Gone are the days when a chain and a padlock were all it took to keep self-storage criminals at bay. Unfortunately, break-ins and thefts do occur. Failure to provide quality, on-site security for your tenants can set your company up for a pricey and possibly public lawsuit. An even more significant threat arises when groups of tenants band together to file a class action lawsuit against a self-storage facility. Whether an individual or class action lawsuit develops over personal injury or property theft due to inadequate on-site security, the occurrence may cost you your business. Strengthening your on-site security system helps protect your business, attract new tenants and keep current tenants happy. Here are our top five ways to ensure you’re being proactive about your self-storage facility’s security:
Lighting is critical to your facility. Your tenants want to feel secure arriving at and leaving their units at all hours of the day. Therefore, lighting should be prominent outside and inside all buildings and hallways. Broken bulbs and switches must be replaced immediately. Motion detectors are an excellent option for lighting between units and are easy to install throughout your facility.
Keep your facility clean. General upkeep such as cutting the grass, refreshing paint and having a neat office area will show current and future tenants you care about your facility and their belongings. Well-kept property can also deter criminal activity.
Install working cameras on the property and place monitors in your waiting areas and office so they are the first thing people see when they walk in your door. Cameras will show tenants you know what is happening on your property. Then, if an emergency occurs, you can use the footage from your surveillance cameras to be proactive.
Fencing is necessary. Whether you install chain link or decorative fencing, it should cover most of your property to keep strangers from walking in or around your facility. Your facility should have gates, but your office needs to be accessible without going through a gate. If the gate is visible from your office, you can see everyone entering and exiting the facility. If you leave your gate open, it can easily compromise your security.
Another added layer of security once tenants are inside the gates is an electronic locking system. These systems are integrated into the door tracks, making it easy to secure your unit at all times.
Updating your facility with the latest security systems can be pricey. As technology develops, your security options range from wireless surveillance to high-resolution video monitoring. However, financing for security and facility upgrades is available. If you have questions on where to begin with security improvements or how financing can help you get started, visit https://www.liveoakbank.com/self-storage/
Anna Taylor joined Live Oak Bank in 2013.
She was a dedicated Credit Officer for over a year before joining the Self-Storage team as a Loan Officer. With a background in credit and financial analysis, Anna is committed to helping clients navigate the loan application process. A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Anna earned a degree in Advertising and also completed the Minor in Entrepreneurship Program.
Pros and Cons of Self Storage SBA Loans vs. Traditional Loans
Decide wisely between SBA and traditional loans for your self-storage business. SBA offers lower down payments, but traditional loans provide lender reliability. Make informed investment choices for your storage facility.