Contributing Editors

Texas SSA Donates $33,000 to Shriners Children's Hospital

by Winnie Hsiu January 13, 2010 8:57 AM
The Texas Self Storage Association announced this morning that it has donated almost $33,000 to the Shriners Children's Hospital in Galveston. The money will be used to help pay for medical treatment for critically burned children. The Shriners Children's Hospital has specialized in burn treatment and research since its opening in the mid-1960s. In addition to treating burn injuries and scarring, the hospital also provides physical rehabilitation and treatment of emotional trauma. Shriners Children's Hospital does not charge for treatment; children are admitted to the hospital based on their need for its services.

TSSA Executive Director Ginny Sutton and Director of Marketing and Membership Silvia Pendleton presented the donation to the hospital's Donor Relations representative, Jim Smith, at the TSSA's Round Rock offices on January 6. [More]

Hawaii Self Storage Offers 12 College Scholarships

by Holly Robinson January 12, 2010 4:28 PM
Hawaii Self Storage is offering 12 scholarships to high school students on the island of Oahu. Students who apply must attend high school near one of Hawaii Self Storage's five locations: Salt Lake, Pearl City, Kaimuki, Mililani, and Kapolei. Students who receive a scholarship will receive $1,000, renewable annually, toward their college education. At most, students may receive $4,000 for college over four years.

Hawaii Self Storage has been offering college scholarships since 2005, when it awarded seven scholarships. The scholarship program was designed to invest in Hawaii's future business leaders. [More]

Self-Storage Companies Offer E-Waste Recycling

by Tony Gonzalez January 12, 2010 1:03 PM
Several self-storage companies around the country are beginning to offer electronic-waste, or e-waste, recycling centers on site for the convenience of their patrons. The most recent company to do so is A-American Self Storage, a privately-held self-storage company. A-American has more than 100 locations in five states, but it is going to start the e-waste recycling program with drop off sites at its eight Nevada locations, which are all in the Reno area. A-American is offering the e-waste recycling service in conjunction with Greenworks Environmental LLC. Greenworks is a green designer, builder, and land planning firm.

The public can drop end-of-life electronics off at the self-storage sites, where staff members will inventory them and handle them carefully. Most electronics and electronic components can be recycled there. For example, the e-waste recycling centers will accept computers, televisions, cell phones, cables, etc. Hard drives, however, are destroyed rather than recycled, for customer security reasons. A-American does not want to be responsible if a recycled hard drive falls into the wrong hands and provides someone unscrupulous with information that he or she should not have. There is no charge to drop off e-waste. All eight facilities are open seven days a week, and all recycling is done in an environmentally responsible way, so that no hazardous substances, such as mercury or lead, are leached into the ground or the groundwater. [More]

Hobbyists Peddling Stored Collections to South Asian Buyers

by John Stevens January 11, 2010 9:48 AM
People who have been using self-storage as a place to keep their ever-increasing collections of coins, stamps, or wine may find that their investment has paid off. If they wish to, they may be able to find buyers for those collections--in India. The Economic Times of India reports that in India, as in the West, the gap between rich and poor has been increasing in recent years. Although India has a reputation for being one of the poorest countries in the world, it also boasts more than 50 billionaires. Furthermore, at the moment, collections are very fashionable among wealthy Indian businesspeople.

The market for rare object collections in India is currently relatively unorganized, according to Economic Times reporter Aman Dhall. One Indian auction house, Todywalla, is known to specialize in coins and banknotes. "They deal only in high-end coins. They have a catalogue beyond which they don't fish," says Hrishi Modi, a director at ASK Private Wealth Advisors. Modi collects rare coins and stamps himself. Like many collectors, Modi began his hobby as a child, when his father brought back coins and stamps from trips abroad. Now his collection includes gold coins from the Kushan Dynasty, silver dollars from Calcutta, Iran Persia stamps from 1897 and Nazi era coins. [More]

Analysts Continue to Favor Self-Storage REITs Over Others

by Kim Kilpatrick January 11, 2010 7:51 AM
At the end of the year, business journals all over the country began evaluating the performance of REITs in the 2009 markets, and forecasting what is to come in 2010. The Wall Street Journal published an article predicting that 2010 will be a more stable year for real estate markets, and noting that REITs (real estate investment trusts) continued to do well in 2009, showing their strongest performance since 2006. The Seattle Times called REITS "some of the decade's best investments." Forbes, as well, weighed in, noting in mid-December that while REITS were risky, careful investors could still do well. Over the weekend, the New York Times jumped on the bandwagon as well.

Most analysts quoted in the media have recommended self-storage as one of the least risky REIT options available going into 2010. Analysts also recommended REITs focused on apartment buildings, shopping centers, and hotels. Toward the year's end, two California-based REITs took the advice of analysts and added more self-storage facilities to their own portfolios. Late in December, Bancap Self Storage Group brokered the sale of a Hesperia self storage facility, and Strategic Storage Trust, Inc. (SSTI) bought two Pittsburgh self-storage facilities. [More]

Extra Space Listed as One of "Top Best Dividend Stocks to Own in 2010"

by Winnie Hsiu January 8, 2010 5:04 PM
Yesterday, CEOWorld Magazine listed Extra Space Storage as one of its "Top Best Dividend Stocks to Own in 2010." Extra Space is in good company on CEOWorld's list -- the other stocks on the list include market giants Altria Group (the parent company of Philip Morris), Best Buy, Colgate-Palmolive, Harsco (formerly the Harrisburg Steel Corporation), Intel, Sysco, and Visa.

Explaining CEOWorld's choice of Extra Space for the list, writer Amarendra Bhushan says that Extra Space is the second largest self-storage operator in the United States and that it "is a growth-oriented company creating a new standard in the self-storage industry. Both customers and communities benefit from Extra Space Storage's professional approach to storage." She goes on, "Featuring attractive, convenient and secure facilities operated by professional managers, Extra Space Storage seeks to change the association of self storage as a temporary holding place for rarely-used things to a desirable, safe, and customer-oriented facility perfectly suited for maintaining and accessing valued personal and business possessions." [More]

Study Shows Many Regret Tossing Out Items They Could Have Stored

by Winnie Hsiu January 8, 2010 2:26 PM
An online study released this week showed that more than half of survey respondents regretted throwing away personal items just to save space. The study was conducted in the United Kingdom, by British self-storage company Safestore. Survey respondents especially regretting tossing out old clothes, photographs, and other items of sentimental value, such as family memorabilia.

Saving space is a topic that is frequently on the minds of Britons. In August 2009, a study conducted by CABE, the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, showed that of all Europeans, British have the smallest homes. About 45 percent of people in Britain say that they have just barely enough space to live in, while 50 percent say that they do not have enough space and their homes are too cluttered. [More]

Northrop Grumman Relocates Los Angeles Office to Washington, D.C.

by Holly Robinson January 7, 2010 5:10 AM
Just as the Washington, D.C. area Beltway gears up for the Fort Belvoir relocation, which will bring 19,000 new jobs -- and a potential traffic nightmare -- to the region, defense contractor Northrop Grumman (NG) has announced that it, too, is relocating to the Washington area. "As a global security company with a large customer base," explained NG president and CEO Wes Bush, "this move will enable us to better serve our nation and customers."

The District will have some time to prepare for its newest influx of workers, as NG has not chosen a new location yet. The company plans to move only about 300 members of its corporate staff at this time. The relocating staff members will come from NG's Los Angeles offices....When NG's corporate employees do move out of Los Angeles, they may be in for an unwelcome surprise as they start looking for housing in the Washington, D.C. area. Housing in Washington is 13% more expensive than housing in Los Angeles. The overall cost of living in Washington is about 7% higher than the cost of living in L.A. The differences are mostly in the areas of housing and transportation -- food and health care cost about the same in both places, and utilities are a little less expensive in Washington. Relocating employees may want to use the following resources as they research the Washington D.C. area: [More]

Free 'All Calls' Strategy Webinar to Take Place January 27

by Tony Gonzalez January 6, 2010 11:53 PM
MiniCo Publishing is adding another free webinar to its 2010 Mini-Storage Messenger self-storage webinar series. The webinar, "The 'All Calls' Strategy: Why This Model Makes Business Sense Today," will be held on January 27, at 1:00 pm ET, 12:00 pm CT, 11:00 am MT, and 10:00 am PT. It will be presented by Cynthia Abraham and Larry Rolando, the vice presidents of OpenTech Alliance, Inc., a Phoenix-based company. MiniCo Publishing and Storage Marketing Solutions will sponsor the webinar, which will be moderated by Poppy Behrens of MiniCo Publishing.

The Mini-Storage Messenger Self-Storage Webinar Series is held monthly or bimonthly, and is offered free of charge to owners, operators, developers, and other professionals within the self-storage industry. Webinar participants must register online at the Mini-Storage Messenger website. [More]

Jan. 25 Deadline to Nominate Outstanding Green Facility

by John Stevens January 6, 2010 12:20 PM
Mini-Storage Messenger, a monthly trade periodical for the self-storage industry, is accepting nominations for its 2010 Outstanding Green Facility award. Nominations will be accepted until January 25, 2010. The competition is open to all self-storage facilities. Facilities may be nominated by owners, operators, builders, managers, or others. The facilities that win the award will be sent a trophy, and will be featured in an article in the April 2010 issue of Mini-Storage Messenger. [More]
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