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  • INFOGRAPHIC: Self-Storage Explodes As Hidden Giant Of Real Estate
    By Sarah Little on June 14, 2012 | 239 Comments239 Comments  Comments

    The Surprisingly Interesting Facts About Self Storage

    AUSTIN, TX – June 14, 2012 – SpareFoot has released an infographic presenting surprising statistics about the self-storage industry. Having doubled its footprint within 5 years, the niche self-storage segment is the “hidden giant” of the real estate industry.

    The increase in self-storage real estate demonstrates the rapid increase in consumer demand, particularly in the United States, which makes up nearly 86% of the global self-storage market.

    The infographic also highlights how self-storage is a segmented industry. The data supporting this argument is jarring: As of 2011, 90% of all self-storage companies were owned by small business entrepreneurs. Less than 9% are owned by the four largest publicly traded REITs.

    About SpareFoot
    SpareFoot provides web marketing solutions for storage facility owners and operators; the AdNetwork tool helps self-storage businesses modernize their marketing and win new tenants online. SpareFoot AdNetwork listings get more traffic than any comparable directory, featuring software integration and ROI-proving analytics for storage facilities. This fun tech startup is headquartered in Austin, TX. Visit SpareFoot.com to learn more.

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  • What is in a Name?
    By Joel on April 23, 2012 | 291 Comments291 Comments  Comments

    Do you like your name? What is in a name? Do you as a self storage company put a lot of stock in making sure you have the right name for your company? Would you change your name in order to be more competitive? It is sure that self storage companies go through some sort of thinking process to try to figure out if the name of their self storage company is good and will attract customers. Most companies try to think of something clever that will stay in the minds of customers.

     

    I don’t believe that I have heard anyone say they decided to store with a company because of their name, but I have also heard of customers turning away from a company because of their name. So a name is important in one sense but in the long term you still have to have a good company to back up your name. Customers will associate your name with the quality of service they got from you. So in short, what is in a name, the ability for you to gain the respect of those needing storage.

     

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  • Take Pride in Your Job
    By Joel on March 11, 2012 | 629 Comments629 Comments  Comments

    We all should hold ourselves accountable for our actions and need to ensure that we are doing the best job we can do. That is not always the case though. We like to blame others sometimes for our short comings and also for our faults. It is easier to blame someone else than it is to accept responsibility. When someone tells you to take some pride in your job what do you immediately think? Are you taken off guard? Do you feel you have to be defensive? What goes through your mind? Hopefully the person that tells you that, if you hear it at all is the person that your report to.

     

    What does that mean, take pride in your job or work? That means just as it is stated to take pride in your work. When you come to work you should be focused on doing your best job that you can do. When you are in the office you should always put your best foot forward. Don’t be lazy and take advantage of every good situation you can while you are there. Taking pride in your job is not just coming in there and doing enough to make it through the day. If you just come in and do that, then your day will be long and boring. Make something out of your day.

     

    If you are not sure how to take pride in your job, think of something that you love to do and that makes you happy. Why do you like that thing so much? What would do you if you could always do that instead of anything else? You would probably be very happy and you will do your best with that. What would happen if you applied the same thoughts and happiness that you do for that to your job? I believe you will find a whole new world and new thought process.

     

    Not everyone loves their jobs completely, that is an extreme understatement. What get’s people through is that they know what this job means to them. They know that if they do a great job with it they could possibly move up or in some professions help out other people who are in need of their help. It really depends. Just find something that you can depend on that can drive you to do a great job. It does not have to be something big. In fact it could be something like the idea that you can come into work early and get off early before the day really starts. You could choose something like you and your boss get along great and they are making working there bearable. Whatever it is just hold on to that and use that to catapult you into wanting to do all your job duties to the best of your ability.

     

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  • Storage Experts
    By Joel on March 9, 2012 | 623 Comments623 Comments  Comments

    Ok. I am going to say it right here and now. Customers do not always know what they are talking about when they are looking for self storage. Ok the truth is out. I am making light of this topic, but the truth is that self storage customers seem to call with some outrageous, preconceived idea that they know more about storage than any storage agent or property manager. That is just like telling me that I do not know more than a rocket scientist. Ok, well that is a bad comparison, but you know what I mean. There are millions of different professions out there and the person that is actually doing the work will be the one who knows the most about it.

     

    It is just silly to think that if you have never rented storage before that you could walk into a self storage facility and tell the manager what you want. That manager will do their best not to laugh in your face and to take over the conversation. They have had many people walk into their office and let them know what the deal is. There are actually customers who get mad when the manager does not give them the answer they want to hear. I am sorry, you are naïve to think that you can get a one hundred square foot unit in New York for only fifty dollars. Unfortunately people will freak out when hear they are not going to find what they are looking for, but the manager is prepared. They just have to make sure they do not laugh at the customer. That will make the customer mad.

     

    Self storage customers are a different breed of shoppers. The reality of it is that they believe that they can assign a value to an empty space, they are always way off of their mark. Now if a customer has done their due diligence and done some shopping around then they will find that maybe their idea of storage prices are not where they thought they should be. Sometimes it is not just the price the self storage customer has not thought about when they are calling. They sometimes want the self storage managers to be mind readers. They want the managers to figure out what the customer is storing then recommend the right size for them. This is magic act that I love to see.

     

    Customers call looking for self storage and they are not sure what they are storing at this point. They just do not think about the idea that they just do not understand that the price is completely reliant on the space you choose. The space you choose is the is dependant on the amount of things you are storing. So as you see, if you do not know what you are storing then you can’t be given an accurate price. This is where it gets tricky. When a customer hears that, they just want to know all the prices and then choose which one they will store in later. Well that is not how it works. Self storage managers do not just want to give out a bunch of prices. They want to give a price and then have the customer rent. Customers do not always realize this. They feel they are entitled to the price and the manager should honor this.

     

    To wrap this up, the people that are working in storage are the storage experts. Customer should stop arguing with them and let them be of service. The manager wants to help these customers if they are allowed to do so. There are many times in which the manager and the customer will not agree on something. Most managers will do their best job to assist a customer with any situation they are involved in. As a customer, whatever you do for a living, you will be the expert in that. No matter how much research you do, there will always be the person at the store, that is more of an expert than you are.

     

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  • You Have A Choice
    By Joel on February 24, 2012 | 16 Comments16 Comments  Comments

    Many would say that in life you do not have a choice on many things that you encounter. They will say that life will deal you whatever hand it chooses for you and you just have to deal with it. What a great existence and thought process. On the other side many people who feel this way still role with punches and try to feel that they are the ones that are making the correct choices for them and the people in their lives. If you tell the majority of people that they do not have a choice in a particular matter, they might not be happy at all and would tend to pull out of that situation. We all, no matter what we say, like to be in control.

     
    When you are looking for a self storage unit, you should be the one who is making the decisions. You are the one that is saying that you want or do not want a self storage space. No one can talk you into renting a space month to month. All decisions you have to agree with. The manager on site is just there to help aid you to make decisions but they will not make the decision for you. So when it comes to storage versus life, you are in the driver’s seat.

     
    Some times when it comes to self storage, there are a lot of decisions to make. The great thing about self storage is that you have more than a handful of not so complicated decisions. When a manger is listening to your situation and they are offering you their help, they might give you alternate choices. They will use alternative choices in order to help you to narrow down things to make your decision easier, but they are not the one making the ultimate decision. Alternate choices could be as simple as do you want to come down today or tomorrow. Would you like a climate controlled space or a standard space? So they are asking you these questions to help get you to the point where you can make a decision that is beneficial to your situation.

     
    There are some people that feel that when a manager gives them an alternate choice, it is their way of controlling the sale. This is true and not true at the same time. The managers at the self storage facilities know how to interact with customers so they are trying to lead you to a conclusion. Again they are there to aid you to make a decision. The alternate choice questions are there to give you choices to help you along the process. So don’t think that the property manger is not there to help, they are there to help you make choices. Never feel that the end all decision is in the hands of the manager. What you decide to do with your self storage situation is yours.

     

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  • Be Prepared With Self Storage
    By Joel on December 30, 2011 | 9 Comments9 Comments  Comments

    If you think that you may need to get a storage space sometime in the near future, you may just want to make sure that you are prepared. Since you know a storage space will be in your near future, you should do some research now and do some leg work. Now of course managers will not be happy that you do not need storage right now, but they still will try to take care of you. They do not want to not give you service now in hopes that you will come to them in the future when you need storage. Make sure when you are calling around or checking about storage that you do not just go with the facility with the cheapest prices. There are other things to consider. With just a few tips, you should be able to find a good space at a good price.

     
    You should try to find a location that is close to you. No one really wants to drive way out of their way for their storage belongings. So what more people end up doing is on the drive to their favorite destinations see if there is a self storage location on the way. This way, the customer knows that they could have their belongings be conveniently on their normal, daily path. If you end up choosing a self storage facility that is way out of your way, you could spend unnecessary time driving. So you have to decide if the price you are getting on storage worth the drive you have to make to get there?

     
    Also, make sure that the site is secure. You are paying someone to treat your belongings like it is their own. You do not want to know that your belongings have the possibility of being stolen or damaged. A facility that has a gate that is surrounding the facility is a start. A facility that has door alarms on your unit that will sound if someone besides you tries to open the door is better. A facility that has surveillance cameras that keep an eye on your belongings when you can’t is even better. There are more bells and whistles that make a facility secure, so make sure you check out what they have to offer.  Security should be your most important thing to look for.

     
    Access hours should fit your schedule, as well. Access hours are going to be different than office hours for the most part. The office is going to typically be open a shorter time than you have access to your storage facility. If you need to talk to the property manager about something or need something in the office then you need to see when the office is open. If you just need something out of your unit, then the access hours is what you need to look into. Some facilities offer 24 hour access so you can access your belongings when you need to. Depending on the company they could give you some pretty lengthy gate hours to access your belongings. Some facilities consider it a security option in where they only allow you access when the office is open. This way they can see everyone that comes into the facility. Whatever the access hours, make sure that it fits what you need.

     

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  • Requirements For Car Storage
    By Joel on December 28, 2011 | 114 Comments114 Comments  Comments

    It is about that time of the year in which people think about storing their cars. The snow will be hitting the ground soon and no one wants to have their cars outside potentially getting damaged from the snow. They also might not want to deal with the idea of shoveling their car out of the snow drifts they could encounter. Whatever their reason, more people look to store their cars that they would normally store on the street in storage. You will have some options in your local area on where you want to store your car and what type of car storage will be available.

     
    If you are looking to store a car, there are a few requirements that you will have to fulfill. The vehicle will need to be in running condition in order for you to store. In addition, you will have to have the car titled and registered in your name. Finally, the car will need to have insurance on it. These rules are going to be pretty much universal. The reason for this is because these are laws in some areas and not just rules. Not everyone will be happy with hearing that they have to meet some requirements,  but a self storage facility is not a junk yard. They know that if they didn’t have these rules in place a person could just drop off their car and leave it there. It’s sometimes a whole lot cheaper than getting it towed.

     
    Whatever your reason for car storage, make sure that you check with your local facility on the rules and regulations. Some facilities are very lenient when it comes to car storage where other companies will put their foot down. Just know that you have every right not to accept the self storage company’s offer to store you car if the requirements do not fit your situation. You can always check out the facility down the street or across town to see what they have to offer.

     

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  • Self Storage Coupons
    By Joel on December 26, 2011 | 350 Comments350 Comments  Comments

    Self storage facilities will do what they can in order to beat out their competition. With that said they will shop their completion by making phone calls, visiting their website and also by simply walking into their facilities. For the confident storage manager this is not a big deal as they know that they have and they know that they will still get the customer they are looking for. They will gain the amount of new renters they had set as their goal. So what do some facilities do in order to grab the attention of potential renters? They give those discounts and specials off of their monthly storage. They can and have sent coupons on a flyer out to the homes of the people in the area.

    If you receive a flyer or coupon in the mail or on line for a self storage unit you might want to hold on to it if you need storage later.  You might not need it now, but you never know when it will come time for you to need self storage. We sometimes do not think ahead so we decide to act spur of the moment. We look through our coupon books and find some things that would love to get discounts on the products that we need, then discard them. We do plan on using those discounts but we are not organized enough to keep then on or near our person so we can use them.

     

    When you are offered a self storage coupon or discount, you should hold on to that and put it away for safe keeping. Your job could relocate you, you could have a death in the family and have to move, there are so many reasons to need self storage. In a time of crisis you do not want to have to worry about how you are going to pay for your self storage unit. That’s why it’s good to have your self storage coupon handy for you to use. It could save you a couple of dollars or it could save you a couple of months of rent. Find a safe place for your self storage coupon.

     

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  • Being Nice to Self Storage Managers
    By Joel on December 24, 2011 | 20 Comments20 Comments  Comments

    In any industry it is never nice to get mad or upset at people for no reason. We all have an emotional side, but we do not have to let the angry or frustrated part of our being override out better judgment. We are sometimes upset at something that happened to us earlier in the day and we decide to take it out on the person we are now talking to. It is not that person’s fault we are upset so why are we taking it out on them? Sometimes our rude and irrational behavior can backfire against us.
    When you are calling to get storage info, it would probably benefit you greatly to be nice and courteous over the phone. This will allow you to possible get a little better deal or they may hold a space a little bit longer for you than they normally allow. If the manager likes you, they will probably give you the most conveniently located space out of what is left available. They will be less likely to go out of their way to help you out if they do not like you. In most cases it just pays off to be nice to the person you are speaking to. We all get a little put off when someone decides to rip into us.
    We should all follow the universal thought that we should treat others the way we want to be treated. If you don’t want to be treated like the scum on the bottom of your shoe, then stop treating other people like that. It is that simple, but yet that complicated. Many things could fall right in your lap if you can keep your frustrations to yourself. You will be surprised at the people you meet, the willingness of people and the attitude of people if you simply treat them with respect and a smiling face.

     

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  • What Size Do You Need
    By Joel on November 21, 2011 | 26 Comments26 Comments  Comments

    What size storage unit do you need?  This question gets asked everyday.  There are people that will just call into a self storage facility or call center that ask what is the price on a self storage unit. Well this question is very hard to answer especially when the self storage manager you are talking to has a list of spaces in front of them with many different prices. They ware going to have to ask you to narrow it down for you.  Now you just have to work with that person in order to find the right size for you.

     
    There are a few things that go into the size you might not have thought about.  First you need to determine what you are putting into the space.  If you only have boxes, you can go with a smaller unit.  Also, do you need to get in and out of the unit on a regular basis?  If you will need to go through boxes, you want to make sure to get a unit large enough to accommodate.  There is nothing wrong with getting a larger space than you need if you need to rifle through boxes and have some room. Just check with your self storage manager to see what the next size up will cost you.

     
    Finally, consider how long you need it.  If you may need it long term, you might also go bigger in case you want to add things later. Sometimes if you know you will need the space for a long time, you can get a long term deal from the property manager. Since most storage facilities will have a lease that goes month to month, you might be able to find a space that you need at a price that can make you smile. The first step is to tell the manager what you are storing and have them recommend a size that can work for you.

     

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