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Accidental Storage units owner

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  • Accidental Storage units owner

    This is my first forray into the self-storage unit business. We are located in San Antonio TX and TXDOT used emminent domain to take over and demolish our liqur distribution warehouse. We got a temporary restraining order against them, buying us some time to find a new location. There wasn't much available that was suitable for our needs, so we ended up buying a property with 2 warehouses, a residence and 9 self-storage units as well as some RV parking spaces. The warehouses and self storage units were in deplorable condition and it took a while to make the warehouses functionable and useable. I am now on to the storage units. I need to replace/repair doors as well as the insulation etc. I am looking for help on what is acceptable or deemed the bare minimum for lower end units. For example, our doors are not roll-up doors but apparently self-built doors with a steel frame and sheetmetal on the outside. Are people okay with that or do I need to have a roll up door? To make matters worse, none of the units are the same size. they all range from 13'x19' to 14'x19 with increments in several inches in between. Makes buying a roll up door difficult, I guess. I'll start reading on here and then post my experiences and calls for help. Thanks for letting me join.

  • #2
    Tenants will care that the door opens and closes and is secure when locked.
    They do not care if it opens like a swing door or a roll-up door.

    Tenants also care about cleanliness, security and customer service.
    Don't put off until tomorrow, what you can do today.

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    • #3
      What lady said. Welcome to the forum.
      "Never let the inmates run the asylum!"

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      • #4
        Welcome, Timmer! Sounds like an adventure. As long as they work the tenants won't care. You're one step up from last facility which was wooden walls and hollow core doors, so that's something.
        90% of what you're stressing about now won't even be relevant in a year. Breathe easy. ~Wesley Snipes

        WA State

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        • #5
          My focus has been on opur main business (liquor distribution) so the self storage units have taken a back seat, but now I would like to move forward. I have a few questions:
          1. The gate has a simple keypad and I believe it holds only one code. I think I need a keypad that allows for individual codes (one for each tennant). What brand/system would you guys recommend?
          2. The parking lot is not lit. How much of a problem is that?
          3. Do you recommend to have light and electricity in each unit?
          Thank you for your help

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          • #6
            Welcome to the forum Timmer!

            There are a couple of companies out there that have the keypads you are looking for - it's not the keypad itself necessarily but the software that runs it. Get the software that works together such as Sitelink and Storlogix as an example to save you frustration and headaches.

            Lighting the parking lot gives people a sense of safety even if they don't come in at night. It lets them see that you care about their property that it is lit and not accessible to negatives who would try to do nasty stuff in the dark. Having a light in each unit is beneficial to the client but having electricity in each unit only gives them thoughts that they could live there, plug in a spare freezer/fridge, etc that are not necessary for a storage unit.

            Also, regarding the sizes being different - in most everyone's contract it states the sizes are approximate. That means a 10x10 could essentially be 10' wide by 9' 4" or 11' x 10' 2".

            There is a conference coming up in Las Vegas that may help you - look into it - it's advertised all over this forum. Again, Welcome and Good Luck!
            Tall Terri

            The customer's fantasy doesn't always match with reality!

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