Long Term Car Storage

Best Car Storage For Travel

I have been living overseas for the past 10 years but recently decided that I wanted to spend more time with my family back in the US.

At first I was going to spend three months in the US and use Toro for Long Term Car Rental.

But the cheapest deal I could find was about $900.00/month on Toro and it was even more expensive with the legacy car rental companies like Hertz and Enterprise.

So I hopped onto Autotrader and found a decent car for under $5,000 USD.

After spending Thanksgiving with my family and experiencing an early snow fall in late November, I was ready to head back to my ExpatFIRE life in Asia.

But I didn’t know where to store my car when traveling…

After searching for a couple hours, I found a garage where I could store my car for about $100.00/month on Neighbor.com

Is Neighbor.com Legit?

Neighbor is like Airbnb for garages.  Hosts list their garage space, driveway or extra space on their property to people looking to store their car or belongings.

You can browse prospective spaces and see Host’s Reviews just like Airbnb.  I chose an indoor garage parking space that is about 10 minutes from the airport.  Since I am from the Mid-west and winter was fast approaching, I chose an indoor space but I might opt for outdoor storage next time since it is generally cheaper.

My Experience Storing my Car with Neighbor was extremely easy.  I contacted the host on the day of my arrival, set up a drop off time, dropped of my car and was off to the airport about 30 minutes later.

*Pro Tip*

If you’re going to use Neighbor’s Insurance, then make sure that you take pictures of your car or belongings and send them to their support team.

Also, make sure that your host has a few reviews and don’t be afraid to ask them some questions about the space.  You want to make sure that they are responsive and friendly before you decide to store your stuff with them.

Neighbor Long Term Car Storage

Do You Need Insurance When Storing Your Car?

While it’s recommended to have insurance while storing your car, you don’t necessarily need traditional car insurance.

When I bought my car, I insured it with Progressive for less than $60.00/month.  With insurance this low, I was tempted to just keep it while my car was stored away.  But since my vehicle was going to be driven, it didn’t really make sense to have full coverage and I decided to shop around.

Neighbor offers insurance for your vehicle and they have a couple of different plans depending on how much coverage you need.  I chose the Minimum Plan which covers up to $5,000 and only costs $16.99/month which is about $43.00 a month cheaper than my Progressive Insurance Plan.

They also have a mid-range and premium plan if your car costs more than that and will cover up to $50,000 USD for $65.99/month.

Neighbor Storage Insurance

Canceling Car Insurance

You can call your car insurance company and they should be able to cancel your coverage over the phone and then issue a refund.  If they won’t do this, then consider switching to Progressive because they helped me cancel my plan in about 5 minutes. 

Restarting Car Insurance

During my 10 years abroad, I have come back to the US a few times and always been able to easily enroll in car insurance.  These companies want your business and have never hassled me about not having “continuous insurance”.

Progressive Insurance for Expats

Long Term Car Storage

Whether you’re storing your classic Mustang for the winter months or just need a place to keep your car while you’re traveling, having peace of mind while your car is in storage is worth taking the right steps to make sure your car is safe and in working condition when you’re ready to use it again.

The process of properly storing a car requires careful consideration to ensure the vehicle remains in optimal condition.

Key factors include selecting an appropriate storage facility, preparing the vehicle through thorough cleaning and maintenance, and implementing essential measures such as fuel stabilization and tire care.

Additionally, covering the car with a breathable, weather-resistant material safeguards it from dust, moisture, and potential damage. Long-term car storage not only preserves the vehicle’s mechanical integrity but also ensures a stress-free return to the road when the time comes, highlighting the importance of a well-executed storage plan.

Long Term Vehicle Storage

Long Term Car Storage Tips

Choose the Right Storage Location:

Select a clean, dry, and preferably climate-controlled storage facility to protect the car from the elements.

Thoroughly Clean Your Car:

Wash and wax the car to remove dirt and contaminants that could damage the paint during storage. Clean the interior as well to prevent odors and the development of mold.

Perform Regular Maintenance:

Change the oil and filter, top up all fluids, and ensure that the tires are properly inflated. A well-maintained car is less likely to experience issues during storage.

Fuel Stabilization:

Add a fuel stabilizer to the gas tank to prevent fuel degradation and varnish buildup. Run the engine for a few minutes after adding the stabilizer to ensure it circulates through the fuel system.

Battery Maintenance:

Either disconnect the battery or use a trickle charger to maintain its charge. A fully charged battery is less likely to deteriorate during storage.

Tire Care:

Inflate tires to the recommended pressure to prevent flat spots. Consider placing the car on jack stands to reduce the strain on the tires.

Protect Against Rodents:

Use rodent deterrents such as mothballs or traps in and around the storage area to discourage rodents from nesting in the car.

Cover the Car:

Use a breathable car cover to protect against dust and scratches. Ensure the cover allows for ventilation to prevent moisture buildup.

Consider Suspension:

If storing for an extremely long period, consider elevating the car on jack stands to relieve pressure on the suspension components.

Documentation and Insurance:

Keep all relevant documentation in a safe place and ensure that your insurance coverage is up to date. Some insurers offer special storage policies that may reduce costs during this period.


By following these tips, car owners can significantly increase the chances of their vehicle remaining in top condition during long-term storage and enjoy a trouble-free return to the road when the time comes.