Contributing Editors

Professional Organizers Offer Kitchen Advice

by John Stevens September 9, 2010 12:38 PM
The parallel to spring cleaning, it seems, is back to school organizing. In newspapers and on websites at this time of year, professional organizers are offering tips to help keep families from drowning in clutter. In many families, clutter tends to migrate into the kitchen. But organizing kitchen clutter does not have to be an impossible chore.

Most organizers suggest a twofold kitchen organizing strategy. First, move or store any items that do not truly need to be in the kitchen. Second, organize the items that remain, maximizing your use of space and expanding into previously unused spaces whenever possible. Kitchen counters, kitchen drawers, kitchen cupboards, kitchen cabinets can all be organized so that their entire space is functional. [More]

First Thai Self Storage Facility Opens

by Kim Kilpatrick September 9, 2010 8:44 AM
The first Thai self storage facility opened for business last month in Phuket, Thailand. My Storage, operated by StoreGuard Company Limited, is billing itself as the first state of the art self storage facility to open in Thailand. My Storage, which opened its doors on August 1, is located at the Jungceylon Shopping Center, Patong, Phuket, Thailand. [More]

Texas Entrepreneur Uses Economic Development Grant to Fund His New Storage Business

by Holly Robinson September 8, 2010 8:46 AM
Gonzales, Texas entrepreneur Henry Schmidt must have seemed like a poster child for a small business loan program or an economic development grant program. Schmidt had many years of business experience under his belt, working as a sales manager for used oil collection company Midstate Environmental Services. Then, like many men and women who have spent enough time working for other people, he decided that he would like to start his own business. He looked around and realized that the Texas self storage industry was ripe for expansion.

What Schmidt didn’t realize at first was that he qualified for a grant program designed to stimulate economic development and encourage the development of small businesses. Many such small economic development grant programs exist at the state and local level in different states, but entrepreneurs are not always aware of programs that they may qualify for. Schmidt wound up receiving a $25,000 economic development grant in addition to his loan, and used it to buy two self storage facilities. The facilities were side by side, so Schmidt put a security fence around both and made them one business -- Apache Storage. Apache opened its doors for business in July. [More]

College Students Offer Advice on Back to School Storage

by Winnie Hsiu September 8, 2010 8:01 AM
It’s that time of the year -- the time when college students (finally!) vacate their parents’ homes and go back to school, schlepping a mountain of gear along with them. What are college students taking with them to campus this year, and where will they store it? Journalists around the country have been interviewing college-bound students to find out their back to school storage solutions. [More]

Portland Provides a Small Number of Storage Lockers to the Homeless

by Holly Robinson September 7, 2010 6:50 PM
The City of Portland and the Portland Business Alliance have announced that they are working together to provide storage lockers to Portland’s homeless community. While many efforts to solve the problem of homelessness have focused on providing homeless shelters, in recent years a few policymakers have been turning to storage as a possible bandaid solution. The homeless population in Portland numbers approximately 1,600, and many of Portland's homeless currently carry all their possessions with them at all times in grocery carts or on trailers. [More]

Burien, WA Art Museum Receives Grant for Storage of Threatened Collections

by Tony Gonzalez September 7, 2010 10:52 AM
The curator for the exhibits at Highline Historical Society, in Burien, Washington, has been worried about some of the collections. More than 100,000 documents, photos, negatives, and films were in danger of deteriorating if they were not stored properly. Fortunately, the museum has now received a $3000 grant from 4Culture to provide materials to protect the archived historical items. Museums face the same problem that individuals storing documents and photos do -- if historical items are not protected by acid-free storage materials, they can become stained and prematurely aged by the acid in wood products such as paper and cardboard. [More]

Self Storage Search Engines Cater to Last Minute Movers

by Winnie Hsiu September 3, 2010 5:50 PM
Need to move tomorrow? Are you just starting to pack? Several online self storage search engines and shopping sites plan to allow people who need to move quickly to reserve a unit and move fast, even if they need to move within a day. [More]

Namibia’s First Cold Storage Facility Opens

by John Stevens September 3, 2010 4:44 PM
Windhoek, Namibia (in southwest Africa, north and west of South Africa), has become the first town in the country to offer cold storage, a capability which is critical to commercial shipping of refrigerated, perishable foods in a hot desert country, and to the food industry. The new facility, Prosperita Commercial Cold Storage, will open early in November. Prosperita can hold 4500 tons of frozen food, and its temperature and hygiene levels conform to European Union guidelines for cold storage. [More]

British Motorboats Stuck in Storage After Motorboat Museum Closes

by Holly Robinson September 2, 2010 7:03 PM
Ever since the British Motorboat Museum closed last December, its prize motorboats have been sitting unused in storage. Now that the museum has closed, the boats are in the possession of the Basildon Council. Meanwhile, the council plans to turn the former museum into a green visitor center. The motorboats are slowly being collected by their individual owners, who may put them in self storage or find other maritime museums that are interested in storing or displaying the boats. Meanwhile, the Basildon Council must decide what to do with the remaining 15 motorboats that belong to it. [More]

Florida Self Storage Owner Fights Fire Service Tax

by Kim Kilpatrick September 2, 2010 3:51 PM
In many states, fire departments facing budget deficits are responding by charging fees to local area residents for fire service -- fees for equipment used, for the time served by firefighters fighting a fire (including overtime for night fires), etc. Some states, though, have banned the practice of fire departments charging fire victims for their services. Florida is one of those states. However, a few localities are getting around the ban a different way -- by assessing a new tax on businesses and homeowners. The tax is often called the fire service tax or fire service fee. Now a Florida self storage owner is leading the fight against fire service fees in the city of Brooksville. [More]
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