Guest Post: Storage Unit Organization Tips

Self storage requires careful preparations and thoughtful planning if you want it done right. If you don’t follow some common sense guidelines, while working on that you risk damage to your belongings. It will also make it significantly difficult to find anything within the unit itself. Dust can also build up in time and you will need to make sure what you have stored there will be easy to clean as well as organized. These tips will help you get things ready as you move forward:

Make a list of all boxes and their contents, an inventory will serve you a great deal when keeping track of your belongings. You should make labels for each individual box, listing what’s inside as well as the estimated value of each item. This will help you when you decide to insure their contents, as companies need a rough estimated value of all items being insured.

Use a limited number of box sizes as this will make stacking easier. All boxes should be strong enough to withstand the pressure of stacking without collapsing.

Box everything and leave nothing out, as this will only make it exposed to the dust and grime bound to build up during storage.

When you’re packing you should make sure each box is properly filled. Gaps and half-empty boxes can easily collapse, so they will need to be properly filled. Avoid putting too many heavy items in a single box as this will make it impossible to carry without breaking. Also, remember to place heavy boxes on the bottom and lighter ones on top to avoid collapse.

Don’t place any items in sealed bags made of plastic, such as Ziploc bags. This may sound like a good idea at first, but in reality it will only allow condensation and the forming of mildew.

Use small boxes for books, so they can be more manageable. Lay the books flat in their boxes to protect their spines from wear and tear.

If you’re storing any refrigerators or freezers make sure you leave them inside with their doors slightly ajar. Make sure they are completely dried out and drained to prevent mold and mildew outbreaks.

Bubble wrap any breakables in boxes and seal them well. Alternately you can use packing peanuts or paper. Make sure mirrors, picture frames and other similar objects are wrapped in bubble wrap and that their corners are protected from impacts.

Stack boxes in such a fashion that you won’t struggle with opening them. Place the boxes you access most often in an easy location where you won’t have to move anything out of the way.

Dismantle any furniture which allows that so you can save space. Make sure you don’t lose any bits and pieces, bolts and screws by keeping them in a labeled container.

For any furniture you can’t dismantle you should consider placing boxes within instead. This will save you space as well as adding an extra layer of protection to any items you place inside. That way you will also minimize the moving stress that usually is rather unpleasant.

Guest Post: Top Ten Books on Storage Auctions

By Eve Pearce

The storage auction boom shows no signs of slowing.

What was once the domain of a relatively small group of collectors and bargain-hunters, has transformed into a global phenomenon thanks to a slew of incredibly popular reality television shows in the United States.

The age-old saying that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, has never been more apt. But while the appeal of the auctions has gripped those keen to “get rich quick”, it has also given rise to a raft of how-to guides and handbooks aimed at this growing army of fans. Some latch on to the glitz and glamour of the TV shows, but many others cut to the heart of the business and provide clear and helpful advice.

Here are some books worth considering.

1. The Definitive Guide to Storage Auctions By Barry Flynn and C.R. Powell

The popularity of Storage Wars in the USA have prompted a string of copy-cat TV shows all focused on the treasures-in-trash theme – Auction Kings, Auction Hunters, Pawn Stars, Pawn Queens, American Pickers — to name just a few. But with this book, Flynn and Powell debunk the many myths and misconceptions surrounding the industry. A must-read.

2. My Life as a Storage Auction Addict By Glendon Cameron

For almost a decade the author of this book was a full-time storage auction buyer in Atlanta, Georgia. But left the day-to-day business behind, Cameron has written an incredibly insightful book teaching would-be treasure hunters the ropes. “In the next two to three years, this is going to skyrocket,” he says. “It’s not for everyone. It’s not easy and it’s a lot of hard work, but if you put in your time and money into it, you can make money.”

3. How to Make Boxes of Cash with Self-Storage Auctions By Barbara Rogers

Small but perfectly-formed. This is not the longest book you will ever read, in fact it is only 48 pages long, but in many ways that it is its greatest strength. It took Rodgers a year to work the business out but this easy-to-follow manual will ensure you get to grips with it much quicker than that. Clear, concise, clever.

4. The Beginner’s Guide to Storage Auction Profits By Glendon Cameron

This is a great starting place for anyone looking to take their tentative first steps into the business. Cameron knows his stuff but this is aimed at someone keen to dip their toes in without investing their heart and soul… yet. Storage Auctions 101 gives you the basics and some tips that border on advanced storage auction buying techniques. Will make you look like a pro.

5. The Garage Sale Millionaire: Make Money with Hidden Finds from Garage Sales to Storage Unit Auctions By Aaron LaPedis and Jeffrey Kern

Written by two expert collectors with more than sixty years of combined experience, this book is packed with gems of information. LaPedis and Kern lift the lid on the often intimidating world of collecting and created this absolutely indispensable guide to hunting for and then profiting from someone else’s junk. Comprehensive and convincing.

6. Mastering Storage Unit Auctions: The A-Z Guide to Storage Unit Auctions By Eddie B. Allison

Another book with a real mouthful of a title but another informative and entertaining read. Allison breaks his advice down into bite-size and easy to read advice, such as: three little known, yet simple ways to generate income, three proven steps to avoiding the pitfalls of the auction-room and three things you should never do at a storage auction.

7. Making Money in Storage Auctions: How to Profit from the Storage Wars and become a Storage Auction Warrior By Boston Reynolds

As the title says, this book is inspired by the television show that sparked the phenomenon. But having said that, Reynolds has plenty of straightforward advice that gets to the heart of the business and helps you to minimise the risk and maximise the profit. A popular choice in the United States.

8. Winning Storage Auction Strategies By Dirk and Susan McFergus

This husband and wife team dispel the myths around the TV shows to paint the reality of the auction business. This book includes the story of how bags of dryer lint, sex toys, $20,000 in cash, gold and 100,000 expired Trojan condoms were bought at delinquent storage unit auctions in Las Vegas and tells you how to prevent your ego from buying a losing storage unit. Essential tips and funny personal stories.

9. How to Invest in Self-Storage By Scott Duffy and RK Kliebenstein

This well-researched manual looks at the other side of the business and tells the story of those who manage and own storage units. This will help add depth and understanding to those of you attending as buyers.

10. Money Making Tactics From Mini-Storage Auctions: Cashing In On The Booming Self Storage Auctions Trend KMS Publishing

The auction business is full of unforeseen events – stock lost in an accident, lots that disappoint and the occasional diamond in the rough. But this book will help you take the rough with the smooth and is full of good advice. Short, sharp, simple to understand.

Guest Post: Do’s and Don’ts in Production Scheduling

Are you having difficulties in scheduling your freight shipment at the right time? Do you have problems in getting your shipment to arrive at its location on the date that you schedule it? If your answers are yeses, indeed, you’re not alone. Production scheduling can be an intricate task which involves the process of creating dispatch lists for the proper functioning pertinent to freight forwarding businesses. In this article, we will discuss what to do and what not to do in scheduling for your proper shipment due.

 

1. Do plan carefully ahead of time.

Production scheduling consists ofplanning the provisioning of available resources such as warehouse facilities, vehicles for transportation, and others materials and equipment to fit the schedules of your manpower resources. All these elements are most often subject to constraints and limitations, so planning ahead of due time is truly essential. You have to take into account the materials for requisition to fulfillment, machine loading charts and roster of the workforce. This is necessary to have an overall clear picture of how to achieve the right production schedule for the freight shipment.

 

2. Do get the third group of operations’ advice for production scheduling.

The ideal production schedule brings about detailed targets and other specifics that help shop floor staff and managers to monitor the performance of machine and labor productivity and usage of materials. This also aids the customer service team to delivery items on time. However, the right people to conduct production scheduling are neither the staff members or shop floor managers nor the customer service staff. Rather, they are the third group in operations who meddles between these two teams. The recommendation of this group is expected to be based on their observations and analysis on how timely the availability of materials and machines is and also the absenteeism and attendance of employees.

 

3. Don’t rely on only a spreadsheet to monitor and production schedule.

By now you realize that production scheduling is a time-consuming task. While you’re planning, new orders are coming in and these might affect and cause changes to your plans. Machine breakdowns may occur whenever or at the time they are least expected as well. As such, you need to redefine and revise your schedules once again manually by hand (paper-form) or electronically through a spreadsheet. However, after some time of utilizing a computerized form of managing schedules, you will also recognize that master production scheduling and capacity planning through a spreadsheet file will do only little help. Just because you are using it as a typewriter to make encoding the pre-planned and changes to schedules easier does not equate to more efficiency. This leads to the next point.

 

4. Do invest and make good use of legitimate software specially for finite capacity scheduling and advanced planning for production.

An ordinary spreadsheet does not have the power to help you in the decision-making process.When you use software specifically targeting production scheduling concerns, you will have the ability to create detailed models of capacity. With more accurate models of capacity planning, you can then make more accurately predictions and calculations of when operations and productions start and end. These software will also give you good estimates and simulations of what-if scenarios to help review your planned production schedules before execution.

 

5. Don’t overlook on employees’ shift planning.

When you are into production, you are inevitably dealing with both the production and those working behind the scenes—your people. So in a nutshell, production scheduling poses as a tough challenge, since you need to consider both the schedule of the freight (delivery of shipments) and also the shift schedules of your people. The key here is to manage the workforce’s shift rotations seamlessly, note their vacation leaves and holidays in the calendar, and keep adequate number of workers at all times. You may also use an automated system to integrate overtime regulations and put an end to excessive overtime costs.

 

With proper production scheduling, you really need to monitor the operators’ performances, schedules and skills and the relative efficiency of your machines and tools. All these contribute to factors that affect the production control, capacity utilization and your delivery commitments.

Author bio:

Natalie Montes is an alumna from San Beda College of Alabang, a former marketing assistant and a 23 year old freelance writer. She is into almost all types of Music especially The Ballad and Old Love songs. She also has a passion in Singing and Scrap Booking. Follow her escapades on her Twitter.

Guest Post: Getting the Best Shipping For Your Auction Goods

It’s amazing the things that people can fit inside a storage unit. Half the fun of winning an auction is finding out what sort of treasures are hidden within. If you recently won an auction you may have found it was filled with more than just old memorabilia — maybe there was a huge tiki head or a big neon beer sign pushed to the back amongst all the boxes and containers.

Your primary concern once you’ve won the auction should be to connect with potential buyers. You don’t want to have to hold on to that replica Civil War cannon or that massive antique bookshelf for too long.

It can be extremely difficult to find a buyer who is willing to come to your home and pick up the item being sold, so when you find your buyer, your work is still not done. Items that have warnings like “buyer must arrange pickup” can be off-putting to a potential buyer so you’ll need to arrange for the item to be shipped.

If you are lucky enough to get paired up with a buyer who is interested in the item you’re selling, a bad shipping rate will dramatically lessen your profit margin.

If you’re looking to get a bulky item on the road to its new owner, look to companies like uShip that can arrange affordable delivery of the most bulky items.

uShip, which figures largely into the new A&E television show Shipping Wars, is a company that allows independent shippers to bid on shipping jobs for everything from animals to cars. This bidding system guarantees that sellers get the best price for their shipping job.

Logan is a guest writer who blogs about auctions and how to procure the best shipping and courier jobs.

We’re On Youtube!

Today Storage Auctions Kings took a step forward into the spotlight – or at least the brightly colored Hawaiian print background. (We’ll work on that). Our first video on Youtube explains how to find storage unit lists in your area and why calling around randomly to facilities in hopes of finding sales dates doesn’t really work. We’re looking forward to taking more reader’s questions and answering them on Youtube, so feel free to send in your questions via the “ASK” link at the top of the site. Thanks for watching and be sure to show us some love with a like and subscribe to our channel!

 

Do It Yourself or Hire the Professionals? That is the Question When Moving in Sydney

Moving in Sydney often presents people with a dilemma is it worth bringing in the professionals or should you simply do some DIY moving? Sydney has a multitude of professional moving firms but what exactly do they offer that can’t be done with a hired van and a couple of friends or relatives?
If you’re moving in Sydney then you are no doubt weighing up the benefits of doing it yourself or hiring a professional to help with your moving. Sydney has many removals services out there, but what can they offer that you can’t do yourself when moving? In fact, hiring the professionals can save you a lot of bother. Here’s a list of reasons why it can pay to call in the professionals when moving in Sydney
Moving in Sydney can be hard work
Many people underestimate just how much hard work is involved in moving. Sydney is a city that sees hundreds of moves taking place every day but not everyone has help with their moving. Sydney residents that choose to do the job themselves may find themselves in trouble if they don’t have any assistance from friends or relatives when moving. Removalists in Sydney are available to help with this problem if you have no-one else to turn to then hiring a man and a van can be absolutely invaluable when moving. Sydney phone books will have a multitude of options listed under moving Sydney, or you could just type moving Sydney into a search engine, which display literally hundreds of websites. Either way, if you’re not sure how much help you can rely on when moving in Sydney then it is essential you get professional help.
Moving in Sydney can be dangerous
It’s easy to injure yourself and/or damage your possessions when moving. Sydney moving firms are less likely to do either of these because they employ professional staff to deal with moving. Sydney residents who want to do their own moving are not experienced in the sector and could easily end up hurting themselves when moving. Sydney employers will not take kindly to people who have to have time off because they hurt themselves while moving!
Not only that but professional moving firms are insured against any accidents that may occur whilst moving. Sydney residents doing a DIY move are unlikely to be insured so if a piece of furniture is destroyed while moving then they will not be compensated.
Moving in Sydney can be expensive
It may seem cheaper to do it yourself when moving in Sydney but have you thought about all the costs that you will incur when moving? Sydney is an expensive place to hire vehicles and you will find that you pay a premium for hiring a van whilst moving. Sydney vehicle supply firms are not likely to offer you a discount when moving and you could find yourself paying through the nose for a van. You also have to add to this any money you will lose by taking time off to help while moving. Sydney based moving companies will supply their own vehicles and men and the whole move can take place in line with your work commitments. Moving in Sydney with the professionals can end up being a lot less time consuming and thus less expensive.
About the Author:
Jeremy has been associated with removals Sydney and packing services Sydney“packing services in Sydney for a long time. Presently with his vast experience, he is helping people in choosing the best service provider for them for their safe and hassle free move.

Chateau Circular Disc Locks

Why Disc Locks Are Safer

These tough and enduring little circular locks have become a staple of mini storage properties, who want to market advanced security features to their concerned tenants. Whereas regular padlocks leave your storage unit vulnerable to bolt cutter attacks. Bolt cutters are like giant scissors that make very short work of the standard curved bolt found in most normal padlocks. The problem arises when your mini storage property isn’t very well secured or overseen. Anyone that already has permission to come onto property, such as a current tenant, can simply walk up and down the line of storage units, merrily snipping open the ones they want to go shopping for free in. If your property manager isn’t paying attention, then you can bet you are going to feel the hurt pretty soon when you show up to your now empty storage shed.

Chateau circular disc locks make this sort of thing very hard to do. You just can’t cut them using regular bolt cutters. I’ve tried. It’s not pleasant for the person trying to get through the lock. The reason you can’t use standard bolt cutters to open a circular disc lock is that only a small portion of the bolt is exposed in the first place, and it is extremely hardened, compared to normal padlocks. There’s not only much room for your bolt cutters to get a purchase on the disc lock but there’s simply not much they can do even when you do have them right on the money.

Defeating Disc Locks

Now, it is true that there are several different ways to defeat these advanced locks, but these methods are unwieldy and most of them would cause the kind of commotion that would get a would-be robber nabbed by the cameras or manager. An angle grinder can make fairly short work of circular disk locks, but angle grinders require power, meaning your thief would need to jack in to an outlet somewhere, unless he wants to run a gas generator from the back of his thief-truck. Not likely. Angle grinders also produce a good amount of sometimes very hot sparks, so your thief will have to be prepared with proper eye protection. Not to mention that there are certain blade types which are far more effective than others at opening these high security Chateau disc locks. The point is that your angle-grinder wielding thief would not be winning any awards for subtlety. Sometimes, depending on the positioning of the disc lock on the shed door, it can still take a couple of minutes of straight grinding for a robber to get clear through the lock, even if they know where it is weakest.

The other method for undoing a disk lock involves skill and knowledge. These locks can be “raked” open by a knowledgeable amateur locksmith using little more than a homemade tool and a lockpick. Once you have an understanding of this method, it is quick and relatively easy to pop the lock open, but it does require an understanding of where to apply pressure and how to coax the disc lock into releasing. What makes this method a higher risk to the average mini storage customer is that it is virtually silent and can be done quite quickly by someone proficient in the technique. Should your storage shed be out of the reach of the watchful eyes of cameras, you could be at risk of a raking attack. This is why back-up self storage security systems become so essential. Even if your thief gets past your manager, the cameras and through your disc lock, a good mini storage property will have individual unit alarms that know the person opening your unit could not be you, since you never coded into the gate.

Upselling Chateau Circular Disc Locks

You may notice self storage managers upselling these specialty locks during move-ins or while you’re in the office taking care of business. These circular locks are likely to be more expensive than normal padlocks, but usually only by a few dollars. It’s well worth the small investment in some piece of mind if you’re at all concerned about the safety of your belongings inside your storage shed. Some clever storage companies will run periodic specials, during which times they will offer you a free lock when you move-in. This is a nice perk, to be sure, but don’t be fooled. Usually if the company is offering you a free lock, you are more than paying for it somewhere else, be it some additional fees or a rate increase that is set to come down the pipes after you’ve been in your unit for a few months.

Still, you have to appreciate the extra security where you can get it. Will a Chateau disc lock on its own prevent disaster from befalling your unit, or foil a dedicated crook that’s intent on getting into your possessions? Absolutely not. But with the combination of a good electronic gate system, a competent manager, surveillance cameras and high security locks backed up by individual unit alarms, you can rest pretty easy knowing that there are multiple layers of protection working together to keep your things safe and out of harm’s way.

Buying Circular Disc Locks for Managers

The Most Secure Lock for Self Storage
Click here for the latest discounted disc lock prices

From a self storage manager’s perspective, the calculus of whether or not your should stock and sell these specialty disc locks is a little more complex. Everyone knows how constantly customers will come into the office complaining that they have lost their keys and need to get into their units. When your customers use normal padlocks, getting them back up and running is a snap – just pop their old lock off and sell or give them a new one. Unfortunately that’s not the case when you’re dealing with these high security circle locks. If you are the sole manager on property, a customer with a lost key means closing down the whole office, getting the appropriate gear and facemask, running multiple extension cables if you don’t have a nearby outlet, and then grinding away on a small object that is perfectly shaped so as to make it very easy for your angle grinder, now running at 7200 rpm, to kick outward, maybe toward your flesh.

Managing Disc Lock Cuttings

Some companies deal with this by telling customers that it’s their policy to schedule circle lock cuttings because they are so involved. They can’t be done right this instant. Naturally, self storage customers being the uniquely reasonable lot that they are, this may or may not go over well. Any decisions to stock and carry these circular disc locks must be weighed carefully. On the one hand, they can help you to increase your brand’s image by offering higher security. They can make your operation seem more professional and modern. This is all good and overtime should positively affect your revenue and market value in your area, especially against companies that do not offer disc locks for sale. On the other hand you have the lost time, risk of injury and general hassle of cutting through disc locks, which would seem, by some cruel trick of fate, to always be required either: right after you sit down to lunch, just before you close up to go home, just as you’re in the middle of a complicated move-in with a high paying client, or while there are other people accessing their units right next to where you need to make a pretty ugly spectacle of butchering what once seemed a secure lock with a high pitched whining machine of death that launches showers of hot sparks in every direction.

Making Local Storage Auctions into a Home Business

With the public’s awareness of local storage auctions becoming more and more pronounced in recent months, some folks are turning their storage rummaging hobby and pastime into something far more lucrative and sustainable. A locally-supplied home-run business. The basics of setting up your own home business using local storage auctions as your supplier are simple: you need to bring in enough discounted goods via smart storage auction purchases, then appraise and refurbish the worthwhile stuff, and then resell it either via online auction sites like eBay or local listing directories like craigslist. If you are careful to price your items to move, but still high enough to turn you a profit based on what you paid for the storage unit, you can even use your front lawn as your selling floor and a couple well-placed signs on major roads for advertising.

Becoming Your Own Business Through Storage Locker Sales

Essentially what you are doing is making yourself into a retail store, while avoiding the high overhead costs and initial investment capital usually necessary to get a new retail store off the ground. The best way to figure out if using local storage auctions to provide you with inventory will work for you is to try it out first, on a small scale. Just attend one of the mini storage sales in your area. You can check the newspaper for postings about when the next public mini storage auction is coming up. Bring $100-200 for your first time, and keep an eye out for a small unit, probably around 5×5, that looks pretty densely packed. Avoid units that are primarily made up of clothes and other personal junk like blankets and trash bags.

What to Look For in a Mini Storage Unit

You want to focus your efforts on neatly boxed up units and units with several identifiable items of value. For example, if you can say, Oh, there’s a TV, there’s an upscale coffee maker, and there are a couple of board games that I could probably resell at a yard sale for $2-5 each, then you’ve got yourself something of interest. When the bidding starts, your aim is to get the entirety of the unit for about half of what you think you could make by reselling everything inside it at discounted prices. The biggest mistake new auction hunters make is to over-inflate the value of the things they see inside a unit they want simply because they are excited. Keep your emotions reined in and undervalue the items inside while making a quick tally of their worth. Now half this number and don’t bid a dollar above it.

Winning a Local Mini Storage Unit

If you win the unit, you get to pay the auctioneer or the storage company the full amount following the conclusion of the auction. Most auctioneers and storage companies prefer cash. Credit card sometimes works. Personal checks are almost never accepted, under the assumption you’d just pack up your things, bounce a check, and never be heard from again. Once you have paid up, the property manager will help you to get access to your unit and you can begin stuffing all your new winnings into your car.

Sift and Sort

Now you can head home and start sorting through the goods. Separate the objects of obvious value and do your best to clean them up. If they are electronics or appliances, test them to see if they work. Plug them in and make them do what they are supposed to do. If they don’t do what they are supposed to do, take note of this and knock even more off their resale price. Once you have everything more or less sorted out, you can start listing your items on eBay and craigslist. eBay is a great catch-all solution for selling just about anything, big or small, sentimental or highly technical. eBay is also ideal for extremely obscure offerings. If you can find the right name for it and make a listing for it, chances are someone will buy it from you.

What Should Go on Craigslist.com

Craigslist is better for larger items of general interest. For example, standard and decent looking pieces of furniture, coffee tables, lamps, small couches, paintings, wall hangings and the like. If it is too large to comfortably ship to an eBay buyer, just post it on craigslist for a reasonable price. If you are not sure if your asking price is reasonable, just put OBO in the post to signify ” or best offer”.

All the rest of it you can put out for a yard sale, should you have enough of it. If you have other things in your home you’ve been meaning to get rid of, now is a great time to lump everything together and try to make some cash extra cash!

Step Back and Reevaluate

If you finish this whole process with more money than you initially put into it, and you found that you didn’t hate the entire undertaking, and, better yet, even enjoyed it a little, then try buying up two storages next time you hit a local auction.

eBay Myths that Keep Storage Hunters from Maximizing Their Profits

Today we’re going to address a couple of myths surrounding eBay that, strangely enough, seem to be prevalent amongst the auction hunting population. eBay remains one of the easiest to use and most effective outlet for converting the spoils of a recent storage auction into profitable resales. However, whether it’s because of a certain generation gap, a general distrust of online commerce, or a plain lack of experience with this site, many auction buyers I speak with have not only never used eBay to make a sale, but they also won’t. Continue reading “eBay Myths that Keep Storage Hunters from Maximizing Their Profits”

The Most Important Storage Auction Tool You Can Carry

As you become more and more acquainted with storage auctions and their procedures, you will start noticing certain patterns with the more and more auctions you attend. Certain familiar faces will keep turning up again and again; these are the dedicated auction hunters that make a good portion of their living doing it.

You will also start to watch these veterans and you’ll discover advanced tactics that they employ in order to give themselves a bit of an advantage over other bidders. There are a couple things, you will also begin to notice, that are okay to do when you’re attending a storage unit auction, and there are plenty of other things that are definitely not okay.

One thing that isn’t really spelled out anywhere, but has become sort of a de-facto staple of the auction hunting world is Continue reading “The Most Important Storage Auction Tool You Can Carry”