We can always tell when there's a new series of Storage Wars on television as we get lots of requests from people asking if we auction off abandoned storage units. If you don't know what I'm talking about, two stars of the show give an insight in to the process.
We get approached semi-regularly for our units to appear on the TV shows (we recently had an approach for storage in Bristol), the companies have obviously seen the success of the shows in America and thought they fancy a piece of the action. It's a lengthy enough process as it is and to 'stage' the auctions as they do on TV would take up too much time. For example, they wanted us to put aside five storage lockers for a day for them to use. When we're busy we might not even have five storage units for them to use. Also, our bad debtors don't all occur at the same time at the same facility, you might get one in our Swindon storage facility and then one in our Warrington storage site. To explain, when a customer defaults on their payment with us we obviously try our upmost to recover the payment - it is in our best interests of course. The process for this is long, time consuming and therefore expensive. Without boring you about the whole process I'll fast forward to what we do when it comes to an end or when the storage unit is "abandoned" as they say on the shows.
Very occasionally, self storage rooms are abandoned by our customers. Perhaps the customer has unexpectedly left the country or has simply decided to stop paying their bills. It’s rare, but surprisingly it does happen. In this instance we have no real option other than to sell the contents to the highest bidder (as we need the space back to rent to our customers).
Sadly, this isn't quite as entertaining as it is in the States. We conduct the auction using eBay (https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/auctionro-32). Once the auction has ended, the winner comes to site and has to clear the whole unit. As the gentleman describes in the video above, this is a lot of work but sometimes there are some real finds in the unit. How much do people bid? Well that would be telling and is obviously dependent on what is found in the storage unit / room. However, I can tell you this, we have never made the money back that has been owed on a room - EVER! So, we'd much rather our customers just kept paying or moved out when they can't afford to stay.
Our customer’s interests are always our primary concern when it comes to handling overdue accounts, and it is only in extreme circumstances that goods can be sold. Auctions are handled only by a dedicated Auctions Manager and are always dealt with sensitively and with the utmost discretion. If you have any concerns about whether your goods may be sold at an auction, please don’t hesitate to speak to a member of our team using the information on the Contact Us page.
We work closely with the people bidding on the storage as we want them to get value for money from the auctions. It's not like Storage Hunters where their own stars say the success of the show on Dave is from the lack of social skills the bidders have!
Once a room is ready to be sold at auction, it will be entered by our highly trained and trusted staff. The contents will be inspected to ensure nothing containing any form of personal data will be taken to auction. In addition to this, our auction buyers have an obligation to return to us any items that may be found to contain personal data, should they find anything.
If you are interested in joining our list of trusted and verified buyers, please send your contact details to [email protected], and we will be in touch with further details. You can also view our current auctions on our eBay account by clicking this link - https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/auctionro-32