Many people use self storage facilities these days. They are easy to use, convenient, relatively inexpensive and sometimes necessary when you just can’t find the room for certain things. But how safe are they? How do you know that your most prized possessions are going to still be there, undamaged, when you return for them?
SSA UK has addressed this and many other issues when it comes to self storage facilities. RewardExpert recently had the pleasure of speaking with Rennie Schafer, CEO of SSA UK, about what the organization has done to keep our valuables safe.
History of the Organization
In 1994 a small group of self storage owners came together to share some ideas and form an organization that could lobby on behalf of the industry, setting a common standard for all who were involved in the self storage business. When the Association was officially incorporated a year later, it had 23 members.
“This was the first self storage association in Europe and only the second outside the USA at the time,” explained Schafer. “One of the main objectives of the Association was to establish a British standard for self storage and a standard legal agreement for customers that use self storage.”
In the 23 years that have taken place since then, they have grown into more than just a standard for business practices. “The Association has a comprehensive legal support service for its members including not just a standard storage agreement, but a full manual of advice and procedures along with free legal advice for its members,” said Schafer.
“There is a British and European standard for self storage that the Association actively maintains and endorses. We now have over 370 members representing almost 900 self storage stores and around 80% of the total self storage space in the country.”
Self Storage Solves Many Issues
The option of having extra storage helps more people than just your typical family dealing with extra things lying around the house. It also helps small businesses and students who don’t have a permanent place to call home while studying.
“Self storage provides solutions to small businesses that could not operate effectively without flexible storage space for their goods or records,” explained Schafer. “Around a third of self storage space is taken by businesses and many of these are small but growing, looking to expand but do not have the space in their home or current premises. Self storage provides a flexible low cost solution for them.”
“Self storage also helps people out at life changing moments. For example, if there is a death in the family, this can be a very traumatic time. The deceased’s goods can be put into self storage until the family is ready to deal with them.”
“Students use self storage to store their items when they leave school over the summer break. People use self storage when renovating their house to create more space but still have access to their items when they need them. There are lots of different reasons people use self storage.”
Contributing to Future Success
As mentioned above, there has already been a huge impact on small businesses who incorporate the use of self storage in their daily practice. This has contributed to a great deal of success with these organizations due to the fact that they are able to essentially grow their space without buying or leasing new warehouse or storefront property.
“There was a large rise in use by small businesses during the recession and this level of use has not fallen since,” explained Schafer. “Last year these businesses added over 800,000 square feet of storage space and this kind of growth, if not more, is expected in the coming years.”
“Growing a small business is a real challenge and many people fail despite having great products or service. Self storage allows businesses to manage their growth by providing low cost local storage solutions that are just the size they need and always accessible. Many self storage stores also offer offices for their customers to use on an as needs basis to work in or meet customers. Some also provide goods receiving services.”
To learn more about how SSA UK can help your growing need, visit their website at ssauk.com today.