Contributing Editors



NAPO to Give Organizing Excellence Award to Waste Not Center

by Winnie Hsiu March 19, 2010 5:35 PM
The National Organization of Professional Organizers has decided to grant its 2010 Organizing Excellence Award to the Waste Not Center of Columbus, Ohio. The award will be presented by Sheila Delson, NAPO’s Awards Committee Chair, at NAPO’s 22nd Annual Conference and Organizing Exposition. The Conference will be held in Columbus from April 21 to 24.

The Waste Not Center is a center dedicated to storing, organizing, and recycling supplies that would otherwise be thrown away. It receives donations of art and office supplies from businesses and individuals, organizes them with its other donations, and stores them. The donations accepted by the Waste Not Center include paper, pads, notebooks, paint, brushes, glue, fabric, pens, markers, foam core, vases, silk flowers, books, videos, folders, envelopes, pencils, and containers. It makes these materials available to artists, teachers, and community organizations for no cost other than a small annual membership fee. On an average day, the Waste Not Center provides about 1500 pounds of material and supplies to between 30 and 40 clients. If its members were to buy the same supplies and materials commercially, they would, collectively, spend an estimated $4,500 each week, or about $250,000 each year. In many cases, therefore, the Waste Not Center gives its members supplies that they could not otherwise afford. [More]

2009 Self Storage Facility of the Year Award Winners Announced

by Winnie Hsiu March 18, 2010 4:39 PM
Mini-Storage Messenger has announced the winners for its coveted Self-Storage Facility of the Year awards. The winners are:

2009 Facility of the Year Overall Winner: Store Self Storage and Wine Storage, of Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Store Self Storage was also featured in an article on wine storage in the Wall Street Journal on March 4th. In addition to its self storage and wine storage areas, Store Self Storage has a wine tasting room, a business center, and a conference room. Store Self Storage also hosts community events such as meetings of the Ballen Isles Wine Lovers Club, and "Wine, Dine and Design," an annual meet and greet event for interior designers. [More]

Spring Cleaning Starts With National Clutter Awareness Week

by Kim Kilpatrick March 18, 2010 4:37 PM
We’ve turned our clocks ahead, the weather is warming up, the first day of spring is approaching, and taxes are due in a month – that means it is time for spring cleaning. For the National Association of Professional Organizers, this week is Clutter Awareness Week. Next month, when taxes are actually due, is Stress Awareness Month. The idea is, clean up your clutter, get organized, and then you will not have as much stress to deal with during Stress Awareness Month. [More]

NPSA Announces Spring Seminar Agenda

by Tony Gonzalez March 18, 2010 4:37 PM
The National Portable Storage Association (NPSA), the trade association for the portable storage industry, has announced its 2010 Spring Seminar agenda. The NPSA's Spring Seminar, an annual event, will be held from April 26-27 at the Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront resort in Virginia Beach, Virginia. [More]

Extra Space Partners with Thanks Again

by Holly Robinson March 17, 2010 10:47 AM
Extra Space Storage and Thanks Again announced today that they have begun a partnership that will allow self-storage tenants to earn airline mileage and other rewards when they reserve a self-storage unit. To earn the mileage or other rewards, a consumer will first have to become a member of Thanks Again, a company that allows consumers to register their credit cards in order to earn rewards when they purchase goods or services at designated merchants (such as Extra Space). Consumers can also register credit cards that already participate in a rewards program, such as United Mileage Plus or Delta Skymiles, and earn rewards both with their credit card's own program and with Thanks Again.

When Thanks Again members place a reservation for a storage unit with Extra Space, they will receive 500 bonus airline miles, or $10 cash back, if they place the reservation using a credit card that is registered with Thanks Again. In addition, new members who have never enrolled with Thanks Again before are eligible to receive an extra 250 bonus miles after the first Thanks Again transaction (through the end of this month). [More]

Self Storage Owner Runs for School Board

by Winnie Hsiu March 17, 2010 10:46 AM
Mike McDaniel, co-owner with his wife, Linda, of Preferred Self Storage in Double Oaks, Texas, has announced that he is running against incumbent Tommy Kim for Place 3 on the Lewisville, Texas school board -- the LISD Board of Trustees. McDaniel filed notice of his campaign on Monday afternoon.

It's not unusual for self-storage owners to take an active role as leaders in the community. Self-storage facilities often become strong proponents of local charities and school fund drives. For Mike McDaniel, running for a position on the school board is a natural extension of the volunteer work that he already does in Lewisville. Last year, Preferred Self Storage, the facility run by Mike and Linda McDaniel, was awarded one of four Humanitarian Service Awards by Inside Self-Storage. The award was based on Preferred's support of the Lewisville High School Circle of Friends Club, a club dedicated to supporting students in the Lewisville area who have developmental challenges. Members of the club find ways to include their developmentally-challenged peers in regular high school activities, by eating lunch with them and taking them on school outings. [More]

Are Virtual Walk-Throughs of Self-Storage Facilities on the Horizon?

by John Stevens March 12, 2010 3:03 PM
Working with Immersive Design Studio, a Montreal-based virtual world developer, Prudential Real Estate and Relocation Services (PRERS) has launched a new online tool, using video game technology, that is intended to take virtual home tours to a new level. The tool can be used by people who are relocating for a new job in another part of the country, making it possible to view potential homes without traveling to distant locations. If virtual home tours become standard in residential real estate, use of the tool may spread to commercial real estate (and possibly the self-storage industry) as well.

"This is actually Avatar meets real estate," Prudential's CEO, Jim Mallozi, said in today's Inman News. "We demonstrated...how (two people) could both be in different rooms at opposite ends of the country and be holographically next to each other. Buyers can start to experience homes and what they would do with (a home) even before they actually see it," he continued. It is hoped that the home tour technology will eventually allow viewers to actually walk through a room physically, projecting a version of the room onto a wall and using technology that tracks the human body as it moves, so that home buyers do not have to click with a mouse or even wear special equipment to do the walk-through. [More]

Self-Storage Zoning Laws Changing Across U.S.

by Holly Robinson March 11, 2010 5:12 PM
Many towns in rural and suburban America are changing their zoning laws to make it possible for new self-storage businesses to be constructed. Recent changes in zoning laws that affect self-storage firms include the following:

In Richardson, Texas, the City Council changed the zoning laws to allow for "temporary" self-storage businesses in some commercial districts. The council classified this use of city land as a "secondary use" and proceeded to approve a special permit for one such business, to be located in a local shopping center. In Richardson, to meet the new zoning requirements, a self-storage business may not take up one whole building -- it must be less than half the total size of the building it is located in, and, no matter what size the building is, the self-storage business may take up no more than 20,000 square feet. [More]

Fewer Employers Offer Relocation Assistance

by Tony Gonzalez March 11, 2010 12:26 PM
The average cost for a family to relocate from one part of the United States to another can vary from $18,355 to $76,600, according to Worldwide ERC, an association dedicated to workforce mobility. (Worldwide ERC last gathered these statistics in 2007 -- the cost of relocation today may be even higher.) Before the recession set in, it was becoming common for companies asking employees to relocate to pick up the tab, whether they were asking current employees to move or hiring new employees from out of town or out of state. But now, according to a recent MSNBC report, fewer companies are offering relocation assistance to pay for expenses ranging from moving and storage to selling a house and/or making an extra trip across the country to look for housing. [More]

Marcus & Millichap Releases Self-Storage Report

by Kim Kilpatrick March 10, 2010 2:02 PM
U.S. commercial real estate investment firm Marcus & Millichap has now released its annual report on the self-storage industry for 2009 and its market updates for the first half of 2010. Overall, the report indicates that as the economy improves, a turnaround in self-storage property investments may be approaching, though it is impossible to say when.

The report also notes that self-storage facilities in urban areas are coping with the recession much more easily than facilities located in rural and suburban areas. Tenancies in self-storage units got longer in 2009 in response to unemployment and foreclosures -- renting a self-storage unit to hold their possessions is a common method used by many homeowners to cope with the experience of being foreclosed on. As a result, the national average self-storage unit rental period increased from 13.7 months in 2008 to 14.9 months in 2009. [More]
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