News

Capco Celebrates 21st Year

Capco Steel Inc., a nationwide steel supply and erection company headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, celebrated 21 years in business in September. Capco is involved in the preplanning, design, engineering, production and erection of metal-frame structures for self-storage buildings. Info: www.capcosteel.com


Quality Self Storage Voted Business of the Year

Quality Self Storage was a dual recipient of the Punta Gorda, Fla., Chamber of Commerce Donna Heidenreich Business of the Year Award. Quality has been involved with helping churches, schools and nonprofit organizations before and after Hurricane Charley. It has frequently provided service organizations with free storage at its warehouse.


Michigan Racquet Club Goes Storage

Donna Blake used to play tennis at the 60,000-square-foot racquet club in Jackson, Mich. Now she works there. Blake and her family have turned the former Jackson Racquet Club into a 60-unit facility, reported The Jackson Citizen Patriot in a September. The Blakes are putting more than $1 million into the business to transform the defunct club into a climate-controlled facility. They say its real selling point is the 12-foot-wide and 14-foot-high openings at either end, which are big enough to drive a moving van through.


U-Haul Bites on Tiger Tacos

U-Haul International will give consumers an opportunity to buy Tiger Tacos on its website, the manufacturer announced. Arizona-based Tiger Taco International is a new company that recently introduced its taco invention to the self-storage industry. The taco makes packing and unpacking boxes safer and easier by eliminating box flap hassles. POP kits of 24 Tiger Tacos cost $69.95; for orders exceeding five kits, the company will inexpensively add a facility logo. Info: www.tigertaco.com


Football Celeb Switzer to Present at ISS Expo

Renowned ex-football coach Barry Switzer will deliver the keynote address for the upcoming Inside Self-Storage Las Vegas Expo, Feb. 20-23, at Mandalay Bay.

Switzer was the head coach for the Dallas Cowboys and Oklahoma University Sooners. He has one of the highest winning percentages of any college coach in history, and is one of only two head coaches to win both a national collegiate championship and a Super Bowl.

Since his football career, Switzer penned a best-selling autobiography, Bootleggers Boy. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame and received the Jim Thorpe Lifetime Achievement Award. He also founded Switzers Locker Room, a chain of Midwest self-storage facilities, in 2003.

The ISS Vegas Expo is sponsored by ISS magazine. Info: www.insideselfstorage.com/expo


NYC Market Overbuilt?

An Oct. 4 article in The New York Times examines whether the New York City self-storage market is overbuilt after years of explosive growth. Space to Spare describes the city as home to 292 self-storage facilities as of 2005, up from 65 a decade earlier.

A partner at Manhattan-based Storage Deluxe told the Times the 13-facility company was being cautious with its plans for expansion; five more facilities are due to open next year, but beyond that, there are no plans for new buildings.

As competition has intensified, facility owners have begun offering concessions such as first month free on leases; monthly rents range from $29 for a locker to $2,500 for a 300-square-foot space.

American Self-Storage, which hasnt purchased a building since 2003, closed its 10th Avenue facility last year and leased it to a package-delivery service, substantially increasing per-square-foot revenue. The company is adding features such as shipping centers and offices to keep other locations competitive, said a managing partner, who assessed customer demand and the industrys future as extremely strong.


Free Seminars Offered to Industry

BETCO and S&W Group are sponsoring free seminars next month. The companies will present "Building Your Future in Self-Storage, Jan. 17 at the Marriott Charlotte Executive Park in Charlotte, N.C.

"What Every Self-Storage Owner Should Know," will be hosted by S&W Group on Jan. 18, also at the Marriott Charlotte Executive Park.

To register or for more information, call 888.817.9422.


Pack Rat Courts Self-Storage Facilities

The portable self-storage company 1-800-PACK-RAT exhibited at the North Carolina Self Storage Association conference in October. The company seeks to partner with traditional self-storage businesses, offering a percentage of revenue for no investment. It has created alliances with independent self-storage providers in Washington, D.C., North Carolina and Chicago.

Aligning with traditional self storage companies seems like the natural thing to do, said company CEO Robert Poirier. Theres no reason why we cant join forces to provide customers with the most extensive range of services possible. The speed at which self-storage businesses are partnering with us is proof that were doing something beneficial to both industries.

1-800-PACK-RAT delivers a weather-proof container to customers homes or businesses, where it can be filled at their own pace before being picked up on demand to be moved to another location or stored in PACK-RATs climate-controlled warehouses.

Founded in 2003, the Washington, D.C.-based company now has 18 facilities operating in 11 states, and will have 25 facilities open by the end of the year. Info: www.1800packrat.com


Smartbox Expands to Baltimore

Smartbox, a portable self-storage company, brought its service to Baltimore in recent weeks, continuing an expansion this year that has included new franchises in Atlanta; New Orleans; Raleigh, N.C.; and Jacksonville, Fla.

Smartbox delivers containers that can hold the contents of up to 1½ rooms (3,000 pound capacity). Clients pack the boxes then call the company for pickup and delivery to a warehouse or other moving location; they may also opt to store the boxes on their own property. Based in Richmond, Va., the company also has franchises in Virginia. Info: www.smartboxusa.com


NDS Allies With Building-Component Companies

NDS Construction, a design/build general contractor based in Bulverde, Texas, has become an independent authorized dealer for two building-component companies, Hi-Tech Tilt and Rigid Building Systems. Hi-Tech Tilt uses patented composite building technology to produce light and versatile concrete walls. Rigid Building Systems, based in Houston, manufactures pre-engineered metal-building systems.

NDS recently completed a 13,760-square-foot expansion of Five Star Mini Storage in San Antonio, the first self-storage project to use Hi-Tech products. This newest generation of tilt-wall product is more cost-effective, lighter weight and more efficiently producedand it reduces construction time, said Victor Lopez, NDS president. Using 2 inches as opposed to 6 inches of concrete, the walls are poured on site with embedded metal studs, then lifted and set in place using a crane. Exterior facade effects are unlimited, and adding insulation between the metal studs yields a more energy-efficient wall than either traditional tilt or CMU block walls.

Established in 1986, NDS is part of the newly launched Parham Group, which also comprises Cross Metal Buildings, Joshua Management, Maverick Investments and Noahs Ark Development. Info: www.the1resource.com


N.J. Storage Operators Charge New Tax

New Jersey self-storage operators began charging a 7 percent sales tax on units on Oct. 1. In July, Gov. Jon S. Corzine proposed a 1 percent increase on the existing state sales tax as well as an additional levy on previously untaxed services, including self-storage, tanning salons, tattoo parlors and health clubs. The tax expansion is expected to raise $332 million annually.

Mike Lackland, owner of Lackland Self Storage, which has 21 New Jersey sites, told The Associated Press the first week he lost about a dozen customers who wanted to avoid paying the tax. Other operators shared their woes with the media, saying the new tax created a lot of additional accounting work and confusion on behalf of customers.

The New Jersey Self Storage Association filed a law suit with the Federal Court in Newark, N.J., alleging the tax violates constitutional protections. Association President Chris McGrath said, The state has selected a very narrow sector of commercial real property and applied a sales tax to it. Info: www.njssa.org

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