that things had to be so difficult.


~It Just Gets Stranger