Boost Your Home Rental Business with Self Storage

Time away from the daily schedule gives your family a breather from the usual routine. It opens your mind to new cultures and experiences and can even have a positive impact on your health and well-being. One recent study found that people return from vacations in a happy and relaxed state of mind. The key is to find a place that suits everyone’s needs, has plenty of room, and is close to activities for all ages. The right hotel in the right location can be pricey and overcrowded. The solution to that problem, especially for a large family, is a spacious vacation home rental.

Short-term vacation home rentals are growing in popularity because prospective guests recognize the obvious: a single-family home rental offers more space than a small hotel room or even a suite. If you’re vacationing with the entire extended family, a large home rental is less expensive than a resort, offers more privacy than a hotel, and provides a more comfortable experience than conventional accommodations.

Most people are familiar with Airbnb, VRBO, and other online short-term property rental sites. If you aren’t familiar with this concept, property rental sites enable hosts to list properties online for viewing by prospective vacationers. Online listing also enables a secure payment platform for the benefit of both guests and hosts. If you’re interested in making some extra income, this can turn into a profitable business venture. To make it the ultimate experience for you and your renters, read on to find out how self storage can help.

Where do I start?

The first step to becoming a short-term property rental host is to register your property by submitting photos and descriptions of your rental space. Travelers who are looking for accommodations in your area can view these listed properties using criteria like availability, the number of bedrooms, price, and amenities to refine their search. Prior to booking through the online service, a guest can contact the property owner.

How does self storage fit into the picture?

Travelers are looking for a welcoming space that they can quickly settle into. They want to make it their own, even for the short time that they are renting. If you want your rental to be more welcoming, you need to depersonalize and declutter. This is where a self storage unit becomes your ideal solution. A self-storage space will give you the perfect place to store valuables, personal mementos, bulky furniture, and anything your guests won’t need during their stay.

Storing items like family photos, books, and memorabilia will not only ensure the safety of these items and provide a more welcoming atmosphere, but it will help to make the photographs of your rental more appealing to prospective guests. You’ll want to make your space look sleek and appealing because the way the property appears in photographs has a huge influence on your number of bookings. 

Another Perk: Self storage for your home rental business may be tax-deductible.

Renting a self-storage unit for your home rental business can also provide you with a tax benefit. If you want more bookings and more income, using self storage to tidy up your space is a necessary business expense. The IRS generally allows business deductions if they are ordinary and necessary. Be sure to keep careful records and consult your CPA.

In Summary

Be cautious when choosing your self storage facility. Look for a secure, dependable, affordable facility that has flexible leasing and 24/7 access. The home rental business can be a serious source of extra income. Do your research to determine if it works for you. If it does, go for it!

                                                 

How Do I Attract College Students to My Self Storage Facility?

If you’re a self storage owner with a facility in a college or university town, summer can be a great time to attract students. When summer break begins, they’re looking for a place to stash their stuff so that they don’t have to pack up and move their belongings home. Toward the end of summer, they may be planning for the upcoming school year. Given the tiny dorm rooms and shared housing, you can market self storage to students year-round.

To attract college students to your self storage facility, examine your services and amenities through the lens of what’s important to a college student. What do they need, what do they care about, and what are they willing to spend? 

Following are some easy ways to get you started on marketing your facility to college students.

Self Storage Services that College Students Care About

College students are looking for services and amenities that speak to their needs. It’s not hard to gear your services toward student renters.

Student Discounts and Specials

College students don’t generally have large budgets. Tuition, books, meals, and social activities don’t leave much disposable income. If you haven’t already, consider offering student discounts. A reputation for being the low-cost self storage provider will encourage new tenants.

Flexible Lease Options

With summer classes, internships, and study abroad programs, college students are always on the move. The flexibility of month-to-month self storage on their terms will have far more appeal than being stuck in a long-term lease. 

Small or Shared Units

College students are not likely to store large furniture or appliances. Their belongings are typically packed away in boxes and take up minimal space. Your smaller, less expensive units are a more suitable option for the college crowd. If you have only larger units, market them as a “shared” space so that several students can “share” one unit for less money.

24/7 Access Hours

College students don’t keep regular schedules. We’re talking about late nights, early classes, midday naps, and any study they can squeeze in between their social schedules. They want to know that they don’t have to keep track of access hours if they want to retrieve something from their units. Extended hours make your facility more appealing to them.

Technology Friendly

If a college student can’t log on to your website from any device and easily pay their bill, reserve a unit, and manage their account, you’re sending them to a competitor. Another desirable option is a Bluetooth access control system that allows self storage tenants to enter their units with their mobile devices. With their crazy busy schedules, students appreciate these time-saving amenities.

Your Website Should be Student Friendly

A user-friendly, visually appealing website that is optimized for mobile devices, establishes a connection between you and this tech-savvy generation. The following pages will make it easier for students to find your facility when they’re searching for self storage.

Student Storage Page

Having a student-specific page will give your website a higher Google ranking for college storage searches. Optimize your title tag with something like “Budget-Friendly Self Storage Near (local university)”. Include driving directions from the local school to your facility.

Student Discount Page

Even if you have an overview of all of your specials, be sure to showcase student discounts. Students love to know that renting a unit from you is affordable.

Add a Student Section to your FAQ Page

This is another great method to increase your ranking for student storage. By adding information specifically geared towards students, your site will be more likely to appear in student-specific searches.

Student Moving and Packing Supply Page

To college students, packing means throwing their belongings in the nearest trash bag or stuffing them into a broken cardboard box. They’re not focused on sturdy boxes, wrapping, tape and labels. Your moving and packing supply page could include a section for 2 or 3 different sized “student” packing bundles. Students will appreciate being able to purchase bundled supplies without making the effort to actually choose what they need. Their parents (who are footing the bill) will also appreciate you.

Market Your Message in the Right Places

Following are some quick and easy ways to get the word out about your self storage facility.

Attend University Events

Look for your prospects where students gather. Getting involved in campus activities is a simple way to make your self storage facility more visible. Attend campus sporting events and tailgates with flyers and business cards. Buying ad space in sports programs is another excellent way to increase your visibility. 

Post Flyers

This is a simple, but effective, strategy. Create professional-grade flyers and post them in dorm lounges, university offices and student hangouts. Be sure to get permission from the administration.

Target Facebook Ads

If you have a social media page for your self storage business, consider buying ad space on Facebook. These ads are affordable, and you can easily target your university student audience.

Study Abroad

Contact the study abroad department of your local university, and find out how to provide information to students who are planning to leave the country for a semester or even longer. They may be subletting an apartment or giving up a dorm room and need self storage services for a short period of time.

Offer a Small Scholarship

If you can afford it, consider offering a small scholarship for the following semester. Not only would you be helping a student, but this could get your business listed in the scholarship section of the university’s website. 

Summary

Start promoting your facility as the summer is drawing to a close and market year-round. Make your facility the preferred choice by offering student discounts, flexible lease terms, smaller units, and mobile access. With the right amenities and the right marketing, you may just find that your facility is the go-to storage business for area college students.

Tips and Tricks for Your First U-Haul Experience

Whether you’re trying to free up some space in your home or making a cross country move, you could be using a U-Haul truck for the first time. Many of our storage locations, in an effort to help make your moving and storing experience more convenient, offer U-Haul truck rental on site.

U-Haul is unique in the industry because they work with manufacturers to design a truck specifically for household or small business moving. U-Haul offers more safety features than any other truck in the industry along with gentle ride suspension and high visibility mirrors to assist the driver.enefit of Driving a U-Haul Truck

  • 50% easier to load –  A wide, stable EZ Load Ramp makes loading your large, heavy items a breeze.
  • Safely move your furniture –  Gentle ride suspension and aerodynamic styling keep your furniture safe and secure.
  • Quiet, with independent seating for three Driver and passengers enjoy a peaceful, comfortable driving experience.
  • Save money –  This is important with current gasoline prices. While many trucks use acrid, expensive diesel fuel, these trucks use cleaner, cheaper, and more convenient unleaded fuel.

It’s great to have a truck at your disposal, but If you have no previous truck-driving experience, you’re going to need a little help. We want to share the following tips to get you started on your journey and keep you safe.

First Time Driving a U-Haul

As with any new experience, driving a truck for the first time can be tricky. Be sure that you choose the right size vehicle, and discuss any concerns you may have with office personnel. They have plenty of experience and will be happy to answer your questions.

We always have a selection of the newest trucks to fit your moving and storage needs.

  • U-Haul trucks are heavy vehicles, especially when fully loaded. It takes longer to stop than a car, so allow at least 4 seconds between you and the vehicle in front of you (allow 5 seconds in adverse weather).
  • Because a truck is longer than your average vehicle, you’ll need more time and distance to pass. Don’t pass on hills or curves.
  • Shift into lower gears when driving uphill to prevent jerking due to engine lugging.
  • Before going downhill, slow down and shift into lower gear to allow the engine to control your speed. Do not ride the breaks on a downgrade.
  • If your truck moves off the paved roadway, don’t panic, don’t make a sharp turn, and don’t apply the brakes. Slow down to below 25 mph, and make your way gradually back to the road.
  • When turning at a sharp corner, drive slightly past the corner or make a wider turn than you would in a car. 
  • Avoid parking on steep inclines. The parking brake may not hold, and the bumper may drag or get stuck. 

Using a Truck Ramp for the First Time

Using a truck ramp for the first time isn’t difficult, but like any first-time experience it can be confusing. The following tips will help you through the process.

  • First, open the rear door of the truck.
  • Push down on the latch that keeps the ramp securely under the truck and pull the ramp out slightly.
  • Use the straps on the end of the ramp to slowly and carefully pull the ramp out until it is fully extended.
  • Set the ramp on the ground gently.
  • Grab both sides of the ramp near the rear of the truck and lift up. You’ll see two hooks. Place these hooks over the slots on the truck deck to secure the ramp in the loading position.

If you’re thinking about towing your car or a trailer. U-Haul has an easily understandable series of videos to help with that.

Whatever your needs, our friendly, knowledgeable staff is always here to help. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and express your concerns. Have a safe trip!

How Self Storage Can Help When the Kids Are Home for the Summer

If this is your first time as a parent with a college kid who has been living in a dorm, you’re in for a love-hate experience. You love that your child is going to be home for the summer because you’ve really missed the patter of their little feet sneaking out when they’re already grounded for sneaking out last week. On the other hand, you hate that your child is bringing home all that junk that they just took with them. 

You’re wondering how time flew by so quickly. This isn’t high school, Momma. College semesters are shorter than you realize. In spite of that brief stopover at school, your child has managed to accumulate a few strange, and maybe scary, items. Many of them will be unfamiliar, and you’re better off not even knowing they exist. 

Unless you want this stuff stored all over your house, these items need to find a temporary home before next semester. You have a problem, and we have a solution – a safe, secure, affordable self storage unit.

Self Storage Saves Your Sanity

You need an actual solution to this problem, not a Band-Aid. Your solution should keep your space just the way it is – full of your own possessions and not tripping over cartons of text books and bags of dirty laundry. It has to be affordable because you’re already paying big bucks for tuition. State-of-the-art security, including electronic gates, perimeter fencing, and 24-hour video monitoring are not optional. Having any of this junk stolen does not fit the plan.

Month-to-month leasing is another necessity. Flexibility is important, and you don’t want to be committed to a long term lease. Location is another factor to consider. The storage facility that you choose should be close to the school and in a safe location.

The following tips will help you find the storage that you need.

The Right Self Storage Facility Should Keep the Possessions Safe and the Student Safe 

As shocking as this might sound, college students don’t always have the best judgment, and cautious behavior is not always a priority. It’s probably a good idea if you help them to choose the right storage facility. 

You want security not only to keep the things safe, but to keep the student safe. Look for a clean, well-lit property that is fully fenced and gated with digital video monitoring and electronic keypad access. Have the manager take you on a tour of the property, and check to see if a tenant protection plan is available.

Look for Layers of Security

  1. A facility in a safe, convenient location
  2. A clean and well-maintained facility
  3. Well lit property
  4. Perimeter fencing
  5. Gates equipped with electronic access 
  6. Twenty-four hour video surveillance
  7. An indoor unit with keypad access
  8. On site and/or resident managers
  9. A disc or cylinder lock that is resistant to tampering
  10. Do Not share gate access code with friends

Be thoughtful when choosing a storage facility, but don’t worry. There are plenty of safe, secure self storage facilities. For more detailed information read, Choose the Right Self Storage Facility.

Ease and Accessibility

You want to be close to the school and in a safe area. Look for 365-day access, with packing supplies, and moving carts and dollies available. Drive-up access and wide aisles can relieve loading and unloading problems. 

Added Amenities

Depending on the items you’re storing and the local environment, you may be interested in climate-controlled storage. Many facilities offer a free truck with move-in, accept deliveries and offer free copy/print/scan services. Check with your manager for details.

Student Discount

Don’t forget to check on available specials, particularly student discount programs. You may even be able to share with another student.

Conclusion

Whatever you decide, your life will be less chaotic with a storage solution. And remember to have a serious conversation with your kids. You don’t want them storing their younger siblings or that roommate that doesn’t believe in personal hygiene. Take a deep breath. Only three??? more years of this. Then…grad school!