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29 Apr 2024

7 Updates You Must Make to Your Outdated Storage Facility

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Drew Case

Operations, Sales and Marketing

Competition is always stepping up and you don't want to be left behind. A new facility may not be in the cards for you. Question is, how well are you maintaining your facility and is it still competitive? You can invest in some key aspects or repairs and your return will be more customers. A little bit of paint makes a huge difference, but there are a few more things you can tune up. Here are a few aspects that too often need attention at a somewhat outdated self-storage facility.

Landscaping & your curb appeal

Landscaping & your curb appeal. If the facility does not look inviting, then you have already lost potential customers. Install some flower bed edging, fresh mulch and plant new flowers and low level shrubs. If you have trees, you don't have to cut them down, but do trim them up and thin them out. Don't let the trees block the view of your facility to drive by traffic. I suggest you park across the street from your storage facility and look upon it as a customer. What do you see? Faded signage, random litter, overgrown trees, tattered flag, rusty fencing are common items. Hopefully not all of this, but be hard on yourself and you will do better for the customer.

Perimeter fencing and gate

Perimeter fencing and gate can give the wrong impression when you believe you are helping. Barbed wire is a major turn off and unsightly. Remove it because it is not improving security and makes your facility look like a prison. You can also roll paint a fence black, green or silver to freshen the appearance. Your gate must be operational and have a working keypad. You may also want to look into adding modernized features. Gate systems can now be operated rom a cell phone app and much more convenient than reaching out to a hard to reach keypad on a rainy day. Wireless entrance is highly desirable for RV owners.

Driveway and drive aisles

Driveway and drive aisles can be costly if left poorly maintained. A paved lot that gets sealed and crack filled properly on a maintenance plan lasts much longer than one that is ignored. It's good to keep the cracks from worsening by filling and sealing properly and also freshening any parking stripes or driveway arrows. Patch areas as needed to avoid a full repaving. If you have gravel, fill in holes and level so your drive areas are reasonable and you don't have mud puddles all over the lot.

Lighting

Lighting must be functional and bright. Older lighting maybe have dirty lenses, bugs and spider webs surrounding it and simply not working. You can maintain older lighting and it can work just fine. However, you can update to LED lighting that has a higher lumens and also is more efficient to operate. LED's lighting is rated to last longer than standard bulbs. Bottom line is that the lights must be working and provide a sense of security to the customer. Always review your lighting opportunities at night to see where you should replace or add lighting. You can also check to see if your state is offering any grant money towards replacing older lighting.

Doors and building paint & finish

Doors and building paint & finish must be in good condition. Peeling paint and faded doors just shout lack of care. You can use a door refinishing product to make your doors shine again. There are a couple products on the market for exactly this issue. If they are so worn that the paint is fading or whitewashed, you will need to repaint the doors for a new appearance. Make sure whomever you use to paint the doors has experience doing so and insurance. Also, be sure to replace bent or rusty hasps, door seals and pull ropes as needed. Contact several companies to receive bids on painting. If you have an office, consider repainting the office walls and restroom to freshen up a bit inside as well.

Management Software

Management Software is never fun to change, but may be long overdue. The excitement is when you learn the new program and use it to its fullest capability. The new options available in current programs makes customer service much easier and also enables a better customer experience. The program you bought 10 or more years ago probably does not have nearly the capabilities of what is being offered today. Visit a trade show or check out the numerous options online. Be sure the new program you select offers online move-in's, not just reservations and payments.

Website

Website should be compatible with your management program. If you are operating with an old website that was made by a friend or relative of yours, you are probably not getting the SEO you need to drive occupancy and rates. You are limiting your capabilities to business online that all your competitors are already doing. Choose a website provider that helps you with suggestions and has reports that help you understand what is working for increasing leads.

These 7 aspects can provide a nice update to any older facility. For more great ideas, I encourage you to join your State Self Storage Association. Attend trade shows and meetings to find out more of the latest and greatest available to self-storage owners. Even the largest self storage providers are trying to learn the next greatest thing to do to capture more customers, so you should to! Curb appeal matters and so does how you help a customer. Make it a good experience and make the customer feel safe confidant they are in the right place to store their belongings.

Storage Authority's guidance in self-storage development underscores the intricate balance between meeting storage demands and environmental sustainability. By aligning with Storage Authority's principles and leveraging our team's expertise, along with your engineer, architect, and general contractor we can navigate the complexities of impervious coverage with confidence, ensuring the creation of self-storage facilities that are both economically viable and environmentally responsible.


Storage Authority Franchising is all about owning your own local self-storage business, supported by professional systems and expertise. We like to say, "You're in business for yourself but not by yourself." If self-storage is on your mind, don't hesitate to reach out to Drew Case at Direct: 513-582-0125 or Drew@StorageAuthority.com to learn more about the Storage Authority Franchise opportunity. Your self-storage journey awaits!

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