Page 1 of 7 1234567 LastLast
Results 1 to 8 of 51

Thread: Onsite Managers

  1. #1
    Satyra From PhoneSmart is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Columbia, MO
    Posts
    321

    Default Onsite Managers

    I was wondering if some of the managers on here could explain to me whats it like to live onsite. Any job that comes with a place to stay sounds like the perfect job, but is it scary at times with all the customers knowing where you stay? More specifically the ones that lose their belongings or become upset for some reason. Where does your peace of mind come from?

  2. #2
    Storman's Avatar
    Storman is offline Moderator
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Northern CA
    Posts
    1,606

    Default Re: Onsite Managers

    I'm the owner and the manager and have lived onsite since 1987. Never once have me or my wife felt exposed or nervous about living here. A large part of that peace of mind comes from us being the ones to rent to every single tenant over the years. We can tell pretty quickly who we want as "neighbors" and who we don't. In the case of people who have had their units auctioned, they know very well by the time we hold the auction that we have done everything we could possibly have done to allow them to keep their stuff. At some point they understand that this is a business and we have to do what we have to do.

    It's usually hard for a rational person to get angry over a situation they put themselves into and then couldn't take advantage of all the extra opportunities they were given to make it right.

    The keyword being RATIONAL PERSON. Choose your tenants wisely and you won't have any fears.
    Last edited by Storman; 11th February 2011 at 09:59 PM.
    In no way affiliated with Storman software.

  3. #3
    SMSSId's Avatar
    SMSSId is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    1,054

    Default Re: Onsite Managers

    There is an old real estate saying; location, location, location. The same holds true of storage facilities also you need to take the design, layout and security into consideration. Regardless of where you work, you still need a life.

    Storman is right, “The keyword being RATIONAL PERSON. Choose your tenants wisely and you won't have any fears.”

    The problem is some companies may not give you that luxury.

    Chose your location wisely. Have fun; there are a lot of really great managers and/or owners out there. When you’re traveling around don’t be afraid to stop in at facilities and visit or ask questions.

  4. #4
    Sandra is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    227

    Default Re: Onsite Managers

    I have to agree that we must go with that gut feeling in some cases and I would not rent to someone that displayed there would be a problem. This does go back to location and we are in a very great area, with low crime rate and it is a small close knit community. Most all of our tenants will run into us at the local Wal Mart etc and we are more like friends. When problems do arise we are going to solve the problem to the customers satisfaction as often as possible and have never(knocking on wood) had a situation arise that we could not work out with the tenant. I love living on site and honestly feel even safer because we have so many tenants that are the eyes and ears on our site in addition to us, we never had the volume of security at our other home. People look out for us and our site, we have a great relationship between management and tenant(s) and i think that makes a huge difference. They cheer us on when they see a relief person in our office for a day or two because to them it seems like we are never away. I run my property at night and it is amazing how many tenants keep an eye on my safety when they see me on the property after dark.
    Lovin it.

  5. #5
    Gina6k's Avatar
    Gina6k is offline Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Morgan Hill, California
    Posts
    5,260

    Default Re: Onsite Managers

    The other side of the equation is not a lot of privacy at any time. If you BBQ, people stop by the back gate to tease about inviting them to eat. Or when coming & going, everyone knows when you've shopped at Safeway or Walmart, or see you loading up an overnight bag into the car. Probably the worst part of living on site is the commute! The traffic snarl of escaping the pillow/blanket interchange is sometimes an extremely difficult commute.

    Storman stated it the best! We have had a couple of incidents over the years where it was unnerving for awhile with a non-rational person floating around. Especially the one time the local PD told us; "If you see him anywhere around call 911 immediately!" Okay, fine! There wasn't much sleep happening for awhile as I looked at every car that drove by to see if it was Mr. Irrational.

    If a rental doesn't feel right, even if we have shown the person the unit, there is always the option of walking back into the office, shuffling some papers or typing on the keyboard and saying; "Oh, I am terribly sorry, my co-worker already rented that unit!" and send them on their way. I've learned to trust my instincts as each time I don't, it's always proved I should have listened the first time around.

    Peace of mind comes from treating everyone the same way you would like to be treated. Promising them you will do your best and asking for their help as well. I ask each tenant to immediately let us know if anyone or anything feels amiss. I remind them all that this is not only a place for what is valuable to them, but that I want to be safe also. This creates a security force of about 700 tenants and their family watching over not only the property, but also us. Who else but the President with his Secret Service can boast a bodyguard team of that magnitude? Every on site manager needs to ask tenants to be an extra set of eyes and ears, it can only help. We are in effect our own Community Crime Watch group.
    Last edited by Gina6k; 12th February 2011 at 01:08 PM.
    Gina 6k
    CochraneStorage dot com
    Morgan Hill, California
    twitter.com/CochraneStorage

    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough!
    I am not an attorney, just an experienced manager who is willing to share what I have learned. Your thoughts, practices or opinions may vary and neither of us may be right.

  6. #6
    Lisa T's Avatar
    Lisa T is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Happy to be in Myrtle Beach, SC!!!
    Posts
    2,858

    Default Re: Onsite Managers

    We have lived at two storage facilities, and both of them made me actually concerned that emergency personnel could not find us or get to us in case of a middle-of-the-night emergency. And we couldn't get a pizza delivered in the evening after the office closed, unless we waited outside in the parking lot for him.

    However, here are two good stories that maybe we weren't as "secure" as we had thought.

    In the 2nd facility, we lived upstairs over the office. In order to get to the apartment, you could enter the front glass doors and walk through the office to the stairs, or enter the side glass door (outside the gate) and make an immediate left turn to go up the stairs, or walk straight into the office. The side entrance was considered the apartment entrance, even though it let you into the office as well. For some reason, the front doors had a burglar alarm, but the side door didn't. We couldn't leave home without being in the office.

    Anyway, one night on a day off, our relief person forgot to lock the side door. I don't know why she unlocked it, because we had a sign on the glass saying "STOP not an entrance, please come around to the front", and also we kept it locked at all times, only unlocking it to enter or exit and then locking it immediately. Well she must've had some good reason for unlocking it and not locking it back. About 9:30 pm, my husband had just gotten out of the shower and was dresed in only his underwear, half asleep in the recliner in our living room, half-listening to the tv. I was sitting on the couch, and all of a sudden, a guy walks up the stairs and into our living room.

    My husband raised one eye and eyebrow, and said "Yes, can I help you"..to which the man replied, "I was wanting to rent a U-Haul truck and I saw the lights on up here. I'm sure he had seen the dark office, and the sign with the hours on the front door, and tried the door anyway to find it locked...then came around to the side door, saw this "STOP This is NOT an Entrance!" sign, and pulled on the glass door anyway and came right on up the stairs. My husband told him that it was 9:30 at night, the business was closed, and that he had just walked into our living room (which should have been obvious). Hubby then got up, put on his jeans, and escorted the man downstairs and off the property...making sure to lock the door on his way back up. From then on, we always checked the side door ourselves after the office closed.

    If you rent trucks, then you are wide open to the entire world, not just your pleasant law-abiding storage customers.

    The other facility the apartment was downstairs, attached to the office. Our bedroom window looked out onto the main drive and was located right next to the driveway area just inside the gate. Obviously we kept the blinds closed at all times, since anyone driving in through the gate, or leaving the property could see into our bedroom window.

    Well one Sunday morning about 6 am, I heard a knocking on our bedroom window. I looked over on my husband's side of the bed and he was gone. In my half-asleep brain, I thought he had gone outside for some reason and had locked himself out, and was therefore banging on the window to wake me up to let him in. So I get up, walk over the window, and turn the blinds to open them. Well much to my surprise, there stands a customer staring back at me in my flimsy nightgown.

    Turns out hubby was in the other bedroom downloading music on his computer with his headphones on and hadn't heard the knocking. (he's an early riser). And the customer, who had standard 7 am to 9 pm gate access, had tailgated in behind a 24-hour access customer...and the 24-hour access guy had left before him, so he couldn't get out for an hour unless someone else with 24-hour access came in...which wasn't likely at 6 am on Sunday morning. So he just decided to bang on a window since he knew we lived there and hoped we would hear it...he didn't know it was our bedroom window, and didn't know was a visual treat he was going to get as a result of his actions.

    Have I mentioned how much I like NOT living on site now? Pizza delivery to my door AND a swimming pool and NO unexpected visitors who think that just because you are home, you are there to take care of them 24/7. I never minded opening the office and renting a storage unit to someone who needed it after hours, but that doesn't mean you should be available to everyone for everything 24/7. We also had one tenant who was drunk and couldn't remember his gate code at 2 am (which wouldn't have worked anyway at that time)...and blew his horn for over 15 minutes til he woke us up. I knew how long he had been blowing it because I looked at the gate logs and could tell what time he stated punching his code and when he finally woke us up and stopped. And it doesn't mean it's safe for the employee to be expected to provide 24/7 service.
    Last edited by Lisa T; 12th February 2011 at 03:02 PM.

  7. #7
    ShaneinSD is offline Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    71

    Default Re: Onsite Managers

    My entrance to the apartment is the entrance to the office so I am ALWAYS at work, day off or not. I have had customers bang on the office doors after hours many times, we close for lunch daily between 2 and 3 and have had people honking horns and banging on the door, ringing the bell incessantly. It's amazing to me what people think is rational behavior.

  8. #8
    Lisa T's Avatar
    Lisa T is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Happy to be in Myrtle Beach, SC!!!
    Posts
    2,858

    Default Re: Onsite Managers

    At the last place I worked at, with the glass doors, I put the "manager out on property, be right back" sign up and headed for the bathroom. While I was in there taking care of business, I heard a loud and incessant banging on the door...so loudly as a matter of fact, that I thought the person was going to break the glass, since I heard it so clearly over the bathroom fan and it was steadily getting louder.

    I hurried up and finished, not even taking time to wash my hands because I thought it had to be some life or death emergency. When I emerged from the bathroom, I found an extremely elderly man standing there beating on the glass door with his cane as hard as he could. I went over and opened the door and he looked at me and said "Oh there you are". To which I replied..."Did you not see the sign?" He told me that he couldn't wait, he needed someone to give him directions to where he was going.

    I guess if I had been out showing a storage unit, he was have just kept on til he broke the door down.

    So to answer the original question, never had any threats from an auctioned customer, but no, I don't think living on site is that safe because the general public including the percentage of strange or persistent or entitled people among the general public, don't understand boundaries and obviously can't read signs.

 

 
Page 1 of 7 1234567 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •