Are You at Risk of a Self-Storage Break-In?
When you rent a self-storage unit, or own such a facility, you assume all of those valuables are safe. However, even if you have 24/7 security, a well-lit lot and of course the peace of mind knowing that there are scores of other units nearby, self-storage break-ins are a daily occurrence. Risk factors vary depending on location, just how “secure” that security is and the kinds of units and roll-up doors used.
For example, in Las Vegas Metro reports state there is at least one self-storage burglary every single day. According to police, the biggest issue is cheap “five dollar locks” attached to what are otherwise quality roll-up doors. Renters are depending on pocket change to protect what’s often thousands of dollars in equipment, keepsakes and furniture. However, police also warn that not even the best locks are enough to deter a committed thief.
Storage companies are scrambling to stay ahead of burglars, but without much luck. The installation of 24-hour video monitoring, alarms on every individual unit and gate codes haven’t been able to stop thieves. Metro Police say that the theft numbers have plateaued in recent years, but on average there are still about 40 reported burglaries per month.
Even worse, police readily admit that self-storage break-ins are tough to solve, with Lieutenant Larry Spinosa noting, “Chances are some of your stuff will be gone forever.” In less secure facilities, renters may not even realize a theft has happened until hours or even days later—and there’s no camera evidence to provide any clues. What’s a renter to do? Self-storage managers say you should know what you have in storage, put it on video tape, get a good lock and make sure insurance is in place.
Tips for Renters
Unfortunately, renters are simply out of luck if they’re the victim of a break-in. However, researching self-storage facilities can stack the odds in your favor. Take a look at the quality of the roll-up doors, ask about security measures and know how many break-ins happen at the facility per month and year. To play it safe, load your most treasured possessions first so they’re not as easy to reach or see. Burglars are opportunists, and even after they get inside a unit they’ll still go for what’s most accessible.
However, there’s still no substitute for a great overhead door, bolt-proof lock and renter’s or homeowner’s insurance that fully covers self-storage units. Talk with your insurance provider and make sure you’re in the clear before renting a unit. Remember that preventative measures and reading of the fine print can help you avoid a big headache if a thief zeroes in on your storage unit.
This entry was posted on Tuesday, May 13th, 2014 at 5:51 pm and is filed under Blog. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
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