Your basement is one of the largest rooms in your home and is also relatively far away from the general living space of your family. This makes basements the ideal choice for storing items that would otherwise take up a lot of space and would not see a whole lot of usage. However, since your basement is below ground, items that are put into storage are at a higher risk of becoming damaged due to flooding, water damage, and moisture. Fortunately, there are a couple of steps that you can take to ensure that your items in storage are protected against potential water damage and can be easily rescued if your basement does experience water exposure in the future.

Proper Storage Containers

The simplest thing that you can do to ensure that your stored materials are kept safe from high levels of moisture and flood damage is making sure that they are stored in plastic containers. While plastic totes can be more expensive than cardboard boxes or paper bags, they offer a waterproof surface that will pay off if you ever experience water damage in the future. Plastic boxes also have the added benefit of helping to keep pests like moths away from fabrics and other soft items that can be easily damaged.

Pallets and Raising

Furthermore, for large pieces of furniture or other items that can't be easily be put into a plastic container should be stored on wooden pallets or another type of surface that actually raises them off of the ground. This will help ensure that mild amounts of water damage that can result from water seeping up from the floor or even minor flooding will not actually damage your furniture and will simply soak the pallet, which can be thrown out at little cost.


If you live in an area that is particularly humid throughout the year, you may want to invest in a portable dehumidifier – or even a series of them – to reduce the moisture levels within your basement. This is doubly true if you are storing items like fabrics, furniture, or books which may be susceptible to mold growth if exposed to moderate amounts of humidity over a long enough period of time. While there is a slight electrical cost associated with consistently running a dehumidifier, this cost is more than offset by the damage that mold growth and excessive moisture can cause.