Though the Raleigh, N.C., Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) ranks No. 42 in the United States in number of self-storage facilities, it has the industry’s fastest growth rate of supply among the nation’s top 50 MSAs. In the next year, 1.9 million net rentable square feet of self-storage is expected to come online in Raleigh, representing a 23.1 percent increase, according to a study released by STR Inc., a global supplier of data and information services for the health-club, hotel and self-storage industries.
As of January, Raleigh had 168 operating self-storage facilities comprising about 8.1 million net rentable square feet, with 42 percent independently owned and 58 percent affiliated with a chain. The operators with the largest presence in the market are Ample Storage, Life Storage Inc. and Public Storage Inc. The average size of the existing facilities is around 48,500 net rentable square feet, the report states.
Of the 48 Raleigh-area storage development projects being tracked by STR, 12 are expansions to existing properties. Within the pipeline of new construction, 13 are under construction, while 19 are in the planning phase and four are in the final stages of planning. STR predicts 29 of the projects will be complete in the next year.
Raleigh’s self-storage supply has been trending upward since 2013, growing 37.8 percent through 2017, according to commercial real estate services firm Marcus & Millichap. The growth has paralleled increases population, which grew 15.3 percent (1.3 million people) from 2010 to 2016, the STR report states.
“When combining U.S Census Bureau data and STR’s ranking of the Top 50 largest MSAs for self-storage, Raleigh’s population growth from 2010 to 2016 ranked third, behind only Austin, Texas, and Fort Myers, Florida,” wrote STR analysts.
STR believes the self-storage growth rate in Raleigh as well as other U.S. markets is likely to slow in the near term. “We expect in the not-too-distant future—whether that’s six months, 12 months, 18 months, I can’t tell you—that the pipeline will start to flatten out, and the percentage of projects in the pipeline that make it through to completion will go down,” Anne Hawkins, executive vice president of STR, told a source.
STR launched a self-storage database in 2015 designed to offer development and performance reporting. A reporting page on its website allows industry professionals to share information about new self-storage developments in the United States including expected completion dates. STR uses its collected data to provide aggregated market-segment data, competitive benchmarking, construction pipeline reports and industry forecasts in the sectors served by the company.
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