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5 Things to Consider Before Building a Storage Facility

August 9, 2018

5 Things to Consider Before Building a Storage Facility
4 min

Developing a self storage facility can be an exciting new business adventure to take on, even if you have built multiple facilities in the past.

Each new project has its own set of hoops and ladders to jump through and conquer, and we are here to guide you through this process.

Some may think that the self storage industry is a saturated business but according to Bloomberg, “The U.S. self storage industry generated more than $32.7 billion in revenues in 2016, almost three times Hollywood’s 2016 box offices gross.”

There is more than enough money to be made in this highly profitable business of self storage, and it looks to continue to grow at a fast rate.

Below we have provided five expert items to consider before building your new self storage facility.

Get the most out of your self storage investment or learn how to get started  today with our Free Self Storage Investing Playbook

A One Of a Kind Website

The status quo of self storage is a basic marketing website that lacks functionality.

Twenty years ago you did not buy a plane ticket online, today I couldn’t imagine not purchasing it online.

Think of the last time you flew, did you buy your ticket online?

That is how consumers use the internet in 2018.

People expect to be able to purchase through a companies website and most industries accommodate this.

Self storage exists to help people transition into new phases of their lives, so their customers make up a broad demographic of varying means and circumstances.

It is imperative to have a user-friendly website where customers can easily rent units and pay their bill online.

Make sure that your site is mobile responsive, that way people can rent a unit from their phone.

If a potential customer is searching for self storage near your facility and you do not have a website, your facility will never be found!

Most people call four facilities before renting a unit. Self storage is a needs-based industry.

People don’t search for a storage unit unless they are looking to purchase one. Make sure your website can convert your web traffic into paying tenants!

Early one morning we received a phone call from the owner of Morristown Self Storage, he was excited because he just rented a unit to someone moving from Michigan!

StoragePug launched their new website on February 1st, 2018. Today is August 9th, 2018, which is six month and nine days after the launch.

Morristown Self Storage has rented 27 units on their website!

They have already rented four units in the first nine days of August.

It is imperative for your self storage website to have a modern rental process!

Location, Location, Location

Just with any real estate transaction, the location of the property is always crucial.

Think about when you were looking for a place to live, you don’t want to live next to some noisy bar; you want a location where you can feel at peace and enjoy being at every day.

When scouting for land to build your upcoming self storage facility, you need to be looking for high traffic areas, such as; busy streets, along freeways, near college campuses and apartment complexes.

One significant aspect of self storage is that it can appeal to any demographic, we all have too much and sometime or another we could always use a self storage unit.

It is crucial to research the area you are interested in building at to check out the competitors – see how they are pricing their units and see how their occupancy rate changes.

The ideal occupancy range to achieve the highest profits is around 90%.

What you need is a location that is within your budget, zoned properly, and has plenty of visible traffic to attract customers.

Price To Build a Successful Self Storage Facility

The cost to build a self storage facility can significantly range per region, but according to Makosteel, “The cost of single story self storage buildings typically runs at least $12.00 – $17.00 per square feet. Multi-story self storage buildings typically run $14.00 – $19.00 per square feet.”

Keep in mind, when creating the layout for the size of the facility to make sure it meets the scale of the local market demand.

It would not be great to build out a 90,000 square feet self storage facility in a town that has less than 30,000 people within a 5-mile radius.

A complete analysis of the market must be done so you know that you may need more climate controlled units over office space or any other features that could affect the design layout.

Solar Power = $

Since you can design and build your self storage facility from the ground up, why not add features that many of your competitors don’t currently have and one huge feature is solar power.

More and more storage operators are trying to add more green energy sources at their properties.

By adding solar power you are lowering the cost of your electricity, you will attract more green-friendly customers, and some states offer tax credits for being more energy efficient.

It’s a Booming Market Out There

We are currently in the perfect market where the economy is once again booming, which means people are purchasing homes and will need a place to store their precious belongings.

In times of economic growth, consumers are more likely to buy more than they need and then ultimately have to rent a self storage unit.

Along with the market increasing the US population is also seeing an enormous surge too – “the population of the United States has grown from 249.62 million in 1990 to 321.19 million in 2013.

What’s more: urban areas accounted for 79.0% of the U.S. population in 2000.

In 2012, that number rose to 80.7%, and the increase is expected to continue.”

With statistical facts about the growth of the population, self storage is a great option.

To read more about my favorite StoragePug features, take a look at:

StoragePug is a modern marketing company for self storage. We create intelligent marketing websites that allow you to rent units & take payments through your facility’s website.