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Nebraska Governor Signs Self-Storage Facilities Act

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Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts signed Legislative Bill 492 (LB 492) on May 12, establishing the state’s first Self-Service Storage Facilities Act. The state previously operated without a comprehensive law to govern self-storage lien proceedings. The new measure enables storage operators to e-mail tenant-default notifications and conduct lien auctions online. They can also deny tenants access to their units if any part of rent is past due and can begin lien proceedings when a tenant is in default for more than 45 days. The act stipulates tenants must be notified at least 45 days before the date of a lien sale, and operators must advertise the sale “in any commercially reasonable manner” at least seven days prior to auction.

Similar to recent lien laws passed in other states, LB 492 deems the public lien-sale notice “commercially reasonable” as long as three independent bidders attend the auction in person or online. Lien sales can be public or private proceedings, and storage operators may buy a delinquent tenant’s property during the auction, according to the bill.

The law also allows self-storage operators to place limits on the value of belongings that may be stored. A value limit in a signed rental agreement would be considered the maximum value of the stored personal property should unit contents be sold to satisfy a lien.

LB 492 also enables operators to have vehicles towed if tenants are more than 60 days delinquent.

The measure passed the legislature on May 8. Its contents also update provisions related to the State Boat Act and Motor Vehicle Certificate of Title Act. It was supported by the Nebraska Self Storage Owners Association and national Self Storage Association (SSA).

Alaska is now the only state without a formal self-storage act, according to SSA officials. The association expects future legislative updates to be signed in Colorado, Florida, Hawaii and Texas, according to a May 29 e-mail newsletter to its members.

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