This week I learned…

Revelations from Inside Self-Storage WorldExpo in Las Vegas

I spent the week immersed in all things self-storage and learned something at every single seminar I attended! Whether the focus was on self-storage businesses for sale, self-storage business plans, how to start a self-storage business or overall self-storage investing, there were true golden nuggets to mine:

Highlights include:

· BIM is a miracle –Did you know that if you get a laser scanner and use it to scan the inside of a building you want to convert to a self-storage business, it will produce a 3-D image of the building? And then you can give that map to your architect, engineers and contractors so that they can see how all of the electrical, HVAC, structural, etc will actually work together?

BIM stands for Building Information Modeling. BIM can also be used on new construction. Although it might seem expensive up front – between $1.75-$3 psf – it pays for itself many times over by virtually eliminating change orders and helping with scheduling. Definitely something to keep in mind if you are starting a self-storage business or doing a self-storage conversion.

· DIY laser scanning – The BIM speaker said the laser scan costs $1-1.50 psf to scan your building. However, the speaker just before him revealed you can rent a scanner and easily do it yourself for about $400. This would be a much cheaper way to see what you are working with in the self-storage feasibility study and analysis stage of your project when you are doing a conversion.

· Climate control does not mean the same thing to everyone – True climate control means you are controlling air movement, temperature and humidity. If you are just controlling one of these things, you need to call it what it is to avoid liability. Either way, smart self-storage consulting groups will use this as a marketing positioning tactic to differentiate yourself from your competition by educating your clientele.

· Best quote of the conference – Definitely by Jamie Lindau from Trachte. “Those are 504,000 people who don’t know where to put it.” In reference to record number of RV’s sold in 2017. Easily the most entertaining speaker I saw!

Whatever type of self-storage investing you are pursuing, attend as many events like this as possible and your business is sure to prosper as a result.