U.K. self-storage operator Safestore reported a drop in its monthly rental rates during the first quarter of its fiscal year, which ended Jan. 31, but indicated a slowdown in declines across its portfolio in France and the United Kingdom.
The average monthly rate across the company’s portfolio dropped 2.8 percent during the quarter to £24.18. In the U.K., rates dropped 4.8 percent during the three-month period, but less than 1 percent from the previous quarter—the lowest fourth-quarter to first-quarter reduction in three years, according to the source.
Although the first quarter is historically the company’s slowest, Safestore officials credited improvements in the U.K. housing market for marked, year-over-year improvements. The company reported a 5.9 percent increase in revenue, year over year, for its French holdings.
“Our French business has made a particularly good start, and we are seeing improving occupancy and rate trends in the U.K.,” said Frederic Vecchioli, chief executive. “The measures we are taking to improve rental rates will take some time to impact the entire customer base and feed through to revenues, but we are encouraged by the improving trend.”
Safestore operates 134 self-storage facilities, including 97 wholly owned U.K. locations and 25 wholly owned facilities in France. The company also has 12 locations under management in the U.K. It serves approximately 46,000 total customers and employs about 550 people.