Author Topic: Storage facility owner bidding on units. Conflict of interest?  (Read 1496 times)

Offline Travis

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There is a facility owner here in Houston that bids on units for sale at his own facilities. He has 7 locations in Houston and he travels to each one to bid against us. Example: This manager and I were bidding on the same unit. It was a nice unit that had 6 brand new A/C compressors that you could see,there were also about 20 other boxes. I knew they were worth money but I didn't know exactly how much they would resell for nor exactly how many were there. I pushed the unit pretty high and he kept going. He won the unit. I was talking to him a little later and he told me he would have went up to 4 thousand dollars on the unit. Turns out, there was around 60K in a/c compressors in the unit but you would have never known that without moving things and opening boxes.

My argument is that anyone who has access to the unit shouldn't be allowed to bid on it.

Does anyone have another view point?

 

Offline sbell111

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Re: Storage facility owner bidding on units. Conflict of interest?
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2011, 07:49:39 AM »
I completely agree that it's not fair for an owner to use information that he received poking around in a unit.  THat being said, our state law specifically states that owners are able to bid.

Offline terry

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Re: Storage facility owner bidding on units. Conflict of interest?
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2011, 08:04:00 AM »
We had same thing at two locations in Covington, ga. Owner bidding on units. There were over 200 units between between the 2 locations. They were selling 30 units a day every Wed and Fri. So everybody just put up with at first. He could buy them all. At the 4th sale we began to notice that a newbie had been buying a lot of units. 1500 to 2500 a auction. So we decided to spy on him at pay up time. 2k bill and he hands over 100. We spread the word. And haven't been back.

Offline Travis

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Re: Storage facility owner bidding on units. Conflict of interest?
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2011, 05:12:37 PM »
Yeah, that's scandalous. The problem is that there is no law enforcement agency enforcing this kind of behavior. What can you really do? In my situation, I wanted to protest to the auctioneer but, bottom line, she services 7 of his facilities. She is not going to bite the hand that feeds her.

Offline Travis

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Re: Storage facility owner bidding on units. Conflict of interest?
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2011, 08:21:03 PM »
Yeah, they do because we list them all.  Believe me, there are a few facilities that I wish I could leave off.


Offline sbell111

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Re: Storage facility owner bidding on units. Conflict of interest?
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2011, 09:06:38 AM »
Yeah, that's scandalous. The problem is that there is no law enforcement agency enforcing this kind of behavior. What can you really do? In my situation, I wanted to protest to the auctioneer but, bottom line, she services 7 of his facilities. She is not going to bite the hand that feeds her.
The real problem is that while what they are doing is unethical, it is probably not illegal.  In our state, an owner is legally allowed to enter a unit that has gone into default.  The law also allows him to bid on units if he wishes.

Offline Ironman

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Re: Storage facility owner bidding on units. Conflict of interest?
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2011, 12:36:43 PM »
I'd dare say that often enough the facility owners or even managers check out defaulted units the day before the auction. I'm in N. Ga, North of Atlanta and VERY SELDOM do I see a unit owners lock being cut off when the auction starts. Almost 90% of the locks had already been cut AND put inside the unit so you know the managers have been in there already. Thats when I get very suspicious and actually bid less. Yes I lose some potentially good lockers but if the owners and managers have pulled out some BLING already then that sucks. No way to tell for sure but I'd bet it happens more than we know.

Offline MovieMan

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Re: Storage facility owner bidding on units. Conflict of interest?
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2011, 12:47:34 PM »
No way to tell for sure but I'd bet it happens more than we know.

Yep, no way to tell, but if it only happens in 1 in 10 or 20, it might be the one you get that is then a bit short of the original goodies.

The thing that I think is funny that one of the auctioneers big in my area makes a big deal of the fact that they (the auctioneer) cut the locks.  Well, consider this.

1) the property manager cuts off the original lkr owner lock.
2) the property manager can go in and look, take, whatever.
3) the property manager comes out and puts a lock on.
4) the auctioneer comes along and cuts that lock off....he doesn't know it wasn't the original.


The worst case I have seen of this happened when another regular buyer and I made a point of watching the locks get cut off. This was being done by the property owner AT THE AUCTION, he made a big deal of this. 

Guess he didn't realize we were watching carefully. Every lock he cut (10 of them) was of the same brand, quality of construction and the brand he sold in his office. He had been inside on all lockers, come back out and put his locks on after doing who knows what in the lkr.
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Offline moparornocar72

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Re: Storage facility owner bidding on units. Conflict of interest?
« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2011, 01:52:54 PM »
I think it is okay for employees but not the owner, cuz he is basically getting a free unit if you think about it. I have been to a few auction where employees (maintenance, desk people) would occasionally bid and I was okay with it because they had to pay for the unit just like we did.
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