Reed Market Storage: Turning Profit, Starting a Trend With Business-Warehouse Units

Michael Gutmann Comments
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Small-Business Warehouses

We love our RV and boat customers. What we didn’t expect was the wide variety of new customers our business now supports. In fact, many of our tenants are using their units as individual business warehouses. The size, accessibility and convenience of the facility have filled a need we even didn’t know the community desired.  

When we look at the harsh realities of small-business operation and inventory costs in the current economy, it makes a lot of sense. In the recent past, a small-business owner might have leased flex-space, which included a reception and office area, bathroom and adjoining storage area. This type of commercial property might lease for $1,500 to $2,500 a month, depending on location, size and other factors. The storage area was used for inventory and miscellaneous equipment.

Today, the new model for a small business is a home office and a storage unit for equipment and inventory, drastically lowering overhead. A business owner can scale back rental costs while maintaining a healthy inventory. Anyone who has worked out of a home office understands the convenience and efficiency. With an extra-large self-storage unit, inventory storage problems are solved with compelling savings.

Reed Market Storage’s occupancy has been close to full based on a wide variety of small-business applications. With our customers finding such a tremendous savings, we have to wonder: Will a product of today’s recession lead to even more home-office plus self-storage warehousing in the future? It certainly looks very attractive today.
 
Michael Gutmann is the managing director for VGX Capital LLC, a private investment company. A small-business owner and operator, he co-developed and operates Reed Market Storage in Bend, Ore. He was a software engineer and manager for Intel Corp. for 20 years. To reach him, e-mail mike@vgxcapital.com.

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