Self-Storage Security Equipment: Providing Protection and Increasing Occupancy

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Alarming individual units has never been easier or more affordable. Like most technologies, the cost continues to decrease even though the product continues to improve. That means in most cases you can get a wireless door sensor with amazing technology that prevents false alarming and comes with batteries guaranteed for 10 years or more, all at a price that was unheard of five years ago. When you compare the improvements to wireless technology against the ever-increasing costs of copper wiring, the choice is simple on which technology you should choose for your modern facility.

Digital Video Surveillance

The last major security system that every site should have is digital video surveillance. The ability to clearly see what is happening around your facility is priceless, and with the technology available today there is no reason why a site on the tightest budget couldn’t have some form of digital video surveillance.

The heart of your video system is a digital video recorder (DVR). This unit, similar to your TiVo or cable-TV recorder, digitally records the video captured by the cameras around the facility. The average hard-drive size these days is around 500GB, which should give the typical site at least a month of recording time depending on the number of cameras and frequency of activity. Instead of old VHS tapes to record and transfer events, you simply do a quick search by camera, time, date or a combination of these, and copy the event onto a CD, DVD or external USB flash drive. It really is that easy.

The other technological leap the DVR provides is the ability to remotely access your video system from anywhere in the world. Almost all DVRs available today have some form of remote access that can be accessed via the Internet using an IP address and username/password, or by using a more full-featured remote software program that allows you to do more advanced functions such as review and transfer recorded video, control Pan-Tilt-Zoom (PTZ) cameras, etc.

Facility Communications

Once you have the basics taken care of you may want to look at supplemental security components, such as paging and music. Playing music at your facility adds a feeling of comfort, especially in large, sprawling sites. Background music, paging announcements and the ability to communicate with the office via strategically placed intercom stations improves the overall sense of security for a tenant.

Another piece of security that is often overlooked is the office security component. The office and apartment areas are just as likely to be targets for thieves as tenant units. It is important to have an alarm system that covers all perimeter access as well as motion inside. Wireless models allow you to add security as an upgrade or more security without worrying about wiring.

A security vendor that offers software, access control, digital video surveillance and wireless door alarms can provide a tight integration that would allow you to observe all movement and access around your facility. When selecting your security and software systems, remember to plan ahead to ensure all the security and software components work in seamless synergy. This will lead to happier tenants, a more secure facility and higher revenue.

Paul Brandenburg is the commercial sales manager for Van Nuys, Calif.-based QuikStor Security & Software. He has more than eight years of self-storage experience, including six years with QuickStor. To reach him, call 800.321.1987, ext. 207; e-mail pbrandenburg@quikstor.com; visit www.quikstor.com.

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