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Topics - Tinchohs

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Hi all, my name is Martin.  Not only am I new to 'this world', but also my interest is possibly somewhat different from most of you.  I'm documentary photographer based in Montevideo, Uruguay.  You can see my work in martinhsphoto(dot)com.  I'm interested in documenting the 'phenomenon' of the expansion and usage of self storage space in the US.  I was hoping that you guys who find yourselves bidding on abandoned storage places could educate me a little more about the people who rent, use and eventually abandon their storage lockers.  So I have a few questions that if any of you cares to answer for me, I would truly appreciate it. 

(1) Generally speaking, what do people tend to store in the rented lockers?  Is it 'stuff' they no longer use and don't know what to do with it?  Is it precious items that are safer in this place than in their own homes?  How would you characterize the items generally found in the lockers (not only the abandoned ones)? 

(2) From the little I've seen through the TV shows, it would seem that most of the abandoned lockers have junk that no one really cared for.  If that is generally true, why would someone pay for a space to store it and instead of simply giving it away or discarding it? 

(3) If or when it is valuable stuff that they've stored, when they abandon the space, is it driven by a tough financial situation that prevents them from continuing to pay for the locker?  If that is the case, do you tend to frequently find personal items such as photo albums, kid portraits, school artwork etc? 

I'm trying to understand a bit more about my future photography project 'subjects'.  I guess ultimately I'm trying to understand why some people would go for years paying rent on a space to store items they rarely see, and quite possibly will never use.  So any information or light you can shed about anything that can help me better define who they are, why they rent and how they use the space would be very much appreciate it.  If you know of any resource online that I should be considering, or forums from locker users that I should know, that would also be appreciate it

Thanks a lot and good luck on your future bidding and selling.  Martin.

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