How To Buy a Storage Facility: Top 10 Things You Need To Know

How To Buy a Storage Facility: Top 10 Things You Need To Know

Buying a storage facility as an investment? You’re on the right track. This venture can be highly lucrative, offering a steady income stream and a relatively low-maintenance business model. However, to reap these financial benefits, careful planning and consideration are key. And you need to weigh the pros and cons. Let’s explore ten tips that can guide you through this exciting journey.

1. Do Your Research

Before you take the plunge, it’s crucial to arm yourself with knowledge. Conduct thorough market research to understand the demand for storage units in your target area. Look into factors such as population growth, local economy, and competition. A feasibility study can provide valuable insights, helping you determine if the location is viable and if the projected income justifies the investment.

2. Take a Look at Existing Facilities

If you’re considering buying an existing facility, assess its current performance. Review occupancy rates, rental rates, and financial statements. Look for facilities with consistent revenue and minimal vacancies. Also, inspect the physical condition of the property. Poorly maintained facilities may require significant investment in repairs and upgrades.

3. Know Your Types

You’ll want to choose a facility type that matches your market demand and investment capacity. There are several different kinds of storage facilities, including:


These are the most common and offer units of various sizes.

Climate-Controlled Storage

This storage model is ideal for sensitive items that need temperature regulation.

Vehicle Storage

Vehicle storage includes spaces for cars, RVs, and boats and may be paired with other types of storage, such as self-storage units.

Portable Storage

Movable or mobile units can be transported to different locations.

4. Read the Fine Print 

Ensure the facility complies with legal requirements and local zoning laws and regulations. Check for any restrictions that might impact your business operations, such as limitations on signage or business hours. Reviewing the facility’s title for any legal encumbrances or disputes is also important.

5. Consider Your Bottom Line 

Assess your financing options. You may need a combination of personal savings, loans, and investor funding. Banks and lending institutions often offer commercial real estate loans for storage facilities. Prepare a detailed business plan that includes your projected income, expenses, and return on investment (ROI) to present to potential lenders.

6. Do Your Due Diligence When Buying a Storage Facility

Due diligence is a critical step in the purchasing process. This involves thoroughly reviewing the facility’s financial health, legal status, and physical condition. Key areas to focus on include:

  • Analyze past and current revenue, expenses, and profit margins.
  • Review existing tenant contracts and leases for terms and conditions.
  • Hire professionals to inspect the property for structural integrity, pest infestations, and compliance with safety standards.

7. Decide How to Manage the Facility

Will you hire a property management company or handle operations yourself? Consider the costs and benefits of both options. A professional management company can provide expertise and handle day-to-day operations, while self-management can save costs but requires more personal involvement.

8. Get Your Story Out There

Develop a robust marketing plan to attract tenants. To reach potential customers, utilize digital marketing, including social media and search engine optimization (SEO). Local advertising and partnerships with nearby businesses can also be effective. Highlight unique features of your facility, such as security measures, accessibility, and customer service.

9. Turn Up Your Tech

Incorporate technology to streamline operations and enhance the customer experience. Implement online booking and payment systems, install security cameras, and use access control systems. Technology can also help you monitor occupancy rates and manage customer data efficiently.

10. Think Ahead

Consider the future growth of your storage facility. Plan for potential expansions or upgrades that could increase your revenue. Stay updated with industry trends and customer preferences to continually adapt and improve your services.

Buying a storage facility can be rewarding if approached with diligence and strategic planning. You can ensure a successful and profitable venture by conducting thorough market research, performing due diligence, and understanding financial and legal details. Remember, the key to success in this industry lies in maintaining high occupancy rates, providing excellent customer service, and continually adapting to market needs.