Auctions are a “no win” situation.  The landlord seldom, if ever, recoups the rental income and the tenant loses his or her stuff.  A lose, lose situation.

It is truly heartbreaking when the landlord has to sell off items at ten cents on the dollar, items important to the occupant, and glamorized by the recent onslaught of television shows, yet in reality disposed of in just a few minutes to the highest bidder.  By law tenants are given 14 or 30 days before the tenant is over locked- and denied access.  After 30 to 45 days the lock can be cut, items viewed and the unit scheduled for auction.

Much expense, time and effort goes into the rental collection process.  By law the facility must make every effort to contact the tenant and the tenant’s alternates: family, friends, neighbors, boss, X-husband, girlfriend, boyfriend, etc.  No stone can be left unturned to find the content owner.  Each collection attempt must be well documented.  Numerous letters and faxes must be sent and proof of 20 to 30 collection calls made.  This is often to no avail.  It is sad and frustrating for all parties concerned.

After many months of no response from the tenant, the owner can cut the lock, view and photograph, but not remove the content.  Now the items are ready for advertising for sale in a local paper, at great expense to the landlord whose sole objective is to get the non-paying tenant off the books, gain possession, and rent the unit to a paying customer. Seldom, if ever, is the loss of income recovered.

If, there is a silver lining…in the past, prior to the televised shows, knowledge of storage auctions was known only by a select group of bargain hunters, antique dealers, second-hand store owners and wholesale brokers.  With increased visibility, storage auctions are becoming a business for people looking to start their own little business.  It provides an opportunity for hard workers to begin a new enterprise.  Auctions make it possible for merchandise to be bought low and, if the buyer is savvy, sell at a higher price on eBay, Craigslist, social networks and other outlets.

Reliable sources have advised us that L.A., Las Vegas and other affluent markets are best for finding expensive items at bargain prices.  As the old saying goes, “one man’s loss is another man’s gain”.

To find the next storage auction, contact the nearest local storage facility, or check with local papers for auction dates and times.  Become a regular!  Acquaint yourself with the manager, ask to be placed on a special email list, drop off your card and be nice!!

It is estimated that 100,000 units are auctioned each month in the USA.

Feel free to contact us at (805) 347-9111, for more information.