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  1. #1
    blueswimsuit is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default site picked - seeking guidance on development

    My company has selected a property in Ga. for a new self-storage facility.Now,we are seeking guidance in determining the number of rental units,mix of sizes,and climate control units for the area we will be serving.Recommendations?

  2. #2
    Mel Holsinger is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Tucson, Arizona


    I would contact Mr. Jim Chiswell at Chiswell & Associates, He may be the man to help you. You can get his information by going to the ISS web site and looking under the buyers guide on page 32. His company is Chiswell & Associates.

    Jim has helped me with similar ventures and I was very pelased with his work.
    Mel Holsinger, President
    Professional Self Storage Management, LLC
    3434 E. Kleindale Ste. E
    Tucson, AZ 85716
    O: 520.320.9135
    F: 520.320.9435

  3. #3
    Steve_hajewski is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Columbus, WI

    Default Development process


    We have a pretty detailed outline of the new site development process on our web page. Take a look here: for a more info.

    Some people do this on their own, some use a consultant. Many people will do preliminary feasibility on their own, and if it looks good, still hire a consultant to verify.


  4. #4
    MisterJim444 is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Winchester, Virginia



    I appreciate Mel’s referral note, but I know it will cost me a couple of brews!

    Based on what you asked the answers are:

    • 225 units
    • Average unit size of 119.75 square feet
    • 60% climate 40% standard in first phase

    OK I am just trying to make the point that anyone can come up with estimates out of air, but it takes a great deal of homework and boots on the ground time to provide anyone an accurate assessment of a site’s potential and an evaluation of the market area that the facility will be serving and let’s not forget about the impact of the existing competition and it status.

    I wrote an article several years ago for Inside Self Storage magazine that may be of interest.

    Best of luck with the site and I hope that you are planning to attend the ISS Expo in DC in October. It is the best investment that you could make in your new business.

    Learning Never Ends, But Will Time?

  5. #5
    Stevedore's Avatar
    Stevedore is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    NE Ohio


    I would also suggest that you read this excerpt from Jim Killoran's book "Self-Storage Startup", a manual for the development of self-storage properties.

    As a site planner, I often use Jim's generic unit mix recommendations when a proper feasibility study or local market analysis has not been performed.

  6. #6
    Jeff Supnick is offline Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    New Jersey

    Default Determining Unit Mix


    Start with a detailed analysis of the competition to determine the types of rental spaces that are either in demand or subject to a glut. An examination of the competitor's pricing and incentives by unit type may tell you a great deal about how different types of spaces are in demand in the market.

    Look at a demographic report of our trade area. In analyzing the report focus on household income, business census, household size and percentage of renters.

    There is a very direct interplay between unit mix and consideration relating to your site planning. In large part the site plan will influence the unit mix and conversely, the desired unit mix will be an important factor in determining the building configurations you may want on the site. As an example we have had a number of clients who have decided to increase the amount of climate controlled space they built after it was determined that their multi-story buildings required wet system fire suppression which required a heated environment.

    I agree with Mel you might benefit from conferring with an experienced self storage consultant.

    Perhaps we can help.

    Jeff Supnick
    Supnick Real Estate

  7. #7
    rcopper is offline Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Birmingham, AL

    Default Determining Unit Mix & Rates

    Although determining unit mix and rates is far from an exact science, there are some resources you should check before determining your unit mix:

    Demographics: The income levels, density, etc will dictate somewhat what the average size units should be. Unit mixes in Higher density, urban areas tend to be smaller, larger in more rural areas. We typically model more climate in higher income areas.

    Competitors: You need to know what their vacancies are and not build too many of those sizes.

    Bob Copper
    Self Storage 101



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