How to Handle a Self Storage Unit Transfer

Self Storage Unit Transfer

Despite the current economic climate and the difficulties of the past several years, the self storage industry is thriving. Pinnacle Storage Properties continues to acquire, develop, and successfully manage self storage properties across the country. Self storage units have always been a great short-term solution for individuals and companies that have run out of space.

For instance, self storage can serve as a place for property investors to store furnishings and appliances or homeowners to clean out a guest room for a temporary visitor.

Generally, self storage facilities rent units over a two to six month period and offer a discount for a longer contract. It’s not uncommon for tenants to opt for this longer term because of the lower price, only to realize that they need to terminate the lease early.

Faced with this situation, a tenant might consider the possibility of a self storage lease transfer to another person. This is where things can get tricky, especially if you don’t have procedures in place to handle these transitions.

Fortunately, there are some simple ways to ensure smooth self-storage transfers from one tenant to another. In the event that your self storage facility does not allow transfers, there are several options that you can make available.

self storage unit transfer

Self Storage Unit Transfers

Whatever the motivation, due to legal and insurance reasons, if a transfer is allowable, the following steps should be taken

Determine the Needs of Both Tenants

You’ll want to talk to both tenants and find out what their needs are. Is the departing tenant eager to get out of the space? Is the incoming tenant expecting to move in right away?

You’ll want to have a discussion with each tenant so you understand what’s most important for them in the situation. This will help you create a plan that works for both parties.

For example, the outgoing tenant may need a few more days to move their belongings, whereas the incoming tenant may need to immediately get started cleaning the unit in order to start storing their belongings. This is where communication with both tenants is crucial, as you’ll need to make sure both parties are happy with the way the transfer is handled.

Create a Transfer Plan and Let Everyone Know What to Expect

Now that you know both tenants’ needs, you can create a plan to address them. There should be a specific schedule for the entire transition process. Let both tenants know the details so they can plan accordingly.

For example, if the outgoing tenant needs extra time to clean out the unit, you can let the incoming tenant know they will have to wait a few extra days. This keeps both tenants informed and reasonably happy.

Here’s a helpful checklist to get you moving in the right direction.

  • Be sure to talk to both tenants about their needs. This will help create a plan that works for everyone.
  • Be sure the departing tenant cleans out their unit completely. Otherwise, the next tenant will have to clean the unit from scratch.
  • Be sure the departing tenant has paid the remaining amount on their lease. This will alleviate financial problems for the next tenant.
  • Be sure the departing tenant has maintained their security deposit. This will help ensure the incoming tenant doesn’t have to pay extra for damages.
  • Be sure the departing tenant’s signature on the transfer form. This will help make sure the unit is officially transferred.
  • Be sure the next tenant moves their belongings in right away. This will help avoid having two tenants using same unit for a prolonged period of time.

Options if a Transfer is not Permissible

If you choose not to permit a self storage unit transfer, a tenant has the following options.

  • Have the tenant empty the unit immediately and wait out the contract.
  • Permit the tenant to switch to a month-to-month lease.
  • Suggest that the tenant share the space with a friend or family member. This will cut costs and provide needed space.
    If the tenant wants to leave quickly, have them hire a self storage clean-out service.

In this precarious economy, it’s not uncommon for a tenant to decide that they no longer want to maintain the lease on their self storage unit. If this is the case, they may decide that it would be a good idea to transfer the unit to a friend or family member who needs the space.

If self storage unit transfers are permitted at your facility, create a plan that will streamline the transition and work for everyone involved. If a transfer won’t work, there are money-saving options to keep your customers happy and mitigate problems.