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7 Short-term Fixes for Companies Struggling With Shrinking Storage Options

 Updated on: September 20th, 2022

Two warehouse workers looking at a clipboard for storing the boxes behind them.
Two warehouse workers looking at a clipboard for storing the boxes behind them.

Businesses constantly search for ways to cut costs, increase profits, and boost efficiency. This is especially true when it comes to inventory management. One of the biggest issues businesses face is finding enough storage space to accommodate their needs as they grow. Uncertain or inadequate storage options can directly affect your bottom line, as your inventory control is immediately compromised. Stock levels become inaccurate, which can lead to over-and-understocking — both can wreak havoc on your budget.

What happens when you need more space for your inventory? What can you do if you're faced with a seasonal spike in demand? The good news is that many short-term solutions can help you accommodate your inventory until you find more permanent accommodations.

Find Extra Space in Your Office

First and foremost, do your best to find extra storage spaces in your workplace. Even if your office seems full to the brim, there are likely some areas that you can better utilize if you’re willing to get creative. Consider the following:

  • Speak to your lessor: Often, you may find that your landlord has additional space in the same building or a property nearby. This option may interest those who like the location of their business and are reluctant to move.
  • Rent space from a local facility: This is an excellent idea for those who only need additional storage temporarily or seasonally.
  • Expand your office space: Rent an additional office space or purchase a new building if your business is growing and you see no signs of it stopping.

Additionally, using extra space sometimes means exploring other unique options, including vertical storage and ceiling space. After all, the space is there; you just have to figure out how best to use it.

Utilize Vertical Storage Options

Vertical storage is one of the best ways to maximize your office's space usage. This can take a variety of forms, including installing shelves on your walls, placing items on top of cabinets and other available surfaces, or using stackable storage solutions.

Be sure to use the right solutions and equipment to set up and use vertical storage in your workplace. For example, if you’re storing things in a warehouse, a forklift work platform is much safer than a ladder when you need to move items around. Of course, if you’re moving items from a vertical storage space to a vehicle, you’ll need a forklift ramp to transport items on a forklift safely. Make sure your shelving is stable so you can use these tools safely and ensure they can effectively handle the weight of your inventory.

However, you may not need these tools if you work in a small office space or need to store documents and files, rather than your business’s products. This is where other storage solutions, such as tall file cabinets or stackable boxes, can come in handy. They’re generally affordable, easy to find, and can be easily done away with once you no longer need them.

Utilize Ceiling Space

If you want to take vertical storage a step further, try using your ceiling. Hanging racks, platforms, and hooks all allow you to take advantage of a significant amount of space that you’re likely not using for any other purpose.

If you're looking to utilize ceiling space, ensure that the area is well-lit. Not only will it help you see what you're doing, but it’ll also make it safer to get to the items stored up there.

Additionally, make sure anything hanging overhead is as secure as possible. Just as with vertical storage, you need to prioritize safety when using your ceiling space. If you aren’t thorough and careful, your items could potentially fall on and harm anyone walking through your workspace.


Sometimes, you may be able to create more space for your business by reorganizing. For example, if your company has a lot of paper records and they're taking up a lot of space, you might be able to store them digitally instead. This will also save you money on storage space and make it easier for employees to access the files they need.

If you have too much furniture in an office setting, this could be another reason why space is limited. Consider how much furniture is needed for each employee and the type of work they do. You may reduce the furniture each employee needs so that everyone has enough room to work comfortably without feeling cramped.

If you're running out of space for your business, you may be able to create more by reorganizing. Here are some tips:

  • Make a list of what you want to keep and what you want to get rid of.
  • Clean your office first so it's easier to see what needs to be stored and what can be discarded.
  • Sort the items into categories: furniture, tools, and supplies. This will help you develop a plan for where each category goes.
  • Donate or sell items you don’t need.

If reorganizing doesn’t quite cut it, you can consider sharing a space with someone. This is a great way to reduce costs if your inventory storage needs are minimal.

Share a Space

It may be the case that another business is willing to share its unused office space with you for storage. This can be a cost-effective way to get the additional space you need without having to sign a long-term lease.

The first step is finding another company that might be interested in sharing space with you and negotiating the terms of that agreement. You'll need to consider pricing and location, how much room each of you will have, and what kind of equipment needs to be relocated.

If you’re considering this option, it’s important to know what types of equipment will be stored in the facility. Here are some options to consider for moving equipment:

Using the right equipment to load inventory on and off a ramp protects employees and products. Make sure you use the right tools.

Downsize and Minimize

When you're thinking about downsizing, there are a lot of different factors to consider. Here are some tips for approaching downsizing the right way and ensuring you don't end up in a worse spot than when you started.

Take a look at your current space. Are there any non-essential items that can be removed? For example, if you have an extra shelf or two lying around, consider removing them to free up space for something that might be more valuable to your business. In addition, if any pieces of furniture aren't being used but could be repurposed for another part of your office, consider moving them around so they’re more useful.

Think about what needs to stay where it is. If there’s a specific piece of furniture that is needed for an employee or team member who primarily works remotely, make sure it stays in place so they have access to everything they need when they come into the office.

Rent Out Equipment

If you have extra tools, equipment, or other items you don’t need, consider renting them out. This can help save space in your workplace, help you reduce storage expenses, and serve as an opportunity to earn extra income.

Be deliberate about the items you rent out. It’s best to select equipment that you don’t use often — and that you won’t miss if it’s damaged or never returned. You should also focus on equipment that is in high demand, but that would still be preferable for people to rent rather than purchase, such as tables and chairs that can be used for parties or events.