Self-storage has boomed over the last 20 years, and along with that boom, sites have sprung up in just about every town. So how do you differentiate your store from the site down the road?
What happens when the customer has a choice of where to store if multiple sites exist close by? In most cities, potential renters face that choice every day. It can be argued that they may choose a store based on price or special offers, but surveys show that security of their goods is paramount. Price is almost always further down the list. After all, would you store your goods at a site where you didn’t think they were secure?
Keeping Your Investment
Individual door alarms have had the biggest impact on self-storage security over the last 20 years. CCTV is the other clear solution for self-storage security. Surveillance—or the threat of it—has a big effect on renters, and they tend to behave themselves when they think their actions are being monitored.
What do these systems deliver? Simply put: an edge over the site that does not have them. The security of people’s goods has been one of the primary causes of a change in business patterns, especially for those sites that have little security when another store with all the latest security features opens up down the road.
To ensure you get the best value from the security system you have already installed, take these simple steps:
Maintain what you have purchased. Security systems are just like any other piece of equipment. Some components have a finite life—like batteries used for backups. Make sure that door switches are aligned and working, cameras are focused and in good repair. Create a regular maintenance schedule for the equipment. Clean keypads regularly. Also, don’t make claims that cannot be substantiated. If you have sign up that says “24-hour surveillance” and you don’t have anyone sitting in front of the monitor 24/7, you are lying and open to criticism or even legal action in the event of an incident. A better sign might read: “24-hour event CCTV recorded.”
Monitor your security system diligently. Many sites have systems installed and, for whatever reason, just don’t use them. You spent the money, so make sure you use the recorded information. Access logs and CCTV footage can reveal interesting tenant activity and, used diligently, can uncover undesirable activities and potential security threats daily. Make sure the management software link is working and the correct PIN numbers have been downloaded.