It’s of continuing concern to me that having just valued another provincial (smaller scale) self storage facility operated by a local estate agent, I have once again been confronted with management that is unhelpful, reactive and lacking focus, using reporting tools that are simplistic and too high-level, and by agency staff themselves who are removed and disinterested.
Many also have an often-apparent disregard for, or lack of knowledge about, potential OH&S matters and legal implications that may affect your operations. The degree of professional ignorance I find time and again is doing you, as owners, a disservice for what you pay for.
The quality of the local agency staff can directly impact and affect your economic occupancy, gross and net rental returns and hence capital value. Many agents are not Self Storage Association members, do not understand the industry, and do not use standard Self Storage Association monthly rental agreements. Furthermore, very few have even heard of StorMan. I therefore have little access to dependable historic trading data beyond interview with those agents, and in smaller country markets, where agents many times look after several stores, that can be of concern.
If you choose to be “hands off” with your business, find a good agent that understands self storage, one that has transparent and understandable reporting procedures in place (such as those offered in StorMan’s range of self storage management packages), is proactive and interested in your facility (and not just dealing with you as one of many in its “rental pool”), and one that understands the differences between self storage and leasehold – many simply do not.
Knowledge is value. And at the end of the day, it’s your value that counts.