The Rise of Self-Storage

Density, Divorce, Death and Dislocation are what we term the 4Ds driving demand for storage.

Continuous urbanisation coupled with rising real estate costs mean larger population centred in key city centres. Trends also point towards smaller and shared work and living spaces, resulting in overall shrinking of personal space. As a result, storage will grow to become second nature or a necessity, in many instances.

As families grow and continue to live together, there is need to make space for a new member of the family either thru birth or marriage. Round the world, millennials are starting to live at home with their parents due to rising costs of living. This reverses how the generations before them have been living.

Storage is relatively low-cost vs renting a larger work or living space to accommodate your items. There is also the idea of decluttering personal space. Startup storage providers such as ourselves are breaking conventions by offering pay-per-item storage coupled with transportation so customers are not locked in to long-term contracts for large storage spaces, or having to deal with separate providers. Having said that, the rise of logistics players have helped enable the process of self-storage for the bigger players.

Divorce or a break-up is a disruptor in many sense. Couples who get displaced often have to find quick solutions to living apart. Temporary living arrangements result in the need to move away personal items until such time a solution can be found. Divorce also usually sees living spaces being swapped from a larger to a smaller unit.

As the population ages, we are faced with the possibility of the deceased leaving many items behind on their passing. Some, while not valuable, provide memories for the families of the deceased. Items with sentimental values are often not discarded, yet they do take up space in the home of the living. Many have chosen to tuck these away in storage, where it is safe and yet close enough to be accessible in time of need.

Dislocation has now become commonplace for the world citizens of today. In North America where many are mobile by nature, particularly USA, storage is second nature. Europe has also been following suit, causing a rising demand for self-storage. Over in Asia in countries such as Singapore and Hong Kong, expat movements are often correlated to the economic climate. Whether they arrive or depart, the use of storage is quite commonplace. Dislocation is also caused by migration, where storage provides a temporary solution.

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