Storage Auctions

Auction Scene #1....January, 2014

Offline MovieMan

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Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« on: January 01, 2014, 09:39:45 AM »


Another opportunity to make a fresh start and the best buying/selling decisions we can come up with !




Offline Alias300

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Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2014, 12:51:13 PM »
Joshua: Greetings, Professor Falken.
Stephen Falken: Hello, Joshua.
Joshua: A strange game. The only winning move is not to play. How about a nice game of chess?


Stephen Falken: Now, children, come on over here. I'm going to tell you a bedtime story. Are you sitting comfortably? Then I'll begin. Once upon a time, there lived a magnificent race of animals that dominated the world through age after age. They ran, they swam, and they fought and they flew, until suddenly, quite recently, they disappeared. Nature just gave up and started again. We weren't even apes then. We were just these smart little rodents hiding in the rocks. And when we go, nature will start over. With the bees, probably. Nature knows when to give up, David.

Offline MovieMan

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Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2014, 01:11:33 PM »
The only winning move is not to play.

And fortunately the Cuban missile crisis didn't turn into anything worse.


Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2014, 01:31:25 AM »
I got a new flashlight for Christmas......I'm going to buy twice as many lockers this year as last!

Offline MovieMan

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Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2014, 09:10:48 AM »
I got a new flashlight for Christmas......I'm going to buy twice as many lockers this year as last!

And how many would that be ?

Last year I bought 4, count 'em 4, lockers. This year my intent is to break that record by buying fewer than 4.

I should have taken up serious picking 2 years ago like some of my cronies did, but I stuck it out.  I still go to a handfull of auctions very close by, but haven't found a locker worth buying at a reasonable price since last May I think it was.


Offline Cobia

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Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2014, 11:59:10 AM »
And how many would that be ?

Last year I bought 4, count 'em 4, lockers. This year my intent is to break that record by buying fewer than 4.

I should have taken up serious picking 2 years ago like some of my cronies did, but I stuck it out.  I still go to a handfull of auctions very close by, but haven't found a locker worth buying at a reasonable price since last May I think it was.

The end of the year between Thanksgiving and the New Year or until tax return checks start going out is supposed to be the time to pick up storage units on the cheap. Not so this year. No doubt the crazy crowds from a couple of years ago are gone but bidding really has not come down in any permanent way. Sometimes I will hit a light crowd and bidding will be reasonable but for the most part the new part-timers who have stuck it out just love to gamble or make money on small margins. I think the long term effect of the TV shows is units bid for about twice as much as before the TV shows even if the crowd size is about the same as pre-TV show crowds. I'm not looking forward to the new crowd of tax return newbies this Spring. I too am moving away from storage units as being a primary source of inventory and doing a lot more picking and wholesaling.

Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2014, 07:56:28 AM »
In Long Island we have smaller crowds but higher prices... Some of the whales ( I used to be one but started picking instead) are buying 10 a day and bidding them up to record prices and also just bidding on rooms they don't want so no one else gets a room for cheap... picking is the only way to make consistent money in this game anymore

I went from buying 10 units a week 2 years ago to 1-5 a month now.

Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2014, 05:42:13 PM »
This morning there were two units and five buyers. First unit 10 X 15 stuffed full. First thing I saw were five mattresses. Yuck! Went for $300.00 to the only newbie there. Second unit 10 X 10 not much but a few things with potential. I bid Went for $60.00 to a regular. Was to much for my liking. Hope we have some good prices tomorrow at the piece auction. Need a few fillers for the store. It has been a busy couple of weeks.

Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2014, 05:38:25 PM »
Today I went to 5 facilities and saw 30+ units. I kept the store closed today because apparently nobody in NC leaves the house when the temps get below 40 degrees. I bought 1. It was 2 dressers, the obligatory mattress and a clothes basket filled with stuff. I paid a whopping $30.. Easy profit, no mystery. Boo.. Other lockers weren't going for crazy numbers like a year or 2 ago, but still more than I would like to pay.

Offline MovieMan

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Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2014, 12:14:14 AM »
I went to two auctions today. I was amazed at how many people were there ! At each of the two there were 75-80 people (just slight variation in the two crowds).

I only knew 10 to 12 people at each place so you know what that means....NEWBIES ! Most of the lockers went to them and prices were high for what was showing. It was like two years ago all over again. Maybe they got tax money back or something.

Anyway, I didn't even bid. Both places had pretty trashy lockers but people were buying. One regular got one locker for $600 and its companion (same tenant owner) went for $1K.  Lockers that used to go for $5 to $20 went for $80 to $100.


Offline Alias300

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Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2014, 10:17:35 AM »
I seriously doubt I'll make it to any auctions for at least the next few months.  These classes I'm taking are seriously 30-40 of homework a week.    And I'm in class when most of my regular auctioneers are doing business.  Plus I just got rid of my place and moved closer to the college so I'm going from house to small apartment.....not much room for even picking, let alone sorting auction contents..... 

Offline MovieMan

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Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2014, 03:23:43 PM »
I found out today that the two lockers sales I talked about in reply #9 above (at $600 and $1,000) were both DUDS. Each of the two buyers was ticked (at themselves) and basically said "Why did I buy that thing?".

Both lockers had same former owner and both showed some vintage type stuff, but for me there weren't enough hints
of that and other buyers said the same thing.  The two who did buy have both been buyers for the same 10 years I have and they both continue to buy a lot...but we all make mistakes...or in the case 2 of 10 seasoned buyers made mistakes.


Offline MovieMan

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Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #12 on: January 15, 2014, 03:27:54 PM »
Today I went to two auctions and this time the crowd was back to normal, maybe 20 buyers with about 10 regulars.

Two new guys (from over 200 miles away ..... yikes !) bought a 10 x 10 for $1,400. This was after a similar 10 x 15 went for $1,700.  The 1.7K was a better bargain but the consensus from the regulars was that the 1.7 would have been a good deal at about $700 or so in order to guarantee a $500 or so profit.

The same crowd (minus a few) went to the second auction where a 10 x 30 sold for $1,500 to one of the local regulars. It looked pretty good, but I hope the boxes pan out !


Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #13 on: January 15, 2014, 08:13:12 PM »
Thanks for the updates on the California scene.  It seems like some of the seasoned buyers are anxious to get lockers and are spending a premium to gain inventory.  Movieman, are these buyers store owners, or just regular storage unit hobbyists?  There's been a lot of talk recently regarding crowd size getting smaller but prices remaining pretty high.  I've noticed this trend at most of the larger runs here in the Northwest.  The newbies are running up the price on the low end to medium units, and the thrift shop owners are dropping more than ever on units that show any potential.  Once in a blue moon the crowd is small and the right combination of buyers are there to get a good deal, but I'm having a hard time winning units that show any potential whatsoever. 

On a side note I went to an auction today and the facility had 5 units, 9 bidders with no signs of any whales.  I was thinking to myself "finally an opportunity."  2 units didn't sell, 1 unit sold for $1, the 4th unit sold for $10, and the 5th unit was announced as a "charity" unit.  Awesome!!  Oh well, it's the reality of the business! :-[

Re: Auction Scene #1....January, 2014
« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2014, 11:48:18 PM »
Busy (kind of) week. Sale on Wednesday was only one unit. I looked the guy up. He was a contractor who was REVOKED by the license board. I thought what the heck maybe some tools. Only one other guy showed up to bid. The manager opened the locker and it was mostly crap. I ended up taking it for free. So far I have make $50.00 and see a potential for $150.00 more.  Not bad for a clean out. The best part is that the manager put me on her abandoned list. This facility is always full and she is always in a hurry to get unit cleaned out.

Today I went to a sale. One unit at one facility and one at another. Five bidders showed up. The manager was shocked as she normally only has one bidder. First unit had a cheep rolling tool box and a bunch of crap. Went for $300.00. Second facility the unit had two antique dressers with beveled mirrors, three small side tables, three upholstered chairs, a love seat,  a set of vintage wood tv trays, three trash bags and three nice packing boxes. The unit looked like no one had been in it in years. I purchased it for $350.00. The trash bags are full of linens. The boxes contained a complete set of modern dishes, a set of community silver plate silver wear, a full set of new pots and pans, a collector spoon collection, several tools and some vintage glass wear. Not a bad day. Should see a profit of 700 to 900 on all of these pieces. Not a bad day.


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