Self Storage Industry

The storage industry is one of the few remaining industries where local, small operators are king. According to industry reports, the top ten operators control less than 20% of the self storage market. Although some markets are saturated, overall the industry continues to grow. National occupancy rates ranged from 85% to 91% in the last few years. As of 1997, 6,994 self storage facilities existed in the United States, with the majority of those establishments in the U.S located in the top eight states of California (1,217), Texas (704), Florida (567), Washington (287), Georgia 240), Virginia (204), Illinois (201), and Ohio (195). All growing at a steady rate.

Finance in the Self Storage Industry
According to the 1997 Economic Census, the average revenue for self storage facilities nationwide was $361,000 in 1997. In Entrepreneur Magazine’s How to Start a Self Storage Center the average net profit before taxes is estimated to be $89,000, with a minimum start up investment of $72,000 and an average start up investment of $350,000. The cost of operating a facility in the self storage industry can be quite low because of low operating costs. On average, there were three employees per self storage facility in 1997 with an annual average payroll of $42,000.

Growth in the Self Storage Industry
According to a document from, the growth in such self storage idustry facilities has added some bulk to the phone book as well. South Central Bell Telephone Co.’s 1993 edition of the Yellow Pages used eight pages to list about 66 temporary storage facilities. BellSouth Corp.’s 1998 counterpart consisted of 13 pages and about 102 providers.

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