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Self storage approaches 50/50 commercial share

Posted by Trevor
January 7, 2014 in News

First launched as a consumer enterprise to help families store belongings they are not quite ready to part with, the self storage industry is now taking on the commercial sector. With commercial contracts now accounting for a lot of storage firms’ business, it also transpires that many operations are actually being run from such facilities.

In 2012, 39% of UK self storage space was for commercial use. At the end of last year, this had risen to 42%, with firms not having to spend cash on business rates, and being able to claim back VAT, which was introduced in 2012.

According to Ollie Saunders, accountant Deloitte’s head of self-storage

“Today, in some stores, every other unit is a commercial customer.

“Businesses no longer need to rent a dodgy lock-up garage down a side alley – instead they use a self-storage facility where they also can get a cappuccino in reception.”

It is more than just frothy coffees on offer though, with many of these storage spaces able to be adapted for specific purposes.

This is certainly the case for seasonal operations.

With Christmas just passing, many self storage facilities saw staff working around the clock. Talking to the BBC a boss of a small online gift firm, Hiren Patel, said:

“It’s convenient to be here. You don’t need to pay council tax, it’s all included in the rent.”

Mr Patel, who also has a number of other facilities used as mini warehouses, complete with warehouse racking, went on to say that such space gives a lot of choice, able to be reduced or increased as demand requires.

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