Guarding Against Self-Storage Perils: Facility Managers Deter Crime and Ensure Personal Safety

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We have a tenant at one of our facilities who is always inebriated when he comes. As the facility is run by women (usually one at a time) with a maintenance man once a week, he makes us all a little uncomfortable. Fortunately, he doesn't live near the facility and usually mails his payments. When we see him pull in, however, we are sure that we have the pepper spray within quick reach.

The site manager at the same facility was recently threatened by a tenant we auctioned after giving her multiple opportunities to pay and avoid sale, but she left when she realized the manager was calling the police. It's a small town, so the police can usually respond pretty quickly if needed. I believe they also have a free unit and a gate code, just in case they feel like breezing through to check things out.
~Member hnelson310

I have never felt unsafe at my place. So far, so good. It's a little creepy when I come at night, but the most fear I have then is maybe of a snake!
~Senior Member LauraGVAZ

At the property we managed previously, there was reason for fear all the time. The property was in a bad neighborhood that all around us was crime of all sorts.

We were awakened in the middle of the night once with the police helicopter flying low over the property and shining their lights up and down the driveways. We could hear the police and their dogs just outside our bedroom window. My husband did not go out of the apartment until we called 911 to let them know he was coming out and who he was. Long story short, there was a break-in at one of the homes behind the property and the owner shot the person. The police were following a "blood trail" that came into our property as well as exited. Thankfully there was nobody on the property and we were all safe.
~Junior Member Evergreen-ClaremontSS

Our facility here mostly deals with customers that pay with cash because they can't afford credit cards. A number of co-workers say that they are afraid of some of the people that come in, but I grew up in this town and don't fear at all. I have come to the conclusion that if you treat them with respect, you get respect. A lot of the times, if you give it first and they get nasty with you, you can instantly say, "Can I ask for some respect?" They may look at you funny, and if they decline, then you can politely say, "I have respected you since you walked through the door. I would ask the same from a nice person like yourself." Works like a charm.

We also have given local law enforcement a gate code, and they do a drive through once a week at odd hours.
~Senior Member LockItUpOgden

I have felt unsafe at my previous location. The facility was in a somewhat sketchy neighborhood as far as crime statistics go, but the only time I ever felt afraid was when an unhappy tenant started to threaten my manager and the owner. A little bit of research with the local police proved we had reason to feel threatened; they were quite familiar with him from previous incidents.

This tenant was always nice enough to me. He reserved his vitriol for the higher-ups, but the situation was tense enough that we kept pepper spray behind the desk for a few weeks, and called in unofficial back up manpower (read: tough guys) when we held an auction and were concerned this person might show up and act out. Nothing ever came of it except a lot of hot air, but we were all glad we were prepared.
~Junior Member mosey330

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