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Messages - Travis

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5236
Attending storage auctions (post storage auction reality shows) is like the California gold rush. Tons of people are rushing in. You have to change your location or your methods if you still want to cash in. Pardon the analogy.

5237
Really, its about having more options. In the Houston area, there have been so many new buyers attending storage auctions that it has become almost impossible to buy a unit that you can still profit on. I was talking to a storage facility owner a few weeks ago who is located in a rural area. He said only 2 people usually show up to his auctions. Auctions that are advertised in smaller local newspapers generally have fewer people who attend. This is what our service is all about....helping storage auction buyers get off the beaten path and attend auctions that have fewer buyers in attendance. If my members are able to attend just 1 auction and purchase just 1 unit at a price lower than what they would pay at other auctions, then our service has paid for itself.

Also, I agree, it's hard to teach an old dog new tricks but, the old timers are usually my best customers. They are the ones who depend on storage auctions to make their living. Since the auctions advertised in the mainstream are flooded with new buyers, they have to get off the beaten path if they want to survive in this business.

5238
I agree, it's a broad question. In just the past 6 months (before the storage auction shows premiered) I usually doubled sometimes even tripled my money on 8 out of 10 units that I bought, but I usually bid quite conservatively. Some units were total busts. Some had broken or hard to sell items that I hadn't anticipated. One purchase comes to mind. There were roughly 6000 brand new picture frames in one unit. 25 pallets stacked 7 feet tall. I bought the unit for $375. I was pretty excited when I put the lock on the door, I thought I had hit a grand slam. Most of these frames came from Wal-Mart and had prices on them between $9.99 - $29.99. Do the math, its a fortune, so I thought. Upon closer inspection and having experts come to appraise them, I found out that most of them were 15-20 years old and no longer in style. Nobody frame shop in town wanted them. It took over a month to sell them all and it consumed days of my time. After all was said and done, I think I made about $175. I consider that a loss. I do agree, slam dunks only occur every once in a while. I would say like 1 in 30 units.

5239
The purpose of this survey was to find a fair price point for services like ours. I currently own & operate https://auctionstx.com/houston-storage-auctions/ and we actually call over 1400 storage facilities twice a month. It took over a month to build our database and it requires constant updating. We are currently the only service to provide information on 100% of all storage facilities in the greater Houston & surrounding areas. We provide listings for roughly 300 storage auction events every month including 25-40 auctions that cannot be found on any other website.

 Yes, there is free storage auction information available in every city but, in the greater Houston & surrounding areas, we have over 1400 storage facilities. There are two main newspapers that publish notices for about half of all storage facilities in this area. There are also over 40 smaller local newspapers within our area, most of which don't post their content online.  Nobody is going to subscribe to and read that many newspapers. It would cost several hundred dollars a month and consume hours of your time every day.

Most other major cities in the U.S. don't have a service that covers 100% of all auctions. Some areas have newspapers & auctioneers that may handle a majority of the market but they only promote storage auctions that they are profiting on somehow. Unless a service like our exists in your area, or you are willing to devote a majority of you time to collecting information, you will always be missing some of the auctions in your area. Of course this may vary depending on the size of your town. Also, Keep in mind, our service unites over 40 smaller cities within the greater Houston & surrounding areas and we are very thorough at collecting the information we provide for our subscribers.

Anyway, getting back to the subject. The question is not if it will work, it does, (the creator of this forum currently operates 3-4 services like ours). Rather, the question is, if this kind of service existed in your area, at what price would you consider joining. This question is Hypothetical, we have no plans of expanding nationally.  Information collected from these results will only be used to offer our current & future members a quality service at the most reasonable price.

5240
Hypothetical question: Suppose there was a storage auction information service in your area which called every storage facility within a 60 mile radius. If this information service provided information on 100% of all storage auction events in your area & provided 30-40 auctions per month that you couldn't find on any other website, at what price would you subscribe to this website?

$5 $10 $15 $20 $25 $30 $35 $40

Thanks for your input.

5241
New to Storage Auctions? / Re: Weekend Auctions?
« on: March 12, 2011, 08:00:30 AM »
Great Question!

Yes, the weekend storage auctions are harder to find. I own and operate a storage auction information service in the Houston area. We actually call over 1400 storage facilities twice a month in order to find every storage auction event in our coverage area. Most of the major storage companies do hold their auctions on weekdays. These facilities have larger advertising budgets and typically put their public notice in mainstream newspapers. What I have found is that a majority of smaller independent facilities, especially in rural areas, hold their auctions on Saturdays. Our storage auction schedule usually lists several auctions on Saturdays every week. Most of these independent facilities advertise their auctions in smaller local newspapers and unless you happen to live in that specific area or you subscribe to our service, you would never know they were occurring.

My advice to buyers that live in areas that don't have storage auction information services that cover 100% of all auctions, is to call all of the facilities in your immediate area and get on their auction call list.

   

5242
You know, a lot of people get caught up in this question. If you only bid on what you can see, it shouldn't matter whether someone has gone through the unit. Is it unethical & illegal, sure. But, if there was anything valuable missing, you would have never known it was there anyway. What you really need to watch out for are "managers units". These are the units where a manager stores the items given to them or left behind by tenants who are moving out, or items that were left at the dumpster that the manager thinks they can make a buck on. The reason you have to be careful with these is because most of the time it is just a bunch of junk.

Two ways to tell if it is a managers unit is to make sure that the unit being sold was advertised in the public notice.
If it isn't in the public notice, the storage facility has made a huge mistake and sold the wrong unit or it is a managers unit. Every now and then you will come across a unit where the tenant is current and has actually requested for their property to be sold, be weary of these as well.

Also, at storage auctions in Houston, most delinquent units have some type of tag on or near the lock. If it is missing the tag, this is a giant red flag.




5243
New to Storage Auctions? / Re: Warehouse not taking bids
« on: March 12, 2011, 07:17:45 AM »
Most storage facilities reserve the right to dispose of the property in the storage unit any way they see fit. Our company in Houston calls about 1400 storage facilities twice a month, so I can give you some inside information on this subject. Believe it or not, about 15% of all storage facilities in the greater Houston and surrounding areas don't even have auctions. Most of these facilities claim to almost never have a delinquent tenant. There are laws which the storage facilities must follow; However, no one is really enforcing what the storage facilities do. Especially, the smaller facilities in rural areas.

I have spoken with other facility owners that don't have auctions but personally invited me to come by and make them an offer on delinquent units.Some of these facilities have garage sales and sell the items individually. Others claim to just take the contents to the dump. Some facilities will hold an auction but if the storage unit doesn't sell at an appropriate amount, they will refuse the bid. I even know of one facility that files a public notice, but when you arrive, they start the bidding at what is owed in delinquent rent and moving costs (Usually $1200-2500). At this facility, they don't let you view the contents, they just hand you a itemized list of the contents. Since nobody in their right mind is going to pay that kind of money without inspecting the condition of the merchandise, the contents almost always revert back to the storage facility. This facility conveniently has a resale shop next door which happens to be operated by the facility owners wife.




5244
SB 690 was recently introduced to the Texas Legislature to amend the Texas Property Code, Chapter 59, which deals with storage lien sale notification requirements for storage facilities in our state.

One of the main changes being proposed involves the option for storage facilities to publish legal notices on free websites for the storage industry. Currently, storage facilities in Texas must run their legal notices for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation, which can be quite expensive.

This prospective change may cause some confusion. Once storage facilities realize that they can save hundreds, if not thousands per year on their advertising expenses, they will abandon ship, and begin posting public notices for  storage auctions on their own websites. Public notices in newspapers will be obsolete.

So how does this affect you, the storage auction buyer?

If every storage facility in your area listed public notices in different online source, this would make an already imperfect system all the more confusing. Can you imagine having to visit hundreds of websites to find auction information in your area?

To find out more information on this subject or to find out how Houston Storage Auctions plans to alleviate this problem, visit www.houstonstorageauctions.com

I hope you found this article to be informative and have a blessed day.

Travis Lane

5245
SB 690 was recently introduced to the Texas Legislature to amend the Texas Property Code, Chapter 59, which deals with storage lien sale notification requirements for storage facilities in our state.

One of the main changes being proposed involves the option for storage facilities to publish legal notices on free websites for the storage industry. Currently, storage facilities in Texas must run their legal notices for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation, which can be quite expensive.

This prospective change may cause some confusion. Once storage facilities realize that they can save hundreds, if not thousands per year on their advertising expenses, they will abandon ship, and begin posting public notices for  storage auctions on their own websites. Public notices in newspapers will be obsolete.

So how does this affect you, the storage auction buyer?

If every storage facility in your area listed public notices in different online source, this would make an already imperfect system all the more confusing. Can you imagine having to visit hundreds of websites to find auction information in your area?


I hope you found this article to be informative and have a blessed day.

Travis Lane

5246
Garage Sales / This is how we made money with Garage Sales.
« on: March 06, 2011, 09:33:55 AM »
When I was at my peak, buying 7-10 storage units per week, I had so much merchandise that I had sell it quickly. My employees and I would fill up two 26 U-Haul trucks per week and then have a gigantic garage sale in a car lot that I rented on Saturdays. I got great exposure being on a major road and we had about 800-1000 people stopping by every Saturday. With this many people picking through your merchandise, you will move a lot of items that you otherwise couldn't sell. But surprisingly, we still had a ton of stuff left over at the end of the day.

At first, we placed an add on Craigslist under the free section to get rid the leftovers. This became a problem because a lot of people usually showed up and they really made a mess. They would take all of the good stuff and leave other stuff scattered everywhere. I got tired of this and decided to donate all leftover items to local charities, which helps out the less fortunate people and it is a great tax deduction.

I hope this has been informative. If you are looking for storage auction information & you live in the greater Houston and surrounding areas I encourage you to visit our website http://auctionstx.com/houston-storage-auctions/

5247
As the owner of a storage auction listing service in the Houston area, I can give you first hand knowledge on this subject. We actually call over 1400 storage facilities bi monthly and scour obscure newspapers to find every storage auction event occurring in the greater Houston and surrounding areas.

Whether you choose to call the storage facilities or scan legal notices, it involves a lot of time & effort, but the results will pay off in the long run. I am not aware of any major city that has a single information source that provides 100% of all storage auction events, other than our city, Houston, TX, which has Houston Texas Storage Auctions. This being said, most storage auction information websites list the auctions of the major players in the storage industry and a handful of others. Most auctioneer's websites only list the storage auctions that they are conducting. Usually, the smaller independent facilities, especially in the suburban and rural areas, advertise their event in obscure local newspapers. This can work to your advantage.

Ever since Storage Wars & Auctions Hunters premiered, there has been an increase in the number of individuals attending storage auctions in our area. I assume that remains true in all areas the country. The auctions in our area that used to have 15-30 people in attendance, now have 50-100 buyers. The smaller independent storage facilities haven't seen a major increase in attendance because their auctions are difficult to find.

Here is what I recommend to all newbies: Invest some time & effort in researching the independent storage facilities in you immediate area. A great way to do this is to go to Google Maps or YP.com. You can search for self storage facilities by zip code or by city. I suggest that you start with you own zip code. Make a list, then call all of the storage facilities. Some of these facilities do not have auctions, cross them off of your list. Most storage facilities that do have auctions keep call lists to notify storage auction buyers of upcoming events. Call these facilities and ask them if they have a call sheet, then request to be put on it. This is a great way to find auctions that the crowds are unaware of. This will increase your chances of buying a storage unit at a good price.

If you live in the greater Houston or surrounding areas and are looking for storage auction information, check out AuctionsTX.com. It is the only information source which provides listing for 100% of all storage auction events occurring in the greater Houston and surrounding areas. Plus, there are 25-40 auctions listed per month that are only available on this website. These are the auctions you want to go to because they typically have fewer people who attend.

I truly hope that I have been helpful & have a blessed day.


5248
Welcome to the Online Storage Auctions Forum / Storage Auctions Houston TX.
« on: February 23, 2011, 03:35:00 AM »
Hello, My name is Travis Lane, owner of AuctionsTX.com & a professional storage auction buyer. I will be glad to answer any questions you may have about storage auctions in the greater Houston & surrounding communities. Feel free to PM me. Thanks and have a blessed day.

5249
The storage game in Houston is probably the same as most larger cities, we have about 50-70 regulars that have having been buying units for years. Up to December 2010, it was a great business to be in. The game has definitely changed with the amount of people in attendance since the storage shows premiered. It has been tougher the buy a unit at a good price.

Locating the auctions in our area is pretty easy, there are two really good information sources. There is one business newspaper in town that covers a good portion of the auctions in Houston, but they only advertise the auctions of their customers. The good thing about this source is that its free, the bad thing is that they advertise to the masses and most of their auctions have 50-100 people there and you just can't buy a unit for a good price with that many people at an auction. Storage Auctions Houston  is a great source for storage auction information. We are the only source that covers 100% of all storage auctions occurring in the greater Houston and surrounding areas.(usually over 400 in all)  What makes us really different is that we list 25-40 auctions per month that cannot be found on any other website. These are the auctions you want to go to because attendance is minimal. Check us out.

5250
South West / Re: Houston Storage Auctions
« on: February 23, 2011, 03:06:44 AM »
For those of you who live in the Houston and surrounding communities, there is an excellent resource for storage auction information. https://auctionstx.com/houston-storage-auctions/ lists over 300 auctions a month plus, since we actually call every facility in the greater Houston & surrounding areas, we usually have 25-40 storage auctions listed that cannot be found on any other website.

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