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Valuation limit section of lease

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  • Valuation limit section of lease

    I get a ton of questions from new renters about a of our lease, especially the section which lists:
    "Occupant hereby represents to owner that the total value of all property stored or to be stored in the future in the unit is less than $5000, unless owner authorizes occupant to store items of a greater value in writing and in advance of such storage. Occupant must request to store items of greater value in writing to owner before placing such items in unit."
    It then goes on about maximum lawsuit liability can only be up to $5k.
    I'm under the impression that this prevents any personal lawsuits brought against the company to compensation over 5k.

    I get a lot of people who say their vehicle or items are much more than $5000. Do we need to have some sort of addendum if they are storing a vehicle or pricey item?

    Today my coworker had a lawyer rent a parking space who questioned EVERYTHING and argued with me on the phone about how he can't legally initial that part of the lease. I told him to notate in that line that the vehicle was over $5k value and have both he and my coworker initial next to it.

    Is there a spiel we can give as an answer across the board when people stop at this section?
    EDIT NOTE: This is NOT the insurance section of the lease. We require proof of insurance, either theirs or ours. This is a completely different section of the lease.
    Last edited by danikahsafestor; 4th October 2019, 06:02 PM.
    Give them an inch, they'll take a mile!

  • #2
    We tell people, "OUR stuff (the buildings) is insured but theirs is not" and then they initial stating they understand

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    • #3
      I would tell them if they don't like the policy they can rent elsewhere. In general your storage will not cover or insure their items, and if they are worried they should carry their own insurance on their property or unit so that their things will be covered.

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      • #4
        Also you can tell them this is standard practice within the self storage industry.

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        • #5
          The company I work for offers customers coverage on their belongings (coverage is required) at a four-tier level. If they are storing a vehicle inside a unit along with other items, I have them complete a vehicle addendum stating they will not complete any work on it while inside their unit or on the property. The vehicle must also be licensed, insured, registered to the tenant storing it. If they are storing additional items, the vehicle must either cover those items or they still will be asked to have coverage on those items. I don't normally bring that part of the lease up unless they ask or if something happens. Then, I let my company handle their claim.

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          • #6
            Your lease already answers that question. They need to get authorization to store over $5k. Your sign the ok when they can prove they have coverage for them. It also helps cover you when a lien tenant unit is sold and they say they had the Hope Diamond in there. If they store a vehicle all they have to do is show the insurance for it.

            By the way, tel the lawyer to pound sand and go elsewhere if he doesn't like it. Not all but lots of them are bottom feeders.
            "Never let the inmates run the asylum!"

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            • #7
              Unless you have permission to override that from the owners, you should NEVER change it. That is your limit of liability should you ever be found negligent in some way. That means that no matter the value, you are only liable for the first $5,000. And it's up to them to be insured for the entire value of the contents.

              I would have told that attorney that those are our terms, our attorneys drew up the agreement, it is above my pay grade, and if they were not acceptable to him, he would have to go elsewhere. Though it says that they must have our permission to store more, we would never give it.

              I'm afraid you may have a problem in your future!
              MamaDuke

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              • #8
                I'm in the same boat as mama and pac said, he can go store elsewhere. Our leases have the same section in them about 5k limit and I would never even entertain going to the owners to request a higher limit for a customer as that is the safeguard to cover them should something ever go wrong. You as staff members would not have the authority to grant that change to the lease imo. I had a lawyer once who lived out of state and we sent out new leases as we took over a site and he tried sending it back with tons of items marked out, changed put in etc.. He got a nice phone call, let him know he could sign the new lease i'm emailing him in .pdf form and email it back to me or he can come down from NY to FL and move his belongings out. Got my lease signed without any changes

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                • #9
                  In the future, in my opinion, I would not make or accept any changes to the 'boilerplate' lease. The lease is constructed to protect you, the facility, the company and/or the owner - it is not constructed to protect the tenant (except to inform them of the insurance requirement and the number of day's before a rent increase and calendar days for late/lien/auction). If a customer has a problem signing the lease then they should try renting somewhere else. They will find that all self-storage use about the same language in the lease. We provide a blank copy of the lease and rules and regulations (in a folder, in the clear plastic sheet holders) for the customer to look at while we enter the customer information in the computer. So they can ask questions or change their mind before we take any payment. That limit on the property stored amount is to protect the company/owner - from a catastrophic payout (fire, etc) and the company is found to be at fault or negligent (i.e. - the employee is smoking and tosses the butt, the wind blows it into a corner, starts a building fire and none of the fire extinguishers work because they have not had a yearly inspection, etc). You will probably be ok with this one off or if you want to sport-vacate him, you can say the owner did not accept the request to store the item and give him the option to sign the lease as it is written or vacate the spot/unit or send him the 30-day 'terminate lease' letter, if he refuses to sign the lease with no changes. Hopefully this all works out for you with the least amount of headaches.

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                  • #10
                    Everything they store is at their own risk. If they store items worth over the $5000 then it's on them, but it's their things and everyone always overvalues their own stuff. If they argue, tell them it's standard contract language in almost all facilities, so they'll need to keep their high value stuff at home.
                    When I had all of my ducks in a row-I realized that most of them were not even mine!

                    WA State

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