What is Self Storage?

Self storage is the term applied to buildings that provide rental, on a month-to-month basis, to individuals or businesses for the storage of their personal or professional items.  The tenant  applies their own lock to their own individual storage area and is the only one (or their designee) who has single access to the storage space.  The tenant is responsible for the care, custody, and control of their own items.

Modern Self Storage

Taking a look at the state-of-the-art storage unit facilities throughout the nation, it is hard to believe that less than 50 years ago was a "Mom and Pop" operation. The lack of information on structure and operating procedures for storage facilities in the 1960's and 1970's forced owners/operators to depend on their own company intuition and expertise of area demands. Nevertheless, these very early entrepreneurs had a significant benefit, due to the fact that there was practically no competition in the marketplace!

Today's storage investor is competing in a very competitive environment. There are now over 50,000 self storage facilities in the United State, of which nearly 20 % are run by Publicly Held Real Estate Investment Trusts. Most self storage facilities now have professional onsite managers, use sophisticated software systems to receive payments and track tenant activities, and employ the use of advance security systems that include 24 hour camera surveillance and electronic keypad gate entry.


A typical self storage facility is housed on approximately 2.5 to 5 acres, with 40,000 to 100,000 square feet of rental space, with various drive-up buildings (one to 2 stories each). The storage units usually range in size from 5'x5' to 10'x30', have big roll-up doors, and come by either increasing to them or via an indoor hallway. Some storage facilities provide outside parking for watercrafts, cars, and RV’s.  Some even have climate controlled storage units. Generally, dollies and moving carts are available on premise to customers to use free of charge. Go here to see a modern storage units centers at StorageNewMarketMd.com.

Self Storage Financial Returns

The rewards of the self storage industry traditionally have been high financial returns, low up-keep, and minimal staff -typically 2 to 4 employees.  In fact, the publically held self storage REIT sector showed nearly 16% financial gains in 2012.  But, investing in the self storage business is no easy task.  Self Storage rental income is a commodity where pricing is dictated by supply and demand.  Investors need to be wary of properties were storage units are numerous and easily created. 

Self Storage Marketing

Self storage marketing has also changed significantly over the past 5 years. Gone are the days of placing an ad in the yellow pages and tenants will come.   In order to attract tenants in our electronic age, Self storage operators now have to be concerned about having a strong presence on the Internet.  The Self Storage Association recently reported that it membership states that over 50% new self storage facility business results from searches over the internet.


For the right investor, the self storage investment can be a significant win.  However, before one invests in self storage, the investor needs to be wary of excess supply of storage units and clearly understand  the competitive nature of their local market.  Particularly, the prospects of having high internet search rankings so that prospective tenants can find the facility. 


Want to Learn More about Self Storage?

Check out: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self_storage

                 Self Storage Association


 CLick on the Video below to Whatch this Video about a Modern Self Storage Facility Now.