Trends In America’s Self-Storage Industry Still Look Strong

America's self-storage industry is thriving. In fact, 2016 was a banner year for this sector, which saw increasing revenues, high occupancy rates, and high demand that drove new construction and conversions. It’ll be hard to repeat last year’s remarkable performance, and self-storage industry experts doubt that 2017 can match or surpass the previous impressive run. Still, this year is witnessing high occupancy rates that are in the low 90s for large public and private self-storage owners. The data is slightly lower for smaller self-storage companies, but remain healthy.

In the first quarter of 2017, national vacancies rose by 40 basis points—putting the overall occupancy rate at 89.3%. The slight downward trend can be attributed to mounting supply pressures, with new constructions starting to show its impact on the occupancy rate. Luckily, demand is maintaining its upward trajectory, adding a nice support floor. Positive demographic trends—including strong population growth, rising incomes, downsizing of baby boomers, and emergence of millennial households—is stroking demand for self-storage space.

The West region saw the strongest year-over-year rent growth for 10x10 non-climate controlled properties at around 4.1%, with the Midwest and South Atlantic trailing behind at 1.7% each. Self-storage industry professionals looking to achieve continued growth can best position themselves to do so by getting creative and offering more services.

According to the latest U-Haul migration trends report, Texas ranks number one in arrivals of one-way U-Haul rental trucks for 2016. U-Haul truck rentals in the state rose 4% year-over-year, while departures held steady. Rounding out the top 10 were Florida, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Missouri, Maine, Idaho, Louisiana, Vermont, and Arkansas.

Annually, 32 million Americans rely on self-storage services, with demand continuing its ascent. As the trend continues, facility owners can expect to enjoy an average of over 90% occupancy year-round. While rent growth moves from peak levels to more historically normal trends, storage owners can boost their bottom line by enticing customers with creative and useful services. On The Move, Inc. not only leases and sells trucks, but also offers an insurance license program, and can even brand the vehicles with custom self storage truck advertising graphics to help market your self-storage business. To learn more about how to leverage data and improve your self-storage enterprise in an increasingly competitive market, visit us online today!