Economists have long considered the self-storage industry to be recession-resistant, meaning there is high demand for storage units even when the national economy takes a dive. In fact, economic recessions can actually increase self-storage demand, as rising home, office and rent prices force many people to downsize and find alternative places to store their belongings. As of early 2022, estimates suggest that most self-storage business owners maintain occupancy rates that hover somewhere between about 88% and 94%.
While material and construction costs tend to rise year after year, there are many different variables that help determine self-storage building price. What are some of the factors that can help you figure out the total cost to build a self-storage facility?
How much you are going to pay for materials depends on certain variables, including the current cost of materials (the market price of steel) and what company you use to secure them. Mini Storage Outlet’s Regency Steel mini storage buildings currently go for between about $8.50 and $14.00 per square foot depending on the size and scope of a project. However, you may find quite a bit of variation in self-storage construction cost per square foot
from one supplier to the next.
Some buyers also face expenses relating to the land where they plan to erect their self-storage facilities. Depending on the condition of your build site, you may need to consider additional expenses relating to bad soil, accessibility, utilities and so on. A civil engineer should be able to assess your proposed build site and give you a sense of any repairs you may have to make to make it usable. As far as the site, itself, if you do not already have a site in mind, most recommend selecting one that falls somewhere between about 2.5 and 5 acres in size.
Depending on the climate in your area, you may also need to consider expenses relating to storm drainage. Everything from roof pitch to gutters and downspouts help determine the effectiveness of your drainage system, and if you live in an area prone to considerable precipitation, you’ll want to account for these costs.
As you might imagine, a complex self-storage building with numerous storage units and customizations will cost considerably more than a basic facility with a dozen or so units. Other variables that help determine final costs include the doors you choose for your storage units, whether you insulate your mini storage building and whether you add any special aesthetic elements.
How much it costs to erect your building will depend on the size of the project, how complex it is, whether it involves insulation and the contractor you choose to work with, among other considerations. Most contractors should be able to give you a ballpark figure of how much they plan to charge per square foot to erect your building.
There is no simple way to determine the total cost to build a self-storage facility. However, by securing materials quotes, figuring out where you plan to build and knowing what features and storage units you want to include, you should be able to develop a good idea of your self-storage facility project costs – and plan and budget accordingly.
Current estimates suggest that self-storage facilities generate somewhere between about $350,000 and $800,000 a year. By finding an area with high demand, offering services and perks your renters want, and taking steps to keep costs low, you should be able to erect a self-storage facility that creates a steady stream of revenue for years, or even generations, to come.