How to Prevent Flood Damage in Your Storage Unit

Did you know that flooding doesn’t happen only after a massive rainstorm? It can occur at any time due to poor drainage systems, summer storms, melting snow, a large construction project, or a broken water main. It’s hard to believe, but according to FEMA, even one inch of water can cause thousands of dollars in damage.  

Flooding can be a concern for some people that keep belongings in self storage. Others are either unaware of the damage that can be caused by flooding or don’t realize that they can take measures now to prevent flood damage later.

If you currently have items in a self storage unit or you’re thinking about leasing a unit, read the tips below to help keep your belongings safe during a flooding event.

Water or Flood Damage Prevention Measures

Store Items in Plastic Bins

Plastic containers will keep your items safe from moisture and the resulting mold and mildew. Try to purchase bins of identical size, and take the time to label your items for easy retrieval. Store important documents and valuable items in watertight containers.

Use Pallet Boards and Tarps

Pallets are a great way to keep your items off of the floor. They are the perfect solution for small businesses that use self storage for inventory, important documents, and office equipment and supplies. 

Place pallets on the floor and cover them with plastic tarps before stacking your items. This will protect your bins and containers from sitting on a potentially wet floor. If you’re storing heavy items, check to be certain that the pallets can safely withstand the weight. 

Use Shelving for Your Smaller Items

An alternative for storing your smaller items is shelving. There are lots of great options available that will provide you with a safe, convenient way to keep your belongings above the floor. Your storage unit can easily accommodate rack and wall mounted shelving as well as standing and hanging shelving. 

Organize Strategically

When you organize your unit, stack valuable or sentimental items on your highest shelf or on top of items that are less expensive or meaningful to you. This will lessen the risk of damage from moisture to your more important items.

Cover Your Belongings with Nylon

You may not have heard this before, but covering your items with nylon can help prevent water damage that comes from above. You never know when a broken pipe or heavy rains can cause a leaking ceiling. If you wrap or cover your belongings with nylon, your stored possessions will have basic protection. A sheet of nylon is inexpensive and also a great barrier against dust.

Consider Flood Insurance

If you live in an area of the country where natural disasters are common, you might want to consider flood insurance. Standard homeowner’s insurance doesn’t include coverage for damages due to flooding, and federal disaster assistance kicks in only when there is a Presidential disaster declaration. Discuss your flood insurance options and your off-premises coverage with your insurance agent. It’s worth the peace of mind to know that you’re protected.

Does Your Self Storage Facility Have a Tenant Protection Plan

Find out if your self storage facility has a tenant protection plan. If so, discuss coverage options with the manager of your facility. This can be an additional level of protection as many of these plans cover some water damage. 

Conclusion

Don’t assume that flooding is something you never need to worry about. It can happen anytime due to unpredictable events. Store your items in plastic, watertight containers. Use pallet boards, shelving, and nylon coverings. Organize your items for safety, and discuss flood insurance options with your insurance agent. Simple, basic prevention strategies are more than worth the disappointment of losing valuable or sentimental items. 

Self Storage Can be a Lifesaver for School Organizations

Whatever the coming school year brings, whether your kids are learning in a classroom or at home, your day will most certainly evolve into the after-school mayhem of extracurricular activities. Sports, dance, band, and theater all require long hours of practice and participation. These pursuits are meant for the students, but they keep the entire family busy. 

The fun really begins with the multitude of phone calls asking you to be a volunteer for your child’s activity of choice. Whatever that is, you can be sure that it will be more work, fun, and chaos than taking two-year-old triplets to the circus.

Bear in mind that many school districts don’t have a permanent space designated to store all of the items used in these after-school extracurriculars. Whatever you volunteer for will probably involve storing equipment, uniforms, costumes, or strange things that you can’t identify. As an added bonus, you’ll also have to locate a place to store the paraphernalia used at the events sponsored to raise money to cover activity expenses.

Don’t even think about keeping this stuff in your garage, basement, or the trunk of your car. Remember, you’re not only storing these items; you’re responsible for their safety and maintenance. Temperature fluctuations and humidity can cause damage to musical instruments and sports equipment, not to mention the inconvenience of trying to keep track of items stored in several different homes. You need a convenient, secure, affordable facility for these items. You need climate-controlled self storage.

Storage Tips for School Organizations

Band

The most important items that you’ll store for the band are, of course, musical instruments. These instruments take a different level of care, especially if they have to be stored for a short period of time during the hot, humid summer months. The students can help with the care of their own instruments, but in the end, you’ll be the responsible party. These instruments can be severely damaged by fluctuating temperatures and humidity, so climate-controlled storage is a must. 

Sports

Sports equipment can be anything from football shoulder pads to cheerleading uniforms. These items have to be well-maintained and properly stored in the off-season to prevent deterioration. A climate-controlled space will keep everything in top condition. Most facilities can be leased on a month-to-month basis so you won’t have to commit to long-term storage.

Theater

High school theater departments need storage for costumes, lighting, props, scenery, and sound equipment. Storage units have to be easily accessible, secure, clean, and affordable. As with sports and band organizations, climate-controlled storage is the solution for this type of equipment. Fabric costumes are sensitive to mold and mildew, and lighting and sound equipment are sensitive to temperature and humidity levels. These items should be in a temperature-controlled environment to prevent physical damage and deterioration. Props and scenery are sometimes oversized and need extra space. Look for units with high ceilings and extra-large doors.

Dance Teams

Dance teams and pom squads have become popular, competitive groups in high schools across the country. Storage is needed for costumes, various props, and sound equipment. These items can be easily packed in storage bins and positioned on shelving for easy access. A safe, climate-controlled storage unit is the best way to prevent mildew and deterioration of these items. 

Fundraising Organizations

These organizations all need funding, and some of the best ways to get the parents’ hard-earned cash are casino nights and carnivals. Again, this presents the need for storage. Casino nights involve roulette wheels, gaming tables, and all the smaller items that go along with these events. Carnival games can be large and cumbersome, necessitating the need for spacious units. Look for security features like digital video monitoring, electronic gates, keypad access, and perimeter fencing. Some facilities feature an extra layer of security with a Bluetooth electronic lock that allows you to access your self storage unit from your smart device. 

Takeaway

Watching your children participate in school activities is fun and rewarding, and volunteering keeps you in the “know.” Your kids will never admit it, but they love having parents who care enough to get involved in their pastimes. So, go for it – get involved and find a safe, secure, affordable self storage facility. Discuss your options with our friendly, knowledgeable management team, and put that stuff in storage.

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.