Overview of the industry.
Australia’s self-storage industry has evolved from humble beginnings in the 1970’s to an industry that today boasts over 1,000 storage facilities across the country and is worth over 1 billion dollars. The industry has also matured beyond the leasing of small spaces for personal use to include speciality needs for wine storage, climate-controlled units, records management and ancillary services. The industry’s largest renter group is individuals who make up 65% and businesses make up 35% of tenants.
How then did a humble industry become what it is today? The National Australia Bank (NAB) published a report on self-storage in Australia that highlights three factors driving the growth in the industry:
- Increase in customer awareness – as the industry matured and established itself in Australia, facility owners increased their marketing budgets. Primarily focusing on online marketing strategies, it has resulted in greater awareness and appreciation of the industry’s offerings – long term and short term – through online channels. Furthermore, someone knows someone who has used a self-storage facility which perpetuates the awareness in the community.
- Changes to living arrangements – the ‘Great Australian Dream’ is synonymous with having a large backyard and garage which would have provided ample space for storage of personal belongings. The increase in higher density living and greater urbanisation of our capital cities means this is no longer the case. Moreover, ‘Baby Boomers’ who are downsizing from their traditional homestay are also leading the charge for the increase in demand.
- Changing lifestyles and habits – a younger generation with a more flexible approach to housing, love for travel and a flexible lifestyle appreciate the convenience of non-permanent self-storage.
Other Growing Sources of Demand for Self-Storage Include:
- Safety and security with the presence of 27/7 CCTV and personalised entry via PIN codes.
- The growth of e-commerce businesses needing space for their inventory.
- Business customers don’t need to sign a long commercial lease and can add or remove space as their needs arise.
- De-cluttering a home in preparation for sale.
- Storing household goods while undertaking home renovations.