What Happens To A Rented Storage Unit When A Loved One Passes Away?

When someone in your family passes away, there are always a lot of details and things to sort out. While you may be familiar with all of the standard stuff, you may not have ever thought about what happens if they have a storage unit rental when they pass away. Dealing with a storage unit that's been rented by a deceased loved one takes some careful preparation. Here's what you need to know about dealing with this type of situation.

What If You Don't Know About The Storage Unit?

If you were never informed of the storage unit's existence, there are a few ways that you might find out that your loved one rented it. You may find the rental contract or a key in their belongings as you start to sort them out. Or, you may receive a notice in the mail to their old address when a payment is missed. If they have automatic payments that continue to draft out of their account, you may not find out for quite some time.

What Happens If The Unit Is Behind On Payments?

You won't be able to access the possessions in the storage unit until the balance on the account is made current. Whether you pay the balance from your own funds or from your loved one's estate, the payments must be made in order for the unit to not go to auction.

How Do You Access The Unit?

In many cases, when a storage rental facility finds out that a renter has passed away, the management places an overlock on the storage unit in question. That lock is installed to prevent unauthorized access to the unit. Legally, the only person that the storage unit company can allow in the unit is the person listed on the rental contract.

Given that fact, how do you gain access to a storage unit that a loved one left behind when they passed away? You'll have to show that you have the legal right to access the individual's property. That means visiting the rental office with the death certificate for the person in question as well as the paperwork that identifies you as the executor of the estate. You could also show a court order that you've obtained if you don't have executor paperwork. Either way, you simply need to prove to the rental company that you are responsible for the individual's belongings.

For more information, contact a storage facility like Stadium Storage.