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Self Storage Insight Blog

Making the Move from Single Family Investments to Self Storage

Greg started looking into self-storage about three years ago. He knew a lot about different kinds of buildings and how to make money from them because of his banking job. He thought self-storage seemed like a smart way to make some extra money, especially during 2020 and 2021 when banks were lending money easily.

First Steps and Investments
Greg didn't plan to get deeply involved at first; he just wanted a good investment. He also kept buying and managing houses and small apartment buildings, which he had been doing for ten years.

Learning from a Daycare Business
Greg’s wife wanted to buy a daycare, and he learned a lot from that experience. Here are three important lessons:

  1. Always Be Ready to Help: Quick help means happy customers.
  2. Keep It Simple with Staff: Fewer employees mean fewer problems.
  3. Talk to Your Customers: Good service means customers stay longer.

These ideas helped him a lot when he started running his storage places.

How Greg Manages His Storage Places
Greg makes sure he answers all the calls for his storage facilities himself. He believes that most people will rent from the first storage place that gets back to them. This quick response helps him beat the competition.

Using Technology and Getting Found Online
Greg uses the internet to help more people find his storage places. He works on making his website easy to find and easy to use so younger customers can use their phones to look up his place, read reviews, and even rent a storage unit online.

Buying More Storage Units
Greg looks for storage places that are not too expensive and uses money from his other properties to help buy them. He talks directly to the sellers to get a good deal, which he finds more effective.

The Hard Parts of the Job
Running storage units can be tough. Greg says finding someone to fix things, especially storage door springs, is really hard. He tries to hire people for jobs he can't do himself to save time and avoid stress.

Planning for the Future
Greg is always looking for new opportunities to grow his business. He visits properties he's interested in and talks to the owners about possibly buying them.

Advice for Beginners
If you're thinking about getting into the self-storage business, here’s some advice from Greg:

  • Be Ready Financially: Make sure you have enough money saved up or can borrow money easily.
  • Make Connections: Get to know people who can help you find good deals, like real estate agents and bankers.
  • Start Small: Maybe start by investing a little money in a project with others before doing it on your own.

Greg Smith shows us that with the right knowledge and a willingness to learn and adapt, anyone can succeed in the self-storage business. His story offers great tips for anyone looking to enter this industry.

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