Self storage auctions: what you need to know – part 1

Self storage auctions: what you need to know – part 1

A self storage auction is what occurs when a storage facility has to disabuse itself for one reason or another of abandoned items in storage. Not only is it a way for the self storage business to more easily get rid of unwanted items by allowing auction bidders to remove the entirety of an abandoned storage unit, to the wise and attentive auction bidder they can be a source of profit with a sense of adventure. Each new storage unit is a mystery to explore for the lucky bidder who wins the auction, but not every storage unit is chock-full of treasure. By following a few basic guidelines you can increase your chances of stumbling across hidden treasure while avoiding expensive mistakes.

Now popular in the mainstream media thanks to a documentary style television show about the adventures of a few professional auction buyers and storage treasure hunters, self storage auctions are more heavily attended than ever. This means that the more prepared you are the better your chances will be against a growing amount of competition.

Perhaps the most important overriding principle of bidding in a self storage auction is the simple mantra, “Use Common Sense.” Sure, on television you see auction hunters digging out valuable antiques from amongst piles of otherwise unwanted and even depressingly worthless dross. Real auction hunters know that these diamonds in the rough are rare despite their relative frequency in auction shows. What is more likely is to find salable and well-kept valuable items in those storage units which look clean and well-kept themselves.

Even though you may not find precious coins or expensive antiques in every clean and organized storage unit up for auction a good Auction Hunter knows that at the end of the day it is not these rare finds that give you the best return on money, rather it is more common goods that are of proper condition. Sure, a coin collection or precious vase may bring a single high payday but properly store and wrapped appliances and furniture are valuable as well and far more common. Holding out hope for the hidden treasure while ignoring the common sense profits of everyday items is like buying lottery tickets. A serious auction Hunter does not rely on luck.

Before the auction begins you are allowed a look inside each storage unit that will be up on the block for bidding. To use this time most effectively make sure you are prepared for your turn. While you need not go to such extremes as night vision gear or telescopic lenses there are a few items that you can easily carry with you to make your job appearing into the dark history of a self storage unit from the doorway much easier. First is a strong flashlight or better yet handheld spotlight. This will allow you to see back into the dark corners and revealed details of items lurking in the shadows. It can also be helpful to have a small stool or stepladder, to allow you a higher vantage from which to peer into the far reaches of the storage unit under consideration. Last but not least make sure you have on hand pen and paper for taking notes. Depending on the organization of the auction you may view numerous storage units in a short span of time before bidding on each one, taking notes is the best way to remind yourself of which units you prefer to bid on and why.

When the bidding process begins it is important that you have a set price in mind, and that you do not exceed that set price. This will help you to stay inside of your budget plan, which is the only true path to success and profit in storage auction hunting. Do not be afraid to approach the auctioneer before bidding begins to offer up a high opening bid if you are confident on a certain unit. And while the bidding process should be fun remember it is also a serious business do not upset the auctioneer or your fellow bidders by making small increases on the bid amount. If you are serious increase your bid by a reasonable number.