Whenever budding entrepreneurs and inventors try to come up with the next great ‘thing’ they often look to existing ideas for inspiration, something that they believe they can make even better. Often times this train of thought fails, but on occasion the marriage of two good ideas has been known to result in something that is absolutely brilliant.
In a down economy the self storage industry has managed to do the near impossible—it’s thrived and not just survived. To add to the success of the industry, an aspect of the industry has become popular in the day’s pop culture via reality television shows, the auctions that occur after tenants have failed to pay their rent for a given period of time.
While reality programs like Storage Wars on A&E have helped make self storage facilities more well-known now, they’ve been pretty popular in communities around the nation for another reason, their charitable endeavors. Every year you can see the name of your local self storage facility involved in toy drives at Christmas, food drives at Thanksgiving, as well as several other charitable efforts throughout the year.
A new venture has formed that brings those two things together—charity and self storage auctions—called Charity Storage.
Charity Storage is a non-for-profit organization that works to raise money for various organizations through auctions at self storage facilities. What the company does is locate self storage facilities that are willing to participate in the program. The facility donates the use of a unit in which tenants and local residents can donate items. The unit is then sold at auction with the money dispersed to different local charities.
Just last month Charity Storage took part in a handful of auctions held at US Storage Centers in Southern California. With the help and support of members of the Storage Wars cast the auctions succeeded in raising over $5000.
“The presence of ‘Storage Wars’ celebrities and their film crew contributed to higher-than-usual bidding, as did the contents of one antique-filled unit,” said Barry Hoeven, co-founder of Charity Storage. “But this was certainly a great illustration of the impact Charity Storage can have as we implement it nationally.”
Funds raised through Charity Storage efforts will go towards the Self Storage Association Scholarship Fund, Kure It (a charity founded by Charity Storage co-founder Barry Hoeven), and charities of the host self storage facilities choosing.
“This [the recent auctions in Southern California] is a blueprint for how we hope the entire self storage community across America will react to Charity Storage,” said co-founder Lance Watkins, who is also the CEO of Storage Treasures, a website that provides users information on self storage auctions.
“Charity Storage Gets New Year Off to Great Start Thanks to Successful Auctions at US Storage Centers.” PRWeb; 02 March 2012.
The Founder’s Story; Charity Storage.