Inside Self-Storage

MAY 2019

Inside Self-Storage (ISS) is an information source for industry owners, managers, developers and investors covering news, trends, facility operation, finance, real estate, construction, development, marketing, technology, insurance and legality.

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2016 BOS BOS - eas y to assemble Quick Build containers offer versatility in setting up, or expanding self- stor age or portable stor age or portable stor age facilities age facilities . Product Information • Single or double door swing doors. • Height 83" (7ft). • Width 83" (7ft). • Width can be expanded up to 252" (21ft). • Length 43" to 240" (3ft – 20ft). • Length can be expanded up to 480" (40ft). • Wind and weather tight units with high snow-load capacity. • Numerous accessories available. Quick Build container is economical to transport, and the assembly is quick and easy with no tools required. Strong BOS units are made of galvanized steel, and come safety tested and rated by an external testing agency. For more Information, please visit our website +1 (844) 267-3757 Engage tenants in conversation whenever you see them in the office or on the grounds. Criminals who perform "inside jobs" like the idea of anonymity. Greeting them by name and asking an innocuous question like "How's it going today?" will be seen as good customer service by upstanding tenants; conversely, potential criminals may reconsider their plans if they believe they're being watched. If you don't have a relationship with local police, consider developing one. Invite officers from the precinct for a tour. This way, if there's ever a break-in, they'll have a sense of the layout and be able to react quicker. Some facilities allow local law enforcement to do K9 training on their premises. Not only will their presence give would-be crooks pause, you can promote this on your website and through signage to give customers an added sense of security. Safety Guidelines While preventing crime at your facility is important, your No. 1 concern should be safety for employees, customers and guests. To that end, it's important to institute staff guidelines for various situations. Train employees in what to do when faced with specific scenarios, for example, in the event of a medical emergency or if they suspect illegal activity in a unit. The most important instruction to convey is they should never put themselves in danger or take matters into their own hands. Instead, contacting authorities is the best course of action. Tenant Screening One of the easiest ways for criminals to gain access to your facility is by renting a unit. The key is to stop them from becoming tenants. Ask each prospect a few questions about why he needs a storage unit, what he's storing and how long he'll need the space. Listen to the answers. If he responds haltingly or changes his story halfway through the process, these may be signs that you should dissuade this person from renting. If you've had problems with tenant crime in the past, you may have to take additional steps, such as conducting criminal history and credit checks. While you may lose some business over this practice, it can be worthwhile in terms of making your facility more secure. Just remember that if you put these types of checks into your rental process, by law, you must screen every applicant so as not to be discriminatory. Additional Measures The strategies provided above can apply to most self-storage facilities, but if you have a property in a particularly dangerous area, you may have to take additional action. For example, consider restricting your access hours. If you've had more than your fair share of unit break-ins, it might be time to install individual door alarms. By taking the necessary steps to upgrade your security and training staff on what to watch for and do, you can drastically reduce the opportunity for crime at your storage facility. You'll not only keep people and property safer, you'll earn a better business reputation. Derek Hines is a writer for West Coast Self-Storage, a self-storage management, acquisitions and development company with facilities in California, Oregon and Washington. He writes extensively on all subjects related to the storage industry. For more information, visit May 2019 I ISS 21

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